Book Review: The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet by Bernie Su and Kate Rorick

I’ve written before about my affection for the YouTube series, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. When I heard there was going to be a book based on the series, I could hardly contain my “squee!”s. So needless to say, I was pretty excited to pick up The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet.

Description from the publisher:

Based on the Emmy Award–winning YouTube series The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.

Twenty‑four‑year‑old grad student Lizzie Bennet is saddled with student loan debt and still living at home along with her two sisters—beautiful Jane and reckless Lydia. When she records her reflections on life for her thesis project and posts them on YouTube, she has no idea The Lizzie Bennet Diaries will soon take on a life of their own, turning the Bennet sisters into internet celebrities seemingly overnight.

When rich and handsome Bing Lee comes to town, along with his stuck‑up friend William Darcy, things really start to get interesting for the Bennets—and for Lizzie’s viewers. But not everything happens on‑screen. Lucky for us, Lizzie has a secret diary.

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet takes readers deep inside Lizzie’s world and well beyond the confines of her camera—from the wedding where she first meets William Darcy to the local hangout of Carter’s bar, and much more. Lizzie’s private musings are filled with revealing details about the Bennet household, including her growing suspicions about her parents’ unstable financial situation, her sister’s budding relationship with Bing Lee, the perils of her unexpected fame, and her uncertainty over her future—and whom she wants to share it with.

Featuring plenty of fresh twists to delight fans and new readers alike, The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet expands on the web series phenomenon that captivated a generation and re-imagines the Pride and Prejudice story like never before.

I bought this book just before I spent a weekend at the beach so I could devour it while lounging around, and devour it I did. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from the book. Would it just be filler? Would it be a re-adaptation of the web series? (Which would make it an adaptation of an adaptation of an original work. Whew.) I needn’t have feared. The book is as charming as the web series, and several parts made me laugh out loud. It adds enough to make the plot fresh and worth reading.  It also serves as a pretty stellar adaptation of Austen’s novel. I’m not sure if it could standalone without the reader viewing the web series, but honestly WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT? Both are so fun!

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