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A scandal and vicious rumor concerning the Binat family have destroyed their fortune and prospects for desirable marriages, but Alys, the second and most practical of the five Binat daughters, has found happiness teaching English literature to schoolgirls. Knowing that many of her students won’t make it to graduation before dropping out to marry and have children, Alys teaches them about Jane Austen and her other literary heroes and hopes to inspire the girls to dream of more.
When an invitation arrives to the biggest wedding their small town has seen in years, Mrs. Binat, certain that their luck is about to change, excitedly sets to work preparing her daughters to fish for rich, eligible bachelors. On the first night of the festivities, Alys’s lovely older sister, Jena, catches the eye of Fahad “Bungles” Bingla, the wildly successful—and single—entrepreneur. But Bungles’s friend Valentine Darsee is clearly unimpressed by the Binat family. Alys accidentally overhears his unflattering assessment of her and quickly dismisses him and his snobbish ways. As the days of lavish wedding parties unfold, the Binats wait breathlessly to see if Jena will land a proposal—and Alys begins to realize that Darsee’s brusque manner may be hiding a very different man from the one she saw at first glance.
Told with wry wit and colorful prose, Unmarriageable is a charming update on Jane Austen’s beloved novel and an exhilarating exploration of love, marriage, class, and sisterhood.
1. How would you rate Unmarriageable: Pride and Prejudice in Pakistan on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the highest score. Why?
2. What did you like best about this book?
3. What did you like least about this book?
4. Which character or characters in the book did you like best?
5. Which character did you like least?
6. Which character in the book would you most like to meet?
7. How well did you think the author built the world in the book? Did you think Dilipabad was a real town?
8. The author found that writing Unmarriageable had its own challenges, in particular, doing a parallel retelling of Pride and Prejudice set in modern-day Pakistan that would:
1) Satisfy Austen afficionados, as well as
2) Be a stand-alone novel in its own right, as well as
3) Appeal to those familiar with Pakistani culture
4) And those not at all.
Do you think she succeeded? And Why?
9. Would you read another book by this author? Why or why not?
10. If you got the chance to ask the author of this book one question, what would it be?
11. What did you think of the book’s cover(s)? The UK Version; the U.S. Version (Hard Cover, Audio Book and Large Print); and the Digital and Paperback editions? Which do you like better?
12. What do you think of the book’s title? How does it relate to the book’s content?
13. Did this book seem realistic?
14. Is Unmarriageable just a fun twist on the classic English novel or is it more? How are the books different? Do you like one book better than the other?
15. Did the characters seem believable to you? Did they remind you of the characters in Pride and Prejudice?
16. Did the book’s pace seem too fast/too slow/just right?
17. How would you complete this sentence? It is a truth universally acknowledged that____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.
18. What do you think the author’s purpose was in writing this book? What idea was she trying to get across?