Melissa's Reviews > Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Apr 14, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: historical-fiction, austen-spin-offs, books-i-own
Read in April, 2009

The title of this book describes it perfectly - it is just that, the beloved classic Pride and Prejudice, with zombies thrown in to, presumably, liven up the story.

The good thing is that the basis of the book is Pride and Prejudice... verbatim. I believe some cuts were made but most of the book is Austen's work. What Seth Grahame-Smith has added is a lot of references on the periphery to the great war England is waging against the walking dead; their propensity for death, destruction, and flesh-eating; and the various skills with blade and sword, steeped in oriental training, that are used to destroy the deadly menace. We find, for example, that the real reason the Militia has come to Meryton is to protect against the unmentionables; that the Bennett sisters have forgone education in music and art in order to study the deadly arts in China; and the reason Charlotte Lucas disappears from the narrative after Lizzie's visit to Hunsford is not just narrative expedience.

Stylistically, Mr. Grahame-Smith does a fairly good job of matching the tone and cadence of Austen's work, even though many of his additions seem to consist of replacing "music" with "deadly arts", "servant" with "ninja", and appending a phrase about the unmentionable menace or superior warrior skills into other descriptive text. There are several added scenes of battle and "ultraviolent zombie mayhem" which again do a fairly good job of blending in with Austen's text in all respects except of course subject matter. Where Mr. Grahame-Smith falters somewhat are the few bits of adolescent sexual innuendo and, especially towards the end of the book, the unfortunately excessive use of the phrase "exercise moisture."

In all, it's not bad, and several turns of phrase certainly cause some laugh-out-loud moments. I kept waiting for a good zombie subplot to get going, but the action in this book, as in Austen's original, is still driven by romance, and while liberally peppered with action sequences, it's kind of like flipping channels between Lifetime's Movie DuJour and Night of the Living Dead. There is nothing that really connects them, and while that juxtaposition is amusing for a while, it really fails to carry the whole book. Probably the scenes at Hunsford and Rosings are the most satisfying, as the undead become more integral to the plot (although to be truthful, I find Lydia and Wickham's fate to be a touch more satisfactory than Austen's original as well!)
3 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

04/08/2009 page 52

No comments have been added yet.