Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters by Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters

When I first heard of the whole “adding monsters to classic works of literature” schtick, I chuckled to myself, thinking it was a clever concept. I wanted to read them, the only problem being, I’ve never read Pride & Prejudice OR Sense & Sensibility. There’s that Abraham Lincoln one, too, at least I’ve heard of him.

I read S&S (as it will heretofore be abbrieviated in this post) for a book club, and as Borders was in its waning days, I saw S&S&SM on a bargain shelf and grabbed it. (I should also note: I bought P&P&Z, with the full intention of first reading P&P, but my mother-in-law absconded with P&P&Z and I haven’t seen it since. There’s a copy of The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obrect on her shelf that I might just call even Stevens on while no one’s looking.)

Having finally read the whole Jane Austen bit with Elinor, Maryanne, Edward Ferrars, Colonel Brandon and many, many misunderstandings along the way, it was time for me to rock the sea monster edition.

As it turns out, adding deadly sea creatures to a classic work of literature does not make it a more entertaining read. I hung in until about page 30 and then I bailed on this. Every page makes some kind of reference to giant crustaceans, or Elinor sculpting statues out of driftwood, and it becomes kind of tedious in a hurry.

Truth be told, it was kind of a pain in the ass to read the original. In hindsight, I should have read S&S&SM for book club, and acted all hacked off when no one remembered the part about the one dude getting mauled by a shark or whatever.

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