Nov 202015

The Trouble with FlirtingRelevant and Fresh Takes on Jane Austen!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars!

Source: Purchased

To date, Claire LaZebnik has published four refreshing and clever Young Adult retellings of Jane Austen’s novels – Epic Fail (Pride and Prejudice), The Trouble With Flirting (Mansfield Park), The Last Best Kiss (Persuasion) and Wrong About the Guy (Emma) – and I sincerely hope she continues to write more! In this insightful and authentic retelling of Mansfield Park, Franny Pearson is a rising high school senior from a non-wealthy, divorced family looking for a summer job. Her mom arranges for her to assist her aunt with making and altering costumes for a summer theatre program at Mansfield College.

Upon arrival Franny recognizes some familiar thespians – Julia Braverman, a friend she lost touch with, and her brother Alex, who she had a monster-crush on several years ago. Franny hopes a little romance might finally happen between her and Alex this summer, but her hopes are dashed as he seems to be immediately attracted to the sophisticated and gorgeous Isabella Zevallos. Franny feelings of disappointment and dejection start to disappear when super-flirtatious and fun Harry Cartwright starts paying her some serious attention over the other girls, the question is are his intentions as serious… Continue reading »

Apr 102015

Epic FailAssumption and Avoidance

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Source: Purchased

When it comes to contemporary Austen-inspired novels there seems to be as much written for Young Adult audiences as there is for general audiences – (a fact I am extremely delighted with!) What I love even more is that many of the authors who pen these Young Adult Austen-Inspired stories, write them in series and include an installment for each major Jane Austen novel (even Mansfield Park and Northanger Abbey! Woot Woot!!) Some of the authors who have written these YA Austenesque series are Cecilia Gray, Jenni James, Rosie Rushton, and the author of the novel I’m about to review – Claire LaZebnik. Epic Fail is the first Austen-Inspired novel by Claire LaZebnik I’ve read and I believe it is the first one she wrote.

In this super clever and fresh YA update of Pride and Prejudice Elise (Elizabeth) and Juliana (Jane) Benton are the newest students at Coral Tree Prep school in Los Angeles, CA. They moved to this high-priced and swanky school filled with the offspring of the rich and famous because their mother was just appointed principal. It’s definitely awkward being the new kid in school…add to that an über-strict, yet celebrity-obsessed mom, and you are definitely on your way to being a social pariah. Continue reading »