A Novel

Book - 2019
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"In this retelling of Pride and Prejudice set in modern-day Pakistan, Alys Binat has sworn never to marry--until an encounter with one Mr. Darsee at a wedding makes her reconsider. A scandal and vicious rumor in the Binat family have destroyed their fortune and prospects for desirable marriages, but Alys, the second and most practical of the five Binat daughters, has found happiness teaching English literature to schoolgirls. Knowing that many of her students won't make it to graduation before dropping out to marry and start having children, Alys teaches them about Jane Austen and her other literary heroes and hopes to inspire them to dream of more. When an invitation arrives to the biggest wedding their small town has seen in years, Mrs. Binat excitedly sets to work preparing her daughters to fish for eligible--and rich--bachelors, certain that their luck is about to change. On the first night of the festivities, Alys's lovely older sister, Jena, catches the eye of one of the most eligible bachelors. Buthis friend Valentine Darsee is clearly unimpressed by the Binat family. Alys accidentally overhears his unflattering assessment of her, and quickly dismisses him and his snobbish ways. But as the days of lavish wedding parties unfold, the Binats wait breathlessly to see if Jena will land a proposal--and Alys begins to realize that Darsee's brusque manner may be hiding a very different man from the one she saw at first glance"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, [2019]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2019
ISBN: 9781524799717
Branch Call Number: SON
Characteristics: 342 pages ; 25 cm
Additional Contributors: Austen, Jane 1775-1817 Pride and Prejudice


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LPL_IlkaI Jul 29, 2019

Soniah Kamal has crafted a brilliant retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and Predjudice. And not just retold, but she cleverly updated it, thus, ushering this beloved classic into a new age for new readers. This is a must read for all fans of Pride and Predjudice!

Jul 16, 2019

I really loved this modernized adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. Centering the story in Pakistan was brilliant, relevant, and clever. The themes of individualism, feminism, pressure, and expectations to marry (and marry WELL), and the perceived value of women were so clear and well interpreted. My only hang-up is that at times it seemed a little slow to move (which is also nod to the original work?) Overall, an excellent read that I would highly recommend and read again.

May 20, 2019

This is quite a fun take on Pride and Prejudice, reimagined in modern-day Pakistan. It follows the original storyline fairly closely, but with the necessary cultural changes, the characters' names revised to similar Pakistani names. It is also a tribute to Jane Austen, with direct references to her writing and other characters within the novel itself, as well as the occasional appearance of Austen-related people and places - even a brief cameo by Harris Bigg-Wither as a visiting Englishman.

May 10, 2019

Pride & Prejudice was assigned reading in High School, and I haven't revisited it since. I never realized how timeless the plotline was and how even centuries-old, it could be refreshed to fit into Pakastani culture set in the 2000's. Jane Austen delivered biting social commentary and criticism in P&P yet managed to keep it light and witty, and Kamal attempts to the same here. Sometimes she does come across a bit heavy- handed however, I really enjoyed this charming update. One of my fave lines from the novel is when an uptight socialist heiress comments that it must be hard for Alys's (Elizabeth Bennet) mother to have two daughters over 30 that are unmarried, to which she replies "seems to be even harder on absolute strangers." Love the way Soniah Kamal points out hypocrisies and double standard in the society. Kamal also examines class and feminism in post-colonial Pakistan, where the effects of British rule still are felt. For instance this witty take on class "The clinic was an excellent facility, as all facilities that cater to excellent people tend to be, because excellent people demand excellence, unlike those who are grateful for what they receive."

I also appreciated that Kamal does a good job explaining the cultural customs, food, and clothes so that a stranger can picture it vividly while reading. It's been 10 years since I've visited Pakistan and this book made me ache for it. Overall, this was a fun read and one of my favorites this year.

Apr 08, 2019

If you love Pride and Prejudice you MUST read this updated version that takes place in Pakistan. It was a joy to read, and I found myself anxious as if I did not know how the story ended. The characters are so wonderfully portrayed and it was wonderful to learn about Pakistani culture through a familiar story. I loved everything about this book!

Mar 27, 2019

Loooooved this. Came for the Darcy/Elizabeth reiteration, stayed for the Pakistan culture. So fab.

Mar 02, 2019

Clever, fun modern-day version of P&P that Jane Austen fans and "civilians" will both enjoy. The dynamics of the contemporary Pakistan marriage mart make the story of marrying off five daughters seem both old and new. I know we have the movie "Bride and Prejudice" set in modern-day India, but I wish someone would make a film of this story also--much different because of the two lead characters. Hope Hollywood or Bollywood is listening!!

IndyPL_AngieL Mar 02, 2019

This book is perfect for anyone who can’t get enough of "Pride and Prejudice"…but it is told from the viewpoint of Alys Binat, a young woman in today’s Pakistan. Alys is independent-minded and not at all on the lookout for love, as her mother wants her to be. After all, a big wedding is what a girl should aspire to—and a wealthy son-in-law would be especially welcome in the eyes of Mrs. Binat. But Alys thwarts her mother’s plans when she spurns the popular and rich Valentine Darsee, a person with whom Alys always seems to be at odds. Can her mind and her heart be won over by this seemingly callous and aloof young man? Find out in this imaginative and literate version of "Pride and Prejudice."

DCLadults Feb 13, 2019

A New & Noteworthy pick. "Pride and Prejudice" has been done so many ways. This time it’s set in Pakistan and it’s a fun and fresh update on the original.

Feb 03, 2019

What an enjoyable version of Pride and Prejudice. The Binat family were a mixture of personalities. Mrs. Binat has one mission and it is to see her five daughters married to rich eligible men and she is not subtle about it. Jena is kind and generous, Alys is fearless and outspoken, Qitty is an artist, and holds her head up no matter that her sister Lady always puts her down due to Qitty’s weight. Mari is religious and wants to make sure everyone goes to heaven and Lady who just wants to have a good time. Of all the sisters, I liked Alys the most. She cared about her family and was very protective yet she had her blinders on about certain things and people. Sisters Sammy and Hammy were so irritating. I think fans of the Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice will enjoy this version set in Pakistan. I found it an interesting take on the original story with lots of laughter and touching moments.


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Jul 19, 2019

Good for any book club discussion: Page 269
"She wondered . . . whether he believed that books led to an escape from reality or were windows into it."

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