Having never read the original Pride and Prejudice (but heard about, seen the movie) that Eligible is a retelling of (I prefer Sense and Sensibility oHaving never read the original Pride and Prejudice (but heard about, seen the movie) that Eligible is a retelling of (I prefer Sense and Sensibility over this any day), I find it a tad difficult to review this book.
I cannot tell if the characters in this book shared their personality with the original counterparts in anyway, but, God, were they loathsome! Not a single character appealed to me in ANY way and I wouldn't have cared a whit if any of them had suddenly choked on their food and died.
Some background - The story is set in Cincinnati in the present time where Jane and Liz (Elizabeth), we are told, are nearly 40 years old (unmarried) and the other sisters somewhere in their mid to late twenties. I'm assuming this was done to enable Mrs. Bennet to be as odious and shockingly interfering in her children's love life (even in this day and age) as she is in this book.
A chance accident that leaves their father nursing a broken arm in the hospital, sees the sisters re-united in their childhood hometown, where they run into Bingley, Darcy, so on and so forth. The story mostly unfolds in the about the same way as P&P, with a lot of details being modified to fit the era it is set in. But it is the modification of characters' essence that put me off.
Jane is.. nothing. Unremarkable, unmemorable. Half the time I even forgot she existed in the story until Liz mentioned her in some capacity. Chip is a cry-baby? I'm not sure why, but he had an inclination to cry and express his emotions a LOT in the book. Darcy owns a 12-acre mansion in SFO but still speaks like his counterpart who belongs in a different era and country. It is very jarring and takes you out of the story at times.
Liz is just there. She is basically Mary Sue with a job as a writer at a fashion magazine. She is neither enthralling and endearing. Mr. Bennet is indifferent. Let's not even talk about how much of a terrible character Mrs.B is - childish, immature, oblivious and racist doesn't even begin to cover it. Mary was weird. Was she as stand-offish in the original book as well? Kitty and Lydia are written more like immature teens rather than the immature adults in their mid-twenties that they are supposed to be in this book. Honestly, the characterization was a mess.
And then there's this odd reality show that everybody ends up on at the end? Jane and Chip get married on the reality show? And after having "hate-sex" for a bit, Darcy realizes he loves Liz, and after rejecting him, Liz realises that she, too, loves Darcy and she ends up proposing to him on the same reality show as well? I don't know, you guys. I wasn't feeling it. Throughout the book, you get the feeling the author is trying too hard to "modernize" the story.
I give Eligible two stars because, while it kept me turning the pages, it didn't leave me feeling anything at the end....more
Story about two cripplingly shy love-birds told from everybody's point of view, except theirs. Cute, right?
Only, not so much.
After what seemed to be tStory about two cripplingly shy love-birds told from everybody's point of view, except theirs. Cute, right?
Only, not so much.
After what seemed to be the millionth POV of an utterly random stranger (with no connection whatsoever to the two leads) who gushes about how special the two are, and how there is just this chemistry between them and how they are so sure that the two are just meant for each other, I decided to throw in the towel.
So, SO much telling, absolutely no showing. Zip. Zilch. Nada. None.
The book started off funny, and had it remained that way for the rest of the story, I would have loved it! I mean, a caveman trying toSuch potential!
The book started off funny, and had it remained that way for the rest of the story, I would have loved it! I mean, a caveman trying to get with a 21st century woman? That's comedy goldmine right there. But, no. It just had to turn in to an epic romance saga that transcends time.
At first, it was amusing to read about Beh adjusting to the neandrathalic way of life. Ehd was adorably clueless about Beh and her odd clothes and the annoying sounds coming out of her mouth (read - speech). It was cute to see that he came to genuinely care about her, wanted her to be his mate, that he would do anything to protect her, and, most importantly, wanted to put a baby in her.
That was at first.
But when the same things were repeated over and over and OVER again, it got a tad tedious. When in every page Ehd started waxing poetic about Beh and how he loved her and how glorious she was and how, just how badly, he wanted to put a baby in her, I started skipping pages.
After the incessant sex started, I skipped all the way to the end and found out I had missed nothing - Ehd was still completely clueless about the sounds coming from her mouth, they were still living in a cave and having sex in every other page - only now they had four kids and were well into old age.
One of the reasons I didn't enjoy the book as much as the rest of the reviewers was probably because there is minimal dialogue in the book. The story is told from Ehd POV, and since he is a caveman without an ability to speak, the entire book is told in passive voice in the form of his thoughts, which made it really, really boring after a while. I wish the story (or at least part of it) would have been told from Beh's POV; I might have liked it more then.
P.S - I did, however, like the epilogue; It tied up the whole story nicely. But it might have been better if the story had started from there, instead of ending at that point....more
While I enjoyed the author's previous book, "You had me at hello", this one made me mad enough to throw the book at the wall (ifWhat a disappointment.
While I enjoyed the author's previous book, "You had me at hello", this one made me mad enough to throw the book at the wall (if I was reading a physical copy of it, anyway). Positively RIDDEN with clichés!
- Fat girl bullied at high-school? Check. - Bullies are super-skinny and popular girls with brains smaller than that of an ostrich? Check. - Girl has a crush on the most popular boy in school? Check. - Popular boy doesn't giver her time of the day and makes fun of her because she's fat? Check. - Girl grows up, loses baby fat, gets a makeover and becomes super-hot?! Check check. - Girl can't find a decent man to date who is sensitive and understanding and caring and not at all a pervert who likes to discuss bedroom antics on the very first date? Check. - Girl has two (a guy and a girl) super-loyal, super-funny and super-awesome best friends who alone know and love THE REAL HER? Check. - Girl runs into high-school crush again who suddenly finds her OMGATTRACTIVE because she's all skinny now? @#$&-ing check. - Girl hates crush because he was an asshole to her while at school but, oh! He's so hot and maybe she still has feelings for him? CHECK.
I could go on but I stopped reading at this point because it became too excruciating and cringe-worthy.
* Cath - a slash fanfic writing hermit with zero social skills, who just wants to be left alone in her room with her laptop and her3.5 stars
* Cath - a slash fanfic writing hermit with zero social skills, who just wants to be left alone in her room with her laptop and her Simon Snow memorabilia (I can relate to that, more than I'd like to admit)
* The thinly-veiled nod to Harry Potter in the form of Simon Snow and his magical world
Simon Snow is an 11-year-old orphan from Lancashire who is recruited to attend the Watford School of Magicks to become a magician. As he grows older, Simon joins a group of magicians — the Mages — who are fighting the Insidious Humdrum, an evil being trying to rid the world of magic
(The "spells" made me laugh out loud! Observe - "Up, up and away!", "Presto chango!", "Olly olly oxen free!" and a seventh-year spell that requires you to click your heels and say "There's no place like home!")
* The utter lack of exploration of any relationship apart from Cath's and Levi's. Seriously, even that of Cath's and Wren's (her twin sister!) left much to be desired. Her absentee mom? Nada. She came in abruptly and left just as abruptly. Nothing beyond that.
* Abrupt dismissal of Cath's Fanfic Magnum Opus. Where the hell is the story she was desperately trying to meet the deadline for? Whatever happened to it?!
* Extracts of Simon Snow books added in between chapters. While entertaining, they were unnecesary and jarring.
All in all, a good book, but, come on, who didn't see the plot-twist coming a mile away?!
The ending was a bit lackluster for me, since after the bigAll in all, a good book, but, come on, who didn't see the plot-twist coming a mile away?!
The ending was a bit lackluster for me, since after the big reveal there was a sudden change in the (view spoiler)[tenses (People who were, till then, saying "Finn is" abruptly began saying "Finn was" instead) (hide spoiler)], as well as, character behaviour (Celeste, especially. In the beginning she behaved as though she was completely oblivious to her kookiness, but at the end we got the "I'm not crazy, you know, I know how I behave" speech, which felt very unreal to me).
I sort of found Matt utterly unbelievable. I mean, according to the blurb, he had "the social skills of a spool of USB cable" but throughout he was going around flirting with Julie, making smooth, witty retorts with complete ease, and even went on a date which ended in a make-out session(!). Not buying it, Park.
And who is Julie, anyway? I felt her character exploration left a lot to be desired - her relationship with her father, especially!
Bottom line - Could have been a lot better....more
This book should have been named "Nick and Adam's big love melodrama". It has, sadly, barely-there paranormal elements with most of the focus on NickThis book should have been named "Nick and Adam's big love melodrama". It has, sadly, barely-there paranormal elements with most of the focus on Nick and Adam's relationship.