I spent an enjoyable Saturday morning with this one. Not a bad read, but nothing special. I seem to be back in a Pride and PrejudicePride and PrejudicI spent an enjoyable Saturday morning with this one. Not a bad read, but nothing special. I seem to be back in a Pride and PrejudicePride and Prejudice loop, so I was perfectly content to spend a couple hours in this world, but this didn't add much to the original, nor was it a fresh enough take on either the plot or the characters for me to recommend it to anyone who isn't in the process of reading their way through basically every P and P variation available on kindle unlimited. ...more
If you've ever read a Jane Austen novel and thought "but what about the laundry? Who was doing the laundry?" - good news!
I kid. (Not about the laundryIf you've ever read a Jane Austen novel and thought "but what about the laundry? Who was doing the laundry?" - good news!
I kid. (Not about the laundry. Laundry is serious business.)
In her well researched and very detailed look at the lives in the background of Pride and Prejudice, Jo Baker gets down to the nitty gritty - quite literally. Cleaning and cooking and slaughtering animals - I think this book is almost mis-marketed. People who enjoy Austen for the departure from real life that her stories provide will find themselves rather roughly deposited into all of the bits that she left out.
Solid writing, sympathetic characters, and just enough (and barely) action from the original novel made this one enjoyable. If you've read everything else Austen and need a fix, or you're a true completist, have at this one. Otherwise, perhaps another reread of the original is in order? ...more
Yeah, let's be honest: I've read like for versions of this particular "Darcy and Elizabeth are musicians!" retelling. But most of them were not publisYeah, let's be honest: I've read like for versions of this particular "Darcy and Elizabeth are musicians!" retelling. But most of them were not published in book form. And someday I will read this and probably be very frustrated bunts quality. Ah well. ...more
A fun twist on a very traditional story. And much like every young adult novel out there these days, it's a surprise series - three more titles listedA fun twist on a very traditional story. And much like every young adult novel out there these days, it's a surprise series - three more titles listed in the front of the book.
I love Cinderella stories (even in sports - as soon as the last Cinderella team is out of March Madness, so am I), and this is a fluffy, quick one, which is a compliment.
I was able to correctly guess the big twist, so no surprises. But if you go into a book called "Cinder" expecting a shocking plot twist, maybe you need to read the back and reign in your expectations....more
I gave this one as a gift, but somehow resisted the urge to read it first. (High five!) So now I have to borrow it back from the friend I gave it to.
II gave this one as a gift, but somehow resisted the urge to read it first. (High five!) So now I have to borrow it back from the friend I gave it to.
I'm comfortable with the fact that I will buy just about any book having to do with Jane Austen. There are worse low-level addictions to have, and even when they're terrible, I can usually enjoy making fun of them later.
This particular Austen imitation was... okay? I've certainly read worse, and at least the vampire vampyre bit was a new. I finished it. I have not given my copy away, though I can't imagine it will survive my next move.
My biggest issue? I spent most of the book desperate to grab Elizabeth Bennett Darcy by the shoulders and shake her. HAVEN'T YOU EVER READ TWILIGHT, ELIZABETH? DON'T YOU KNOW THE SIGNS?
Which I think is unfair to both Elizabeth as a character and myself as a reader....more
... I'm a little worried by all the reviews I've seen for this one, but Meg Cabot has earned my undying devotion. Meaning: I will cross my fingers and... I'm a little worried by all the reviews I've seen for this one, but Meg Cabot has earned my undying devotion. Meaning: I will cross my fingers and read the book despite the reviews....more
I keep waiting for my Pride and Prejudice spell to break, and instead it keeps coming back stronger. Usually a P&P sequel or retelling will be enoI keep waiting for my Pride and Prejudice spell to break, and instead it keeps coming back stronger. Usually a P&P sequel or retelling will be enough to tamp it down for a while, and not in the "satisfied my Darcy craving" way, either. Let's be honest: most P&P retellings/sequels/updates are awful.
This one was quite good.
It's a different take on Mr. Darcy's reformation - what if he decided he needed, first and foremost, to make amends to Jane and Bingley? He determines that the best way to make that happen is to head to Netherfield and talk to Jane herself.
Out of this simple premise a wonderful "alternate" P&P is born. No awkward exposition. No random French. No previously-unmentioned cousins. No melodrama. No wildly out-of-character behavior.
Just a solidly written, quite engaging, and altogether satisfying look at the characters I'm already crazy about.
**spoiler alert** I find that I have trouble with books where there's no sense of humor involved - whether it belongs to the characters or the author.**spoiler alert** I find that I have trouble with books where there's no sense of humor involved - whether it belongs to the characters or the author. And while Lucy and her family certainly tried to make some jokes, this book was just a little too earnest for me.
I like the premise Werlin went in with, as she built off of Simon and Garfunkel's "Scarborough Fair", which is simultaneously catchy and creepy, and tried to turn it into a story about triumphing over fate and evil and history.
But Lucy was such a flat character - she thinks her lovestruck best friend is just a little bit stupid; she has mommy/abandonment issues; she loves her unborn baby! That's all well and good, but the whole premise of the book is supposed to be Lucy defeating the curse that has tormented the women of her family for centuries. And who does all the research and planning and experimenting? Her daddy, her mommy, and her boyfriend/husband.
To be frank, Lucy was pretty friggen useless when it came to breaking her own curse. She kept in shape during her pregnancy, sure, because she knew there was going to be a physical aspect to the third task. And in the end she preformed all of them, because the curse required it. But the sum total of her contribution to her own defense? She happened to pick up the right magazine in the waiting room at her doctor's. Beyond that, she was passive in every way except for insisting that she had to keep her unborn child, which was all well and good until you figure that at least part of that was due to the curse itself, and had little or nothing to do with Lucy, and her actual wishes and decisions, especially when she outright stated that had her best friend been in the same position, Lucy would have suggested an abortion as the best option. (Why on earth didn't her parents or Zach ever point out that by having a legal medical procedure and, you know, not having the baby of her rapist at age 17, Lucy could have broken the curse right then? Done. Book over.)
Also, I really didn't appreciate the blatant attempt to raise the stakes that Werlin put in with no real explanation. Lucy's pregnant, and there is a very clear deadline before which she has to plow an acre of land by hand, but somehow about 2 months go by and nothing happens. Nothing. The newlyweds have sex and worry, and Zach googles real estate or something. Because they had so much time to kill? Nope. Because the end of the book is more dramatic when Lucy has to plow while in labor. BAM. TENSION.
In the interest of fairness, I gave this one 3 stars when I first opened the review window, but I have talked myself out of it pretty quick. Nancy, you get a star for making Carl Yastrzemski a sort-of (and probably unwilling) superhero. Everything's better with a dose of Yaz....more
I'll start with a disclaimer: I think I was in entirely the wrong frame of mind while reading this book, so in the interest of fairness, some of my isI'll start with a disclaimer: I think I was in entirely the wrong frame of mind while reading this book, so in the interest of fairness, some of my issues with it might very well be just my issues.
That said, I think this was a failed attempt to add something that The Diary of a Young Girl was never missing. Part of the impact of reading Anne's diary is that we don't get to meet the other people hiding in the Annex other than through her eyes. They were systematically murdered during the most horrifying events of the last hundred years, and the senselessness and the waste of human life is supposed to come across by the way Anne's diary just ends. There is no more, because these people didn't make it.
I've read a lot of books about Anne Frank and the others who hid with her, but this is the first foray into fiction that I've encountered. And the exposition was awkward, the story was disjointed, and nothing new was added to the story of the Franks and the van Pels.
People would be far better served to read Anne Frank's diary and not bother with this one....more