Monday, October 31, 2011
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Graham-Smith (R.I.P)
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is another book that I hoped to like, but instead found tiresome. It isn't that I dislike mash-ups. I do like them--or some of them. Last year I read Shakespeare Undead for the R.I.P. challenge and found it great fun.
I love Jane Austen and P & P in particular. I've re-read the novel many times, and it has never failed to make me chuckle and to marvel at Austen's insight into human nature.
I like zombies. Serious and scary zombies and zombie parodies, both. Loved seeing How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse (a zombie boot camp) when we were in Edinburgh.
So...what went wrong (for me) with P & P & Z?
1. Elizabeth in P & P & Z is NOT the witty Elizabeth Bennett of the original. E. B. in this pastiche is simply unpleasantly blood-thirsty and offensive. The humor concerning the zombies is forced and crude compared to Austen's sophisticated satire.
2. The zombies are a gimmick. In spite of the frequent zombie attacks, they are not frightening. Or maybe I just wanted the zombies to go ahead and eat the brains of all of the characters--the entire clans Bennet, Darcy, Collins, Bingley, etc.) --preferably in the first chapter.
3. I read the whole damn thing. It took forever, and I probably read 5 or 6 other books during the same period. Finishing the book is not a feat of which I'm proud. I kept hoping that it would really engage, and when it didn't, I plowed ahead anyway. Masochistic.
My last book for the R.I.P. challenge.
Fiction. Mashup/Pastiche/Parody/Supernatural. 2009. 317 pages.