Thursday, September 22, 2011

Review #67: Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik

Hello my lovely and fantastic friends! I hope all is well with everyone. Have a review for ya today, so lets get started!

Epic Fail is a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, written by Claire LaZebnik (that is a cool name, especially with the capital Z). It follows Elise Benton (Elizabeth Bennett), who moves from Boston to California with her parents and 3 sisters. Her parents enroll them at Coral Tree Prep, where their mom is the new principal and their father a new professor. Her eldest, and closest sister Juliana meets and falls in love with Chase Baldwin, whose best friend is Derek Edwards (Mr. Darcy). Derek is the son of a major film actress, known throughout the school as Hollywood royalty, guys wanting to be him and girls wanting to be with him. He and Elise butt heads on their first meeting. But there is an underlying spark. Will pride and prejudice keep them apart?

I love this book. It is officially up there in my Great Contemporary Fiction list. It also happens to be a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice (see above). And while I haven't actually read P&P *runs away from the torch-carrying mob*, I have the gist of the story. From that knowledge, this was a decent adaptation. LaZebnik nailed the general story of P&P, as well as the characters perfectly. Other than that, this is just a generally great Contemporary book. Funny, heartwarming, heartbreaking, all the things a good book should be. I wanted to throw my Nook at the wall (I would never actually do that), gasped at times (especially near the ending), squealed in delight, etc. It flowed well, sucking me in immediately. 

I liked Elise a lot. She was a normal girl, stubborn in her ways, figuring everything out. She was extremely believable, which is always nice. I feel like if we were friends in real life we would just constantly have sarcasm wars, and it would be fabulous. She's down to earth, sarcastic, loyal to her sisters, all around awesome. Derek was *sigh* amazing. Another one added to my literary crushes. You don't really like him at first, but he grows into someone you love by the end. He and Elise are now added to my favorite literary couples. Their chemistry was so palpable, I felt it sizzling through the air. Back to Derek, who was quiet at times, jerky at times, but also sweet and sincere. He was so loyal, I would love a guy like that, minus the jerkiness. Juliana, the catalyst for the story, was pretty cool. I felt like she was too trusting at times, but that was who she was, and I loved watching her develop. Being the eldest sisters, she and Elise had a close bond. I loved reading that, their closeness is something I wish I had, if I had a sister, or a sibling at all. She was sweet and loyal, and her blind faith and trust did lose points with me. All the other characters, like Chase and Chelsea were great. I loved hating Chelsea, she was such a typical mean girl, but she was so good at it. 

LaZebnik is crazy talented. She took a beloved classic and breathed new life into it, all the while making it her own. Her prose was spot on, dialogue brilliant, nothing was too flowery. I foresee great things from her, even though this wasn't her debut. Can't wait for your next book, Claire!

If you love Pride and Prejudice, as well as good Contemporary romance, you'll love this.

I'll next be reviewing Will Grayson, Will Grayson by David Levithan and John Green (SQUEAL!!!)

Until next time, viva la literature!

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