Unboxed Writers App for Phone and Tablet

Here are more ways to stay at forefront of Unboxed Writers and stay informed and inspired! Download our app for Android Phones and Tablets. Click on the image to Download Now!


Justice

Like Us on Facebook

Follow Us on Twitter

 

Archives

Cattitude: Cause We Support

Cattitude!

The Cattitude Trust is a Public Charitable Trust started to reach out to cats in distress, particularly in Chennai (India).

To know more about Cattitude, 'Like' them on Facebook.

Copyright

Creative Commons License
All content displayed here by Unboxed Writers is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://unboxedwriters.com.

Excerpt, Don't Copy: You may not publish an entire post. You may republish an excerpt of not increasing 250 words.

Give Credit: You may not use any material from our site without giving due credit to the individual author and Unboxed Writers. You must hyperlink directly to the post.

Author: Author of the post retains all copyright, and reserves all rights not explicitly granted here.

Eligible: A Biased Review

eligible

Eligible is American author Curtis Sittenfeld’s re-telling of that much loved classic Pride and Prejudice. To take on a work, any work of Jane Austen (even when commissioned to do so, as part of the Austen Project) is one brave thing to do, and inevitably, for every two people who liked Eligible, four others howled “Sacrilege!” Sittenfeld has said, “ I see Pride and Prejudice as a perfect book. And Eligible is a homage.”  It’s a good job, actually. Read on to find out why I think so.

1. Let me start with the nuts and bolts of the novel. Loved its plot and steady pace throughout.

2. The contemporary connect was deft. Jane a yoga teacher, Liz a journalist at a women`s mag named Mascara, no less, Mary a pseudo bookish sort with a secret (hilarious) pash, Lydia and Kitty your average young vulgarians, the former with hidden depths, though; Darcy a snooty neurosurgeon, Bingley, the man who cries at the drop of a hanky, the eligible bachelor of the reality show called …Eligible!

3. The fact that Sittenfeld hewed so close to the original story. Here’s Mr Bennet (mordant humour intact) on the topic of children: Plenty of men don’t want children. I`m still not sure that I do.

4. Sentences like this: The Bennets’ antipathy for one another was of such an intimate variety it was almost like affection.

5. Chapter 154 (most of the chapters are very brief, in case your eyebrows have shot up). Just read it.

6. That Liz runs in turquoise-and- orange shoes, that Liz falls back on a quote from MK Gandhi when feeling particularly philosophical, that Liz professes a fondness for sag paneer and samosas. That Liz was struck, as she occasionally was during a third glass of wine, by how cute she looked in the mirror.

7. Sentences like this: Liz, trying to dissuade Mrs B from doing something harebrained. Mrs B: it’s worth a try. You just never know. No, said Liz. That’s not true. Sometimes you do know.

8. That Liz (well, she is the heroine of the book) googles Darcy’s worth when she realises just what a seriously wealthy man he is. Then thinks, she didn’t consciously yearn to be the mistress of a place like Pemberley but the wealth it implied was astonishing indeed.

9. Sentences like this: she stepped in and hugged her loathsome charming younger sister.

10. The fact that the story ends with Mary doing what she likes best to do!

So. Are there any flies in this smooth unguent? Oh, quite a few. Sittenfeld has kept it all frothy and light, maybe too light, even while touching on heartbreak, artificial insemination, transgender relationships, racism, sexism, etc. Also, was the ghost of the great Austen looking continuously over the author’s shoulder while she wrote this book? Because while the romance between the haughty-hot, supercilious-sexy Darcy and our cute- as-a button and bright to go with it Liz Bennet, involving as it does quite a bit of hate sex and a stray description or two of his good looks and sculpted body, warms the cockles of our heart, it does not set the pages on fire, alas. Then, just about every character apart from Liz is just that bit cardboard.

Nevertheless, a fun read. There’s a bit in there where some character praises `pleasure reading.’  That’s what Eligible is, pleasure reading, actually.

Sheila Kumar is an independent writer and manuscript editor, as well as author of a collection of short stories titled Kith and Kin, Chronicles of a Clan (Rupa Publications). She blogs at bindersfullawords.blogspot.com, themelekatbook.blogspot.com and  bindersfulla.blogspot.com

Similar posts
  • Book review- The Shock Doctrine Certain books outlive their prime years not only due to their authors’ brilliance (which in this case was never in doubt), but also due to the core issues they analyze and address. The Shock Doctrine, currently in its 10th year of publication since its release in September 2007, falls in that category. Although yet to [...]
  • Book Review: The Golden Legend The master story-teller is back, weaving the usual magic with his words, writing a familiar yet brand-new tale of love in the times of bigotry and xenophobia.“ I wake up every day approaching life’s problems through fiction,“ says Nadeem Aslam.  Which explains the prose that soars even as it touches upon, examines, parses all the conflict life [...]
  • Askew: A Short Biography Of Bangalore By TJS George It is neither compulsory nor mandatory but I feel the need to make this admission: I am not an outsider. Though not of Kannada origin, I have been a resident of Bangalore/Bengaluru since the start of the 80s. That’s been over three decades, during which I have lived, worked, married, learned the language, savoured the [...]
  • Feminine Grace Under Fire     Lakshmi Kannan’s debut novel in English charts the life of two remarkable women, Kalyani, a child bride, and Vishalakshi, a young widow in pre-Independence Madras. Both the women display admirable grace under pressure and at some point, the story becomes a celebration of woman power. Kannan deftly highlights the various issues women had to face [...]
  • Review: In the Jungles of the Night   First a sort of disclaimer: I grew up on a steady diet of Corbett’s tales of the man-eaters he had encountered and bested; and later on, I grew to really like Stephen Alter’s accounts of life of men and mountains.   So this was a double delight for me: Stephen Alter in the voice [...]

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Authors

Be the first to read the latest on Unboxed Writers!

Subscribe for FREE and get the latest in your Inbox! You can unsubscribe at any time.
Name
Email *

Admins

Editor & Founder:
Reema Moudgil
Design Director & Founder:
Vani Bahl
Media Consultant:
Poonam Goel

Mission Statement

Who are we? We are writers. And here, in this space, we put pride and passion back into writing. We give ourselves and each other creative freedom and respect.

* We create an environment where content generation does not entail degeneration of inspiration and spirit.
* We create content that we believe in and identify with.
* We recognise that to create is always of more value than to berate.
*We critique without malice and arrogance.

This site is about us writers, what we stand for but more importantly, about creating something valuable, inclusive, thought-provoking. In this space, we do not just stand for ourselves but for all those who listen to a compelling inner voice that tells them, "Create!"

Unboxed Writers Share

Join the other awesome people who get the new posts right away by email!
Be the first to read the latest on Unboxed Writers.
Enter your email and stay on top of things!

Subscribe!