Friday, January 1, 2016

Stream Of Consciousness: First & Then by Emma Mills

I had this on my TBR for a while due to the fact that it's a Pride & Prejudice retelling, but for the longest time after I completely forgot about that aspect. I even saw it at the library when it first came out and totally just walked right past it (I still hate myself for that). Then one day I finally realized this was a retelling of my favorite book, and I finally acknowledged how quickly I needed to read this. However, I kept putting this one off because I was afraid I wouldn't like it, but I had a P&P craving recently so I decided to read this instead.

First & Then is a pretty wild ride in terms of how I felt about it as the book went on - that's why I thought I'd share my feelings toward the book with you guys! I'll start with my thoughts from the beginning of the book all the way to the end. That being said, I'm sorry if this doesn't make sense.

Meets Devon For First Time: Hmmm I don't really feel anything. But she's really mean to her cousin; Elizabeth Bennett was never mean. *humph* And she's also kind of whiny - but I can also see myself in some parts of her, so I hope that's not how I actually am...

Meets Ezra aka Mr. Darcy: He's frowning, but it's a mean kind of frowning. AND HE'S SO MEAN. I don't think even Darcy was this mean. Ezra's definitely got the scowling down, but it's not the type of scowl I admire. I probably won't even end up liking him - this book is disappointing me already. I want Darcy. EZRA, YOU WILL NEVER BE DARCY. Unless you become more like Darcy later. Which you might.

Devon Reads Jane Austen and References S&S and P&P: Aaaaah the main character loves Austen novels! Oh no...I hope this doesn't mean I'm like her. I agree with her sometimes, but she's whiny and super prejudiced and prefers to love her friend Cas rather than Ezraaaaaa - she just ain't my cup of tea. Also, dear Devon, please get it through you head: Willoughby is not a decent guy!

Foster's Development: I mean, yay, makeover! But what changed him? Football? And what made him the way he was in the first place - they didn't explain this enough. I need to know more. Foster might actually be my most favorite person though, besides the mystery behind his before and after pictures.

Ezra and Dev Moments: They're so cute!!! I knew I'd come to love Ezra (though my feelings toward Dev are still pretty iffy). And they're so cute together! But who is Jane Bennet and Mr. Wickham in the novel? I want to know. I have guesses but I don't know if they're right - I suppose I'm sort of glad this isn't your everyday, predictable Pride & Prejudice retelling. It puts a new spin on things.

Homecoming: Noooo the pain, I can't stand it. I have a thing for painful scenes, and this is the most painful thing I've read in a while. *drowns in pain* THIS IS NOT OKAY. Also, why's it Homecoming? Isn't it usually Prom in these types of book, with seniors and whatnot. On another note, if Homecoming is the climax-ish moment, then wow this romance moved quickly.

The End: Gaaaah Ezra's confession was quite possibly the cutest thing ever! And people's true colors are coming out and other people finally realize they're prejudiced. Whoo! I just realized how prejudiced Devon is in this novel though - it's like Pride & Prejudice with an emphasis on the prejudice. BUT DID I MENTION HOW CUTE IT WAS.

It was really frustrating trying to identify which character was which in this P&P retelling, but in the end, I was glad I didn't know who was who because it made this retelling much more unpredictable. I will say, however, that if this was an accurate representation of a modern Pride & Prejudice, I would travel back in time to the nineteenth century. Even so, this was a really fun, quick read that all Austen fans should read.

...I'm going to go read Pride & Prejudice now. 

Book Synopsis: Devon Tennyson wouldn't change a thing. She's happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, silently crushing on best friend Cas, and blissfully ignoring the future after high school. But the universe has other plans. It delivers Devon's cousin Foster, an unrepentant social outlier with a surprising talent for football, and the obnoxiously superior and maddeningly attractive star running back, Ezra, right where she doesn't want them first into her P.E. class and then into every other aspect of her life.

Pride and Prejudice meets Friday Night Lights in this contemporary novel about falling in love with the unexpected boy, with a new brother, and with yourself.

Source: Borrowed a copy from the library.

Title: First & Then
Author: Emma Mills
Publication Date: October 13, 2015
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, YA
Pages: 272 pages