Friday, April 19, 2013

World War Z by Max Brooks

First of all, remember how I was talking about how zombie books don't often use the worse zombie? Well this one does, all over the place, they are zombies plain and simple.

I like zombie stories. I think I should start phrasing it like that, because it's not actual zombies that I like...zombies are gross! But ugh, the potential in a zombie story! I mean look they combine a bunch of my favorite things--rich thematic material (obvs zombies can be many things but mindless creatures of consumption is one!), survival stories (I like them. What can I say?) and TRAGEDY I mean zombies exist in the bodies of loved ones, a single bite means the end, etc. etc. in order to defend yourself you might have to shoot the person you's tragic and I like that.

I know that it seems like zombies are way played out, but in my opinion they aren't, not really. There will always be room for more well written zombie stories just like vampire stories.

And I've had the good luck to read a lot of zombie stories that I really like, one of my favorite TV shows right now is a gripping zombie story, I mean I haven't experienced many duds (though it should be noted I avoid almost all zombie movies because they all look bad except for like 28 Days Later. If that's a zombie movie.)

I saw Max Brooks at Comic Con one year and he was funny and smart and I've been wanting to read World War Z ever since. And then I got it in the Halloween swap and I was going to be on the plane and since I thought this was supposed to be the zombie book to end all zombie books I brought it along.

In theory, this book is such a good idea. Examining what a threat like this would be like on a global scale, how each country would react differently, how the world would fight back, and more. But...I got bored. That's the most honest thing I can say about this book. I just started losing interest about 80 pages in. I had to force myself to finish and I was determined to finish because of how much people like this book and also the movie which I'm still excited for.

I think, you know, this is not a straight forward story, it's a fictional oral history. So it's lots of "first-person" accounts of the zombie war. I guess that's why it ended up not being for, I don't really know. I needed...characters. Also, as Jenny points out, there's not nearly enough females and that's always a barrier for me.

I think what this book made me realize is that I'm not really interested in what would happen to the world if the zombie virus came about, I'm more often interested in how a few people deal with it. I realized I didn't need a global overall perspective, because...I just didn't care without having individual people to care about. This might make me not particularly smart but since this is only a book about zombies, I don't really care.

So...basically this didn't work for me. But people who don't even like zombie stories such as Jenny liked it, so obviously my opinion is only one!


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