Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen must be one of the most popular classic novels to retell by modern authors. There are contemporary retellings, like Bridget Jones’ Diary (the more comical), Eligible (the serious literary take), there are YA versions, like Pride and Prom and Prejudice. There are fantasy versions, like Heartstone or horror ones, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Then there are the contemporary retellings set in different cultures than the original, like Unmarriageable; Pride, Prejudice and Other Flavors, and this one.
Official book description:
Ayesha Shamsi has a lot going on. Her dreams of being a poet have been overtaken by a demanding teaching job. Her boisterous Muslim family, and numerous (interfering) aunties, are professional naggers. And her flighty young cousin, about to reject her one hundredth marriage proposal, is a constant reminder that Ayesha is still single.
Ayesha might be a little lonely, but the one thing she doesn’t want is an arranged marriage. And then she meets Khalid… How could a man so conservative and judgmental (and, yes, smart and annoyingly handsome) have wormed his way into her thoughts so quickly?
As for Khalid, he’s happy the way he is; his mother will find him a suitable bride. But why can’t he get the captivating, outspoken Ayesha out of his mind? They’re far too different to be a good match, surely…
Uzma Jalaluddin has set her modern retelling of the classic romance in Canada, with the headstrong and loyal Eliza Bennett becoming the hardworking Ayesha Shamsi, whose family (consisting of a grieving mother, ambitious programmer brother, and Ayesha) living with loving grandparents and feeling indebted to their richer relatives who helped them move to Canada after the unfortunate death of Ayesha’s father. Because of both the financial and emotional debt to her aunt and uncle, Ayesha has trained as a teacher and is determined to make this career work, even though she struggles as a substitute teacher and her true passion is beat poetry. Having seen how much her mother still grieves the death of her father, Ayesha’s not sure she ever wants to get married, but she can’t help but be a bit jealous of all the attention her younger cousin (the Lydia character) is getting with her multiple suitors.
Full review on my blog.