Series: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies #1
Published by Quirk Classics on May 1, 2009
Genres: Classic Retelling, Zombie
“It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains.”
So begins Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, an expanded edition of the beloved Jane Austen novel featuring all-new scenes of bone-crunching zombie mayhem. As our story opens, a mysterious plague has fallen upon the quiet English village of Meryton—and the dead are returning to life! Feisty heroine Elizabeth Bennet is determined to wipe out the zombie menace, but she’s soon distracted by the arrival of the haughty and arrogant Mr. Darcy. What ensues is a delightful comedy of manners with plenty of civilized sparring between the two young lovers—and even more violent sparring on the blood-soaked battlefield. Can Elizabeth vanquish the spawn of Satan? And overcome the social prejudices of the class-conscious landed gentry? Complete with romance, heartbreak, swordfights, cannibalism, and thousands of rotting corpses, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies transforms a masterpiece of world literature into something you’d actually want to read.
If you know anything about me…at all…you’d know that I am a huge Jane Austen fan. Her books are like home to me, and I love them dearly. You’re probably wondering why, then, I chose to read this book, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, that seems to sully the great Pride and Prejudice classic with none other than zombies. Flesh-eating zombies. Mostly, I read this since the movie is coming out. But we also talked about it a little in my YA lit class last semester when we were talking about post-modernism. Basically post-modernism is a movement where artists and authors and any type of creative people try to break the mold of what is considered “art.” They essentially do anything and everything unexpected that breaks the traditional rules. And it’s clear to see how this novel is quite post-modern. And since then, I’ve just been itching to read it.
If you don’t know anything about this book, let me just break it down for you. 85%, or maybe even more, of it is just Jane Austen and the original Pride and Prejudice. In that last 15% is where Seth Grahame-Smith comes along and either adds scenes or changes things around in little ways to make it the zombie story that it is. So, basically, it was kind of weird. It was a weird experience for me to read a book that I’ve read so many times, but just slightly altered to completely change it. But because I know P&P so well, it was also kind of hilarious and great.
My friend SJ reviewed this as well and she thought there wasn’t enough zombie scenes. Which I kind of agree with. I love Jane Austen and P&P with all my heart, but this was too P&P, if that makes sense. I think it would have been better a little more separated from Pride and Prejudice, more of its own thing entirely.
But at the same time, I enjoyed how similar it was to the original. I enjoyed reading my favorite scenes, albeit with a little more fighting, and waiting for the romance that’s bound to come, and reading my favorite lines. And I was still able to experience all of these things in a completely new way, as the Bennet sisters were kick-butt zombie-fighters and awesome.
BUT overall, I very much enjoyed this and am excited to see how its portrayed in movie-form. I thought the book was hilarious and wonderful and familiar and weird, all wrapped into one. Also, I super love Lily James, so that helps.
Have you read this book? What are your thoughts? Or are you hesitant to start (like I was)? Let me know in the comments!