Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters:REVIEW, ARTICLE, AND GIVEAWAY

GIVEAWAY ENDED
SENSE AND SENSIBILITY
AND SEA MONSTERS

BY JANE AUSTEN
AND BEN H. WINTERS



ABOUT THE BOOK:

From the publisher of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies comes a new tale of romance, heartbreak, and tentacled mayhem.

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters expands the original text of the beloved Jane Austen novel with all-new scenes of giant lobsters, rampaging octopi, two-headed sea serpents, and other biological monstrosities.

As our story opens, the Dashwood sisters are evicted from their childhood home and sent to live on a mysterious island full of savage creatures and dark secrets. While sensible Elinor falls in love with Edward Ferrars, her romantic sister Marianne is courted by both the handsome Willoughby and the hideous man-monster Colonel Brandon.

Can the Dashwood sisters triumph over meddlesome matriarchs and unscrupulous rogues to find true love? Or will they fall prey to the tentacles that are forever snapping at their heels? This masterful portrait of Regency England blends Jane Austen's biting social commentary with ultraviolent depictions of sea monsters biting. It's survival of the fittest -- and only the swiftest swimmers will find true love!

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:

Jane Austen, coauthor of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, is coauthor of the New York Times best seller Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which has been translated into 17 languages and optioned to become a major motion picture. She died in 1817.

Ben H. Winters, coauthor of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, is a writer based in Brooklyn.

MY REVIEW:

This is the first of this kind of book I have read. After hearing so much about Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, I thought why not give some poor, unheralded not in vogue like vampires and zombies a chance to see if these sea monsters can also entertain. And entertain they did! I think you will either love this book and laugh as you are supposed to, OR perhaps like some of the VERY LOYAL Jane Austen fans, you may feel offended by it. I, however, thought it was delightful, funny, and very cleverly written.

In this novel that I might call a parody, the Dashwood gals are sent off to live on an island. There they find the place is crawling with sea monsters as well as the token debonair young men who undoubtedly are there to woo these sisters. Both sisters do indeed fall in love as is to be expected, but not necessarily with those who you might think...I mean, who wouldn't want to spend time with tentacle-challenged Brando? However, the handsome young men on the island do come to the sisters' rescue at one point when being attacked by a creature from the sea.

The poor dear girls are poor in this novel and looking for wealthy husbands when all they keep running into are these monsters. Poor Marianne, it seems, has caught the fancy of tentacle faced Colonel Brando, and she isn't sure if it is Willoughby who will face off against the monsters to try and protect her or not. Ellinor, meanwhile finds herself falling for Edward Ferras. Will it be possible for these ladies to find true love with the terrible tentacled treasures of the deep all around them? Will the book become too violent and REALLY anger the faithful purists of Jane Austin? The only way to find out will be for you to win one of these in my giveaway and read to see. I enjoyed the fast and funny read and it was quite a nice change from some pretty heavy things I have been reading. Kudos for the quick wit and hard to write comedic talents of Ben Winters.
ARTICLE BY BEN WINTERS:

Jane is my Co-Pilot:

The Fine Art of Making

Sense and Sensibility Totally Ridiculous
By Ben H. Winters,
Co-author of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

Since writing Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, I've gotten a ton of feedback about how nice it is that I've made Jane Austen appealing to certain readers -- meaning readers who previously suffered a persistent allergy to The Classics. I am complimented for taking the prim and decorous Jane Austen and making her, A) really violent, and B) really funny.

The first compliment I will gladly accept. Over the decades since Sense and Sensibility first appeared, it has been noted by scholars and casual readers alike that the book is sorely lacking in shipwrecks, shark attacks, and vividly described decapitations. I believe it was the poet and critic Thomas Chatterton who admired the novel's careful plotting and social critique, but lamented the total absence of vengeful ghost pirates.

But I can't take credit for making Jane Austen funny. As is well known by passionate fans of Austen -- I have yet to meet any other kind -- the old girl has always been funny. Take for example Mr. and Mrs. Palmer, a set of secondary characters in Sense and Sensibility. The periodic appearances of the Palmers comprise what any comedy writer will recognize as a running gag. Mrs. Palmer is chatty and trivial, while Mr. Palmer (a delightful Hugh Laurie in the Ang Lee version) is gruff and unaffectionate. What Mrs. Palmer labels "droll," the reader -- along with Elinor, our sensible heroine -- recognizes as plain distaste for his wife, her friends, and everybody else in the universe. Every time those Palmers show up, we know we're in for the next variation on the same great gag. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF BEN WINTERS' ARTICLE ON THE FSB MEDIA WEBSITE.

GIVEAWAY

THANKS TO EVERYONE AT FSB

ASSOCIATES, I HAVE TWO COPIES OF THIS

IMAGINATIVE BOOK TO GIVE AWAY!


RULES:

--U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY
--NO P. O. BOXES, PLEASE
--EMAIL MUST BE IN YOUR COMMENT!!
--EACH ENTRY MUST BE A SEPARATE COMMENT
TO COUNT OR ELSE IT COUNTS AS ONE

HOW TO ENTER:

+1 ENTRY: COMMENT ON WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT BEN H. WINTER'S ARTICLE ABOUT THIS BOOK BY CLICKING TO GET TO THE FSB MEDIA WEBSITE AND FINISH READING IT

+1 MORE ENTRY:
COMMENT ON HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT SOMEONE TAKING ANY CLASSIC NOVEL, NOT JUST AUSTEN'S AND CHANGING IT LIKE THIS

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON IF YOU FOLLOW MY BLOG AND HOW?

ALL ENTRIES ARE DUE BY
6 PM, EST, NOVEMBER 29

34 comments:

GFDesignz said...

I have been wanting to read the vampire one and missed seeinf this one! Thanks for reviewing it!

I follow thru google friend connect

girlfrienddesignz(at)gmail(dot)com

g.g. said...

I think it was interesting that he talked about how Austen didn't use silly names for people like Dickens did (like Fizziwig) so it allowed him to go over the top with his sea monsters.

anjamie4 (AT) gmail dot com

g.g. said...

I think a writer has the right to write whatever they want...it doesn't mean it will be any good but I guess it is fine.

anjamie4 (AT) gmail dot com

g.g. said...

I follow with GCF

anjamie4 (AT) gmail dot com

Bethie said...

I liked Winter's article. I agree that Jane Austen was already funny. He said he made it ridiculous. I love that he can look at his work that way.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Bethie said...

+1 I am fine with taking classics and "spoofing" them. I actually think it very funny. What I love is that you only get the joke if you have read the original.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Bethie said...

+1 I follow on Google friend connect.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Morning Glow from Novel Addiction said...

+1 Entry - I wouldn't say I love the article, but I will agree that maybe because of these books, people that would not have read Jane Austen on their own will at least get a taste of it. A not-so great taste, but.. at least an idea-ish. Bah.

Thanks!
Morning Glow
ohmorningglow AT aol DOT com

Morning Glow from Novel Addiction said...

+1 more entry: I'm alright with it. I don't love the idea of someone changing a classic like this, but I don't hate it either. I know that this sort of thing widens the audience, and at least gets people familiar with Austen when they previously might have just ignored her existance.

Thanks!
Morning Glow
ohmorningglow AT aol DOT com

Morning Glow from Novel Addiction said...

+ 1 More entry: I follow you via Blogger, so.. Google Friend Connect

Thanks!
Morning Glow
ohmorningglow AT aol DOT com

wheresmyrain said...

+1 i follow with google reader
+1 i love when authors remake classic works of fiction in this manner, i think its fun and done in good humor and i can think of a few I would love to see written


wheresmyrain(at)yahoo(dot)com_

tetewa said...

I'd like to be included! tWarner419@aol.com

Jake Lsewhere said...

I find his comments about "literalizing" the metaphor of emotional rectitude interesting.

Thanks for hosting this giveaway.
jake.lsewhere[at]gmail.com

Jake Lsewhere said...

+1 I have no problem with modern writers revisiting older works and inserting new materials, as long as the new work is more or less consistent with itself.

Thanks for hosting this giveaway.
jake.lsewhere[at]gmail.com

Jake Lsewhere said...

+1 I follow via Friend Connect.

Thanks for hosting this giveaway.
jake.lsewhere[at]gmail.com

Linna said...

I'm a follower

linna.hsu at gmail dot com

Linna said...

I'm optimistic about any books that twist a little bit of classic novels. Usually, it's a lot of fun reading from different perspective. :D

linna.hsu at gmail dot com

etirv said...

I totally enjoyed Mr Winters' article -- it gave me a glimpse of his science fiction take on S&S!

I welcome the various versions and versions of Jane Austen's novels! What an imagination these authors have and their works challenge our imagination as readers as well.

I follow you on google friends connect!

delilah0180(at)yahoo(dot)com

Debbie said...

I like the article and do think he will bring these books to new readers. For instance, this book is on my 15 year old son's Christmas wish list!
fourkidsrgreat(at)gmail.com

Debbie said...

I am a google friend follower.
fourkidsrgreat(at)gmail.com

throuthehaze said...

+1 I like the author and think that it definitely brings new readers to classics

+1 I am not a huge fan of changing the classics but I am willing to give them a try

+1 follower in google friend connect

Raelena
throuthehaze at gmail dot com

Jenn M. said...

I've been wating to read this ever since I saw the hilarious trailer!

+1 MORE ENTRY: I follow your blog with google friend connect and in my RSS reader

jennifermorrill(at)att(dot)net

Jenn M. said...

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT SOMEONE TAKING ANY CLASSIC NOVEL, NOT JUST AUSTEN'S AND CHANGING IT LIKE THIS

When I first saw P&P and Zombies I was initially offended. I got over it and I think the idea of sprucing up old novels is funny and brings new life to them.

jennifermorrill(at)att(dot)net

ossmcalc said...

I think that it is interesting to hear him state that "Even more fun to play with than Austen's eloquent vocabulary is her universe of enforced emotional rectitude." That is a pretty stuffy sentence. He just brings in a technique sometimes used by students of The Classics to get through reading these books. They just let their imaginations ride away with ideas as to what this scene would have been like if it had happened this way. He gives more imaginary options.

Thank you,

Christine
womackcm@sbcglobal.net

ossmcalc said...

It's a little weird to change one of The Classics like this to me. I have seen where students have equated The Classics and other assignments with some pretty unusual associations. For some students, this is the best way for them to approach an assignment.

Thank you,

Christine
womackcm@sbcglobal.net

ossmcalc said...

I follow your blog through Google Connect but mainly through saving this website as one of my favorites. I try to click on it at least once per week and check it out as I feel that you have one of the better selection of books on your website.

thank you,

Christine
womackcm@sbcglobal.net

catss99 said...

I like the review comment about how people in the original book didn't display their emotions.
amanda
catss99@yahoo.com

catss99 said...

I follow through blogger and google friends
amanda
catss99@yahoo.com

catss99 said...

I think changing a book like this is sort of ripping off the original author..
amanda
catss99@yahoo.com

Searcher said...

If it gets people talking about, reading, and discussing books I am all for it!

Besides a classic can take it!

LooseEnds AT Snet DOT Net

Searcher said...

I am a follower on Google Reader.

Thanks for the chance, LooseEnds AT Snet DOT Net

nfmgirl said...

Interesting how he compares Dickens and Austen and their different styles! Please count me in. Thank you!

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

I follow your blog through Blogger

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

Jaime said...

I love the fact that there is humor, we always need a laugh
copperllama at yahoo dot com

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