I have to admit, I really did not expect to like this quite as well as I did. I expected to be amused, but I also thought I would probably turn up my nose at some parts, because Sense and Sensibility is one of my favourite novels. Those turned-up-nose parts did pop up here and there, during some questionable passages, such as Marianne picking her teeth with a fishbone and Elinor being so disgusted with the tentacled appearance of Colonel Brandon - I think Elinor would be a little more just in the beginning, even in her private thoughts.
However, the way Winters wove his own story in with Austen's original was fun (Edward wishes to be a lighthouse-keeper, not a clergyman; London is the underwater domed city Sub-Marine Station Beta; Mrs Jennings and her daughters were kidnapped natives of a remote island; Willoughby hunts treasure rather than fowl; etc.), and he threw in some unexpected twists as well. The added mysteries were the main points which kept me actively interested in reading, since I think I would have skimmed a lot more if it were just a straight re-telling. One of these mysteries involves Elinor and Marianne's youngest sister, Margaret; this is something I thought added a great deal, since even though we still don't see much of Margaret in the narrative, I was glad to see such a fun side character get a bit of a larger role in the story. There's also a little map at the front of the book!
The descriptions of creature attacks tend to be quite...er...descriptive, and there are quite a few scenes which turn our romantic heroes and heroines into action heroes and heroines - I would not have expected Mrs Dashwood to be such an asset in a fight against a sea monster! Absurd though it may be, the beginning of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters definitely hit the ground running, whereas the original (as much as I love it) I admit starts off a little on the slow side for me.
I definitely understand why lovers of classic literature would be hestiant to read these oddball re-writes, but I'm glad I picked this one up to try! It was silly and fun, and even though I did roll my eyes or raise an eyebrow at some parts, I laughed out loud at others and was intrigued by the mysterious plot-line involving Margaret and the other involving Elinor and the five-pointed star. If you really aren't sure about whether or not you want to try this, I'd really recommend at least borrowing it from a friend or from a library.