Friday, 15 November 2013
Review: Definitely, Maybe in Love by Ophelia London
Publisher: Entangled Embrace
Released: October 28th, 2013
Spring Honeycutt wants two things: to ace her sustainable living thesis and to save the environment. Both seem hopelessly unobtainable until her college professor suggests that with a new angle, her paper could be published. Spring swears she’ll do whatever it takes to ensure that happens. "Whatever it takes," however, means forming a partnership with the very hot, very privileged, very conceited Henry Knightly. Henry is Spring's only hope at publication, but he's also the über-rich son of a land developer and cash-strapped Spring’s polar opposite—though she can't help being attracted to the way he pushes her buttons, both politically and physically. Spring finds there's more to Henry than his old money and argyle sweaters…but can she drop the loud-and-proud act long enough to let him in? Suddenly, choosing between what she wants and what she needs puts Spring at odds with everything she believes in.
WOW. That's all I can think of to say right at this minute. What a surprise! I've never read anything published by Entangled before, but I'm so so glad I tried this book. I'm definitely in love with it, it's brilliant and oh-so addictive. I practically had my Kindle glued to my hands the whole time I was reading it and could hardly bear to put it down while I headed off to a day at work. Seriously, I was completely and utterly consumed by Henry and Spring's story, Ophelia London's writing and this clever modern retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. It's so good, in fact, I think I'll read it again!
Definitely, Maybe in Love is a fantastic retelling, modernised and slightly changed to fit this story. It's easy to tell by reading it that the author is a big Austen fan and, thanks to reading Pride and Prejudice quite recently myself, I understood all the parallels and nods to the original text. I was impressed with how London built her characters around Austen's, giving them similar characteristics, looks and situations. It's in no way a carbon copy, but there's no doubt it's a retelling and, if I'm honest, I prefer Henry to Mr. Darcy!
This book starts off with Spring Honeycutt: environmentalist, vegetarian and college student. She's currently writing her thesis on sustainable living and ends up getting a helping hand from new boy on campus, Henry Edward Knightly III. The chemistry between these two is palpable on the page, and I was willing every scene to include them. They're complete opposites when it comes to their beliefs, but together they click, even though Spring sees Henry as a stuck-up, rich boy with no regard for her whatsoever. It doesn't help that she also hears him insult her at a party, him clearly channeling the one and only Fitzwilliam Darcy. Spring starts off as very narrow minded and opinionated, not accepting anyone else's views and thinking her way is the only way. It doesn't make her come across as immediately likeable, though as the book progresses she changes her ways and comes to realise that life isn't as black and white as she thinks it is.
Henry is a brilliant character who, in my mind, looks JUST like Henry Cavill. He's described as having dark, curly hair and a smart dress sense - Henry Cavill, yes? That's how I saw him throughout the whole book, anyway. I think I may have even drooled at a couple of points, when Henry and Spring are getting a little bit closer. Their sexual tension is ridiculous, made all the worse by London's mouth-watering writing. Talk about teasing... compelling is not the word!
Definitely, Maybe in Love is being marketed as New Adult I think, although there isn't one single sex scene in the book. Instead there are lingering looks and lots of kissing, but never anything more than that. This could easily have been YA if it wasn't for the twenty-one-year-old characters and the college setting; YA readers will love it and there's nothing unsuitable at all - don't be put off by its NA tag! This is one of the best NA books I've read full stop and, not surprisingly, it's the one with the least action, so to speak. It just goes to show that a good story doesn't always need pages and pages of steamy scenes!
I really loved this book and I can't wait to read more by Ophelia London. I'm still shocked by how much I liked it considering it's from a smaller publisher I'm unfamiliar with, and I'll now be sure to do more research into Entangled's list. It's a gem of a book, hooking me in from the first chapter and keeping me glued to the pages until the end. If you're a reader of YA and NA contemporary fiction, it's imperative you read this book. Do it now and enjoy.