It is with sadness that this blog notes the passing of Dave Arneson – a co-creator of Dungeons and Dragons, Dave was overshadowed by Gary Gygax, nonetheless his contribution to D&D, and indeed to Roleplaying everywhere, was second to none.
Category Archives: Books
My sympathy to his family and fans of his work – while I’d read and enjoyed his Riverworld series, which he was best known for, as a fan of the pulp era of literature I always had a soft spot for his books on the Wold Newton family and his linking together pulp heroes such as Tarzan and Doc Savage, and which later inspired both Warren Ellis’ ‘Planetary’ Series, and Alan Moore’s ‘League of Extraordinary Gentlemen’
Have you ever been reading a piece of period literature and thought to yourself, “You know, this examination of 19th-century social mores and relationships is interesting, but it just doesn’t have enough flesh-devouring undead.”
Well, here’s the book for you:
Sadly, or amusingly, or awesomely, depending on your opinion, this is an actual book, described as follows:
“Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” features the original text of Jane Austen’s beloved novel with all-new scenes of bone-crunching zombie action. 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 she’s 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. Complete with 20 illustrations in the style of C. E. Brock (the original illustrator of Pride and Prejudice), this insanely funny expanded edition will introduce Jane Austen’s classic novel to new legions of fans.
Jane Austen is the author of “Sense and Sensibility”, “Persuasion”, “Mansfield Park”, and other masterpieces of English literature.
Seth Grahame-Smith is the author of “How to Survive a Horror Movie” and “The Big Book of Porn“. He lives in Los Angeles.
Is it wrong of me to be intrigued by the concept of Grahame-Smith combining Jane Austen with the subject matter of his second book, there? Pride and Prejudice and Boobies? Just saying.
Anyway, in the same vein (if you’ll pardon the expression), is the novel Jane Bites Back, with Ms. Austen as a vampire, and my personal favorite, an upcoming film that answers the question: What happens when a murderous alien lands in 19th-century England? And if you found yourself telling the story of this shocking event, what would you call it?
Consider me first in line…
Just a shout-out for a site called Diamonds in the Rough – it’s an online anthology of Sci-fi with an astronomy bent put together by author Mike Brotherton, aided by the National Science Foundation.
So, on the heels of the news that Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice will be rewritten to include Zombies comes word of two more projects – one, a novel by Michael Thomas Ford envisions Jane as a frustrated vampire, while an upcoming movie by Will Clark entitled Pride and Predator has Jane et co. mixing it up with a space alien. Now, I don’t know about the latter two, but I for one welcome our Zombie Overlords, so in that vein:
Science-fiction writer James Morrow is coming out with a new book! This one, called Shambling Toward Hiroshima looks to be interesting for many reasons, especially to members, both of the ‘geek and our fellow board,’Blevkog’. Not only is Morrow a favourite author of many of us, in particular Kevvyd, the book itself deals with a real world basis for Godzilla or more accurately, Gojira, a subject near and dear to Flash’s heart. To quote Publisher’s Weekly
“the sheer insanity of the premise only makes the eventual payoff even more powerful.”
You can read more about this book, and Morrow’s explanation on John Scalzi’s site.
Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend is my favorite sci-fi horror novel. Although written in 1954, it remains today an effective, atmospheric and powerful novel of a man’s struggle to keep his sanity when he finds himself the last man on earth. He is the last man, but not the only creature roaming the deserted world…
Three film versions have been attempted (and I do mean attempted, not accomplished), the first, and in an odd way the best (or at least the most faithful), an Italian- American co-production cleverly entitled “The Last Man on Earth” from 1964:
Next, in 1971, perhaps the best known and least like the book of the three versions, Chuck Heston’s “Omega Man”. Entertaining, but definitely a product of its time:
Finally, the 2007 Will Smith version, the only one actually titled “I Am Legend”, but which unfortunately, without giving too much away, substitutes an ending that completely invalidates the meaning of that enigmatic three-word phrase:
I have thus resigned myself to the fact that the book will never be done right – just one of many, I’m afraid. I urge you to pick it up – there are parts that will stay with you forever.
Let’s consider this the first of many such entries for good books – and lousy movies…