Thursday, August 11, 2011

Book Review: Prom and Prejudice by Elizabeth Eulberg

Pages: 231
Genre: YA Realistic Fiction
Pub. Date: January 1, 2011
Source: Personal Copy
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "After winter break, the girls at the very prestigious Longbourn Academy become obsessed with the prom. Lizzie Bennet, who attends Longbourn on a scholarship, isn’t interested in designer dresses and expensive shoes, but her best friend, Jane, might be — especially now that Charles Bingley is back from a semester in London.  Lizzie is happy about her friend’s burgeoning romance but less than impressed by Charles’s friend, Will Darcy, who’s snobby and pretentious. Darcy doesn’t seem to like Lizzie either, but she assumes it’s because her family doesn’t have money. Clearly, Will Darcy is a pompous jerk — so why does Lizzie find herself drawn to him anyway?"

Lizzie Bennet is a scholarship student at the prestigious Longbourn Academy where most girls are obsessed with all things glamorous, especially prom.  Lizzie couldn't be more different than the other girls that go to Longbourn; however, she does have a good friend in Jane, her roommate, and Charlotte, another scholarship student.  Her best friend, Jane, does have high hopes for prom now that Charles Bingley is back from studying abroad and thankfully, he is also interested in Jane.  Unfortunately Lizzie has come to find that Charles Bingley's best friend, Will Darcy, is haughty, pompous and possesses all of the characteristics that she has come to hate about the upper class.  What irks her even more is the fact that deep down she might actually have, (dare I say it?!?) feelings for him.  Elizabeth Eulberg's Prom and Prejudice is a fresh and fun take on Jane Austen's classic, Pride and Prejudice. It will please and delight the most hardcore of Austen fans.

As I said, I loved Eulberg's modern take on Pride and Prejudice. She did a good job of making it contemporary and incorporating all the characters we have come to love without destroying the story.  There are some fun new twists as well that made Prom and Prejudice stand out when compared to some other classic retellings.  I liked how Eulberg had Jane as Lizzie's roommate, which is a brilliant change, and fans of Darcy won't be disappointed by the modern Will Darcy.  He was spot on.  Also, Eulberg did a fantastic job portraying the super annoying Collins, and of course, Wickham.  I was dying during Lizzie and Collins interactions, which were hilarious, and Wickham is definitely a modern day bad boy with many sneaky tricks up his sleeve.

My only small issue with Prom and Prejudice was the dialogue. At times it seemed too Austen-ish and dated. I wasn't sure if Eulberg was trying to channel Austen or if she was trying to make the characters sound fancy, but one things is for sure, normal teenagers definitely do not talk that way.  

Finally I have read a retelling of a classic that doesn't want to make me cringe and run to the high hills. I thought Eulberg did a great job balancing the classic tale with some new twists.  Prom and Prejudice reminded me, once again, how incredible Jane Austen is and how timeless her plots and themes are.  I know my students will absolutely love this story and it would be a great opening to Austen's classics.

*Watch the book trailer


  1. Yay! I really enjoyed this one too! The Lizzie/Collins exchanges had me laughing out loud, and I just adored Will:) Really great review Christina!

  2. I just Love Elizabeth Book´s, I want to read this one very zoom!
    Great review

  3. Jenny- I adore Will too! :)

    Nyra- I hope you get to read it soon!

  4. I've had this on my bookshelf for months and I keep passing it up. Your review makes me want to read it. Thanks!

  5. I do like the sound of this one, thanks to your review, Christina :) I've seen this one around but I've never really been all that interested until now.

  6. I liked this retelling of P&P also. I agree with you about the dialogue. I had that same issue with some other retellings of classics. I think that it can be hard to rewrite the popular lines that people are so familiar with but at the same time if you are writing a modern retelling then that dialogue won't feel right coming out of the modern characters' mouths. Great review!


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