I've never been able to abide Jane Austen. I felt completely unconnected from the characters and unable to empathize with their dated misadventures in love and social climbing. That said, I loved this book. Apparently, all it took to make me care about Eliza and Co. was a liberal sprinkling of the undead. Most of the characterizations and the plot itself remained untouched, but the world in which they occur is enough changed to give them a dash of modern flavour. Also, I found Austen's women much improved by their new interest in the "deadly arts," as opposed to all that fuss over balls and letter writing and... pfft. Marriage. Not to say that Grahame-Smith doesn't occasionally go overboard; his additions have a tendency to become incredibly campy (moreso than I believe that they were meant to be) and repetitive. Still, I would highly recommend this book, especially to those who have trouble stomaching the original. I'll readily admit that I have never been Austen's biggest fan, but even I couldn't take my iPod off for days.
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