Mashup Novel

pride and prejudice and zombies

A mashup novel is a work of fiction which combines a pre-existing text, often a classic work of fiction, with a certain popular genre such as vampire or zombie narratives. ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies,’ which combines Jane Austen’s classic novel ‘Pride and Prejudice’ with elements of modern zombie fiction, is arguably the first, and certainly one of the most famous and successful works in the genre, and has been credited with spawning a rash of imitations. The term ‘Mashup’ was borrowed from the world of computers and music. Mashup books are seen as distinct from parody novels like ‘Bored of the Rings,’ and parallel novels like ‘The Wind Done Gone’ or ‘Wicked’ since they do not merely make fun of the original text, or tell an alternative version of it, but also introduce the themes and characteristics of a wholly different genre.

While most works in this genre (or cross-genre trend) rely on fictional texts as their basis, other works like ‘Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter’ superimpose the popular genres over historical figures and events. A more recent phenomenon within the genre is the combination of more than two original works, or genres, as in the case of ‘Robinson Crusoe (The Eerie Adventures of the Lycanthrope),’ which combines the original novel with elements borrowed from the works of H.P. Lovecraft as well as the popular genre of werewolf fiction, and is accordingly attributed to three authors – Daniel Defoe, H.P. Lovecraft, and Peter Clines.

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