According to Mr. Grahame-Smith, who confessed to being “bored to tears” by “Pride and Prejudice” in high school, the idea was mostly to sell resistant readers on the joys of Jane while having a bit of fun.
From “I Was A Regency Zombie“, about the latest Austen variant complete with zombies. For some reason the above quote by the creator of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies made me think of Frank Beddors who also was inspired by a negative experience with another classic book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Says Beddors:
… I hated the books growing up. A lot of people have mirrored that thought, in interviews. We come to a point where we’re supposed to like them. I respect the wit, writing, and imagination, don’t get me wrong, but I didn’t enjoy them like I enjoyed Treasure Island or “The Hardy Boys” or “Johnny Quest.’ I didn’t think the book was cool, I thought it was a girl’s book.
And so he wrote the The Looking-Glass Wars and its sequels, video-game-like stories filled with reinvisioned Wonderland characters.
What strikes me is that both these guys had very hostile reactions to books that are very much seen as girl/woman books and pushed back hard. (Now I don’t see Alice as particularly girly at all, but Beddors clearly does.) I wasn’t a fan of the Beddors’ book, but will wait to see how the Austen zombies play out as I am not entirely down on playing off classical books and characters. Jasper Fforde (still another guy!) does it wonderfully well, for example.