At Coral Tree Prep in Los Angeles, who your parents are can make or break you. Case in point:Everyone who’s read this book has been raving about how cute it is--and they’re totally right. This is the most adorable and fluffy book (sounds like a kitten…) I’ve read in a while. It’s a modernization of “Pride and Prejudice,” so of course it’s completely predictable for anyone who’s ever read the book or seen the movie. But it still manages to be a lot of fun to read. I don’t really know why that is. Usually predictable books get on my nerves after a while, but this one never did--I think it’s probably because although I knew basically WHAT would happen, I didn’t know HOW it would happen.
As the son of Hollywood royalty, Derek Edwards is pretty much prince of the school--not that he deigns to acknowledge many of his loyal subjects.
As the daughter of the new principal, Elise Benton isn’t exactly on everyone’s must-sit-next-to-at-lunch list.
When Elise’s beautiful sister catches the eye of the prince’s best friend, Elise gets to spend a lot of time with Derek, making her the envy of every girl on campus. Except she refuses to fall for any of his rare smiles and instead warms up to his enemy, the surprisingly charming social outcast Webster Grant. But in this hilarious tale of fitting in and flirting, not all snubs are undeserved, not all celebrity brats are bratty, and pride and prejudice can get in the way of true love for only so long.
The characters are super likeable, if a little superficial. I love Elise (the Elizabeth equivalent). She’s sarcastic and funny and down to earth. I would totes be friends with her in real life. And I liked how close she and her sister Juliana were, although I did think they were the kind of close that can only be found in fiction. Having six sisters myself, I pretty sure it’s impossible for Elise and Juliana to go for as long as they do without fighting, no matter how close they are.
I also loved watching the development of Derek (the Darcy equivalent). He seems like a total jerk at first, but as I found out more about his life as the son of famous actors, I could get why he acted the way he did. And I liked that he and Elise actually spend some time together and get to know each other, unlike Elizabeth and Darcy in P&P. It made their relationship more believable.
Overall, this was a light and clever adaptation. I would recommend it to anyone and everyone--I mean, a 10-year-old could read this and not find anything objectionable in it. But that doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable for those of us who enjoy a good YA romance--I mean, it’s “Pride and Prejudice” after all.