Pride and prejudice - book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by Airen Wolf

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Pride and prejudice

Book by Cleis Press Inc.

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Beyond Pride And Prejudice

Mitzi Szereto offers a look at what Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy's family and friends are really like lending a new interpretation on a morality tale. The story retains the sweet quality of the original despite the graphic sex scenes.
Published:
Pros:
Well written, Follows the original story's plot very well
Cons:
Some scenes are overly repetitious
Rating by reviewer:
4
extremely useful review

About author

Mitzi Szereto has written and edited numerous books in a variety of genres including erotica, fiction and non-fiction. My first introduction to her work was In Sleeping Beauty's Bed. I have to admit to being a fan of her work.

Ms. Szereto is credited with pioneering erotic writing workshops in the UK and Europe according to her author's notes at the back of Pride & Prejudice: Hidden Lusts. Also mentioned in her author's note is the fact that Ms Szereto is a 'popular social media personality and frequent interviewee'!
    • Engaging

Content / Style / Audience

Mitzi Szereto's Pride & Prejudice: Hidden Lusts is an irreverent interpretation of the classic Pride & Prejudice written by Jane Austen. In this 'not so moral' tale it would seem that the problems between Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth take a backseat to the sexcapades of the secondary characters.

The book begins much the same way the original novel began, with Mrs. Bennet all aflutter with news that Netherfield Park was to be inhabited by a gentleman of means who could be looking for a bride. Shortly after Mrs. Bennet accosts her hapless husband with this news the story takes a unique spin and becomes something both less and more than the original.

Almost all of the characters are OBSESSED with sex:
Mr. Bennet masturbates to pornographic drawings until he is caught by his housekeeper.
Mrs. Bennet pines for her first love who was a regimental officer and the father of her oldest daughter, Jane.

Lydia likes to lift her skirts and rub her naked privates on any object she can reach, preferably a soldier's thigh. Kitty follows Lydia into all her peccadilloes.
Mary decides she is tired of being the plain child and makes a play for Mr. Collins but has a horrible mishap when she seeks the assistance of the gypsies.

Mr. Collins is only interested in men, particularly his choristers much to the chagrin of his patroness Lady Catherine deBourgh. She believes marriage to a good woman of gentle breeding will set her erstwhile minister on the straight and narrow. He sets his sights on Elizabeth who firmly tells him no. He then marries a woman who is perfect for him as she is only interested in women!

Mr. Bingly is in love with Mr. Darcy, who doesn't return the sentiment. Miss Bingly desires to have Mr. Darcy naked and at the mercy of her birch, he likewise does not return the sentiment.

Lady Catherine punishes all in her domain most cruelly.
Only Elizabeth and Jane seem untouched by all the nasty, down and dirty sex around them but even these two lovely ladies are drawn in by the men they love.

Ms. Szereto stays true to the original plot of Ms. Austen's Pride And Prejudice adding only her unique interpretations of the characters. Even the language she uses has an Austen-like flavor, in short it reads very authentically.

This story is geared toward kinksters who read classic novels and imagine the real behind the scenes, hinted at sex. The focus of this book is these hidden lusts only hinted at by Ms. Austen.
    • Fiction
    • Humorous
    • Parody

Design

The jacket art only mildly hints at the subject matter of the story. The lovely young woman is the main focus and the words 'Hidden Lusts' blend well enough that most people will assume you are reading a classic. This is pretty safe even for work.

There is no Table of Contents page but each chapter is headed by a lovely plate. At the back of the book is a short biography of the author, a list of some of her other projects and some websites you can go to learn more.

This is a paperback book that is slightly oversized and bound so that it will last with minimal care.
    • Discreet cover
    • Soft cover
    • Well made

Personal comments

I am a great fan of Jane Austen and I was taken aback by the apparent disregard for the original plot of Pride And Prejudice. That's when I took a greater look at the cover of the book. I completely missed the 'Hidden Lusts' part of the title. Then it all became clear; this wasn't a parody of the original story this was a look at the people who surrounded Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy!

When I realized this I was able to sit back and enjoy the tongue-in-cheek look at the secondary cast and their sometimes odd adventures.

I did enjoy the book but I found the sex scenes to be rather predictable and not terribly creative. I did appreciate that Ms. Szereto adopted the language of Ms. Austen but I found that the scenes were pedantic rather than erotic. In this case I thought that less attention to the sex scenes would have helped rather than hurt the story.
Follow-up commentary
Although this isn't a true retelling of the original novel, I still think it has re-read potential and offers a different perspective on the motives and actions of the secondary characters in the original novel. For lovers of whimsical erotica and classic novels, this is a great read. It does get a bit repetitive, but I think that stems more from a lack of real secondary character development from Jane Austin than from a lack of writing talent on the part of Mitzi Szereto. There's simply a lack of material to work with!

This is definitely worth a read if you are a Jane Austin fan.
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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Comments
  • Bunnycups
    Bunnycups  
    This sounds like a book I'm going to have to get. Perfect for summer reading!
  • markeagleone
    markeagleone  
    Oddly enough, my wife just recently read Pride & Prejudice. For the life of me I do not know why she read the book again. I am not a reader, so that is probably why it confuses me.

    I think she would enjoy reading this version. I am gonna have to pick this book up for her. Thank you for the review.
  • Shellz31
    Shellz31  
    I have to get this for mum! This is her favorite movie and she loves reading so I'm sure she will enjoy this one.

    Great review
  • ZenaidaMacroura
    ZenaidaMacroura  
    I haven't read Pride and Prejudice since high school. I just couldn't get into it. I may have to read it again just so I can give this one a look. Good review!
  • Airen Wolf
    Airen Wolf  
    Actually, this book tends to deal with the activities of the supporting characters rather than the original main characters so it's pretty stand alone. Even if you knew nothing about Jane Austen's version you'd be able to follow this story.
  • Ivy Wilde
    Ivy Wilde  
    I'm a bookaholic and actually read and like the classics (though I'm more into sci fi/fantasy and contemporary lit). I love the idea of an erotic re-telling of Jane Austen's classic. Too bad the sex scenes weren't as provocative as they could have been.
  • Zapples
    Zapples  
    Thanks for the review! I'm a huge Pride & Prejudice fan, so obviously this has piqued my interest.
  • Airen Wolf
    Airen Wolf  
    Just remember that this isn't a strict retelling of the original story but a sort of companion book to what COULD have been going on with the supporting cast.
  • curious kitten
    curious kitten  
    Since reading Pride and Prejudice 3 times in my school years and it being one of my favorite books; I am looking forward to reading this at least once to see how I enjoy the sexual aspects of this novel. GREAT REVIEW. VERY INFORMATIVE.
  • spicyjjang
    spicyjjang  
    Sounds like a great book~ Thanks for the review!
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