Read Something Wicked by Alan Gratz Online


The Scottish Highland Festival in Tennessee is all set to begin, but there’s one problem: Duncan MacRae, founder of the games, has just been murdered. The police arrested Malcolm, Duncan’s son, but is he really the killer? Horatio Wilkes, for one, has doubts. Horatio is attending the festival with his childhood friend Mac, Mac’s super-hot yet controlling girlfriend Beth, aThe Scottish Highland Festival in Tennessee is all set to begin, but there’s one problem: Duncan MacRae, founder of the games, has just been murdered. The police arrested Malcolm, Duncan’s son, but is he really the killer? Horatio Wilkes, for one, has doubts. Horatio is attending the festival with his childhood friend Mac, Mac’s super-hot yet controlling girlfriend Beth, and geeky sidekick Banks. Once there, he quickly finds himself caught up in the cutthroat world of the Scottish games, where fair is foul and foul is fair . . . and his best friend may yet turn out to be his worst enemy. Join Horatio as he navigates the sinister world of Shakespeare’s Macbeth in this fun and clever follow-up to Something Rotten....

Title : Something Wicked
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780803736665
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 265 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Something Wicked Reviews

  • Cindy
    2019-03-28 16:58

    Take pulp fiction. Add Shakespeare. Mix in a blender. Stir & serve for a delightfully fun & frothy read.This is the second in Alan Gratz's Horatio Wilkes series. This time Horatio's off to the mountains of North Carolina to attend the Scottish Highland Games with friends from school. But with cut-throat (pun intended) piping, dance, and athletic competitions and shady under-the-table land grabs in the offing, it's definitely not all fun and games.If you're at all familiar with the Scottish Play, the who done it isn't going to come as any suprise in this one. But the pleasure in reading lies not in finding out who did it but in how our hero Horatio does the finding out. Gratz's dialogue is filled with snark and is laugh-out loud funny. Nothing gets past Horatio and it's a joy to watch how he puts all the pieces together to solve the puzzle. I was pleased to see that the characters in Horatio's second outing were unaware of the play that they were living. In the first book, the entire cast of characters were involved in putting on a production of ROSENCRANTZ AND GUILDENSTERN and still failed to recognize themselves and their predicaments. It was all a bit too twee.I do have a few concerns about some of the jokes and references being over the heads of teens. Seriously, how many teens know who Dirk Diggler is? (A reference to Horatio's friend, Mac, and his perpetual habit of going commando under his kilt.) It appeared on the very first page and threw me out of the story a bit. I tried to think of teens of my acquaintance I'd actually feel comfortable questioning about this and gave it up as a bad job--there's just no way to ask without coming across as "that extremely creepy librarian." I also wondered how many would be familiar with Braveheart & William Wallace. I'll give the characters in the novel a pass as they're seriously into all things Scottish. (I'm having flashbacks to that SNL skit--"If it isn't Scottish, it's crap!") But how many teen readers will be aware of it? I'm concerned the material is a bit dated for contemporary teens and, erm, outside the realm of their expeirences(30-something librarians being another matter entirely).Given the sexual references, the sheer quantity of blood, and the source material, I'm thinking this one's best aimed at older teens. That being said, I loved both of the Horatio books and would love to see them incorporated into high school classrooms' curricula when studying the Bard. Shakespeare and noir detective novels--two great genres for the price of one. Can't wait to see what's coming next, though from psychic predictions from Madame Hecate in this one, I'm putting my money on THE TEMPEST. Stay tuned.

  • Danae Armstrong
    2019-04-01 21:54

    i read this book when the librarian was getting suspicious of me and my friends. She was about to come around to kick us out(again) when i grabbbed this random blue book and started reading the first page. After the first page i wanted to keep reading, so i checked it out. i loved it. i read it all in one night(A SCHOOL NIGHT) better to say that when class came around i was catatonic, and couldnt hear a word the teachers were saying.But the book was great and the ending was a little sad, i almost cried.

  • Heather
    2019-04-19 21:03

    Rating A-Review I gave the first book in this series, Something Rotten (a re-telling of Hamlet), an A+, but this book only got an A-. Sure, it's still the grading equivalent of five stars, but this one wasn't perfect.You still got Horatio's snark and wit and great one-liners:"...Beth had changed into more formal cosplay: a white long-sleeved peasant blouse, white-trimmed blue vest, and a skirt in her family tartan with tall argyle socks to match.'Waiting tables tonight at the Salty Wench?' I asked Beth.'Spending the night with your right hand again?' she threw back," (p. 47).You still got Horatio figuring out the crime and being unflappably cool throughout (even after getting beat up by a bunch of bag pipe players who are far more scary than that description can make them sound), but there were a few things that were off, in my opinion.First, and this is kind of my big drawback with all murder-mysteries series... why the easy set-up? I remember watching Murder She Wrote with my grandma and saying, "I'd never be friends with that lady--people always end up dead around her." I thought Gratz should have at least given a shout-out to the fact that in what appears to be (chronologically speaking in the life of the narrator) about six months, why he's now found himself in the middle of two huge family killing frenzies. Maybe Horatio needs to pick friends who aren't so messed up. It might just be me, but I feel, with Gratz's strong writing style that comes across as sarcastic and wry, his assumption that his readers are smart and with him during the book, that this topic should have gotten a little play. If nothing else, maybe a quick line about, "Who am I? Jessica Tandy?"The other thing that struck me as problematic (and Gratz was kind of hamstringed by the Bard on this one) was that Mac was a tough character to care about, and for the set up of this book, you kind of need to like him. Sure, you're not supposed to like Beth, I get that, so he did a pretty good job of making her rude and condescending to Horatio, but Mac didn't work for me.The primary problem is that you need to feel (as a reader) that Horatio and Mac are good friends and that's why Horatio wouldn't and shouldn't ever suspect Mac of committing the crimes. That's essential for the "mystery" aspect of this book to work. Unfortunately, Mac comes across as a giant douche bag (he doesn't even play up the "my grandpa died and my uncle's in jail and that's why I'm acting like a jerk" angle like Hamilton did in Something Rotten to explain his behavior), so the friendship seems forced.I know that Shakespeare created a character who is hen-pecked by Lady Macbeth, so Gratz had to follow in those foot steps and make Mac to be the modern day equivalent (i.e., whipped), but that doesn't deny that he also needs to be a friend of Horatio so that you care about him too. If you also care about Mac as a character then you won't suspect him either, but it was too caricatured, in my opinion, and Mac was such an obvious suspect (apart from the fact that this book follows the plot of Macbeth precisely without any plot twists). But, even if you've never read the play, Mac and Beth are too obvious.Gratz could have made Mac just slightly more likable and the story would have benefitted. If nothing else, maybe a quick line behind Beth's back where Mac would say, "Who does she think she is? Hillary Clinton?" to create a solidarity, a bromance of sorts, between Mac and Horatio so the relationship was more believable.Those two things aside, this is still a fantastic addition to Gratz's canon. It's another one that is a great intro to Shakespeare's material. This book is pretty likely to have a tough entry into school curriculum because of some language and generalized underage sordidness, but it's still a good read that should be getting attention.

  • Becky
    2019-04-10 18:06

    Gratz, Alan. 2008. Something Wicked: A Horatio Wilkes Mystery.Horatio Wilkes is back in his second adventure, Something Wicked. We first met our mystery-solving hero (who is wonderfully snarky) in Something Rotten. A modern adaptation of Shakespeare's Hamlet set in Denmark, Tennessee. In this second adventure, we have a modern-day spin on Shakespeare's Macbeth set on Mount Birnam during the Scottish Highland Fair. (And although this is his second book, it is not necessary to have read Something Rotten in order to enjoy Something Wicked.)So who are the stars of Something Wicked? Well, there's Mac (Joe Mackenzie), Beth (Mac's girl friend with attitude), Banks (Wallace Banks, cousin and friend to Mac), Duncan (Mac's grandfather, owner of the mountain and founder of the fair), Mal (Duncan's son and Mac's uncle), Mona (Desdemona, Horatio's older sister), and Megan Sternwood (Horatio's love interest from the Macduff clan). Of course, there are many others as well including a fortune-telling road-side psychic named Madame Hecate.Here's how the novel begins: History is full of guys who did stupid things for women. Paris started the Trojan War over Helen. Mark Antony abandoned Rome for Cleopatra. John Lennon gave up the Beatles for Yoko Ono. You can say I'm a dreamer, but they're not the only ones. Like my friend, Joe Mackenzie: He was about to jump off a five-story building just to impress a girl. "Come on, you wuss!" Mac's girlfriend Beth yelled. "If you don't jump off that tower, you're not getting any more of this!" She lifted her sweater up over her head, showing her bra and her extraordinary breasts to Mac, me, Banks, and the five or six other people milling around Kangaroo Kevin's Bungee Jump-O-Rama in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. They actually inspired a small round of applause. I won't say what they did to me, but Beth's fun cushions certainly inspired Mac. With a Scottish war cry he charged the end of the platform and jumped headfirst, screaming all the way down. His kilt opened like a daisy as he fell, and everyone saw his stamen. (1)This group of friends is on their way to the Highland Fair. (Horatio is the only one NOT wearing a kilt.) But before they arrive, they stop and several have their fortunes read by a woman who calls herself Madame Hecate. An activity that proves rather fateful and which sets the tone for the book. Mac is told that he will compete in the decathlon, he will win, and he will become king of the mountain. Banks is told that he is "lesser than your friend, but greater" and "not so happy, yet much happier" and that he will one day own the mountain. These "prophecies" set off a chain of events...Something Wicked is a mystery. The mystery in this case? Who murdered Duncan Macrae? The man, the founder of the Fair and highly respected and beloved by all the clans, is found murdered in his tent on opening night. Horatio is the one who discovers the body. Who sees the name 'Malcolm' written in blood. Who reports the crime to the police. Who becomes friends with Sheriff Wood. It is Horatio who starts to piece together just who had the motive, means, and opportunity. He may not like being in the center of this unfolding mystery. (Especially as he discovers he has his own role to play in solving the case.) But Horatio plays a crucial role in bringing justice about.I loved so many things about this one. It's a smart novel. Great writing. Good humor. Interesting twists.

  • April
    2019-04-10 22:51

    Horatio Wilkes makes his follow up appearance in Something Wicked (his first being in Something Rotten). In this hard to put down tale, Horatio is attending the Scottish Highland Fair with his best friends Mac and Banks. Things go horribly wrong that first night, with the brutal murder of the game's founder, Duncan MacRae. Duncan's son's name, Malcolm, is written in his father's blood right beside his dead body, making all indications that Malcolm is the killer.However, something just doesn't add up and Horatio is going to find exactly what is going on. His best friend, Mac, and his "evil" girlfriend Beth, are acting even stranger than normal. Both Mac's and Beth's fathers, who just happen to be business partners, are acting very suspiciously. Exactly what is going on and who is really the murderer? Horatio plans to find out and hopes to make a mysterious acting "pixie girl" his.Something Wicked is a wonderfully written and entertaining story. Considered to be geared toward young adult, I would put the age to be 14 and up. I think that boys of this age would especially enjoy the story. As just a warning, there are some sexual overtures (though nothing remotely explicit) and swearing. That being said, I greatly enjoyed Mr. Gratz's work and found him to be a wonderful storyteller. The characters were very well written and I especially enjoyed the character of Horatio - he was intelligent, kind and belivable. The story was very smooth and hard to put down. For those who have not read Something Rotten, the first in this series, you can easily understand Something Wicked and not feel lost. I can say this with confidence, as I did not read Something Rotten prior to this and had absolutely no trouble getting into this story. I recommend Something Wicked to anyone looking for an entertaining story and I greatly look forward to reading more by this author!*overall rating: 4/5

  • Faith
    2019-04-08 22:50

    This book is just as good, if not better, than Something Rotten! It is a YA retelling of the Shakespeare classic Macbeth. It's clever, fast paced, and funny (as funny as a tragedy can be)! Teens will appreciate the biting wit of the narrator Horatio Wilkes, and the simplification of themes, plot, and key speeches from Macbeth. I would personally feel uncomfortable reading this aloud in a classroom due to its pervasive use of sexual innuendo/ obvious sexual content. Of course Shakespeare uses the same technique abundantly, but at least they're easier to skim over when the kids are less familiar with the language. However, I think that students could get a lot out of this book and would maybe let them read silently in class or at home for homework. It's a good read in its own right, and a powerful tool to enhance comprehension of the original Macbeth. The book could also be used to improve students' inferencing, and close reading skills. He who pays the most attention to the details will figure out the mystery fastest!

  • Benjamin
    2019-04-05 20:06

    Having enjoyed the previous volume, Something Rotten, I was initially hesitant that the character of Horatio would be transplanted to other Shakespeare settings. But in the author's note, he states that he found that his Horatio, surname Wilkes, would actually have been part of the MacDuff clan, a neat way to pull him into the tale of Macbeth. The book contains some obvious set-ups, some terrible punning, and some potentially ill-judged commercial/pop-culture references (a sure way to make a text quickly seem dated). Most mystifying was the way in which a character that putatively was raised on pulp mystery novels wouldn't have noticed the homage to The Big Sleep he wound up in, or why the author felt the need to crowbar the homage into the story. It was quick and fun, though, and I felt there was a confident and appropriate weight placed upon the murders, which both befitted the source material and the age of the main characters.Toward the end, there seems to be a hint that the next volume will be based around A Midsummer Night's Dream. If so, I remain intrigued.

  • Leanna
    2019-04-06 19:07

    Something Wicked is the second entry in Alan Gratz’s Horatio Wilkes Mystery series. In this retelling of Shakespeare's play Macbeth, Horatio attends the Scottish Highland Games with his childhood friend, Mac, and Mac’s demanding girlfriend, Beth. When Mac’s grandfather is murdered, Horatio joins forces with the local police to solve the crime. Horatio is a bright and witty hero, but sometimes he reads much older than a junior in high school—particularly when he casually throws off references to Shakespeare and Freud. Perhaps this maturity is why his parents allow him to go alone to the Highland Games for the weekend, rent a room in a seedy motel, and solve murders. Overall, Something Wicked is a fast and entertaining read, but the light tone does mean the murders can come as a bit of a shock.

  • Teena R.
    2019-03-29 17:08

    Solid 4 stars! I'd so very much love to read his further adventure. Why are there no more Horatio books? Whyyyyyyy?Horatio Wilkes returned in his second outing as an amateur detective. This time, he went to a Highland fair with his friend Mac and his girlfriend Beth and yes, something very wicked his way come. The mystery is well-done and the atmosphere is very tense. The Shakespeare drop is great. My favorite is the "Out, out Spot!" Horatio is still his charming smart-mouth, wise-ass self and I was absolutely devastated at the ending. I've never really read Macbeth so I'm not sure whether it's unavoidable or not but damn, it broke my heart. Seems like the author has a plan in mind for next book though. With the prediction of "something in summer night" and "a girl with magician dad". Sadly, it will never come true. T^T

  • Alex
    2019-04-05 21:01

    A retelling, or rather an interpretation of Macbeth, painted against the backdrop of the Great Smoky Mountains, is the theme of this fun mystery. Certainly for slightly older readers as underage drinking and sex are prevalant yet not in great detail, Horation Wilkes is at the Highland Games to root on his friends in their competitions when he discovers a dead body. Wilkes is right in the midst of the mystery and finds himself a target. Great description of the vast contrast in the crass commercialization of the Pigeon Forge area and the striking beauty of the mountains, the author has a lot of fun with his characters. And the Shakespearean influence is very subtle; there are a couple of things that do not fit, such as American teens using words like "snogging, shillings" etc etc.31/2 stars

  • Akilah
    2019-04-15 16:08

    2.5 stars, rounding upI finished this last night, forgot to post about it here, and, when I sat down to type this up, forgot how I felt about it. Which is to say that I liked it well enough while reading, but it was kind of forgettable beyond that.Here's the thing, though: If Gratz wrote more of these, I would read every single one. He integrates and updates all of the elements and characters really well. And I will be forever amused that Horatio's sisters are all heroines from other Shakespeare plays, and Gratz includes nods to their plays as well (Mona mentions a jealous soldier boyfriend; Kate can outargue/outsmart anyone). Also! Gratz hinted at a Tempest story in Horatio's future.So, you know. Three stars.

  • Ahamm14
    2019-04-04 23:10

    My book is called Something Rotten, written by Alan M. Gratz. It is a mystery book intended for young adults. In the book we start out at a festival. It is an all weekend festival with a lot of Irish families attending. On the first night it is a tradition for someone to light the bonfire. The man that was supposed to light it was no where to be found. A couple people walked to the mans tent to see if he was there. The main character opens to tent to find the man dead and full of lacerations from a knife. On the side of the tent the is a message written in the blood of the deceased man. I recommend this book to anybody who likes mystery books. It challenges even the best detectives with all of its chaotic twists.

  • Katrina
    2019-04-09 16:05

    I love a well done retelling of a classic, and this is one of the best. Gratz shows great ingenuity and creativity in this modern day spin to the MacBeth tragedy. Seriously clever. So maybe Horatio is a bit too perfect, but it he is still very much a teenager (ie. throwing out glib and sarcastic remarks at practically every single adult that he meets). Unless you have actually read MacBeth, some of the funnier references will be lost, but you'll still enjoy the humor and the suspense. This book actually made me want to go back and read the original. It's been so long I didn't remember all the details!This book (and Something Rotten) would be great in a classroom to do a compare and contrast.

  • Cathy (Ms. Sweeney)
    2019-04-22 16:57

    Good YA contemporary mystery, taking place over a the course of a few days at a local Celtic Festival; kilts, bagpipes, dancing and murder are all part and parcel of this book (which appears to be part of a series). Interesting characters, whom I am looking forward to reading more about in the future. While the title was one of the reasons I opened up this book (it came across my desk at the library), fortunately I didn't think about the title too deeply until I'd finished reading the book. Although it is quite fitting.

  • Cathrine Bonham
    2019-04-05 23:58

    Alan M. Gratz delivers another awesome modern murder mystery interpritaion of a Classic Shakespeare play. This time he is tackling Macbeth and it was so good. I loved All of the quotes and all of the little touches that are taken from the play but are so well hidden that you have to think about them before you see the connection. Oh and the pay off at the end. It is amazing. And the mystery is so well ploted that even having read the play you still won't be able to guess who done it. Not without doubts anyway.

  • Books Ahoy
    2019-04-16 23:03

    I loved this book! It's a modern YA retelling of MacBeth twisted into a mystery story. I think its really cool how Alan Gratz turned the story of MacBeth into a mystery/whodunit novel. I know what MacBeth is about and this books follows the orginal story pretty great. The stories are just about parallel. I loved the romance between Horatio and his girlfriend but it was also a real shocker what happened to her. I liked how you can see the transformation of Mac's character throughtout the book. I loved the mystery/detective aspect of the novel. This is a really great book!

  • Alexandra B
    2019-03-25 22:47

    Throughout my book so far, it has been ever interesting. The main characters name is Horatio. He is at a festival for the "Highland games." His friends family brought him to join along with other friends also. About 1/4 through the book horatio's friend Mac's father is shot leaving many people very distraught.

  • Emma
    2019-04-23 22:42

    I'm a total Shakespeare nerd, so anytime there is a book based on one of his plays that looks good I try to read it. This book and its predecessor, "Something Rotten" are great mysteries based on the stories of Hamlet ("Something Rotten") and Macbeth ("Something Wicked"). The narrator is smart and funny, and the plots are interesting.

  • Lindsay
    2019-04-24 00:05

    I had very high expectations whilst reading this book. I love Something Rotten, and I assumed I'd like this one as much or more. That is partially true. I definitely didn't like it more, and maybe not as much, but it was still fabulous. And the ending! Very different from Something Rotten. I still found myself laughing out loud.

  • Denise Ashlock-Phillips
    2019-04-10 20:05

    I loved this book! It was simply masterful to watch how Alan Gratz weaved the Shakespeare into his story. I would definitely recommend this book and I can see it easily being used in the classroom in conjunction with the actual Shakespeare!

  • Vickie T
    2019-04-20 21:45

    Macbeth set in Tennessee. Duncan is killed just before the Highland Games begin. Horatio is at the games with his friend Mac and is drawn into the investigation. Laughed at the Macbeth references. Started a little slow.

  • Madeline Smoot
    2019-04-23 22:56

    Nothing wicked happens to Horatio unless you count murder, sabotage, and a gang of punk bagpipers. Horatio will have to keep his wits (and the flaps of his kilt) together if he hopes to survive the weekend. A clever and snarky retelling of Macbeth that is just as compelling as the original.

  • Ganiyat
    2019-03-29 20:53

    Could't put it down;It was pretty hilarious.^_^

  • Kerri
    2019-04-16 18:11

    Modern day plot with a Shakespearean twist.

  • Avry Griffin
    2019-04-02 19:11

    I thought it was a good book about mystery,friends,and murder

  • Elisheva Rina
    2019-04-09 20:53

    This book is "it was ok" because basically everything that happens in Macbeth happens in this book. The only surprise is the Macduff horror...

  • Eden
    2019-04-16 21:00

    Such a great book. Kinda sad, because it involves tragedy and betrayal, and why can't poor Horatio get the girl in the end? Boo hoo. Anyhoo, a great book overall.

  • Gwennie
    2019-04-14 17:12

    A fantastic twist on Macbeth, and a gripping mystery.

  • Brooke
    2019-03-30 17:53

    I loved, loved, loved this book!

  • Kimberly
    2019-04-10 21:57

    Enjoyed it as much as the first in the series.