For his long-awaited third novel, Jeffrey Eugenides goes back to look at love in the '80s — and apparently decides that it's a lot like love in the early 19th century. The Pulitzer Prize-winning author explores this idea through three individuals placed in a classic triangle of lust and anguish: Madeleine Hanna, Leonard Bankhead, and Mitchell Grammaticus. Eugenides guides the trio through a piercing and gorgeous Austen-esque romance, beginning during their senior year at Brown University in the early '80s, and ending as their first postgraduate year comes to a close.
In Pride and Prejudice's dénouement, Jane Austen plans a stunning reversal for the handsome and haughty Mr. Darcy, spinning all of his personality faults and uncivil tendencies into charming assets. Leonard Bankhead is Madeleine's Mr. Darcy. Yet just as Madeleine (working on a thesis about Austen and George Eliot) is a hotter, more Suicide Girl version of Pride's Elizabeth Bennet, Leonard possesses all of Darcy's good looks and smug bravado with none of his virtues.
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