Monday, July 29, 2013

Flirting With Pride and Prejudice

Flirting With Pride And Prejudice  edited by Jennifer Crusie

Some days I get a little too creative and theme-y when I am searching my local library's catalog.  Not long after I finished reading  Giorgiana Darcy's Diary, friends started suggesting other Austenesque titles I might not have read yet, or might find interesting.  I've dabbled in the Jane Austen mysteries, but didn't enjoy them nearly as much as a blogger friend of mine.  I did enjoy P.D. James take on P&P, Death Comes to Pemberley . I'm not crazy about the authors who think they need to spice up Austen and use her work as the basis for poorly written bodice rippers.  Yeesh!.  I'm presently halfway through Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which, considering that I didn't really have much in the way of expectations about, I do find kind of fun.  Seth Grahame Smith stays truer to the story, considering he's superimposed a zombie story onto the original classic, than many more serious writers have. There are a handful of authors writing wonderful companion pieces to Jane's books and I'm usually happy to pick through the crap in search of the gems.

Flirting with Pride and Prejudice is a series of essays about the book. Not just literary criticism, but some of that, too.  We have writers giving their thoughts on Austen and the Bennet sisters, as well as some who ponder modern versions of the story.  The author of that particular essay couldn't think of a way to make the story work in a modern setting. I'm happy to report that she was very mistaken and I hope she's found  The Lizzie Bennet Diaries which found the perfect way to bring this story to the 21st century.  Of course, the book was written years before the vlog series came to be, so we'll just consider it a challenge accepted and achieved.

I really do enjoy reading other people's thoughts on books, especially books I have strong feelings about. That includes reading the thoughts of people who totally disagree with me. If I don't like a book, I really want to know why other people do.  I found the addition of cell phones into the otherwise untouched 19th century story pretty interesting. Sure, you have to suspend belief, but Lizzie texting Charlotte to come to her rescue and avoid Mr. Collins' proposal, while he's on his phone getting instructions from the original micromanager, Lady Catherine DeBourgh made me giggle.  

Only one essay got my hackles up. Someone proclaiming themselves a Janeite, wrote an essay in which she referred to Colonel Fitzwilliam as Colonel Fitzpatrick.  That may seem like a silly little oversight, except when I considered that this was a book written and edited by people who love and really know this book.  I know, I need to get a life if I can get myself worked up about something so insignificant.  But, in my defense, my time spent with a book is really important to me and anything that mars that experience really really bugs me. I can't help it and that just seemed like an error that should have been discovered and corrected!

If you are a P&P fan, and really, who isn't, this little collection of essays may be just the book to spend an afternoon reading.  I particularly enjoyed curling up on the chaise in my sunroom and spending time with people who like Lizzie and Co., as much as I do.

For those of you new to the blog, or anyone who has yet to discover The Lizzie Bennet Diaries allow me to introduce you through, Episode 1:


Amused said...

I like books like this too. I'll have to check it out.

JoanneMarie Faust said...

I hope you enjoy it, Amused. Before you read it, check out the impressive list of books they have in this series. It covers books and television shows that I love. I may have to check out many more of these books.