When Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters was published, I had to wonder about who was pushing for these books — the authors or publishing companies. Apparently, it’s obviously the publishing companies trying to make a quick profit on the zombie fascination. Here’s a list of zombie books published just in the last year:
1). The Undead World of Oz: L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Complete with Zombies and Monsters. Publisher Coscom Entertainment.
2). War of the Worlds Plus Blood, Guts and Zombies. Publisher Coscom Entertainment
3). Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim: Mark Twain’s Classic with Crazy Zombie Goodness. Publisher Coscom Entertainment
(not including Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies)
Some Amazon reviewers are calling this new onslaught of zombie parodies a genre, “Zombie Fiction”. That may be stretching it. Already I’m not sure how my brains can handle so many remakes of classic works with ultra-zombie action added. One book is enough, but in someways cheapens the first effort. It’s not really novel to find a retelling of a classic work, and how much can this be done before people stop buying the books? Is there that much of a market for zombie parodies? What classic is next? The Scarlet Letter? Little House on the Prarie? Sherlock Holmes?
I do have to say, out of all the above authors whose works have already been rewritten, Mark Twain would probably enjoy this new fad the best. Except for the fact that he didn’t think of it himself.
Once it was announced, I completely forgot about this book. Perhaps it was due to the wedding, setting up house, or just getting into the swing of things, but I had no recollection of the book until Brian got it for my birthday a couple weeks ago. With school reading, I just finished it last weekend. And it was fun. Which is probably the most common criticism about the book.
Compared to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies [PPZ], Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters [SSSM] rates a bit higher. The second author, Ben H. Winters, adds two additional story-lines (which doesn’t just include whether or not a main character is going to morph into a sea monster like Charlotte Lucas’ dilemma in PPZ). I read through the book quickly, not just for the laughs, but to figure out whether or not Margaret was really insane. Whereas in Sense and Sensibility she is overlooked, here in Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters she actually takes a larger role. She foretells the rising of the Leviathan (taken from the book of Job in the Bible). Now, Winters doesn’t take the Leviathan much of any direction, but it is a rip-off of the book, so why put much effort into it?
I doubt that people are going to read the actual stories as a result of reading these and that die-hards are actually going to enjoy them, but they do exceed in the ironic Jane way of reading which is why I like them so much [taken from Natalie Tyler’s book, The Friendly Jane Austen: A Well-Mannered Introduction to a Lady of Sense and Sensibility]. Rather than being over-romanticized, they take the silly approach which is the way I’ve read Jane Austen for so many years. I could care less about her over-heroic men; what I enjoyed was Jane Austen’s sarcastic and often very insightful outlooks on her society. And that’s what these books bring to light again — the fun and enjoyable aspect of reading Jane Austen.