Quirk Books made a big splash in the book market earlier this year with Seth Grahame-Smith's Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, a rewrite of Jane Austen's classic romance that added in hordes of the undead, not to mention Shaolin warriors and katana duels. It sounded like a gimmicky-as-hell one-note joke, but our own Donna Bowman loved it and gave it an A grade, and it hit the New York Times bestseller list upon its April release. Industry professionals predicted a wave of copycat warped classics (and at least one opportunist jumped on board with The War Of The Worlds Plus Blood, Guts And Zombies), but Quirk has just announced that it's continuing the line itself, with Sense And Sensibility And Sea Monsters. The "co-author" on this one (sharing a writing credit with Jane Austen) is Ben H. Winters, one of the authors behind a bunch of those deadpan Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbooks. The press release announces that it fills out Austen's classic "with all-new scenes of giant lobsters, rampaging octopi, two-headed sea serpents, swashbuckling pirates, and other seaworthy creatures."
More from that press release:
[Quirk Books imprint] Editor Jason Rekulak explains the choice of sea monsters for this highly anticipated literary mash-up:
“A couple of publishers are crashing Jane Austen vampire novels that will no doubt capitalize on the success of Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, and there were certainly plenty of people who urged me to do the same. But I didn’t want to go out with the one-millionth vampire novel that’s going to be published this year. I know there are a lot of vampire fans, but the genre feels exhausted to me. Whereas Sea Monsters allowed us to draw inspiration from so many rich and diverse sources—most obviously Jules Verne novels and Celtic mythology, but also Jaws, Lost, Pirates Of The Caribbean, even SpongeBob SquarePants! I think Pride And Prejudice And Zombies fans are counting on us to deliver something original, and I don’t think they will be disappointed.”
With Sense And Sensibility And Sea Monsters, Quirk Classics has also developed a new Austen to monster ratio. Instead of featuring 85% of Austen’s work and 15% new text as in Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, Sense And Sensibility And Sea Monsters features 60% Austen and 40% additional monster chaos! Most importantly, this new Quirk Classic stays true to Austen’s original novel."
The A.V. Club thinks the whole concept of "book trailers" is dumb and depressing, but the one below is actually pretty cute. The book is due out Sept. 15.
So, any guesses about the next one in the works? We're holding out for Northhanger Abbey But With All Those Ghouls And Monsters And Things That Catherine Foolishly Imagined Were There, But Weren't Actually In The Original.