Title: World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
Author: Max Brooks
Genre: Sci-fi, fantasy, horror
Born out of a 12-year-old boy in the village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, the virus spread like ink in water across the world and nearly decimated all of human population and wiped out humanity as we know it. Max Brooks, in the wreckage that began from Patient Zero, to the Great Panic, and finally to full-out war, traveled across the world to collect individual testimony from men, women and children who witnessed, experienced and was submerged in the war against the undead, in an attempt to capture the horror, desperation, bravery and humanity in the war and of its survivors.
Eaten Thru On: July 2, 2014
What a page-turner. It had me shivering in fear and dread for its entirety.
I’m not one for zombie-themed anything, books, movies, series. No, I’m not a fan of the Walking Dead and I’ve never seen Zombieland or Shane of the Dead. The closest I’ve gotten to this genre was the feel-good film, Warm Bodies. Even then, I was grossed out and half covering my eyes in fear.
So I was surprised when I voluntarily picked up this book. A friend of mine had recommended it, passing it off as more a journalist-type compilation of personal testaments rather than zombie book. I thought it was just a ruse to get me into the genre. A year later, here I was, unable to put it down once I picked it up.
My friend was right. It really was most about the personal accounts, the individual stories that came out of a war-torn world. The zombies formed merely a backdrop. If I didn’t know any better, I thought I’d picked up a book of stories from a real world. I read this book over the course of two and a half days, and when I reemerged from it, for a moment, I believed I was still in that world. The accounts are written in a brilliantly realistic manner, integrating real world events and conditions. They came from a whole array of believable characters from all over the world in different professions and roles, ranging from military personnel to civilians and businessmen. It gave a well-rounded depiction of what was happening. Let’s you the reader, put everything together into a complete picture with just a tinge of great journalism in the mix.
Although these characters are not interconnected on a personal level, and their stories fragmented in a way that presented a variety of perspectives from different personalities, they carried the entire plot along extremely well. You felt the initial shock and confusion of what was happening. You felt the slow descent into madness and chaos. You felt the desperation and misery at the bottom. You saw no light, until you rose up with humanity and fought back. You saw the end approach, “the beginning of the end” as was well-put in the book. And finally, you saw the tail of the catastrophe. You would release that breath you didn’t know you’ve holding since the undead began to rise.
Gripping. Ferocious. And an absolute delight to read.
If you are like me, and don’t like the undead but do love a fantastic read, please, give this book a shot. It will blow your mind.
Final Verdict: 4 out of 5 Zacks
Recommended for: zombie fanatics, sci-fi lovers, journalist aspirers, and those who love a good journal-esque read
Next Potential Target: The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera