Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet

Written By: Kellie - Jun• 15•14

18775255Publisher:  Touchstone
Publish Date: June 24th, 2014
Source: ARC

Rating: 4/5 stars – A great way to revisit these characters that I already miss so much.

About the book: A modern adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice based on the Emmy Award-winning phenomenon, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.

There is a great deal that goes into making a video blog. Lizzie Bennet should know, having become a YouTube sensation over the course of her year-long video diary project. The Lizzie Bennet Diaries chronicled Lizzie’s life as a twenty-four-year-old grad student, struggling under a mountain of student loans and living at home with her two sisters—beautiful Jane and reckless Lydia. What may have started as her grad student thesis grew into so much more, as the videos came to inform and reflect her life and that of her sisters. When rich, handsome Bing Lee comes to town, along with his stuck-up friend William Darcy, thingsreally start to get interesting for the Bennets—and for Lizzie’s viewers. Suddenly Lizzie—who always considered herself a fairly normal young woman—was a public figure. But not everything happened on-screen. Luckily for us, Lizzie kept a secret diary. 

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet provides more character introspection as only a book can, with revelatory details about the Bennet household, including Lizzie’s special relationship with her father, untold stories from Netherfield, Lizzie’s thoughts and fears about life after grad school and becoming an instant web celebrity.

Written by Bernie Su, the series’ executive producer, co-creator, head writer, and director, along with Kate Rorick, the novelist, TV writer, and consulting producer on the series, the novel features a journal-entry format and design, complementing the existing web series, while including plenty of fresh twists to delight fans and new readers alike. The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet expands on the phenomenon that captivated a generation and reimagines the Pride and Prejudice story like it’s never been done before.

Thoughts: I cannot tell you how excited I was when I heard that this book was happening. I absolutely loved the Lizzie Bennet web series, and this book was the perfect addition to an already multi-dimensional take on Jane Austen’s classic story. Of course Lizzie Bennet keeps a diary!

The book starts a little before the video blogs do, from around when Lizzie first comes up with the idea, which made for an interesting read. And I loved reading about Lizzie and Charlotte together. But more than anything else, I loved getting back to the Bennet sisters. This book offers a lot in terms of extra Jane content, which was tough at times (poor Jane!), but I loved Laura Spencer’s version of Jane, and extra Jane is always appreciated. Was anyone else excited to see Laura Spencer on multiple episodes of The Big Bang Theory?! Yay!

Overall, this was well written and I think it did a great job of capturing Lizzie’s voice. Of course, I wish it was longer and offered even more in terms of behind the scenes (especially with Lizzie and Darcy in the second half of the story) but I think I’m always going to want more Lizzie Bennet and Co.

Annnd, I think it’s time for me to finally watch my Kickstarter DVD set!

Second Opinions
@Writer of Wrongs
@The Bevy Biblioteque
@Reader of Fictions

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