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Reviewed by Nandita Keshavan for Readers' Favorite
Five Stones is an excellent modern Korean-American version of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice by Jennifer Kim. I enjoyed reading about the Kim family's story, with witty and dramatic twists of the plot and the suspense of two unexpected romances, with their celebrations and struggles. At the head of the family is a stern but loving matriarch who makes multiple attempts to ensure that of her five daughters, those who are eligible to marry will find a suitable match. The Kim family is an interesting one, with each daughter adopting distinct traits. The five daughters are like five stones around her neck till she finds suitable marriage partners for them.
This book will appeal to readers who are interested in family matchmaking alongside secret interests with an Asian twist. Furthermore, it contains the medley of humour, suspense and heart-rending moments of Austen's work, but with a modern feel. I really appreciated the lack of pretentiousness of the characters. Though the story has twists and turns, you still get the effect that the events could happen to anyone in similar circumstances, that all the characters are believable and likeable. The plot in the book concerning the eldest daughter - Mihae - is the most interesting and the suspense, love, persistence, humility, jealousy and trust issues are riveting, and run alongside and overlap with the issues that Jihae faces. It's an engaging book which warns against false first impressions and shows the value of intuition versus believing false stereotypes. I believe it would make a great film, and would appeal to people of all ages.