Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld

Wellness with a Wow

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld


A lot of people struggle with intimacy issues besides people with diabetes. However, sexual problems (sexual dysfunction) are common among people with diabetes, particularly in older men who have had diabetes for years. In addition, many medical experts believe that women with diabetes experience sexual difficulties as a result of complications from the disease.

I’m trying to do my part to lessen the stigma surrounding sexual dysfunction and diabetes by sharing great fictional romance books and expert advice on diabetes with the Divabetic community.

If nothing else my latest read, ‘Eligible’ by Curtis Sittenfeld, which is so captivating, could help relieve some the stress associated with managing blood sugars.

I became interested in this book, ‘Eligible’ this Spring after reading countless glowing reviews about it in the British press while I was in London. It was heralded as being the ‘Book of the Summer.’ I quickly learned this book is par of a series comprised of different authors doing their own take on Jane Austin’s novels. Curtis Sittenfeld’s “Eligible’ is a new take on Austin’s ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ The British writers Alexander McCall Smith, Joanna Trollope and Val McDermid have already published their versions of “Emma,” “Sense and Sensibility” and “Northanger Abbey” respectfully.

One Goodreads’ reviewer said, “I’ve only read two of the four (in the series) and this one is a much better read.”

As soon as I returned home I ran to my branch of the NY Public Library to look for it. No dice. I ended up on the reserve list at #256 (I kid you not). Even the librarian rolled her eyes when she announced my place on the list. Well, three months later and several cheesy paperback mysteries in between my number finally came up! I stopped what I was doing, ran down and grabbed it on Friday rather than risk missing my window of opportunity and then being doomed to another three months of purgatory on the reserve list. The two books I’m currently reading (‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette’ and ‘The Readaholics and the Falcon Fiasco’) were dashed to the side so that I could read this book in my allotted time for reserve book.

This version of the Bennet family—and Mr. Darcy—is one that you have and haven’t met before: Liz is a magazine writer in her late thirties who, like her yoga instructor older sister, Jane, lives in New York City. When their father has a health scare, they return to their childhood home in Cincinnati to help—and discover that the sprawling Tudor they grew up in is crumbling and the family is in disarray.

Youngest sisters Kitty and Lydia are too busy with their CrossFit workouts and Paleo diets to get jobs. Mary, the middle sister, is earning her third online master’s degree and barely leaves her room, except for those mysterious Tuesday-night outings she won’t discuss. And Mrs. Bennet has one thing on her mind: how to marry off her daughters, especially as Jane’s fortieth birthday fast approaches.

Enter Chip Bingley, a handsome new-in-town doctor who recently appeared on the juggernaut reality TV dating show Eligible. At a Fourth of July barbecue, Chip takes an immediate interest in Jane, but Chip’s friend neurosurgeon Fitzwilliam Darcy reveals himself to Liz to be much less charming. . . .

And yet, first impressions can be deceiving.

Taking the story out of England and bringing it to America has allowed the author to touch on such current topics as the cost of health care, artificial insemination, transgender and interracial relationships, and the unreality of reality television. The characters in ‘Eligible’ an be raucous and the situations ungenteel, but not since “Clueless,” which transported “Emma” to Beverly Hills, has Austen been so delightedly interpreted according to the NY Times’ review.

Yup, I read the entire book in one day. It was well worth the wait. I fell in love with the Curtis Sittenfeld’s use of language. The book is filled with quotes like,”Time seemed, as it always does in adulthood after a particular stretch has concluded, no matter how ponderous or unpleasant the stretch was to endure, to have passed quickly indeed.”

And as the NY Times review said, “it’s a pleasure to find out how Sittenfeld has updated classic Austen scenes to fit this new milieu. In “Pride and Prejudice,” Elizabeth responds to the disparaging remarks made by Mr. Darcy by repeating them “with great spirit among her friends.” In “Eligible,” Liz confronts ­Darcy on the spot. “I’ve heard we grade on a curve here,” she says, referring to his criticisms of the women of Cincinnati in relation to the women of San Francisco, “so I’m probably what — more like a B for the coasts? Or a B-minus? If you have a minute to figure it out, be sure to let me know.”

Parts 1 and 3 were my favorites Part 2 felt like layover at an airport. I just wanted to hurry through it and get to my final destination, you know what I mean? That said, overall I really enjoyed this book and recommend it. It’s smart and funny. I loved the author’s modern day comparisons, character attributes and locations. Grab a copy!


People who experience sexual difficulties can lead more enjoyable, fulfilling sexual lives by learning about common causes and symptoms of sexual difficulties, treatment options, and how to talk it over with a doctor or mate.

Out-of-control blood sugar levels can lead to blood vessel and nerve damage that hamper sexual performance and enjoyment. This can cause diabetes-related sexual dysfunction in men as well as in women. Men and women with diabetes also should be aware of sexual function issues that affect both sexes.

Other factors can cause or exacerbate sexual dysfunction, including psychological issues, self-consciousness and fear of failure. If you are experiencing impotence or sexual dysfunction, it’s important to see your doctor for an accurate diagnosis of your condition.

LISTEN NOW: Mr. Divabetic interviews NY Best-Selling Author Kristan Higgins on his ‘Don’t Let Diabetes Kill Romance’ podcast.

Kristan has been called “a rising superstar in contemporary romance” by USA TODAY, who went on to praise Kristan’s “genius-level EQ … whippet-fast, funny dialogue and sweet plots with a deliciously tart edge.” Her contemporary romances feature big-hearted, memorable love stories about regular people, combining quirky families, real-life issues and a cute dog or two as well.

Special guests: Stephanie Gaber PharmD, CDE from Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA, Diva Club leader, MaryAnn Nicolay, BA, DTR from the Diabetes Partnership Of Cleveland, OH. Poet Lorriane Brooks, Jennifer Martsolf from Trigg Laboratories and Author Ginger Vieria.


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