Book reviews, new books, publishing news, book giveaways, and author interviews

Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that every* Jane Austen novel must be in want of a ghoulish mashup. Below is a list of some of the recent spate of monster mashups drawing on Austens fiction. The last two in the list are in a slightly different vein, though, and involve Jane getting her own back at these mashup writers.

What do you think about the recent mashup trend (which has spread beyond Austen and to all manner of classic works: see Jane Slayre, Little Vampire Women, and Android Kareninafor example)? Is it harmless fun, clever literature, or a pox we from which we should rid ourselves at all costs?

(*with the single exception of Persuasion, it seems.)

pride and prejudice and zombies austen grahame smith Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith

Blurb: It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains. So begins Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, an expanded edition of the beloved Jane Austen novel featuring all-new scenes of bone-crunching zombie mayhem. As our story opens, a mysterious plague has fallen upon the quiet English village of Meryton and the dead are returning to life! Feisty heroine Elizabeth Bennet is determined to wipe out the zombie menace, but shes soon distracted by the arrival of the haughty and arrogant Mr. Darcy. What ensues is a delightful comedy of manners with plenty of civilized sparring between the two young lovers and even more violent sparring on the blood-soaked battlefield as Elizabeth wages war against hordes of flesh-eating undead.


dawn of the dreadfuls jane austen hockensmith Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Dawn of the Dreadfuls by Jane Austen and Steve Hockensmith

Blurb: At the opening of the international bestseller Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Elizabeth Bennet is already a seasoned warrior-trained in the martial arts, skeptical of romance, and determined to wipe out the deadly dreadfuls. But how did Elizabeth get that way? And where did all of the zombies come from? Readers will witness the birth of a heroine in Dawn of the Dreadfuls a thrilling prequel set three years before the horrific events of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. This comic-horror novel is an all-new work of fiction from acclaimed novelist, Steve Hockensmith. As our story opens, the Bennet sisters are enjoying a peaceful life in the English countryside. They idle away the days reading, gardening, practicing instruments, and daydreaming about future husbands-until a funeral at the local parish goes strangely and horribly awry. Suddenly corpses are springing from the soft earth-and only one family can stop them. As the bodies pile up, we watch Elizabeth Bennet evolve from a naive young teenager into a savage slayer of the undead. We laugh as she begins her first clumsy training with nunchucks and katana swords, and cry when her first blush with romance goes tragically awry. Through it all, of course, readers will be treated to scene after scene of absurd zombie carnage.


sense and sensibility and sea monsters Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters by Jane Austen and Ben H Winters

Blurb: Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters expands the original text of the beloved Jane Austen novel with all-new scenes of giant lobsters, rampaging octopi, two-headed sea serpents, and other biological monstrosities. As our story opens, the Dashwood sisters are evicted from their childhood home and sent to live on a mysterious island full of savage creatures and dark secrets. While sensible Elinor falls in love with Edward Ferrars, her romantic sister Marianne is courted by both the handsome Willoughby and the hideous man-monster Colonel Brandon. Can the Dashwood sisters triumph over meddlesome matriarchs and unscrupulous rogues to find true love? Or will they fall prey to the tentacles that are forever snapping at their heels? This masterful portrait of Regency England blends Jane Austen's biting social commentary with ultraviolent depictions of sea monsters biting. It's survival of the fittest'and only the swiftest swimmers will find true love!


mansfield park and mummies Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Mansfield Park and Mummies by Jane Austen and Vera Nazarian

Blurb: Spinsterhood or Mummification!'Ancient Egypt infiltrates Regency England in this elegant, hilarious, witty, insane, and unexpectedly romantic monster parody of'Jane Austensclassic novel.'Our gentle yet indomitable heroine'Fanny Price must hold steadfast not only against the seductive charms of'Henry Crawford but also anAncient Egyptian Pharaoh!'Meanwhile, the indubitably handsome and kind hero'Edmund attempts Exorcisms'Miss Crawford vamps out'Aunt Norris channels her inner werewolf'The Mummy-mesmerized'Lady Bertram collects Egyptian artifacts'There can be no doubt that'Mansfield Park has become a battleground for the forces of Ancient Evil and Regency True Love!


vampire darcys desire Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Vampire Darcys Desire: A Pride and Prejudice Adaptation by Regina Jeffers

Blurb: This is the greatest literary love story of all time, transformed into a heart-pounding vampire tale of romance, lust, and danger. In Austens original novel, Darcy and Elizabeth are compelled to overcome countless obstacles but thats nothing compared to what they face in Darcys Hunger. This inventive, action-packed novel tells of a tormented Darcy who comes to Netherfield to escape the intense pressure on him to marry. Dispirited by his familys 200-year curse and his fate as a half-human/half-vampire dampir, Darcy would rather live forever alone than inflict the horrors of a vampire life on a beautiful wife. Destiny has other plans. Darcy meets Elizabeth and finds himself yearning for her as a man and driven to possess her as a vampire. Uncontrollably drawn to each other, their complex relationship forces them to confront their pride and prejudice like never before and to wrestle with the seductive power of forbidden love. Meanwhile, dark forces are at work all around them. Most ominous is the threat from George Wickham, the purveyor of the curse, a demon who vows to destroy each generation of Darcys and currently has evil intentions for the vulnerable Georgiana.


mr darcy vampire grange Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Mr Darcy, Vampyre by Amanda Grange

Blurb: Elizabeth Darcy is the happiest woman alive when she steps into the carriage that is to take her on her wedding tour until she sees the look of torment on Mr Darcys face and discovers that he has a deep, dark secret that nearly destroys their love, their marriage and even her very life. Darcy and the rest of his family are vampires that cannot be outside during sunrise or sunset. Lady Catherine is at the source, having turned Georgiana into an undying friend for her vampiric daughter, Anne, and then Darcy as the perfect mate for Anne. Now Lizzy and Darcy must travel across the Continent to the Pyrenees to find a way to break the curse. But Lady Catherine wont give up her undead without a fight The Y in Vampyre is a tribute to the first vampyre story in print in the English language called simply The Vampyre. It was written by John Polidori, a physician in the employ of Lord Byron and who, whilst staying by Lake Geneva with Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin, Percy Bysshe Shelley and Marys stepsister Claire Clairmont amused themselves by reading and writing ghost stories. Two of the greatest horror stories came from that night Mary Shellys Frankenstein and The Vampyre.


emma and the vampires wayne Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Emma and the Vampires by Josephson Wayne

Blurb: Blithely unaware of their presence, Emma, who imagines she has a special gift for matchmaking, attempts to arrange the affairs her social circle with delightfully disastrous results. But when her dear friend Harriet Smith declares her love for Mr. Knightley, Emma realizes shes the one who wants to stay up all night with him. Fortunately, Mr. Knightley has been hiding a secret deep within his unbeating heart-his (literally) undying love for her.


northanger abbey and angels and dragons Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Northanger Abbey and Angels and Dragons by Vera Nazarian (read an excerpt)

Blurb: Dragons in the skies of Regency England!'Gothic horrors collide with high satire in this elegant, hilarious, witty, insane, and unexpectedly romantic supernatural parody of'Jane Austens'classic novel.'Young and naive'Catherine Morland is constantly surrounded by'angels only she alone can see. Leaving her country home for the first time, to embark on a grand adventure that begins in fashionable Bath, our romantic heroine must not only decrypt the mystery of'the Udolpho Codebut win her true love'Henry Tilney.'Meanwhile she is beset by all the Gothic horrors known to Impressionable Young Ladies odious'demons, Regency balls, elusive'ghosts, pleasure excursions, temperature-changing'nephilim, secret clues, ogre suitors, and a terrifying ancient'Dragon who has very likely hidden a secret treasure hoard somewhere in the depths of'Northanger Abbey.


bespelling jane austen Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Bespelling Jane Austen by Mary Balogh, Colleen Gleason, Susan Krinard, and Janet Mullany

Blurb: What if Austen had believed in reincarnation and vampires? Join four bestselling romance authors as they channel the wit and wisdom of Jane Austen.

Almost Persuaded'In this Regency tale of Robert and Jane,'New York Times'bestselling author Mary Balogh brings together former lovers who have seen beyond the veil of forgetfulness to their past mistakes, and are determined to be together in this life, and forever.

Northanger Castle'Carolines obsession with Gothic novels winds up being good training for a lifetime of destroying the undead with her newfound beau, in this Regency by Colleen Gleason.

Blood and Prejudice'Set in the business world of contemporary New York City, Liz Bennett joins Mr. Darcy in his hunt for a vampire cure in'New York Timesbestselling author Susan Krinards version of the classic story.

Little to Hex Her'Present-day Washington, D.C., is full of curious creatures in Janet Mullanys story, wherein Emma is a witch with a wizard boyfriend and a paranormal dating service to run.

jane bites back ford Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Jane Bites Back by Michael Thomas Ford

Blurb: Two hundred years after her death, Jane Austen is still surrounded by the literature she loves'but now its because shes the owner of Flyleaf Books in a sleepy college town in Upstate New York. Every day she watches her novels fly off the shelves'along with dozens of unauthorized sequels, spin-offs, and adaptations. Jane may be undead, but her books have taken on a life of their own.
To make matters worse, the manuscript she finished just before being turned into a vampire has been rejected by publishers'116 times. Jane longs to let the world know who she is, but when a sudden twist of fate thrusts her back into the spotlight, she must hide her real identity'and fend off a dark man from her past while juggling two modern suitors. Will the inimitable Jane Austen be able to keep her cool in this comedy of manners, or will she show everyone what a woman with a sharp wit and an even sharper set of fangs can do?


jane and the damned mullany Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Jane and the Damned by Janet Mullany

Blurb: Jane Austen: 'Novelist . . . gentlewoman . . . Damned, Fanged, and Dangerous to know.Aspiring writer Jane Austen knows that respectable young ladies like herself are supposed to shun the Damned'the beautiful, fashionable, exquisitely seductive vampires who are all the rage in Georgian England in 1797. So when an innocent (she believes) flirtation results in her being turned'by an absolute cad of a bloodsucker'she acquiesces to her family's wishes and departs for Bath to take the waters, the only known cure.'But what she encounters there is completely unexpected: perilous jealousies and further betrayals, a new friendship and a possible love. Yet all that must be put aside when the warring French invade unsuspecting Bath'and the streets run red with good English blood. Suddenly only the staunchly British Damned can defend the nation they love . . . with Jane Austen leading the charge at the battle's forefront.


 Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Mrs Darcy versus the Aliens by Jonathan Pinnock

Blurb:' Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)A year or two into her marriage, Elizabeth Darcy has much on her mind: she has still not produced an heir for Mr Darcy, there are preparations to be made for the Pemberly summer ball, and her youngest sister Lydia has been abducted by aliens. As Regency England sleepwalks towards tentacled oblivion, will she be able to reunite with her old foe Wickham and put a stop to their evil plans? Meanwhile, in the East End of London, the repulsive Mr Collins is running a Mission for fallen women whilst his poor wife Charlotte has fallen under the malign spell of Lord Byron and is now a laudanum addict. But is everything at the Mission all that it seems? What is Mr Darcy doing there? And why are there strange lights in the sky over Lady Catherine de Bourghs seat at Rosings? This is probably the most unconventional sequel to a Jane Austen novel ever written. It is certainly the funniest.


 Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse) Book List: Jane Austen monster mashups (for better or worse)

Death Comes to Pemberley by PD James

Blurb:'A rare meeting of literary genius: P. D. James, long among the most admired mystery writers of our time, draws the characters of Jane Austen's beloved novel'Pride and Prejudice'into a tale of murder and emotional mayhem.'It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy's magnificent estate.'Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable.'Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house.'They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles.'Elizabeth's sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy's sister Georgiana.'And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball.
Then, on the eve of the ball, the patrician idyll is shattered.'A coach careens up the drive carrying Lydia, Elizabeth's disgraced sister, who with her husband, the very dubious Wickham, has been banned from Pemberley.'She stumbles out of the carriage, hysterical, shrieking that Wickham has been murdered.'With shocking suddenness, Pemberley is plunged into a frightening mystery.'Inspired by a lifelong passion for Austen, P. D. James masterfully re-creates the world of'Pride and Prejudice,'electrifying it with the excitement and suspense of a brilliantly crafted crime story, as only she can write it.


  1. I havent actually read any of these, but I cant believe how these mash-ups have exploded! I had a friend who read Pride and Prejudice alongside Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Though she is a huge fan of Jane Austen, she admitted that the characters and their actions actually kind of make more sense when zombies are involved!

  2. Stephanie /

    A lot of the writers seem to be very knowledgeable about Austens works, so hopefully this means that their input offers something interesting. I know that Vera Nazarian is quite well read in terms of Austen, and theres one by Mary Robinette Kowal (Shades of Milk and Honey, which is basically Jane Austen with magic) that I imagine would be quite good, too. I think as long as its respectful to the original work, or at least its honest and self-aware, and the authors are actually adding something of value, then its a valid form in its own right.

    Having said that, Im not sure Ill make a huge effort to go and and buy them all!

  3. Dear Stephanie and everyone,

    First of all, thank you for the mention of Mansfield Park and Mummies.

    And now, just in time for Jane Austens birthday, you might be curious to know that Northanger Abbey and Angels and Dragons is available now!

    Here is an excerpt of the first three chapters. Enjoy!

    Vera Nazarian (the author and artist)

    • Stephanie /

      Hi Vera,

      Wonderful to see you here! Ill update the post with the new info.