One of the earliest examples of the hate-to-love narrative within the bounds of a romance novel is Jane Austen‘s 1813 book, Pride and Prejudice. The up-and-down courtship between Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy has thrilled readers for more than two centuries.
Debra White Smith‘s 2004 tale, First Impressions: A Contemporary Retelling of Pride and Prejudice is set in a small town in Texas. From the moment they meet, Eddi Boswick and Dave Davidson dislike each other. Eddi has just opened her own legal practice. Dave has also just moved in with his aunt, preferring that his neighbors know nothing about his past.
When they are cast as Lizzie and Darcy in a local dinner theater production of the book, sparks fly. As much as they hate each other, they cannot deny the mutual attraction. When push comes to shove, will they walk into the sunset together or will Eddi and Dave go their separate ways?
The title alone, speaks to how much the author respects Austen. First Impressions was the original title before it was changed to Pride and Prejudice. White Smith perfectly balances the original text with the place and time that her story is set in. It is a challenge that many writers (myself included) have taken on and well, taken their best shot at.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely.
First Impressions: A Contemporary Retelling of Pride and Prejudice is available wherever books are sold.
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