Classics are called such for a reason, but what happens when someone decides to take one and retell it in a new way? Pretty amazing things, or at least that's what happens in this collection of the best Pride and Prejudice book adaptations. Even if you're a die-hard fan of the original novel, you'll delight in these creative reimaginings, I promise.
Out of all of Jane Austen's novels, Pride and Prejudice is the most beloved and widely read. With the help of a fierce, bookish heroine, a timeless romance, and witty social critique, the romantic classic is compulsively (re)readable. Filled with vivid imagery, vibrant characters, and beautiful language, it's the kind of story you can get completely lost in over and over and over again. And now, with the countdown on until Bridget Jones's Baby September release, it's officially time to revisit some of the best Austen adaptations, because Helen Fielding isn't the only author who has taken on this iconic story.
Whether you've worn out your copy of Jane Austen's greatest novel or you're looking for your new favorite retelling, here are 12 of the best Pride and Prejudice adaptations you'll want to add to your bookshelves immediately.
1. Eligible: A Modern Retelling of Pride and Prejudice by Curtis Sittenfeld
From prep school to former first ladies, it seems there is no subject author Curtis Sittenfeld can't handle, including Jane Austen. In this modern-day retelling of Pride and Prejudice, two sisters, Liz and Jane, are summoned home to suburban Cincinnati to care for their family. But they find a lot more than their pushy mother and trouble-making sisters. A charming love story brimming with humor and wit, Eligible is the modern Austen adaptation you've been waiting for. Bonus: Mr. Darcy is a neurosurgeon.
2. Longbourn by Jo Baker
Everyone knows the story of Elizabeth and Darcy, but what about the servants around them? In her unique story about the other side of the Bennet's world, Jo Baker's Longbourn explores class and privilege through the eyes of Sarah, the Bennet's housemaid. Romantic, comical, and appropriately dramatic, Longbourn features the same elements that make Jane Austen's classic so beloved, but in a whole new way.
3. Mr. Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange
In Amanda Grange's Mr. Darcy's Diary, readers get to experience the passionate courtship of Elizabeth and Darcy, but this time, through the man's point of view. An intimate portrait of everyone's favorite gentleman, Mr. Darcy's Diary is a treat for fans of Pride and Prejudice who want to return to the story.
4. Epic Fail by Claire LaZebnik
The story of Pride and Prejudice isn't just for adults. In Claire LaZebnik's young adult adaptation, Epic Fail, an unlikely romance develops between Elise and Dereck, two teenagers trying to survive in elite world of prep school. A sweet story that follows the same basic plot as Austen's classic, this is a fun and easy read where a sweet love story takes center stage.
5. An Assembly Such as This: A Novel of Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman by Pamela Aidan
In another Pride and Prejudice retelling from Darcy's perspective, the quiet and brooding leading man of Austen's classic gets a voice of his own. Featuring all the characters you know and a new one you will love, An Assembly Such As This is a charming Austen retelling.
6. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith
Because every story is better with zombies, Seth Grahame-Smith's bestselling novel-turned-movie is a must-read for Austen lovers. An expanded edition of the original novel that includes epic fight scenes, vicious monsters, and bloody battles, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies needs to be on every P&P fan's shelf.
7. Cozy Classics: Pride And Prejudice by Jack Wang, Holman Wang, and Jane Austen
Babies deserve to enjoy Jane Austen's marvelous storytelling, and thanks to Cozy Classics, they can. An adorable board book with words from the original novel, this is a fun novelty book or a great gift for Austen-loving parents and their soon-to-be bookworm kids.
8. The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet: A Novel by Bernie Su
Based on the Emmy Award-winning YouTube series, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet takes fans behind the scenes of the internet sensation, exposing even more drama, romance, and secrets. A contemporary setting where Regency meets the internet age, this fresh take on Austen's work makes it more accessible, and more relatable, than ever.
9. Definitely, Maybe in Love by Ophelia London
In this modern day retelling, the unlikely lovers meet even more obstacles, this time, in the form of graduate school, disapproving parents, environmental activism, and, of course, pride. A sweet love story with likable characters, Definitely, Maybe In Love is a cute novel that will delight Austen fans and novices alike.
10. 1932 by Karen M. Cox
If you thought courtship in Austen's days were difficult, try falling in love in the 1930s. Karen M. Cox's 1932 takes Elizabeth and Darcy's whirlwind romance into the 20th century American midwest, where the Bennets must deal with the harsh realities of poverty and class discrimination. A sexy and exciting story, 1932 is a truly fresh take on this timeless tale.
11. Death Comes to Pemberley by P. D. James
A brilliant and suspenseful follow up to Pride and Prejudice, P.D. James's Death Comes to Pemberley Wickham is dead, and it's up Elizabeth, Lydia, and Darcy to get to the bottom of it. A thrilling sequel, Death Comes to Pemberley takes all the characters you know and love and thrusts them into an exciting whodunit mystery.
12. Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding
Is any list of Pride and Prejudice retellings complete without Helen Fieldings? A hilarious novel featuring a sassy, self-depricating heroine with all the same struggles as you, Bridget Jones's Diary is a laugh-out-loud adaptation of Austen's classic novel of manners — only manners are the last thing on this protagonist's mind.