Unmarriageable by Soniah Kamal Review
Release Date: January 15, 2019
This is a retelling of Pride & Prejudice set in 2001 and in Pakistan. I am a sucker for any Pride & Prejudice retelling and was lucky enough to receive eARC from NetGalley. Pride and Prejudice is my favorite story. I have loved (almost) all the retellings I have read. There is just something so fun about sassy Elizabeth Bennet, the lovable mess of the Bennet family, and of course the wonderful Mr. Darcy. Put them together and you (almost) always get great story. As a disclaimer, I am not Pakistani so I will not be commenting on the representation. I loved seeing a diverse retelling of this story, but I am not able to say if it is accurate.
WHAT I LIKED:
- I loved how Kamal was creative with the names, often in P&P retellings they either keep the names or just make up new ones.
- How Alys and Darsee both loved books (their inner book snob came out quite few times, but they are prideful people so I guess it was okay)
- How feminist this is
- Kamal made this her own, while still sticking to the original storyline. There are a few minor changes, but the core story is the same.
- Mr. Binat was great (as always)
- This quote (out of context so no spoilers) which was so great, “My God! You have more hubris than a Disney prince.”
- There is a scene where Darsee acknowledges his privilege which was nice to see
- In case you wanted insight into my note taking while reading my exact note was: “DARSEEE ACKNOWLEDGING HIS PRIVILEGE YAS”
WHAT I DID NOT LIKE:
- I did not like how Pride & Prejudice exists in the book. The novel starts with Alys teaching her students about Jane Austen and Pride & Prejudice. This was weird and I did not like it.
- There are a lot of characters at times and since this is retelling I kept trying to figure out if I was supposed to recognize them or if they were new characters
- I did not like how we saw other POV’s. Part of the joy of this novel is not knowing what Darcy (and others) are thinking.
- There are a couple of one liners (made by the Mrs. Binat) that are not tasteful. I know she is inappropriate at times, but there was a one liner about “killing oneself” that did not sit well with me
*Thanks for NetGalley for providing me with an eARC in exchange for an honest review*
Goodreads Link: Unmarriageable