Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Published: September 18th 2018
Genres: YA, retelling, romance, contemporary
My Rating: 5 Stars
Zuri Benitez has pride. Brooklyn pride, family pride, and pride in her Afro-Latino roots. But pride might not be enough to save her rapidly gentrifying neighborhood from becoming unrecognizable.
When the wealthy Darcy family moves in across the street, Zuri wants nothing to do with their two teenage sons, even as her older sister, Janae, starts to fall for the charming Ainsley. She especially can’t stand the judgmental and arrogant Darius. Yet as Zuri and Darius are forced to find common ground, their initial dislike shifts into an unexpected understanding.
But with four wild sisters pulling her in different directions, cute boy Warren vying for her attention, and college applications hovering on the horizon, Zuri fights to find her place in Bushwick’s changing landscape, or lose it all.
In a timely update of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, critically acclaimed author Ibi Zoboi skillfully balances cultural identity, class, and gentrification against the heady magic of first love in her vibrant reimagining of this beloved classic.
I only recently read Pride and Prejudice, it was actually the audio book I listened to before listening to Pride and I enjoyed it so much I didn’t want to let go of that story yet. Without comparing this story to the original it’s a great story about high school students from different social classes learning about each other through and enemies to lovers romance, which is exactly the kind of book I want to read.
If you add in the Pride and Prejudice part, I think this book does a great job creating characters in image of Jane Austen’s characters while giving them 21st century traits and problems. I think this is a beautiful remix that honors it’s source but doesn’t overly rely on in. The beats of Pride do follow the beat of the original, but how each major event happens is incredibly different and fits today’s YA audience in a way I like to imagine the original fitted the 1813 crowd.
I really enjoyed the Warren story line and how that played out. Warren is the Wickham character and there is a very particular story line that character follows that I would guess is hard to update into 21st century language, but how Zoboi changed that characters motivations was such a smart way to do it. I spent a little bit of time trying to guess how she would do it, because these characters are in their teens, and I did not come up with what ended up happening.
Overall, I think this is a really cute story if you haven’t read Pride and Prejudice and an even better story if have. It takes place over the course of a summer, so it’s perfect for right now while you’re stuck inside protecting yourself from the pandemic.
The audio book is fantastic, it’s read by the extremely talented Elizabeth Acevedo. Her voice bring Zuri to life, you can feel her attitude and being though Acevedo’s voice. It’s incredibly well done.
Definitely pick this one up if you haven’t already!
Stay safe everyone. Until next time, Internet,