Friday, April 10, 2009

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies spotted in the wilds of
the Los Angeles Central Library Shop.

Let it be known foremost that of the things I do not profess any affection for, two of the high ranking are Jane Austen novels and zombies. In understanding the previous statement, it makes a stronger argument for the merits of Seth Grahame-Smith's additions to the classic Regency romance. For while I do not care for either Jane Austen novels or zombies, I am terribly endeared to any humor that arises from contrast. Gurren Lagann in High School? Code Geass in the Bakumatsu? Pride and Prejudice with zombies? How could such things not, by their sheer unexpectedness, be brilliant?

Upon finishing Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, I have no greater affection for Jane Austen novels than I did before reading it. The novel remains Pride and Prejudice—but it contains that necessary extra element (modern humor of the absurd) to keep a reader from throwing it across the room with the same vehemence as Miss Bennet skillfully employs her dagger.

Moreso, thanks to the marked improvement of Mr. Grahame-Smith's additions to the text, he has accomplished what no English professor or acquaintance could manage: I have finished reading a Jane Austen novel of my own volition. A place on the New York Times bestseller list is not enough—someone ought to give this gentleman and his editor the Nobel Peace Prize.

Details of the novel itself have no doubt be offered by those more equipped to judge and comment. I can only point to the service a series of Quirk Classics would do for my generation: Those "classics" that we never quite managed to read or finish rendered accessible.

One will have to clear a space on the bookshelf for them and Mr. Grahame-Smith's original historical fiction. I, for one, am eager to see where—when?—he'll take us next.


Karen Mahoney said...

Dude, I will never EVER read this novel. ;)

Chandra Rooney said...

Good for you! Take a stand against the zombie invasion right now! ;P