Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet, Bernie Su and Kate Rorick

July 2, 2014 Reviews 1 ★★★

Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet, Bernie Su and Kate RorickThe Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet by Bernie Su, Kate Rorick
Published by Touchstone on 1 July 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 400
Source: Netgalley
Amazon • Amazon UK • Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars

Based on the Emmy Award-winning YouTube series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.

Twenty-four-year-old grad student Lizzie Bennet is saddled with student loan debt and still living at home along with her two sisters-beautiful Jane and reckless Lydia. When she records her reflections on life for her thesis project and posts them on YouTube, she has no idea The Lizzie Bennet Diaries will soon take on a life of their own, turning the Bennet sisters into internet celebrities seemingly overnight.

When rich and handsome Bing Lee comes to town, along with his stuck-up friend William Darcy, things really start to get interesting for the Bennets--and for Lizzie;s viewers. But not everything happens on-screen. Lucky for us, Lizzie has a secret diary.

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet takes readers deep inside Lizzie's world and well beyond the confines of her camera--from the wedding where she first meets William Darcy to the local hangout of Carter's bar, and much more. Lizzie's private musings are filled with revealing details about the Bennet household, including her growing suspicions about her parents'; unstable financial situation, her sister's budding relationship with Bing Lee, the perils of her unexpected fame, and her uncertainty over her future--and whom she wants to share it with.

Featuring plenty of fresh twists to delight fans and new readers alike, The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet expands on the web series phenomenon that captivated a generation and reimagines the Pride and Prejudice story like never before.

natashas_review

I know, there have been a bazillion Pride and Prejudice retellings since Ms Austen introduced us to the fiery Elizabeth Bennet and the brooding Mr. Darcy. There is something about the story and their chemistry that gets me all excited every time I read a new version. I know the plot and obviously know how the story ends – and yet I return to this same tale over and over again.

It was no different in this case, with Bernie Su’s The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet. You have the outrageously interfering mother; sweet, angelic Jane; the irresponsible Lydia; charming George Wickham etc etc. However this time, the story is set in California, current day and amongst the world of mass social media.

Lizzie Bennet is undertaking her post-graduate degree in mass communications. She lives with her parents and two sisters in suburbia, spends a lot of time with her BFF Charlotte, and has decided to document her final year on ‘YouTube’. Things start getting interesting when a handsome and single medical student, Bing Lee, moves into a McMansion in town, along with his mysterious and snobby friend – William Darcy.

This book is based on the popular YouTube vlog of the same name. I must admit I hadn’t seen the videos before reading the book, but have now watched the first 13 episodes. The videos are fun, and probably work better then the book. It introduces the P&P story to a whole new generation and you find comments like “Wow, that George Wickham seems so nice!” Ummmmm…….read a little further…

Overall I enjoyed The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet, but I wouldn’t say it is my favourite retelling. That honour still goes to Bridget Jones, and as likeable and witty as Lizzie Bennet is, she is no match for the weak willed and neurotic Miss Jones.

three-stars – A great introduction to Jane Austen for the Twitter generation.

Natasha lives in Brisbane, Australia with her husband and son. She is a self confessed bibliophile who enjoys literature and adult fiction. She also loves travelling and aims to visit 40 countries by the time she is 40 (current count 36).

One Response to “Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet, Bernie Su and Kate Rorick”

  1. Kelly

    I’ve actually only just started getting into the series on YouTube, after seeing so many Tweets about how fantastic it is. It’s quite witty, really enjoying it. It feels so far removed from P & P, it’s only the character names that really ring true. If it helps introduce a new generation to the classics, I’m all for it. Great review.
    Kelly recently posted…Chasing The Valley: Skyfire by Skye Melki WegnerMy Profile

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