When You Were Mine

For Ages: 14 and up
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In this intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told, Romeo’s original intended—Juliet’s cousin Rosaline—tells her side of the tale.

What’s in a name, Shakespeare? I’ll tell you: Everything.
Rosaline knows that she and Rob are destined to be together. Rose has been waiting for years for Rob to kiss her—and when he finally does, it’s perfect. But then Juliet moves back to town. Juliet, who used to be Rose’s best friend. Juliet, who now inexplicably hates her. Juliet, who is gorgeous, vindictive, and a little bit crazy...and who has set her sights on Rob. He doesn’t even stand a chance.
Rose is devastated over losing Rob to Juliet. This is not how the story was supposed to go. And when rumors start swirling about Juliet’s instability, her neediness, and her threats of suicide, Rose starts to fear not only for Rob’s heart, but also for his life. Because Shakespeare may have gotten the story wrong, but we all still know how it ends….
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  • Simon Pulse | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442433137 | 
  • May 2012 | 
  • Grades 9 and up
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List Price $16.99
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Rebecca Serle on When You Were Mine

An intensely romantic, modern recounting of the greatest love story ever told—narrated by the girl Romeo was supposed to love.

Read an Excerpt

Prologue

Shakespeare got it wrong. His most famous work, and he completely missed the mark. You know the one I’m talking about. Star-crossed lovers. Ill-fated romance. Torn apart by family and circumstance. It’s the perfect love story. To have someone who loves you so much they would actually die for you.

But the thing people never remember about Romeo and Juliet is that it’s not a love story; it’s a drama. In fact, Romeo and Juliet isn’t even the original title of the play. It was called The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. Tragedy. Everyone dies for this love that, in my... see more
Scene One

“This is so not how it was supposed to go.”

I crack one eye open and sneak the covers down over my head. Charlie is standing above my bed, arms crossed, a bag of Swedish Fish in one hand and a Starbucks cup in the other.

I blink and glance at the clock on my nightstand: 6:35.

“Jesus. It’s the middle of the night.”

Charlie lets out a dramatic sigh. “Please. I’m ten minutes early.”

I rub my eyes and sit up. It’s already light out, but that’s not too surprising, given that it’s August in Southern California.... see more

Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions for When You Were Mine By Rebecca Serle 1.Consider Olivia’s question: “If you could know your entire life now . . . would you?” How would each character answer this question? Would his or her response change from the beginning to the end of the book? How would you decide? Would your answer have been different in your past? 2.In the beginning of the book, Rosaline struggles to make things different with Rob, and the result is awkward. What exactly is the problem? Is Rosaline trying to escape fate? Was it not meant to be or are they not trying hard enough? 3.In the culmination of the novel we witness a variety of perspectives on the debate between chance versus fate as a handful of characters, including Olivia, Rosaline, and Rosaline’s mother, offer their opinions. How would you describe each character’s judgment on the idea of fate? Do you believe the author sides with one character’s opinion more than another? If so, which character and why? 4.Physical locations play a significant role in the story. For example, Rosaline and Rob live next door to each other; the girls use Malibu as an escape; and the cliffs become a site of friendship, romance, and tragedy. In what ways do physical settings influence the plot of the novel? How do the physical locations of scenes affect the themes of the novel, including those of chance, free will, and fate? Wh see more

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