cbr11bingo – Remix! Zuri Benitez is of the rambling Benitez family. They live in Brooklyn – in Bushwick – in a one bedroom apartment where she and her four siblings share the living room as their bedroom, where block parties are regular and boisterous, and where she and her family and the neighborhood take care of each other. This is why Zuri views the new family across the street with suspicion. When a developer bought the property and revamped it into a flashy new home, the girls placed bets as to who’d move in – rich white folk trying out […]
I had such high hopes for Pride (2018) by Ibi Zoboi. I first saw it on NPR’s Best Books of 2018 List, and I was immediately intrigued. The description of Pride as a modern retelling of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, set in Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood, sounded fantastic. Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite books of all time, and one of the few books that I’ve actually reread. I have high standards for retellings and adaptations, but when they’re done well, I love them. Two of my favorites are “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries” Youtube series and Longbourn by Jo Baker. Perhaps I began this book with unreasonably high […]
3.5 stars. At this point, my expectations for Jane Austen retellings are so very very low. There are about 2 that I can think of that I would recommend to anyone and considering I’ve read plenty? That’s not a great batting average. It’s like authors/publishers know fans will pick them up so they don’t feel like they have to try very hard. People LOVE Lizzie & Darcy so of course they’ll read. But in truth, you’re getting compared to one of the best writers of the last few centuries, so you should try harder. If an author manages to capture […]
This last year, like many Cannonballers, I read more books than I got a chance to review and so this final review of 2018, which will end up being my first review of 2019, is a sort of odds and ends. Here in no particular order are books that I read while in China, books I read while on vacation in Northern Wisconsin, and books I read during my fall and spring semesters that I just didn’t have time to write about at the time. However, I wanted to get something down about each one of these. [In terms of […]
I like that Ibi Zoboi didn’t call this a “retelling” of Pride and Prejudice. She’s going with the term “remix.” That seems to fit a little better, because while the main plot is pretty similar, there are lots of little things that don’t quite fit into a strict retelling. What Zoboi did instead was take a story that most of us already know, flip parts of it around, and make it her own. And it really worked for me. Zuri Benitez was born and raised in Bushwick, Brooklyn. She’s proud of her Haitian/Dominican heritage. She’s fiercely protective of her family […]
Ibi Zoboi’s Pride is a modern retelling of Pride and Prejudice set in Brooklyn. The best adaptations take a familiar story and use it to explore contemporary issues. Once we identify each new character with it’s P&P counterpart, we understand where they fit in the story and then we can move on to the meat of it. We know class is going to be a part of the conflict, and since this is a modernization, we know getting the 5 Benitez sisters married off isn’t a motivation.
I’m sorry to say that Meet Cute was my biggest reading disappointment of 2018 so far. It had everything I thought I wanted: how-we-met short stories from some of the best YA authors out there — including Julie freaking Murphy — and a recommendation from Rainbow Rowell. I assumed it would be a delight. And some of it was. I had never heard of Ibi Zoboi, but her story “Hourglass” was my favorite of the bunch. She told a story about Cherish, a tall African-American girl in a small town filled with white people. Her best friend is kind of […]