Friday, January 11, 2008

Book Review: World War Z by Max Brooks

After reading 'The Zombie Survival Guide' I had to get Max Brook's follow up, 'World War Z'. I was not disappointed. If anything, it far exceeds the first book. On the front cover there is a quote from Simon Pegg, zombie enthusiast. He proclaims this book 'An absolute must have', a thought I echo.
'World War Z' is set in an undisclosed future time - I'm not talking hundreds of years here, maybe a decade at most, but the technological advances mentioned in the book show that we have a few years to wait before the zombie Apocalypse. Sometime in the near future an outbreak of the solanum virus in China gets the dead back on their feet and looking for fresh meat. The plague spreads across the entire globe, destroying lives, countries and bringing civilisation to its knees. The book is a collection of interviews with the survivors, relating their first hand experiences of the war against the undead. It spans continents, cultures and includes the perspective of both the military and the civilian side of the war. It is also broken down into sections - the beginning of the outbreak, during the war, and the aftermath.
Max Brooks has certainly done his homework with this book. He writes with such ease and authority about situations - both real and imagined - that you begin to believe there really has been a zombie war and you are missing something. There is no hyperbole in this book. It is a really study in human behaviour and what would REALLY happen if the undead began to walk the earth. Every possibility has been looked into. He also gave himself the difficult task of writing with a dozen or more different voices. He captures each of the different people superbly, so well in fact that you have to remind yourself that it is actually fiction and these aren't real people. The stories range from frightening, disturbing, annoying to heartfelt.
I found this book hard to put down. It is not like a horror book - it isn't gory or sensational, but I liked it all the more because it felt real and made me think. More than ever I am planning my strategy for when the zombie's come. This is a must read. I rate it 10/10.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sounds an exciting read! Have you had nightmares since?