DAWN OF THE DREADFULS by Steve Hockensmith

Book Quote:

“Ohhhhhhhhhh!” she cried, rolling her head and grabbing Mary with one hand, Kitty with the other. “My last hope, gone! Instead of throwing my eldest in the path of eligible bachelors, they’re to be thrown to the unmentionables! And so go the rest of us, girls—to a potter’s field or down a dreadful’s gullet, one or the other! And all because your father started taking orders from some ponytailed stripling who doesn’t even have the sense to cook his fish!”

Lydia and Kitty joined in with weeping of their own, and even Mary’s eyes took to watering behind her spectacles (though Elizabeth suspected this had more to do with the way her mother was crushing her hand).

When Elizabeth glanced at Hawksworth to gauge his reaction to the spectacle, she was surprised to find him intently gauging hers.

Book Review:

Review by Ann Wilkes (MAY 13, 2010)

In Dawn of the Dreadfuls, Steve Hockensmith takes Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and adds a generous helping of dry humor and zombies. What’s not to love? Here are the first two lines, which promise much more fun to come:

“Walking in the middle of a funeral would be, of course, bad form. So attempting to walk out on one’s own was beyond the pale.”

And Hockensmith doesn’t disappoint in this prequel to the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

At the ill-fated funeral, Mr. Bennett clears the church except for the vicar and his girls. His four daughters learn their father is more than just a long-suffering, hen-pecked man with a saving sense of humor. He’s expert at killing zombies. In fact, it’s a skill the secret order expected him to pass down to his children.

Mr. Bennett knows that a zombie incursion begins with just one zombie. Ignoring the shrieking protests of Mrs. Bennett, he throws all his wife’s flowers out of his dojo-turned-potting-shed to begin training his children in the deadly arts.

Soon, a handsome young warrior, trained in the East and sent by their father’s secret order of zombie hunters takes over their training. Lizzy makes up for her lack of skill with more than her fair share of determination. Under Master Hawksworth’s tutelage, Lizzy becomes a formidable foe to the many zombies who dare cross her path.

Unlike most Victorians Lizzy encounters, Dr. Bertram Keckilpenny is untroubled by her training outfit, straightforward manner, hunting skills and lack of squeamishness. When Lizzy meets him, he is made up to look like a zombie to test his theory that they are no danger to each other and to people they mistake for their kind.

Lizzy’s life is complicated by these two men and keeping her sister, Jane, safe from the philandering Lord Lumpley. The Lord makes a pretense of courting her naïve sister. Elizabeth Bennett manages all this while saving England from zombies.

I enjoyed seeing Mr. Bennett get his day, having a vital purpose rather than just hiding away in his library. Dawn of the Dreadfuls kept me amused for days. I didn’t want it to end.

AMAZON READER RATING: stars-4-0from 78 readers
PUBLISHER: Quirk Books; Original edition (March 23, 2010)
REVIEWER: Ann Wilkes
AUTHOR WEBSITE: Steve Hockensmith
EXTRAS: Trailer for the book

Quirk Classics web page for more mash-ups

Ann Wilkes interview with Steve Hockensmith

MORE ON MOSTLYFICTION: More Jane Austen fan reads:

Beginner’s Greek by James Collins

The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Fowler

More Zombie fiction:

Cemetery Dance by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Not sure if there is a Zombie in this one, but check it out anyway:

The Devil You Know by Mike Carey


Holmes on the Range series:

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies series:

More Quirk Classic Mash-ups:

May 13, 2010 · Judi Clark · 2 Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Humorous, Speculative (Beyond Reality)

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