Friday, July 3, 2009

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith



He scarcely needed an invitation to stay for supper; and before he went away, an engagement was formed, chiefly through his own and Mrs. Bennet's means, for his coming next morning to shoot the first autumn zombies with her husband.

Let me add my chorus of praise to the long list of favourable reviews for this clever take on a familiar classic. I laughed out loud when I read the paragraph above. It wasn't the first time either. I'd no idea zombie mayhem could be so entertaining, and in case you're wondering what the undead spawns of Satan look like - there are pictures!

As a diehard Pride and Prejudice fan, I'm surprised I liked it as much as I did. But beware you purists out there, the original text has been altered much. Of course, he kept all the best lines, and most of the general story remains intact, but he condenses and paraphrases a lot of the descriptive paragraphs. The book overall is about 75 pages shorter than the original, if you're anal, like me, and keep track of that sort of thing.

Grahame-Smith did seem to have it in for some of these characters. Few are spared being touched by this devilish plague that has consumed the countryside, which leads me to my main, tiny complaint: What's up with this plague? Where did it come from? What dark events led to its destroying England? Helloooo..big questions here.

That aside, I must say it was fun to see the characters and their fates altered a bit. Of course, Elizabeth can beat the crap out of Mr. Darcy. It makes perfect sense! And I know I've secretly wanted to kick Wickham's butt around more than once, and Mr. Collins! If you've seen the new movie - Lost in Austen you'll know what I'm talking about, Mr. Smelling Fingers! Gross.

What if you, like Mr. Grahame-Smith could alter these memorable characters. Whom would you change? Would all survive until the end?



Sadly, it seems the author plans no further zombie tributes in line with other Austen Classics. Maryann and Eleanor will never brandish a sword, Anne's sickly sister will probably not catch the zombie plague, and unfortunately Mr. Elton will continue living. Darn it all. I guess instead I'll just have to use that thing Mr. Grahame-Smith has in spades - my imagination. 4 stars

Other excellent reviews that far exceed mine:
Stephanie
Amanda

15 comments:

Stephanie said...

Now I can't wait to read this book!! Thanks for the review!

Stephanie said...

It's nice to read a review from someone that knows the source material so well. I, to my shame, haven't read Pride and Prejudice since high school.

I have to admit, now when I read a book that's not quite up to snuff, I imagine zombies rampaging through it. Never fails to put a smile on my face.

celi.a said...

I'm reading this too, and your review just moved it up the pile for me...thanks! Now I'm really looking forward to it (and laughing aloud?).

hmsgofita said...

I just finished reading it a couple of weeks ago, before I knew about the Austen Challenge. Oh well, it was a funny and entertaining take on the original! I liked it as well!

Lula O said...

Stephanie1 - Thanks again for hosting this challenge! This really is a fun book. A good laugh that's for sure, and the pictures are the best.

Stephanie2 - I keep thinking about zombies too! I heard he's doing a new one with Abe Lincoln and zombies, but no more Austen. Hrm..
No Wickham the werewolf books, although did you see I listed Mr. Darcy, Vampyre? Can you believe it?

Celi.a - Thanks for stopping by! I hope you read it soon. I love fantasy that doesn't take itself too seriously. This book is a perfect example of that. I hope you enjoy it!

hmsgofita - Glad you liked it too! It was funny, wasn't it. Making Elizabeth a ninja killer just made perfect sense to me. I just wish he would've explained the plague more, like why it was happening. Why I'm analyzing that particular question is dumb I know, but oh well. I embrace my inner nerd as much as I can!

yesterdaystuna said...

Thanks so much for the review! I must say that when I saw the book title on the list that Stephanie gave on the initial Everything Austen page I thought, "are you kidding me"?! But now I am definitely adding it to my list to read. How can I pass up anything that talks about the first autumn zombies! I have a feeling that I'm going to love this :)

Fiona said...

Super review! I'm definitely going to try to include this one on my "Everything Austen" list!

Lula O said...

yesterdaystuna (awesome screen name!) and Fiona - Thanks for your comments! I hope you both read it. I laughed often that's for sure, and enjoyed seeing Wickham get his due, and boy does he get it!

Lit and Life said...

I'm glad to get a review by a P&P devotee; I had previously just assumed that only the people that didn't love the original would enjoy this. May yet have to give it a go.

vvb32 reads said...

i've got this on my list too. really looking forward to it especially with your review. i'll make sure and come back to vote. wonder who the top person will be.

Lula O said...

Lit and Life - I really was surprised I liked it as much as I did. Jane Austen's probably rolled over in her grave, but what do you do? Laugh your behind off I guess, and beg for forgiveness later! What a movie it would make..

vvb32 reads - I look forward to your review. Almost every one I've read so far has liked it. So far Mr. Collins and Lady Catherine are in the lead for an early demise. Wait till you see what happens to them in the book!

celi.a said...

You should check out my P&P&Z giveaway http://ceceliabedelia.blogspot.com/2009/07/pride-and-prejudice-and-zombies.html and vvb32's contest for those who read and review http://vvb32reads.blogspot.com/2009/07/pride-and-prejudice-and-zombies.html.

Thanks again for your review.

Lula O said...

celi.a - Hey, cool bookmark! I tried my best. Lots of competition though. It's a popular book, for good reason.

Shannon said...

I just joined the challenge and this is on my list! I can't wait to read it...

Lula O said...

I hope you like it Shannon. I can't wait for the next one. Check out the trailer. I'm personally hoping Fanny dies a long drawn out death!