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

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The Bottom Line

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith is the latest of the many retellings of Jane Austen's classic. Much like the original, the Bennett sisters live in the English countryside, which is stirred by the arrival of two wealthy bachelors. Unlike the original, the resulting opinions and relationships formed between the characters is played out against the backdrop of hordes of undead roaming the meadows, which they often have to fight off, making it a unique and fun read.

Pros
  • Clever and amusing retelling of a beloved classic
  • Light-hearted, not scary or too gruesome

Cons
  • Not enough zombies, really

Description
  • 'Pride and Prejudice and Zombies' was first released in April 2009.
  • Publisher: Quirk
  • 320 Pages

Guide Review - 'Pride and Prejudice and Zombies' by Seth Grahame-Smith & Jane Austen

In Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, one is not judged only by family and fortune, but by her skill in the deadly arts. A zombie plague has befallen the country and the Bennett sisters have been most rigorously trained by a master in China so they can be in His Majesty's Service fighting the living dead. Elizabeth Bennett lives by the warrior code and is rarely without some piece of ninja weaponry, which means she often has to hold her sword as well as her tongue when she is insulted and her temper rises. The juxtaposition of the peaceful, civilized world of Jane Austen with ninja culture could not be more amusing.

The main plot points of the original Pride and Prejudice are there, which was comforting.

I initially feared this retelling would be violent and grotesque, but with the exception of a couple scenes, the action is light-hearted and there is little doubt of who will win. Even the scenes that are gruesome manage to have a laid-back air. The author uses double-entendre to create just a bit of juvenile humor, and vomit plays a larger role than in any book I've read, but -- judge me if you will -- these truly add to the amusement.

I recommend Pride and Prejudice and Zombies to those who like the original and think they would be amused by a light addition of "bone-crunching zombie mayhem." Really, there is less about zombies and more about martial arts and its culture, anyway. Also, don't forget to check out the discussion questions at the end, which are just as funny as the book.
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