Sunday, April 24, 2011

DoJ: Pride/Prejudice

From Herendeen's website
I recently picked up Ann Herendeen's Pride/Prejudice. It is a slash fiction re-telling of P & P.  Herendeen's definition of slash fiction is when "existing stories are re-told with same-sex relationships between some or all of the main characters" (410). Basically, Darcy and Bingley have a relationship inspired by ancient Greek and Roman culture, when men had relationship with younger men in an "ideal love." Plus, Lizzy and Charlotte also have a relationship, though Charlotte is really a lesbian.

The premise isn't that strained, as Darcy obviously has a whole lot of authority over Bingley, but the fact that Darcy is part of the Brotherhood of Philander (the gentlemen's club whose members are all gay/sodomites). The Brotherhood is a major part in her first book, Phyllida and the Brotherhood of Philander.  It's a little to much product placement for me; plus she adds so many characters, the actual story of P&P is lost.  The flip side of not dwelling too much on the original is that Herendeen actually creates rather than retells:

"all authors who write versions of Austen novels are faced with the hellish problem that the Divine Miss A. produced some of the most elegant prose ever to appear in English literature... we have two unpalatable options: to paraphrase, or to dump vast chunks of her text into our narrative. Neither alternative is attractive to a writer. Copying is, well, copying - not creative at all" (412).

On the whole, it was okay; pretty smutty, but being able to see more of Darcy (even a bi Darcy) was refreshing. Grade B. Rating R.

Other Reviews:

B&N Bookclubs     Good Reads     Library Thing
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Monday, April 18, 2011

Chick Lit, Chick Flick

I recently saw the trailer to the newest rom-com that will be hitting theaters this May. It's Something Borrowed starring Kate Hudson, Ginnifer Goodwin, Colin Egglesfield, and John Krasinski (aka Jim from The Office) and directed by Luke Greenfield.  I am a fan of Ginnifer Goodwin having seen her in He's Just Not That into You, Mona Lisa Smile, and a the few episodes of Big Love I watched.  She usually plays a sweet, somewhat naive best friend (seems to be the standard for brunette actresses), so I am excited to see her with a leading role, though I will admit the role is still in her 'type.'

The film is based on Emily Giffin's novel by the same title, and because the trailer was so intriguing I checked it out from the local library.  It was a quick read, as is most chick lit, but I'm kind of ambivalent about the premise. Basically, on her thirtieth birthday, Rachel has semi-drunken sex with her best friend's fiancé, Dex, and then proceeds to have a summer affair with him before his September wedding date.  As much as I was rooting for Rachel and Dex, I was almost hoping that Dex's continuous avoidance of calling off the wedding would spur Rachel into dumping his a** and finding someone who deserves her. Also, ruining your best friend's wedding is a huge no-no in my book, though Darcy, Rachel's bff, is not a prime candidate for bff of the year.  Really, I just wanted Rachel to grow a spine and dump both Darcy and Dex and find some other way to fulfill her life. So I give the book a B, and I plan to see the film, probably as a matinée.
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