Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls, written by Steve Hockensmith, introduces us to the Bennett family - Mr. and Mrs. Bennett and their daughters Elizabeth, Jane, Lydia, Mary and Kitty. The daughters are growing up peacefully in England, learning the genteel things that all proper ladies of the time must learn - gardening, reading, and dancing. Their sights are set only on finding suitable, wealthy husbands.
When they attend the funeral of Mr. Ford, their lives begin to change. The corpse just doesnít behave as a corpse should. Instead of staying in the coffin, waiting to be put in the ground and decay, he rises up out of it, emitting an unearthly howl. Needless to say, the funeral comes to a dead halt. This is just the beginning. Mr. Bennett begins teaching his daughters how to kill a zombie. They are horrified that their father would want them to do such a thing. Why, only a man should do that!
We learn that this isnít the first time zombies, or dreadfuls, have invaded England. In Mr. Bennettís younger days, he helped to rid the countryside of these dreadful creatures. The training he received then is about to come in very handy.
Dawn of the Dreadfuls is well written. It humorously takes us through a terrifying time for the Bennett family, as well as the rest of England. As long as one isnít easily frightened and has no objection to reading about zombies, the book is awesome. One does not to have an extensive vocabulary in order to enjoy the tale. Next to no bad language is present, nor is the blood and gore you know must have occurred described in such vivid detail that you wouldnĎt allow your children to read it. In other words, this book should not give you nightmares. Iím sure it will make you laugh, though.
Jane Austen was a very talented writer. Her books have stood the test of time. Personally, though, I could not make it through any of them without falling asleep. The social mores of the time - women are meant to do only things of a gentle nature and men are the ones meant to fight and work - are well in place, and challenged when the Bennett girls are trained to fight the hordes of zombies. It is wonderful to watch the change in each of the Bennett girls as they turn from naÔve young ladies into women who have the ability to savagely slay zombie after zombie, even if the undead happens to be someone who they once knew or cared about.
Since it isnít socially acceptable for young ladies to do such things, the girls are snubbed. They are only human, and this does hurt them a great deal? How will they ever find husbands? How will they ever find someone who can stand to be associated with them?
Elizabeth and Jane each have their admirers. Romance is in the air, even with zombies invading the village. Will it last through the turmoil? Or does it only exist because of the excitement and action of the moment? If they survive, will their feelings for each other continue to grow?
The addition of the dreadfuls, or zombies, to Jane Austenís classic tale only serves to make it extremely more interesting. Would Jane Austen approve? I truly believe she would. Life is so much different now than it was when she lived.
This book will be on sale March 23, 2010. Quirk Classics graciously sent me a free copy of it to review. Its sequel, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, is already available through Amazon.
Below is a link to Quirk Classics. If you click on this link, you will have a chance to win one of 5o Quirk Classics Prize Packs. Each pack is valued at over $100.00. One of the items included in the prize pack is an advance copy of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls. Click on the link to be entered to win and to find out what else is included in the prize pack.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Classic Regency Romance - Now with Ultraviolent Zombie Mayhem!
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls (Quirk Classics)