Our Day 3 pick for Best I’ve Read 2011 is Pride and Popularity by Jenni James. She is here for an exclusive interview plus multi book giveaway!
Pride and Popularity
by Jenni James
Perfect Paperback, 240 pages
Published July 13th 2011
by Brigham Distributing
4.5 starsChloe Elizabeth Hart despises the conceited antics of the popular crowd, or more importantly, one very annoying self-possessed guy, Taylor Anderson, who seems determined to make her the president of his fan club! As if! Every girl in the whole city of Farmington, New Mexico, is in love with him, but he seems to be only interested in Chloe.
This modern high school adaptation of “Pride and Prejudice” is a battle of wits as Chloe desperately tries to remain the only girl who can avoid the inevitable—falling for Taylor With as many young adult books as I read there are very few I would definitely recommend to my daughters and friends as completely worth the time and purchase. But Pride and Popularity is one I can whole heartedly stand behind. Jenni James takes Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice into the 21st century and adapts it to teens. I found myself totally immersed and grinning ear to ear at the end.Chloe has been burned by the popular crowd at her old school and at age 15 is determined it won’t happen again when she relocates with her family to Farmington. The only problem is that there happens to be an uber popular, stunningly cute and charming boy there. But mark Chloe’s words to her two best friends…Taylor Anderson will NOT win her over. Forget the fact that Taylor has beautiful blue eyes, serves others plus is ever persistent in his attention. (Girls and moms alike will swoon at the fact that Taylor’s middle names is Darcy.)Pride and Popularity not only won my heart, it also addresses withholding judgement, the risks of online sites for young teens, and the importance of involved parents. The characters are real, the teen perspective spot on. I can not wait to see all of Jenni James re-tellings in her Austen series. She’s a YA author to watch! Thanks so much to Brigham Distributing for sending me such a fun amazing book.Our exclusive interview with author Jenni James:
Tell us about your Jane Austen inspired books.
I’m rewriting & modernizing all the Jane Austen novels in a series for teens. There are 6 total. Pride & Popularity is the first, and while they are all stand alone novels, there are reoccurring characters throughout. Northanger Alibi, Persuaded, Emmalee, Mansfield Ranch, Sensible & Sensational
Any projects you are currently working on?
I’ve got Northanger Alibi releasing in February (2012) and I’m currently working on my first all natural healthy cookbook. Making all your favorite cakes, candy, cookies… and meals using 100% whole wheat, honey, olive oil and all natural ingredients, all of my recipes are simple, yummy and from scratch. J
You are a mother of a large family, tell us how you find time to write.
Actually, writing is my sanity. It’s what I do at night and it lets me feel like I’m human and am contributing to the world in some small way. Plus, there’s the added bonus of how it makes my brain think, you know, like I’m going to school and learning. It’s like that.
What lessons do you hope to pass on to your readers and teens?
Mostly, that teens today aren’t as the YA world has been portraying them lately. That they can be normal and still be cool and get the guy at the end. I guess I’m championing for all the normal teens out there. J
What authors or people have inspired you?
My most favorite author (apart from Jane Austen of course) is Judith A. Lansdowne. She’s a regency romance writer… and an incredible friend and person. I love love love her! While living in England, I’d emailed her to ask for some pointers on the ball I was throwing, we began emailing back and forth. It was during one of these emails she encouraged me to write, telling me that through my letters she could tell I’d make a wonderful writer. I thought back on that conversation often a year later when I finally sat down and began writing.
We heard you have some exciting movie news…can you share?
*waggles eyebrows* Do I ever?!?! Hehehe! But, er… I can only say this much: I have a producer *very* interested in making all 6 of the Jane Austen Diaries into movies and filming in Farmington, NM… which would be amazing for Farmington. Oh, and I can say—recently, as of *very* recently—I’ve had significant interest from an amazing director who’d like to come on board.
What has been the biggest surprise about this whole process?
How much fun writing is! I so thought it’d be boring, but I was way wrong. Writing your own stories is so much more amazing than reading someone else’s.
If you could change anything about today’s YA fiction works what would it be?
I’d clean them up. Period.
Tell us what you enjoy to do when not writing? Favorite movies, snacks, hobbies?
Oh goodness! What don’t I like to do? I love to paint portraits and sing and plan elaborate parties and cook and bake and well… a whole bunch of things. My favorite movies tend to lean toward very sappy and wonderfully romantical love stories. –The simple, cute, perfect ones. *sigh*
Author Bio: I’m married to a totally hot, redheaded Air Force Recruiter, named Mark. Together we have 10 kiddos (7 ours, 3 fostered). We have just moved back to the States after living 9 awesome years in the Azores Islands of Portugal and England! Our kids love the USA!
When I’m not writing up a storm, I enjoy reading, acting, portrait painting, directing plays, cooking, planning elaborate parties and chasing my kids around the house. Oh, and before you ask–I haven’t been to college, YET! But I’ve always been able to write one mean essay when I needed to. *wink*
Learn more about Jenni James on her website
Jenni and her publisher have donated 5 copies of Pride and Popularity
to our blog followers for Best I’ve Read 2011. SO AWESOME!! To enter to win click here
and fill out the form.