"Ryane presents each child as an individual. Through these deftly drawn portrayals, readers get a sense of their personalities and challenges. She tells them that if they can do Shakespeare, they can do anything. Teaching Will is a light, fun and engaging book that, in the end, is also quite moving."
"Teaching Will is a really good memoir because it embraces the joy and the sorrows in teaching without minimizing either. It's neither saccharine nor pitiful. Maybe I can learn to be like that."
"I found myself moved to tears by one sentence and laughing out loud at the next....Here's my recommendation: Read Teaching Will. I promise you'll have a good time -- and you might even be inspired by an urge to try something you've never attempted."
Personal essay: "Finding a way to direct her own happy ending"
"In her lively memoir reaching back to moments in her own acting career, Ryane manages both to be funny and not take herself too seriously, though the respect she instilled in the children is remarkable: respect for her direction, for each other, and for the genius of Shakespeare."
"Ryane brings a wry tone to this highly enjoyable memoir....It’s inspiring how Ryane helped these kids step up to Shakespeare, and their journal excerpts are often hilarious....Overall, a bravura performance. A charming memoir that will amuse and inspire parents, teachers, and Shakespeare fans."
Interview with Lisa Napoli: "How teaching Shakespeare to middle schoolers transformed a struggling actor"
Podcast: "William Shakespeare and Kids??"
"Ryane’s writing is wonderful, and I would love to see Teaching Will as a movie one day."
"A wonderful book for parents and teachers as well as teens....Inspiring and engaging."
"The tale is full of compassion, humour and the stuff of life that details a series of rattling disappointments and yet whose lasting impression is one of hope....There is great wisdom in these pages...and a great understanding of children and their slow and often bumpy road to maturity."
"Hilarious and touching....It’s a book that teachers, parents, actors, child psychologists (Ryane shares fascinating looks into the minds of these kids) and, of course, lovers of Shakespeare will enjoy, especially anyone who had the joy of discovering Shakespeare as a child and wants to relive that discovery."
"The voice is wonderful, totally free of pretension, but always thick with empathy and compassion....And she's hilarious. I laughed out loud time and again. The reader feels as though s/he's listening to a tale being told by a master teller and it's a great gift."
"Waiting for the Fruit" by Mel Ryane
sidebar photo by Jay Sharman Photography