Prom & Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg

Once again I am woefully behind here. Nonetheless, I have been reading so let’s focus on that.

I just finished up Prom and Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg. Not surprisingly it is based on Austen‘s Pride and Prejudice. I found it to be very entertaining.

Prom and Prejudice book reviewLizzie is a scholarship student at snobby Longbourn Academy, where the girls are obsessed with prom (the event is covered by Vanity Fair). Lizzie is largely snubbed by her wealthy classmates. Her only friends are Jane, her roommate, and Charlotte, the other scholarship student. With prom fast approaching, Longbourn girls are doing everything they can to line up dates with guys from neighbouring all-boys Pemberley School, and designer dresses to wear to the event. But Lizzie has more important things to focus on, and she meets someone who is so different from all the Pemberley guys that she might actually like him.

The story is very closely based on Austen’s original – names of characters included. It was a quick read and the story was cleverly adapted to modern day. I liked it so much that I went out and grabbed Eulberg‘s other book, The Lonely Hearts Club, from the library. Liked it too. I’m always glad to read good adaptations of my favourite classics, and in this case I was lucky enough to discover a new writer too.

Last month I picked up the graphic novel version of Pride and Prejudice, and was surprised by how much I enjoyed it.  It was done by Hilary Burningham and I was surprised to find out how many classics have been turned into graphic novels. A whole new way to enjoy my classics! I can’t wait to pick up the graphic novel of Jane Eyre.

I’ve also read through the Hunger Games series, but don’t feel the need to create a separate post for these books as they aren’t new releases and they’ve been reviewed ad nauseam, I’m sure. Suffice it to say that I picked them up on the recommendation of my sister-in-law, and couldn’t believe how much I liked them. As I’ve mentioned on here before, dystopian fantasy/sci-fi isn’t often my cup of tea (you know, happy ending mandate and all that), but I thought these were fantastic. Katniss rivals Brynn as far as badass heroines go.

Speaking of badass heroines… well, ok, not-so-baddass heroines… I also read  Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa. I wrote about the first novel in the series, Iron King, here.  The concept for Kagawa’s world was still really unique, but the plot wasn’t my favourite and I found that the main character, Meghan, less than badass and actually kinda whiney. I may not read on in the series.

I’m learning so much by reading all these books. Who knew I got so attached to the characters!

 

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Jane by April Lindner

Well I finished reading this modern-day adaptation of Jane Eyre last week. Let me preface this by saying I LOVE Jane Eyre. It is one of my favourite books ever and especially lately: I have probably read it 4 or 5 times a year for the past three years. (Though, I’m not going to lie, a few of those times I skip a lot of the very beginning, and start when Jane gets to Lowood).

Jane  April Lindner book reviewJane (the book) is set in present day, and begins as Jane (the character) is forced to quit university when her parents die. She has two siblings, both considerably older than her, who do not offer to support her continued education. Jane has to find a job, so she applies at a nanny service. She gets a position as a nanny for the daughter of a rich rock star. The story is fairly true to Jane Eyre so if you’ve read that book, you know what happens. 🙂

I thought that Lindner did a good job of modernizing the part of the book where Jane leaves Thornfield for her period of self-imposed exile. I don’t want to give too much away, since this is part of the book I was very pleasantly surprised by.

I didn’t super-love Jane Moore as a character. I found that she wasn’t as strong as Jane Eyre was, in some ways, but she did an admirable job as a stand-in. I also didn’t completely believe that Nico (aka Rochester) could fall in love with this Jane, but once their romance started it seemed a bit more believable.

Lindner did some other really clever things in the modernization. In Jane Eyre, when Jane leaves Thornfield she has no money and won’t say where she’s from so she essentially has no way of getting a job. These days, if a person had been working for several months it’s highly unlikely that she wouldn’t have any money. Lindner gets around that by writing that Jane doesn’t want to access her bank account because she knows she can be tracked down that way; same with using her cell phone.

Overall it was a very clever re-telling. It’s no Jane Eyre, but it was an entertaining read.

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

I could not put this book down, which is surprising given that I am on such a happy-subject-matter-only bent right now and it is evident from the inside cover of this book that it is not happy subject matter.

Sam is a typical high school girl until the day she dies in a car accident and starts to relive the day of her death over and over again.

So, okay, it’s not a terribly original plot idea but Oliver hooked me from the beginning and the book sailed along at an incredible pace. Each time Sam relives her day, and she discovers what she can change and what she can’t, I found myself liking her more and more; Oliver does a great job of showing how Sam changes, and grows up, in a matter of a few days. (Well. Repeating the same day several times.)  

This is not fantasy, just fiction; but I still really enjoyed it. I see that Oliver has written another book, Delirium, and I will totally be checking that out too.

In other news, I can’t seem to get through Gaiman’s Anansi Boys. I am finding it difficult to read, in the same way that I found it difficult to watch Seinfeld because I couldn’t stand watching George embarrass himself over and over. So I stopped watching Seinfeld, and now I’m gonna stop reading Anansi Boys. Sorry, Gaiman. I’ll try it again later…

So what’s up next? I’ve picked up Mairelon the Magician by Patricia C. Wrede after reading what Aarti had to say about it on her blog. So far, I’m loving it!