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patfrench

Stop Making Sense

I read anything that's nailed down, or even just moving slowly. Cereal boxes, candy wrappers, all genres, etc., and I don't always have much time for arbitrary distinctions like literary fiction vs. genre fiction.

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War - Max Brooks "We have met the enemy, and he is us." Or similar.

I really liked this one. I stayed away for a long time, thinking it was just another "braaaaaaains" horror show. But it ended up not really being about the zombies at all--it's about how humans (individuals, groups, families, governments) behave when they're trying to survive. Think The Road, not Night of the Living Dead.

The book is told as a series of Q+A interviews between a narrator and a sampling of survivors from all walks of life around the world. This has pluses and minuses--we get personal and global perspectives (for once!), but we don't get the typical connection with a protagonist and supporting characters. I do think that Brooks did a good job of getting across a story arc despite the lack of a "main character" other than himself as narrator.

It's hard to judge the pacing because I read it as an ebook--I have trouble with them anyway. The ebook format also made it difficult to pop in and out of the supporting "footnotes" as I went along.

The only substantive negative comment I have is that I would have preferred a bit more buildup before the outbreaks got going...for example, how did the infection get outside of China, or at least the initial villages? Maybe he could have had an airline rep be one of the interviews? But really, this is just nitpicky.

It's funny--the movie isn't really about the zombies, either; it's about Brad Pitt, Action Hero. But the book is so much better, well, fleshed out. (moan)