Sunday, February 7, 2021

Pudge and Prejudice: Review and Giveaway

Categories: YA / Clean & Wholesome Romance / '80s
Publisher: Wander (a division of Tyndale House)
Date of Publication: January 12, 2021
Number of Pages: 352 pages

Scroll down for Giveaway!

A Mixtape of Big '80s Style, High School Angst, and a Classic Jane Austen Tale

It’s 1984 and after moving to Northenfield, Texas, with her family, Elyse Nebbit faces the challenge of finding her place in a new school, one dominated by social status and Friday night football. When Elyse’s effortlessly beautiful older sister Jayne starts dating golden boy Charlie Bingley, Elyse finds herself curious about Charlie’s popular and brooding best friend, Billy Fitz. Elyse’s body insecurities eventually complicate her relationship with Billy, leaving Jayne and Elyse’s exceedingly blunt friend, Lottie, to step in and help Elyse accept herself for who she is, pant size and all.

Written with wit and considerable insight into the highs and lows of first love, this coming-of-age twist on the Jane Austen classic had me laughing out loud, singing ‘80s lyrics in my head, and cheering on the brilliant, yet self-deprecating heroine. Pudge & Prejudice is a joy to read from beginning to end!
Lorie Langdon author of Olivia Twist and the Disney Villains series

Allison Pittman will have readers laughing (and singing) on every page of this delightfully tenderhearted novel for all ages…[She] crafts a particularly savvy character who learns that beauty really is soul-deep…. 
Julie Cantrell, New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of Perennials   

I can’t remember the last time I loved a book as much as I love this one. It’s an instant classic I will return to time after time. 
Bethany Turner, Award-Winning Author of The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck

Let me begin with saying that I'm a HUGE Pride and Prejudice retelling fan. Pride and Prejudice is sort of my thing. Some of my favorite memories as a teenager was watching Pride and Prejudice and just about every single retelling with my mom and my best friend. And the books, I devoured any retelling book. So when I saw the opportunity to read Pudge and Prejudice, I couldn't help myself, I had to read it!

First off, I love that this is an 80's retelling. The hair, the clothes, the attitude. It fits perfectly with the primary themes of Pride and Prejudice. Especially Billy Fitz aka our our Mr. Darcy! I could just picture him, his hair, his swagger, his prideful personality. I could easily picture him resembling a member of Duran Duran for me. Easily. 

From the beginning, we are swept into the world of Elyse's life. In fact, I loved how Pittman described her sisters right from the beginning: "Jayne and I love them, of course. The way you love a pet- not like a puppy or anything, but more like a couple of hamsters that can capture your fancy for an entire afternoon before becoming nothing but rustling, squeaking noise you have to remember to feed." 

Lots of comments like this made me giggle out loud! I love Elyse's personality and her spirit! A pure joy of a character!

One of my favorite things I love to do in reading retelling's is to find the key moments from the originally and see how the author does it differently. For one, I enjoyed how the dances for the high school were where the evens for the dancing took place. They explained it in the story that homecoming was for the masses. The gossip was another key piece from the original! I loved how everyone gossiped about everything! Billy was so snarky, which was awesome! Lydia of course lived up to her promiscuous ways. Though I think she deserved a harsher punishment at the end than what she ended up getting, but it happens like that in the original though too. 

And the proposal scene! When Billy very rudely explains his feelings for Elyse. That definitely was comparable to the original!

To be honest, I only had a few minor moments where I thought "I wish Pittman had done...." I was kind of hoping for that rudely open rejection of how our beloved Elizabeth character Elyse was handsome (beautiful since it's the 80's) but not enough to tempt our Mr. Darcy character Billy. I always loved that scene in the original, partially because it really sets the tone for the two. 

The other thing I had wished for was more interactions between Elyse and Billy. I know it's a retelling, and even in the original there's a lot of them just looking at each other. But I wanted more interactions between them, more build up to the moment when Billy makes his some what rude declaration of his feelings. 

And lastly,  I was really surprised how quickly Elyse felt like she was in love with Billy after his rude declaration of his feelings for her. Her feelings seemed to change rather quickly, another reason why I felt like there needed to be more interactions between them to help build that connection between the two. I was still angry with him when she had decided she was in love with him! 

I think the best piece about this entire book was Elyse and how she grows through this story. She's always a bit outspoken, but here you have a girl where it seems like her weight is something talked about frequently with her mom and how certain foods aren't on her diet. But as the story goes she starts to step out of her shell, dress in clothes that are flattering on her, and finds a way to step into that spotlight no matter what music is playing. 

Overall though, I feel like this story has alot of spunk! And despite those minor wishes, I really enjoyed the flow of the story. Pudge and Prejudice is charming and witty! I love how Pittman took our beloved classic and made it completely different from any Pride and Prejudice retelling I have read before. It's creative and funny, and was definitely a hard read to put down! 

Allison Pittman is an award-winning author of thirteen novels, including the Christy-nominated Sister Wife series and the critically acclaimed The Seamstress. An enthusiast for all of the writing world, Allison holds active leadership in her local American Christian Fiction Writers chapter, and she heads up a thriving critique group in the San Antonio area. When not writing, Allison teaches middle school English, working as a conduit to introduce her students to new, fresh literature. You can follow her around on Instagram or Twitter and keep up with her writing news on her Allison Pittman Author Facebook page. Here you'll learn what's going on with new books, next books, and day-to-day life with Allison and her husband, Mikey. You'll also get a peek at Snax, the world's worst dog.

Each winner receives a SIGNED COPY of the book,
a hair scrunchie, and a $25 Visa Gift Card
Giveaway ends Midnight, CST, 2/13/2021
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  1. Love that you know the original so well as to do a side-by-side comparison to plot points! Thanks for a great review!