The Bennet girls go through a transformation. All but Elizabeth were reluctant to become warriors, but once they embrace their destiny they learn what it means to be an Englishwoman. Somehow they manage to be 100% warrior, 100% lady (or girl, in the case of the youngest sisters who lop off heads when they aren’t giggling and gossiping).
A hint of romance rears its ugly head throughout Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls. While Jane sees only good in everyone, including the lecherous baron, Elizabeth is more level-headed, but soon starts to fall for the mysterious “Master” Hawksworth, a powerful warrior who has come to the Bennet home to mold the Bennets (except Mother who is too busy swooning) into ninjas. Jane is distracted by a handsome army officer who does not approve of English women battling with the undead; Elizabeth finds distraction in a quirky, young doctor whose dedication to re-Anglicizing the dreadfuls seems misplaced since they are both dead and decomposing. Hockensmith generously describes the state of various unmentionables when they come calling.
Throughout Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls, Elizabeth experiences a number of awakenings, becoming a warrior and true hero in the process. When it comes to the men, she experiences a number of disappointments.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls culminates in a zombie jamboree at the estate of the debauched baron, Lord Lumpley, whose home has become a refuge for hundreds of tradespeople and their families, villagers, and soldiers much to his disdain. As the unmentionables swarm the estate, Lord Lumpley laments, “My God…just look what they’ve done to the topiary.”
Hockensmith has populated Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls with a memorable cast of characters—some admirable, some despicable, and some just dead. He walks a fine line between decorum and disgusting and delivers an entirely satisfying story that is by turns wonderful, horrible, hilarious, savage, and sad. Look for it in stores March 23.
Bottom Line: Would I buy Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls? You betcha!