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Sunday, November 1

Mansfield Park and Mummies, Oh MY

Say it ain't so, Janeites! I'm still in shock.

Excerpt One:

About thirty years ago Miss Maria Ward, of Huntingdon, with only seven thousand pounds and nary a kingdom or sand granule in sight, had the good luck to captivate Sir Thomas Bertram, of Mansfield Park, in the county of Northampton, and to be thereby raised to the rank of a baronet’s lady, with all the comforts and consequences of an handsome house and large income.

With the former, all Egypt mourned. With the latter, all Huntingdon exclaimed on the greatness of the match, and her uncle, the lawyer, himself, allowed her to be at least three thousand pounds short of any equitable claim to it. The deceased Pharaoh had two royal siblings who immediately benefited from his elevation to the Afterlife. Miss Maria Ward had two sisters to be benefited by her elevation -- not to the Afterlife, to be sure, but to the even grander state of AfterEngagement -- and such of their acquaintance as thought Miss Ward and Miss Frances quite as handsome as Miss Maria, did not scruple to predict their marrying with almost equal advantage. But whether three thousand or merely thirty years ago, there certainly are not so many men of large fortune in the world as there are pretty (and decidedly unmummified) women to deserve them.

So perfectly suitable was Mr. Rushworth indeed, to Mrs. Norris's notions of ideal matrimony that she forgot herself a certain full moon, and shared a short carriage ride with the young gentleman, while singing praises to Maria, and managed to just barely miss a certain break in the clouds and the revelation of a certain bright nocturnal celestial object that had such a regular and dire effect on her.

Mr. Rushworth never knew what hit him. Indeed, he never remembered the incident, but the bite was there, on his forearm, right through the fine linen shirtsleeve, and things got a bit bloody and rather dizzy, from there on. He was certain, out of nowhere there had been a monstrous big dog, or maybe a wolf, in the carriage; it growled and bit him, then bounded outside, and he barely managed to get home and retell the tale to his mother, forgetting all about the presence and indeed, role, of the venerable Mrs. Norris in the whole incident.

Mrs. Norris may have been forgotten that night, but the impression of her transformed teeth remained in a certain portly young gentleman’s forearm. And though it healed well and soon enough, unfortunately Mr. Rushworth was never to be his former self again. . . .

After dancing with each other at a proper number of balls, the young people justified everyone’s expectant opinions, and an engagement, with a due reference to the absent Sir Thomas, was entered into, much to the satisfaction of their respective families, and of the general lookers-on of the neighbourhood, who had, for many weeks past, felt the expediency of Mr. Rushworth's marrying Miss Bertram -- especially considering how restless the young gentleman seemed to become lately, and how much additional vermin turned up dead, and how domesticated small livestock went missing in the surrounding countryside.

“No,” cried Edmund, “you must step away from him!”

“I am afraid I am perfectly incapable of moving,” replied his sister. “Oh, his glorious song fills my head, till I see sapphire skies over the Nile and the brilliant golden sun over the pyramids, the perfume of the temples and the falcon in flight, his dark exotic, non-British eyes -- Oh, it is perfectly intolerable, I simply cannot!”

“But you must! Make haste, Maria, before it is too late!”

But the Mummy was looking at her with his mesmerizing gaze.

Maria began to tremble. “Is it not too late for me already, Edmund? Is it not a spinster’s life for me? No one will have me now; I am tainted, relegated to paltry livelihood alone or as someone’s pitiful companion --”

“Oh, for heaven’s sake, think, Maria! Your choice is spinsterhood or mummification!”

Maria wailed. “Spinsterhood is mummification! Can you not see, brother, at least with him I will be loved, I will be forever his! A blissful eternity!”

The Mummy’s gold-braced hand rose, beckoning.

The butler cleared his throat.

“Begging pardon, Sir Thomas -- at this late hour, the Lady Bertram sends to inform -- there are -- baboons in the ballroom.”

Sir Thomas was somewhat weary of interruptions but duly unperturbed. “Baddeley -- be so kind as to remind Her Ladyship, every ballroom has its share of baboons. There is nothing one can do, when those of inferior breeding are allowed to mingle with the better set. One need but revise the regular invitation list to omit the undesirables next time. Do remind me on the morrow --”

“Begging pardon again, but one does not mean to speak in metaphor. There are actual baboons in the grand ballroom. Flesh and blood, simian. As early as this noon, perfectly inanimate and on display in this household, together with the other fruits of the Nile, as mummified objets d'art. At present, actively consuming the supper buffet spread. And tossing their own excrement at the serving staff.”

Sir Thomas became rather still.

“In addition,” Baddeley informed his master, “I am told there is a crocodile. A decidedly non-metaphorical one. Also initially mummified and hailing from the African Continent. Last seen in the drawing room, gnawing -- apparently something one would rather not venture to guess. But, I am told, the divan is in shambles.”

“What of -- the guests?”

“Bedlam, Sir.”
  • If you haven't had enough of all this zombie and monster and mummy madness, here's the prequel to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Dawn of the Dreadfuls.
  • Excerpts from Norilanda books.

Thank you Adriana Zardini for the tip. Vic awkwardly photoshopped the cover.

Disclaimer: No mummies or publishers bribed us to place this non-review on our blog. We have not received an advance copy of this novel, nor do we expect to after our disrespectful attitude towards monster and mummy sequels in general. So please don't look at us cross-eyed for exercising our constitutional right to place our opinion on a personal blog that makes us absolutely NO money.


ChaChaneen said...

Lurve the disclaimer! Lol

And yet another book trying to make money off of Jane and the current vampire, mummy craze. This too shall quickly fad... but soon enough yet for me though.

Laurel Ann (Austenprose) said...

LOL Vic!!!!

Enid Wilson said...

The trend is unstoppable! I like the book cover.

Bargain with the Devil

Adriana Sales Zardini said...

I've just posted some information about P&P and Zombies the movie and comics:

Adriana Sales Zardini said...

Ps. Why I didn't create a cover as yours? Lol

Alexa Adams said...

I'm boycotting the monsters. Enough is enough. If we can cut into the profits by saying no, we refuse to read this, maybe the horror will come to an end.

Anonymous said...

I think these are hilarious. Much better than Pride & Prejudice "sequels" that just end up being some fan-fictiony porn novel.

Laura's Reviews said...

Oh my!!!

Jane Odiwe said...

I'm sure I shall see Northanger Abbey and Ninjas come to fruition yet! I actually posted this on twitter for a joke and promptly won a clutch of followers - lol!

Charleybrown said...

Vic, when I read your comment on Twitter about this, it actually brought amusement to an otherwise uneventful evening:) As much as I'm put off by this trend, I have to say this latest edition of MP&M seems to be more humourous than the zombie books. Great book cover!

Nonna said...

I hope this trend is over first, I allowed it because people were reading books as a result, but it has gone over into the abyss for me !

DangAndBlast! said...

No! I loved PP&Z, mainly because it kept all the main story and wove some zombies into it as a hilarious side piece... this one looks from the excerpts to be awful!

Adriana Sales Zardini said...

Vic, the book was released:

Adriana Zardini