TITLE: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
AUTHOR: Seth Grahame-Smith
ONE SENTENCE SUMMARY: Zombies have taken over the English countryside where the Bennet sisters are left to learn the art of killing the unmentionable menace looming over them.
I’ll come out and say, I did not like this, and I tried. I read most of the novel before finally giving up by page 270. I know it’s part of a trilogy, but I’m not even going to bother with the other two books.
I was hoping to see more action and a difference from the original work, but it’s very much the same. I know it’s a retelling but it’s so similar in language that I kept forgetting this wasn’t written in 19th century England. I would get so comfortable with the time period that whenever a zombie was mentioned, I was caught off guard, as if they didn’t belong in the story. I found this off putting and it took me out of the story several times while reading.
On the other hand, Smith is more obvious with character personalities and sexual innuendos. Because the original Pride & Prejudice is in an ultra-polite language, it did take me some time to get the character personalities right. For example, Collins. In the original it takes me a while to figure out that the Bennet girls think he’s an idiot, but in this version it’s evident from the beginning. The same occurs with double entendres in this retelling, there are many times where Elizabeth and Darcy say something inappropriate (at least by their era’s standards) and it was funny.
I also liked seeing how the zombies or the epidemic moved the story along. It’s fun to think that they were there in the background all along. They’re the reason why people overstayed their welcome, why others rushed into marriage, and why letters were delayed.
Apart from all that, I didn’t love this retelling as much as I thought I would. I didn’t even finish it because I was sensing a reading slump. But I still do want to watch the movie.