World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

Written by: Max Brooks

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War Book Cover
The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.

Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.

Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, "By excluding the human factor, aren't we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn't the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as 'the living dead'?"

Note: Some of the numerical and factual material contained in this edition was previously published under the auspices of the United Nations Postwar Commission.
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World War Z An Oral History of the Zombie War Reviews

Emma
So many people love this book and I really though I was going to be one of them. I can't believe I'm not..
First things first. This is not a story. Also, there were no characters and It almost felt like nothing happened....although how I can say that in a book where a zombie world war happens, I really don't know!
I really like character led stories. I knew the style and structure of this book before I started it and I was looking forward to reading something a bit different; however it quickly be So many people love this book and I really though I was going to be one of them. I can't believe I'm not..
First things first. This is not a story. Also, there were no characters and It almost felt like nothing happened....although how I can say that in a book where a zombie world war happens, I really don't know!
I really like character led stories. I knew the style and structure of this book before I started it and I was looking forward to reading something a bit different; however it quickly became apparent that it didn't agree with me..
The most interesting thing about the book is the global and political bigger picture view of what a zombie apocalypse might look like.
If you're thinking about reading this book- I would go ahead. For me it helped clarify what I do and don't like in my zombie apocalypse reading: I didn't know I had an opinion!
Diane
One of my hobbies is film adaptations - comparing source material with the movie script to see how they differ. I wanted to read World War Z because I saw the movie version and had heard it was very different from the book. This is true.

The book as written is unfilmmable -- it's a series of interviews with people around the globe and their experience during the zombie apocalypse. Chunks of the book are very militaristic and we hear from soldiers, commanders and other government agents about the One of my hobbies is film adaptations - comparing source material with the movie script to see how they differ. I wanted to read World War Z because I saw the movie version and had heard it was very different from the book. This is true.

The book as written is unfilmmable -- it's a series of interviews with people around the globe and their experience during the zombie apocalypse. Chunks of the book are very militaristic and we hear from soldiers, commanders and other government agents about the battles with the undead. The scenes are vivid and engaging, but the writing got bogged down with acronyms and other minutiae. The sections I liked best were the discussions of how people reacted to the attacks, how society crumbled and then slowly tried to build itself back up again. Because everyone interviewed in the book is a survivor, they all had different stories about how they actually made it through.

This novel gets at the heart of some truths of human nature, such as that when threatened, people will act in their own best interests. Or how quickly fear can spread and cause a massive panic, disrupting all forms of civilized life. Early in the book there is a description of a battle at Yonkers, where the army has decided to take a violent stand against the zombies. But when the undead seem to keep coming and coming, fear spreads among the soldiers, the line crumbles and the whole battle goes south.

Another example is what is called the Redeker Plan, which was South Africa's plan for the military to temporarily retreat, and to only save a selected "valuable" number of the civilians. Other countries adopted their own versions of this plan. Anyone who has studied the history of genocide knows that governments and armies will willingly allow entire sections of a populace to be sacrificed, if they think it supports their own goals and survival.

"First of all, there was no way to save everyone. The outbreak was too far gone. The armed forces had already been too badly weakened to effectively isolate the threat, and spread so thinly around the country, they could only grow weaker with each passing day. Our forces had to be consolidated, withdrawn to a special safe zone."

Overall the book was interesting and thought-provoking, but too many sections felt superfluous and dragged on. I think the narrative would have been improved with some sharper editing.

For those who have seen the movie, there are only a handful of scenes in the book that were kept in the film -- the two versions are so different that the title should have been changed.

Update May 2014:
After hearing positive reviews, I listened to this on audiobook, and it was an improvement over the print. They used a cast of actors to narrate the different voices and stories, and most of the performances were great. The cast included Alan Alda, Carl Reiner, Henry Rollins, Mark Hamill, John Tuturro and Rob Reiner.

The description of the Battle at Yonkers was particularly well done. Another strong section was the story of Colonel Christina Eliopplis, who survived a zombie attack with some guidance from an unknown voice on the radio. And Rob Reiner has such a great voice that I wish he recorded more audiobooks.

However, the one sour note was the voice of author Max Brooks, who read the part of the interviewer. Poor Max. With talented parents like Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft, I expected his performance to be less contrived.
First read: June 2013
Second read: May 2014
Andrew
I haven't seen every zombie movie or read every zombie book in existence, but I have watched enough to know the cliches of the genre. It was so refreshing to read a book that avoided so many of these conventions and covered some new ground. I mean, how many zombie stories span the entire world? How many cover the entire apocalypse, from Patient Zero to the aftermath/rebuilding? Aren't we all a little tired of zombie stories that closely follow a small group of survivors, as they get picked off o I haven't seen every zombie movie or read every zombie book in existence, but I have watched enough to know the cliches of the genre. It was so refreshing to read a book that avoided so many of these conventions and covered some new ground. I mean, how many zombie stories span the entire world? How many cover the entire apocalypse, from Patient Zero to the aftermath/rebuilding? Aren't we all a little tired of zombie stories that closely follow a small group of survivors, as they get picked off one by one?

Each chapter is only a few pages long, and consists of an interview of one individual survivor. These survivors range from the powerful elites who made decisions affecting millions, to the most inconsequential peons swept up in the winds of war, to the soldiers on the front line. Each interview is unique in a number of ways; the individual's personality and experiences, their nationality, their role in the events. The nationality of each character in particular is what makes this book so interesting. Whereas most zombie movies I've seen take place in the US (and often end with the heroes fleeing to Canada for some reason), virtually every corner of the world is represented in World War Z. Every nation deals with the crisis in it's own way; the Canadians flee to the arctic, the Americans try to fight the zombies as they would a conventional war, the French use the opportunity to rebuild their national pride, the South Africans rely on a war measures plan developed during Apartheid, the Russians keep control of their military through decimation. Part way through the book, I realized that what I was reading was sociology disguised as science-fiction/horror. Some might argue that the sociology is somewhat sophomoric and predictable, and they would have a point. But remember, this is not written as a history, it's written as an oral history. Each interview is just one man or one woman, and that's what the book is really about. The big picture stuff is interesting and compelling, but this is about individuals surviving, each in their own way. As the author asks in the introduction: “isn't the human factor what connects us so deeply to our past”?

Which brings to mind another interesting aspect of World War Z. In the first pages of the book the journalist conducting the interviews explains the rationale for compiling an oral history, and states his intention to avoid any interpretations or intrusions into people's stories. We hear his questions in many of the interviews, and occasionally an interviewee with react to his body language but otherwise he is virtually silent. It made me wonder about his story. We know that he is American, and that he was commissioned to write a report for the UN. Given what we learn throughout the book, we can probably assume that he spent the war in the “safe zone” in California, but there is no direct evidence. This is not a criticism of the book; on the contrary it's a compliment to the fact that the author does such a good job removing the journalist from the interviews. It left me wanting more.

As a clinical psychologist, it was enjoyable to see the author imagined the psychological trauma that would result from something unimaginable. Of course, there was reference to standard, expected illnesses like PTSD and depression. But we also encounter some creative and reasonably plausible conditions such as the quislings, feral children, and Asymptomatic Demise Syndrome. The human psyche is capable of incredible things in response to trauma and stress, and it says a lot about this book that the author made a point to reach beyond the kinds of reactions that people have in the real world and try to picture what would happen in this reality that he created. At the same time, given the fact that we are reading the stories of survivors, we are almost by definition hearing the tales of the most resilient ones. As you read World War Z, you can't help but wonder what you would do in this situation. How would you react waking up in a world that makes no sense? I think most people would like to imagine that they would be strong, moral, and resilient, and would always be ready and willing to do the right thing. But most people also believe that they wouldn't violate their morality in response to demands of an authority, and research has shown otherwise. If WWII led to the Milgram obedience studies, what kind of psychological research would emerge in the aftermath of World War Z?
The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead :: Hook :: Sometimes the Magic Works: Lessons from a Writing Life :: Dragonlance Chronicles :: The Illuminatus! Trilogy
katwiththehat
Wow, this had an amazing amount of detail. Told in sort of a memoir style, the narrator goes back and interviews various people from all around the world to get their perspective on the zombie war after it has unfolded and they are in recovery. It's an interesting storytelling style. You get the gradual story of how the outbreak unfolded, and since its both from the narrator's interviewing perspective, but also really from the pov's of so many third parties, you really get a global feel. There w Wow, this had an amazing amount of detail. Told in sort of a memoir style, the narrator goes back and interviews various people from all around the world to get their perspective on the zombie war after it has unfolded and they are in recovery. It's an interesting storytelling style. You get the gradual story of how the outbreak unfolded, and since its both from the narrator's interviewing perspective, but also really from the pov's of so many third parties, you really get a global feel. There was a strong military feel to this. The author had a good sense of jargon and nice voice. Enjoyed it. 4.5/5 stars.

Please excuse typos. Entered on screen reader.
Richard
Employing the format of transcribed interviews, Brooks uses a series of different narrators to tell the story of World War Z, from the earliest outbreaks of a virus which starts the conflict through various stages of resolution.

I'm not sure what I expected from this going in. It did have many gruesome moments, but it was more than just a pulpy horror novel. It was in fact deeper and more philosophical than I expected it to be, exploring the various effects of a zombie outbreak on society, econo Employing the format of transcribed interviews, Brooks uses a series of different narrators to tell the story of World War Z, from the earliest outbreaks of a virus which starts the conflict through various stages of resolution.

I'm not sure what I expected from this going in. It did have many gruesome moments, but it was more than just a pulpy horror novel. It was in fact deeper and more philosophical than I expected it to be, exploring the various effects of a zombie outbreak on society, economy and world politics.

EDIT: I refer my readers to the review of my GR friend Peter Meredith: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

This is a humorous but lucid list of some of the novel's flaws.
Meg
World War Z was touching, emotionally messy, heartbreaking, and more than I ever thought it could be. I had never read a book by Max Brooks before but I wish he wrote more because I would love to read more by him. Having read many zombie novels and seem many zombie films in my day, I wasn't looking for more zombies in my life. I had actually become sick of them so I never planned on picking this up. But after several people telling me that I needed to read this I decided to give it a chance.

I'm World War Z was touching, emotionally messy, heartbreaking, and more than I ever thought it could be. I had never read a book by Max Brooks before but I wish he wrote more because I would love to read more by him. Having read many zombie novels and seem many zombie films in my day, I wasn't looking for more zombies in my life. I had actually become sick of them so I never planned on picking this up. But after several people telling me that I needed to read this I decided to give it a chance.

I'm glad I did. The way Brooks formats the story he is telling makes it fresh and unique, it throws you right into the action and takes off from there. The zombies are actually quite terrifying! I was expecting them to just be zombies, the typical type. But Brooks takes them and puts a twist on them that make you frightened not only of them but for the characters he has created who have had to deal with them. He also does a great job of showing all the different perspectives of the different types of people who would have to interact and come into contact with these zombies. It's something I think that also made the concept fresh and new.

By the end of the novel, I didn't want it to be over. I wanted more and I wish there had been more for me to read. I have no intentions of seeing the movie but I plan on re-reading this book at least one every couple of years, it's that type of novel that I never want to forget.
Joe Valdez
Ingeniously designed, supremely well crafted and highly entertaining horror thriller with scope to refashion the zombie tale -- in film and TV typically confined to a farm, a shopping mall or prison fortified against the walking dead -- into a global pandemic with many individuals, many stories.

Max Brooks takes the conceit of documenting the spread, the destruction and the containment of a plague to end all plagues very seriously; the novel has the spirit of a "Why We Fight" newsreel from World Ingeniously designed, supremely well crafted and highly entertaining horror thriller with scope to refashion the zombie tale -- in film and TV typically confined to a farm, a shopping mall or prison fortified against the walking dead -- into a global pandemic with many individuals, many stories.

Max Brooks takes the conceit of documenting the spread, the destruction and the containment of a plague to end all plagues very seriously; the novel has the spirit of a "Why We Fight" newsreel from World War II and is gloriously detailed. The reader could expend considerable thought comparing the 2013 film version (in name only) starring Brad Pitt to its source material; the novel is more like a playbook from which a dozen different franchises could be called, which may be what attracted Pitt to the property in the first place.

Brooks barely takes a breath to cross the globe from one elaborate set piece to the next:

China, where a dam project, sunken village and human necessity are the start of the plague.

South Africa, where riots attributed to a rabies outbreak lead an Apartheid era security expert to devise a controversial plan for mankind's survival.

Israel, the first nation to appreciate the threat and take steps to protect its people, including the Palestinians.

New York City, the first metropolis to fall when the United States underestimates its ability to pacify the zombies using conventional military tactics.

One of the best vignettes in World War Z involves a female USAF pilot tasked with running resupply missions who crashes behind enemy lines in Louisiana, forcing her to sneak through the zombies with only a radio dispatcher to guide her to safety. Brooks addresses the role canines and their highly loyal handlers play in the war, how white collar workers become "unskilled labor" overnight and are put under the command of immigrant laborers whose manual skills elevate their social status in the war effort, and how a few survivors simply go crazy and adopt behavior of the zombies in a bid to survive.

There's no room for characterization here as Brooks jumps from one event to the next, but any fan of the zombie genre should relish the ambition, the sobriety and detailed research that the author devotes to the walking dead.
Becky
I really enjoyed this. I listened to the abridged audiobook (dramatization?), although I do own the book as well. First, I must say that if you read Max Brooks' "Zombie Survival Guide" and are looking for that kind of feel again, you've come to the wrong place. The "Zombie Survival Guide" was a so-serious-it-was-funny look at the methods of surviving a zombie attack. What works, what doesn't, how to use and prepare your weaponry and shelter, etc.

This book explored the socio-political ramificati I really enjoyed this. I listened to the abridged audiobook (dramatization?), although I do own the book as well. First, I must say that if you read Max Brooks' "Zombie Survival Guide" and are looking for that kind of feel again, you've come to the wrong place. The "Zombie Survival Guide" was a so-serious-it-was-funny look at the methods of surviving a zombie attack. What works, what doesn't, how to use and prepare your weaponry and shelter, etc.

This book explored the socio-political ramifications of having real live undead zombie hordes breaking down the door of every house, in every nation on the planet, told in interviews with survivors. What caused the outbreak, what was done to try to escape and survive, who took action against the zombies and which methods succeeded and which did not, and finally what was done to take back our lives from the undead.

This was great. Listening to the audiobook gave the story a realism that was actually kinda creepy. The audiobook was abridged, yes, but the performances were great, and I was surprised to find some of the cast included huge names like:
Alan Alda
Henry Rollins
Mark Hamill
Carl Reiner
Rob Reiner
John Turturro
Eamonn Walker
Ajay Naidu
and of course Max Brooks himself.

If I had to choose a favorite story, it would be Todd Wainio's (read by Mark Hamill). His story of being on the front lines in battle after battle with the zombies is harrowing and straight-forward and it pulls no punches. I feel like his story gave the best idea of what it was really like going up against millions upon millions of brain-seeking walking corpses, as well as an insight into just how unprepared most of the world was for dealing with this sort of war. He gave an interesting militaristic and strategic view of some of the battles, which I enjoyed purely for the fact that he was more than willing to call out the head honchos for their mistakes. Good stuff.

I will definitely be reading this again.
Becky
This is going to be a really short review. There's a lot that I could mention regarding this book, but really, it's the kind of book that is best experienced first hand. Max Brooks makes this book so incredibly believable and real and plausible, that based simply on that, this book would be a 5 star read for sure.

But, that also translated into some... less than thrilling reading at times, and I found myself stalling out on the book during some sections. It was really GOOD, but sometimes I just This is going to be a really short review. There's a lot that I could mention regarding this book, but really, it's the kind of book that is best experienced first hand. Max Brooks makes this book so incredibly believable and real and plausible, that based simply on that, this book would be a 5 star read for sure.

But, that also translated into some... less than thrilling reading at times, and I found myself stalling out on the book during some sections. It was really GOOD, but sometimes I just wanted more action and less technical gun and MRE and BDU and M-1117 description.

But then again, this is a book of interviews about peoples' experiences before, during and after the zombie war... so that stuff is important to them, and important to why they are here to tell it. So there you go.

I thought that the audiobook version, while abridged, was not "better", but more focused on the horror aspects and therefore more enjoyable on those terms. But I still gave it the same 4 star rating I'm giving this edition... just for a different reason. This book is expertly written, amazingly detailed and very, very believable. That's worthy of 4 stars even if the pure horror aspect is slightly less enjoyable because it's slightly more buried under the rest of the stuff that MAKES it believable. If that makes sense.
Ashley Daviau
I enjoyed this book but at the same time I was slightly disappointed by it. I was expecting lots of guts, gore, zombies and killing. While there was a bit of that, it wasn't nearly enough. There was too much politics and not enough zombies for me. I found it a tad dry and I had to fight to keep my attention from wandering. Some bits were definitely interesting but I was still left with a lingering sense of disappointment.
Chris
3.5 stars.

I really had a tough time giving this book a rating. On one hand, it's extremely well written, realistic, engaging, and consistent. The world-building that Brooks has accomplished here with his near-future world in the years after a zombie apocalypse is amazing. He has restructured the world's political climates and in many cases the borders (and sometimes religion) of an entire region. A lot of careful thought, research, and planning went into this book.

It reads like non-fiction, as a 3.5 stars.

I really had a tough time giving this book a rating. On one hand, it's extremely well written, realistic, engaging, and consistent. The world-building that Brooks has accomplished here with his near-future world in the years after a zombie apocalypse is amazing. He has restructured the world's political climates and in many cases the borders (and sometimes religion) of an entire region. A lot of careful thought, research, and planning went into this book.

It reads like non-fiction, as a series of interviews where key people give their accounts of their struggles and methods of survival during the Zombie war. In just over 300 pages, Brooks imagined an entire period of (future) history for the world, with an event that left no one untouched. Remarkable.

On the other hand, the more realistic and authentic it got, the less I enjoyed reading it by the end. Let me explain. I read for escape, for the pure enjoyment of getting away and diving into something that my imagination will embrace. While this book is very imaginative, it got so "real" at times it drifted away from being that fictional escape.

And yes, there were some dry periods. Some of the interviews were boring. There was a lot of background and occasional info-dumping that was necessary to tell a few of the stories, and it did drag things a little. Fortunately, the sections are all short, so a particular one that wasn't interesting wouldn't last long.

Still, with the nature of the book, I couldn't connect with the characters. There were too many and they were spread out. Their stories were too brief to really get to know them individually. That said, it was an awesome glimpse into the world they were in, but I never really felt invested in the particular players in the game (and the fact that they were interviewed tells us that they survived).

All in all, this book does stand out as something that should be experienced by anybody with a love for zombie fiction. It's essential to the genre. It could have been shorter, perhaps, for my own tastes. I don't know that I'll read it again, but it does bring Max Brooks onto my radar as an author to watch.

Also, by writing this review I've talked myself into kicking it up to a full 4-stars. I've shown myself that it's unique and genuine enough to stand above the "average" crowd.

Reese Copeland
I initially had a problem with the format of this book in that it came off as a series of interviews. However, as the story went on, I found this to really add to the story in terms of depth, but also perspective. I listened to this as an audio book and found it to add that much more to the story with different people taking on different characters. Overall, really liked the book.
Obsidian
I have to say that a lot of people suggested that I listen to this book and what a great idea. I have to say that some of the voices sound a bit too stereotypical to my ears, but I really did enjoy listening to the so-called Zombie wars.

I will say that you really do have to listen to this book. It doesn't work well at all as a written novel. I had to switch over since I almost DNFed it at one point. Reading interviews and questions and answers doesn't work in the long term. Your brain after a w I have to say that a lot of people suggested that I listen to this book and what a great idea. I have to say that some of the voices sound a bit too stereotypical to my ears, but I really did enjoy listening to the so-called Zombie wars.

I will say that you really do have to listen to this book. It doesn't work well at all as a written novel. I had to switch over since I almost DNFed it at one point. Reading interviews and questions and answers doesn't work in the long term. Your brain after a while just doesn't care and you find it hard to concentrate. Or at least me. When I have to read through Congressional transcripts it's the worse. I like to listen to congressional meetings or attend in person cause you don't get to hear the nuance in people's voices.

I liked hearing about the so-called Patient Zero and how the virus spread and all of the places on the Earth that was touched. It was so scary reading about how the young boy's body was falling apart. I even got a little bit sick here and there listening to how cords had gone through his body to the bone. How cold his skin had gotten and how his blood now looked. When we hear about how the governments of the world even had a zombie protocol though it was surprising to me.

I did think the narrator (who was Max Brooks) was not that great. He sounded so weird to my ears. I think certain statements/questions he asked needed more passion in his voice or more feeling. It just felt like he was reading the phone book to me sometimes.

I was thrilled to figure out that one of the voices was Mark Hamill. He is the best!

I will say though that I wanted to read more about what people did when the outbreak happened, how they managed to get through it. This was definitely an oral history, but I felt like it was missing parts.

I did love the thinking that went into this by Max Brooks though. Cause it didn't even occur to me that zombies can just exist in water. That they don't need to breathe, so they can just hang out on the bottom of the ocean floor...forever. That the cold will stop them so heck move to a colder climate. Still not dead, but not real active anymore either. I also love how we learn about different things such as protocols, laws, how the world changed and new countries were formed, etc.
Cathy (cathepsut)
The history of our first zombie world war, told in retrospect by the survivors in form of interviews and eye witness reports. If you have seen the movie, don't expect the book to be the same. Both bear little resemblance to each other.

The book is told in a series of short chapters, headed by locations and the present day setting of the narrator. The story itself then goes back in time to its specific setting during the war. Those chapters are grouped in parts. The first one is titled Warnings, f The history of our first zombie world war, told in retrospect by the survivors in form of interviews and eye witness reports. If you have seen the movie, don't expect the book to be the same. Both bear little resemblance to each other.

The book is told in a series of short chapters, headed by locations and the present day setting of the narrator. The story itself then goes back in time to its specific setting during the war. Those chapters are grouped in parts. The first one is titled Warnings, followed by headings like The Great Panic and Total War, and so on, ticking off the various stages of this war.

The stories itself are each just a few pages long and the characters, with a few exceptions, do not appear more than once. So there is not a lot of noticeable plot progression in the individual stories and no character development.

If you do not mind that, you have a winner. The book is well written and choking full of great ideas and scenarios.

I, on the other hand, was bored. I had to make myself pick up the book every single time. It was totally devoid of suspense or any tension whatsoever. I already knew that the various characters survived, because they told their stories themselves. And the headings were a pretty clear indication, how the war progressed. If the book hadn't been so well written, I'd have tossed it aside several times.

At some point I decided to treat this as an anthology, without any expectations other than to catch short glimpses of the retreating back of a plot bunny. From then on I actually enjoyed myself a little more. But what I really wanted from this zombie apocalypse--nail-biting, page-turning and blood-curdling suspense--was sadly lacking!

3 shambling and moaning stars...
Liz* Fashionably Late
I was reading this book thinking "this can't get any better", until I found out the audio version was out there. And it proved me wrong. The audio version makes this book so much better (one of my favorite characters was Colonel Christina Eliopolis, thanks to Becky Ann Backer).

World War Z is a different kind of zombie book, but an honest to God zombie book in the end. It's structured as a documentary, a lot of interviews and remembrances about the zombie war with fascinating perspectives. The fi I was reading this book thinking "this can't get any better", until I found out the audio version was out there. And it proved me wrong. The audio version makes this book so much better (one of my favorite characters was Colonel Christina Eliopolis, thanks to Becky Ann Backer).

World War Z is a different kind of zombie book, but an honest to God zombie book in the end. It's structured as a documentary, a lot of interviews and remembrances about the zombie war with fascinating perspectives. The first Outbreaks, The Great Panic, The Total War and The VA among others are all different stages of the war described in detail by the very same witnesses. You may not have a main character to feel connected to, I think the main character is the human race, but that wasn't an issue for me to feel captivated by it from the beginning. However, I must admit the first half of the book was so much more enthralling than the second part.

I think that the zombie war gave Max Brooks the excuse to talk about our greed, intolerance, stupidity, cruelty but also about our survival instinct, solidarity, heroism and sacrifice. My brother had to hear me talk about not only the chances of a world wide zombie invasion but also about in case of a zombie attack, how I'd definitely fear more the living than the dead.

It's not dead scary but it's good.
And you'll probably end up feeling like killing some zombies with Daryl Dixon.
Basia
I loved it. I feared I wouldn't be able to care about the book because it presents the story through different people's perspectives, all over the globe. But it turned out that here, that was precisely what was needed.
It has the honor of being the very first zombie book I read (read intentionally, and while knowing without a doubt that there would be zombies therein; I had no clue when I started Girl With All the Gifts years later--what an amazing book THAT was, too).
I still smile whenever my I loved it. I feared I wouldn't be able to care about the book because it presents the story through different people's perspectives, all over the globe. But it turned out that here, that was precisely what was needed.
It has the honor of being the very first zombie book I read (read intentionally, and while knowing without a doubt that there would be zombies therein; I had no clue when I started Girl With All the Gifts years later--what an amazing book THAT was, too).
I still smile whenever my eyes land on this novel when I pass by the bookcase. Great.
Kimberley doruyter
no matter how many times i re-read this book, it stays frightning
Stuart
"*sings* 'It's the end of the world as we know it!' REM were eaten during the writing of this review (apparently)."

Right, if this doesn't read as it's meant to, I'm going to look like a bit of a fool.

So this morning (6:30am) I was at the gym doing my best to wake up and actually do some training, whilst not stumbling into a sleepy slumber during this attempt. Given this I found myself comparing World War Z to a shopping experience I had with a girlfriend a few years ago. I'm not the biggest fan "*sings* 'It's the end of the world as we know it!' REM were eaten during the writing of this review (apparently)."

Right, if this doesn't read as it's meant to, I'm going to look like a bit of a fool.

So this morning (6:30am) I was at the gym doing my best to wake up and actually do some training, whilst not stumbling into a sleepy slumber during this attempt. Given this I found myself comparing World War Z to a shopping experience I had with a girlfriend a few years ago. I'm not the biggest fan of shopping, apparently I'm a handy clothes rail, hmm. Anyway, that shopping episode went something like this (for parody reasons, this is just for giggles, oh and I'm using a similar prose style as WWZ) -

London, England

[Audrey Frazier is a full-time student at a well established educational institution in the UK. To supplement her income she took a part-time job working at a lingerie store. Unfortunately for her the 1st January 2009 wasn't a fun morning! The store opened and only what can be described as a 'herd' of bargain crazed hunters confronted her.]

Would you care to give me a brief description about the opening events?

Sure, well it was 6am, we were opening earlier than normal. I was busy filling the 70-80% off sections with lingerie. What caught my attention was how orderly the customers seemed outside. It wasn't until the manager opened the store that any semblance of that order fell into a frenzy of chaos.

What were these 'customers' like?

There must have been 80-100 people, stampeding right for me! Well, not right for me, but for the La Senza matching underwear sales section. The first line of people tripped over some railing, other's clamoured over and sometimes other people. They were foaming at the mouth, hair everywhere. By this point fights had broken out as they neared the isle. I saw one women flailing around with 2 handbags, using them as a deterrent against the horde. One young girl caught a glancing blow to the face and she went flying into the Agent Provocateur displayed, thongs everywhere!! [Audrey visibly sighs]I was so scared, but I had a job to do right!

How did you continue working in such an intense environment?

The box I was carrying, I literally emptied into the sales table and stepped away. By now people were pulling other's hair. Handbag to the face. Another was using perfume in the eyes, to stop other's getting closer or picking the choicer items on sale. To my horror I even saw another attempting to strangle another lady with a suspender belt!! One shopper even pointed at me and shrilled in a unearthly voice "What do you have in that box my dear." I remember tipping the box end over and mouthing the word "empty." I was a quivering mess by now. I've avoided your question haven't I?

Understandable. Please continue at your leisure!

What made me continue working in the face of such a crazed bunch of loonies? There was this one guy amongst all the women in the store, he grabbed a girl and shielded her from the fervent crowd by learning over her. By this point people had started to calm down, though all I could think about at the time was how we turn into a zombies when face with a discount. Is the term zombie just a metaphor for sale shoppers?

End/ish

That pretty much sums up a shopping experience for me, I came out of that store with more bumps and bruises than I'd ever received in a game of rugby.

Why did I write that? I wanted to highlight the style World War Z is written in. You could say that Max Brooks presents us with eye witness accounts that are conducted in a interview style. This does give the reader a 'sort of' authentic style to the zombie crisis. Personally it didn't really do it for me. Why? There are waaayyyy to many interviews going on. Easily, there must have been 60-70 by the end of the novel. Sure it all gels together, but it's written in such a mundane way that any enjoyment is sapped from the prose. At times I felt I was reading some of Livy's works - that's not a good thing.

I've got ahead of myself having written the conclusion already, I might as well quit huh? Hmm. OK, a bit more then.

What does World War Z bring to the table? The 'novel' essentially tells us about a worldwide pandemic wherein a zombie plague consumes around 80% of the world's population. These aren't the usual *yawns* slow ponderous walkers, these undead blighters run, jump and climb. Though they are still meant to be unthinking dead-folk? Let's say that they revert to their basic needs, feed - no procreation and no sleeping. OK, so one of the three. Having said that I don't want to ever read about zombies having sex!! I did have a point, but I realise that it doesn't really matter. Write what you want Mr Brooks, it's fictional after all!

The interviews help give us a idea of the scale of the zombie outbreak. Ukraine is covered, as well as America, Cuba and so many other countries. The story isn't just restricted to just one country (which is a good thing!). We've one guy interviewed who was a aide to the US President. He openly admits that the President wanted fear to take root in the populous, by doing so they could then present a antidote to the general public. Rabies is believe to be the cause, so the government introduces 'Phalanx.' Then the next interview shows us the side of the money-guy behind this miracle drug! It doesn't work, as rabies has nothing to do with the crisis. He openly admits to lining his pockets, but he believes that the situation is controlled through fear. A interesting theory I feel. I chuckled at the American playboy who lived in a 'fortress.' He streamed online that his place was secure and in doing so caused a angry mob to lynch him and his house full of raunchy ladies. What a waste...

Where Max Brooks really excels is highlighting how quickly human society could fall. What was even more of a shock for me was just how far some countries went! Germany, China and the US adopt a policy of 'human sacrifice'. They took all humans of high IQ, of necessary skills and those *sighs* who have wealth too safe havens. This is while they are herding the general populous into zombie kill zones. This allows for the governments' to buy time and in doing so, give up their humanity? No it is a ends to a means (apparently).

I could harp on about more of the book. How modern technological is negated, a lot of the 'characters' are cliché. WWZ trying to be different but blows hot and cold. There is just not enough here for me to be interested. It's a very basic story of A-B, much like the movie version as well come to think of it. I realise World War Z is the zombie novel that really began the avalanche of zombie-esque literature, but I couldn't get into it. I'd much rather read Thucydides any day or wear a pair of shorts with a tie and shirt - now there's crazy!! I'd even plum for a erotic novel...
Sandi
8/27/08 Update--I'm downgrading my rating of this book. I still like it, but I realize it's not very original. I caught the beginning of "Resident Evil: Apocalypse" on the SciFi channel a few days ago and it was deja-vu. The zombies are reanimated by a virus and you can only kill them by shooting them in the head. Since the movies (and video game) came first, I'm afraid my original rating was a result of ignorance.

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I avoid best-sellers and 8/27/08 Update--I'm downgrading my rating of this book. I still like it, but I realize it's not very original. I caught the beginning of "Resident Evil: Apocalypse" on the SciFi channel a few days ago and it was deja-vu. The zombies are reanimated by a virus and you can only kill them by shooting them in the head. Since the movies (and video game) came first, I'm afraid my original rating was a result of ignorance.

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I avoid best-sellers and horror novels. I have found that there’s a lot of crap out there that ends up on the best-seller lists and I’m not a fan of horror novels. But, “World War Z” has generated a lot of buzz among people whose opinions I respect, so I decided to set aside my prejudices and give the book a try.

To set the record straight, in my opinion, this book is more apocalyptic science fiction than horror. Yes, it is about zombies going around attacking humans. However, the origin of the zombies is explained in a very scientific manner. A peasant in rural China cuts his foot while wading in a river and soon sickens. He dies, but his body is re-animated. He bites a couple of people and they go through the same disease process. It isn’t long before this virus is spreading faster than you can say “bird flu”. This disease is so virulent and so un-deadly, it makes Ebola look like a common cold.

The way the story is told is pretty unusual in fiction. It’s told through a series of interviews (oral histories) with Zombie War survivors taken shortly after the end of the war. The chapters are broken down into the stages of the Zombie War. Each interview is preceded by an introductory paragraph that tells who the interviewer is meeting and where they are. The subjects range from political and military leaders to soldiers and civilians. They come from all walks of life and from all around the world. He even interviews a feral child who ran away from zombies attacking her family and neighbors and was surviving on her own after the age of four.

As compelling as the concept is and as unusual as the narrative method is, “World War Z” suffers from some serious flaws. First, the oral history style decreases the dramatic tension of the story. Each history is short, anywhere from a few paragraphs to a few pages. The reader doesn’t get enough of each character’s story to really engage with him or her. Furthermore, because each story is told in retrospect, the reader doesn’t get a sense of immediacy. The characters also don’t have sufficiently different voices to make their stories convincing. Oral histories of real people work because they are real people and each has his or her unique voice. In “World War Z,” each character is the product of the author’s imagination. Brooks has an incredible imagination, but he only has one mind and that becomes obvious after the first few interviews. I think this book is one that would really work best in an audio book format with a different actor taking each part and giving it uniqueness.

Despite its flaws, I really liked “World War Z.” I like the way this fictional work reads like non-fiction. I like how the story is told through multiple first-person accounts. It’s unusual and intriguing. The author made some daring choices and it clearly paid off.
Lucian Vaizer
Lamentablemente, los zombies se han convertido en el "porno" de la cultura pop, un comodín para artistas demasiado perezosos para usar eso que tanto le gusta a nuestros podridos amigos: el cerebro. ¿Tienes cero creatividad e imaginación, pero aún así quieres escribir una novela/videojuego/guión de éxito seguro? Tranquilo, pon un zombie en tu vida y seguro que alguien pagará por tu trabajo.

Podría ponerme unas gafas de pasta y decir lo de "yo era fan de los zombies cuando no era mainstream", pero Lamentablemente, los zombies se han convertido en el "porno" de la cultura pop, un comodín para artistas demasiado perezosos para usar eso que tanto le gusta a nuestros podridos amigos: el cerebro. ¿Tienes cero creatividad e imaginación, pero aún así quieres escribir una novela/videojuego/guión de éxito seguro? Tranquilo, pon un zombie en tu vida y seguro que alguien pagará por tu trabajo.

Podría ponerme unas gafas de pasta y decir lo de "yo era fan de los zombies cuando no era mainstream", pero el hecho es que estos últimos diez años de asedio constante mediático de muertos vivientes me ha hartado, y siento un fuerte rechazo hacia un género que cuando era niño siempre me había aterrorizado.

No obstante, Guerra Mundial Z y The Walking Dead, son dos más que notables excepciones en un mar de absoluta mediocridad no-muerta. Max Brooks nos hipnotiza con una obra monumental que destila algo que jamás lograron sus cientos de imitadores: originalidad, frescura. Parte documental, parte relato de terror neoralista, Guerra Mundial Z reimagina una guerra mundial que pone en duda la supervivencia de la raza humana, una épica aventura coral protagonizada por personas anónimas, gente corriente con sus defectos, sus traumas y sus virtudes.

Releyendo la novela, a uno le da la impresión de que la lucha contra lo que representan los muertos vivientes -fascismo, perdida de la identidad, pandemias, fanatismo- es más actual que nunca.

PD: Como cinéfilo no puedo evitar añadir que la versión cinematográfica es abismal, simplemente patética como adaptación y como película de terror.
Donna
I liked this book more than I thought I would. I listened to the full cast audio...and I ended up loving the narration. It was so well done. I felt completely "wowed" by it. I loved Alan Alda's voice and Masi Oka's.

The format of this book was unusual. It was like a glimpse into the lives of several different survivors of the war, from all around the world. I know some readers had a problem with that but it didn't bother me because I was loving the narration. I thought this was very thoughtful an I liked this book more than I thought I would. I listened to the full cast audio...and I ended up loving the narration. It was so well done. I felt completely "wowed" by it. I loved Alan Alda's voice and Masi Oka's.

The format of this book was unusual. It was like a glimpse into the lives of several different survivors of the war, from all around the world. I know some readers had a problem with that but it didn't bother me because I was loving the narration. I thought this was very thoughtful and I could see how the thoughts and feelings of the survivors were completely valid in our world today. So 4 stars.
Liz Janet
This was such a nice zombie book. I listened to the audio-book and read it, which made the experience all the more awesome. I love what it did to certain countries (cough cough Cuba), and the British Royal Family was bad-ass. I loved the retrospective view, it made it seem so much possible.
P.S. If you have seen the film, read the book. The book is so much better, broader. I highly recommend it, preferably in audio-book format.
ben
Still good, but not as big on it the second time around; probably because my zombie obsession has ebbed down to normal human levels (ie. I'm no longer assessing areas for how dangerous they'd be during a zombie apocalypse or thinking through my various survival plans).

I love that this book covers the entire history of the war and offers a global perspective, but the Japanese guy's chapter felt a bit campy and I wonder if the entire thing might have been better if told as if it were actually happ Still good, but not as big on it the second time around; probably because my zombie obsession has ebbed down to normal human levels (ie. I'm no longer assessing areas for how dangerous they'd be during a zombie apocalypse or thinking through my various survival plans).

I love that this book covers the entire history of the war and offers a global perspective, but the Japanese guy's chapter felt a bit campy and I wonder if the entire thing might have been better if told as if it were actually happening to each person. Which is probably what the Hollywood execs realized while making the movie, thus giving up on the book and turning it into 'brad pitt shoots zombies' instead...
movie
Denisse
WOOOOOW! This man thought on everything, every single little piece of thing and problems and solutions we could have IF one day we have to fight against zombies.
This is probably one of the most inteligent books I've ever read!

Max Brooks took his time to investigate before writing. You guys know how hard it is to find an author like that right know?!

It is not just the military changes, is the mind-changes people have in war, this is a really good example of how real human behavior is in those und WOOOOOW! This man thought on everything, every single little piece of thing and problems and solutions we could have IF one day we have to fight against zombies.
This is probably one of the most inteligent books I've ever read!

Max Brooks took his time to investigate before writing. You guys know how hard it is to find an author like that right know?!

It is not just the military changes, is the mind-changes people have in war, this is a really good example of how real human behavior is in those under-pressure situations.
Podría hablar sobre el libro por horas, una de las cosas que mas me gusto es lo VARIADO que esta, te viene que cuando el mundo tuvo un mismo enemigo, en lugar de unirse los países, se aislaron, y a su vez cada país con sus reglas hace que estés mas expuesto o mas preparado, dependiendo.

El libro habla desde gente militar y de seguridad, políticos tomando control, hasta el extremo sobre la realeza, los minusvalidos, niños de las calles, perros, DE TODO! TE EXPLICA COMO PODRÍAN ESTAR TODAS LAS PERSONAS EN ESA SITUACIÓN. ES INCREÍBLE!

El libro esta dividido en varias secciones, mas que nada en como al principio la gente intento ocultar la enfermedad, por llamarla de una manera, y después como lo hicieron publico, como este virus consumió la humanidad, y después como se hicieron planes para atacar y no solo defender, y como termino el mundo después de la guerra. Y LES JURO QUE ESTE LIBRO ABARCA TODOS LOS PARÁMETROS HABIDOS Y POR HABER.

Uno de los puntos mas interesantes, es como un plan para defender y atacar consistía en solo intentar salvar a las personas "útiles" y que a lo mejor puede sonar inhumano, pero cuando estas en extinción viendo las cosas objetivamente, obvio se intenta salvar a la gente que podría luchar en lugar de a ancianos que no harán nada al fin de cuentas, en fin, el libro tiene muchos temas delicados, suicidio, descontrol, exceso de control, sacrificio, etc.

El toque realista de este libro supera mucho de lo que he leído antes. ALTAMENTE RECOMENDADO!
James Higgins, Jr.
Esto es terror del bueno. No las porquerias que salen hoy en dia.
El verdadero terror viene del acto de representar circunstancias que nos atemorizan por la condicion humana, no por una criatura del fondo de un lago que persigue adolescentes y esta filmada en primera persona (representacion de todas las peliculas genericas absurdas actuales).

Que destaca esta novela? Su realismo, realismo absoluto. Esta no es la tipica historia de zombies, ni siquiera es una historia, es una recopilacion de relato Esto es terror del bueno. No las porquerias que salen hoy en dia.
El verdadero terror viene del acto de representar circunstancias que nos atemorizan por la condicion humana, no por una criatura del fondo de un lago que persigue adolescentes y esta filmada en primera persona (representacion de todas las peliculas genericas absurdas actuales).

Que destaca esta novela? Su realismo, realismo absoluto. Esta no es la tipica historia de zombies, ni siquiera es una historia, es una recopilacion de relatos sobre lo ocurrido antes, durante y despues de la guerra. Casi todos muy buenos.

Lo segundo que me impresiono es la variedad y calidad. De donde saco este hombre tanta imaginacion? vaya uno a saber. Van desde lo emotivo, hasta lo epico. Creo que tiene, por lo menos, una entrevista que trate de conducirnos hacia cada una de las emociones que abarca el espectro humano.

El tercer punto es la informacion, para lograr un... efecto (digamos) de realismo se necesitan datos reales, lugares reales, estructuras socioeconomicas, tendencias. Cultura en general, de cada pais y sus ciudadanos. Hasta parte de su historia. El señor Brooks, no, el comico famosos no, su hijo, el novelista, hizo bien su trabajo.

Lo malo, algunos de los relatos son como la tipica pelicula hollywodense. Estados unidos es el bueno, el otro es el malo, y asi. Pero son muy pocos, pasan casi desapercibidos.

En resumen, yo casi me pierdo de leer esta magnifica novela por lo deplorable que fue su adaptacion al cine. Cabe aclarar que la pelicula solo comparte nombre con el libro, hasta ahi llegan sus similitudes.
Claramente esta entre los mejores libros que voy a leer en mi vida. Inclusive antes de haberlo terminado, ya estaba recomendandolo.
Molly
This book is terrifyingly matter-of-fact on the question of the zombie invasion, its incredibly harsh realities, our methods for dealing (and failing to deal) with it, and its bitter aftermath. I'm halfway through it now, and although I'm suffering from a serious case of the creeps when I'm up late at night nursing my baby, I can't stop reading it. To be fair, it's really not a zombie book. It's a very clever global politics and socioeconomic commentary wrapped inside a zombie book. (But that do This book is terrifyingly matter-of-fact on the question of the zombie invasion, its incredibly harsh realities, our methods for dealing (and failing to deal) with it, and its bitter aftermath. I'm halfway through it now, and although I'm suffering from a serious case of the creeps when I'm up late at night nursing my baby, I can't stop reading it. To be fair, it's really not a zombie book. It's a very clever global politics and socioeconomic commentary wrapped inside a zombie book. (But that doesn't mean that zombies aren't really, really scary.) My only complaint about it so far is that Max Brooks' portrait of our current reality (in a book that takes place roughly a decade after 2008) is so bitingly literal that it breaks the spell of the fictional narrative. He's a good enough storyteller and editorialist that he doesn't need to drop current events like an anvil.

UPDATE: Finished this book, and despite the thrill during the reading, I did feel a bit let down at the end (primarily because [SPOILER ALERT] I didn't find out anything about the zombie-creating virus, and found it hard to believe that the future society wouldn't be dedicating at least some resources toward cracking that nut). Ultimately, I think Brooks takes a fairly dim view of our current society, and that's what resonates most. This book is kind of a finger-wag at the post-technological revolution, not-salt-of-the-earth, white collar way of life, and at the end of it all, I think my middle-class ass has enough to feel guilty about without also worrying that my lack of salt-of-the-earth skills will be a drain on society should I survive a nearly humanity-destroying zombie invasion. Darned good read, though.
Evelyn Swift (Featherbrained Books)
I really didn't know what to expect going into this. I read this before watching the movie (thankfully, or I might have never read this as the movie was truly awful and has literally nothing in common with the novel) and the reviews are very mixed on Goodreads.

It seems like the kind of novel people either absolutely love or loathe. I fall into the first category and was so pleasantly surprised at how good this was! I do have a soft spot for zombie stories but I am not a zombie fan or fanatic by I really didn't know what to expect going into this. I read this before watching the movie (thankfully, or I might have never read this as the movie was truly awful and has literally nothing in common with the novel) and the reviews are very mixed on Goodreads.

It seems like the kind of novel people either absolutely love or loathe. I fall into the first category and was so pleasantly surprised at how good this was! I do have a soft spot for zombie stories but I am not a zombie fan or fanatic by any means, so I don't think that I went into this with a bias. I really think you don't have to be a fan of horror or zombies to appreciate this novel.

I was really impressed at the realistic take on a post-apocalyptic world and how Max Brooks went in depth on the theories survivors had about where the zombie virus had initially kicked off.

It reminded me of when I first watched "Outbreak" which is a movie from the 90s that I really like and still remember, about an Ebola-like virus that originates with one monkey. Even if you find zombies silly/stupid, I think the real threat of a virus that can turn people into zombies (or just outright kill them) is way scarier than any zombie and something that isn't out of the realm of possibilities.

Overall I really enjoyed this and definitely want to read more Max Brooks as I think he is a great, straight-forward writer. Having the different point of views from survivors was perfect in my mind for explaining our postapocalyptic world.

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Tom Merritt
Overall an outstanding read. The end sections actually brought asmall tear to my eye.

Brooks does a very good job creating the idea that this is really an oral history. Writing from the perspective of so many different people, and keeping them with authentic voices is tough. Occasionally a voice doesn't ring true, or feels stilted, but not all that often.

Also the complicated matter of trying to execute a history through bits and pieces of recollections is well done too. I didn't find any glaring Overall an outstanding read. The end sections actually brought asmall tear to my eye.

Brooks does a very good job creating the idea that this is really an oral history. Writing from the perspective of so many different people, and keeping them with authentic voices is tough. Occasionally a voice doesn't ring true, or feels stilted, but not all that often.

Also the complicated matter of trying to execute a history through bits and pieces of recollections is well done too. I didn't find any glaring inconsistencies. This is a monumental task.

The only major criticism I might express, is that some of the 'moral' lessons still seem a bit trite. Brooks obviously has a perspective on politics, religion and morals that seeps through. It doesn't detract from the overall value, but it does show that he's writing it rather than having it seem like a true history all the way through.

That said, the problem doesn't really distract you, only popping up in a few comments here and there that seem like they might e out of character and very obviously pointed at he pre-Z War audience. Overall I LOVED the book and highly recommend it to zombie afficionados and zombie newbies alike.
Ale Rivero
La primera palabra que me viene a la cabeza con este libro es REALISTA, no por creer que los zombis puedan atacar de un día para otro la tierra, sino por la actitud que tomaríamos los humanos ante ello.
Creo que el autor, a través de las diferentes voces que ha utilizado para plasmar esta historia, logra mostrarnos la base de las culturas más importantes sobre la faz de la tierra y cómo los integrantes de cada una de esas culturas puede reaccionar ante el peligro, aunque siempre hay un denominado La primera palabra que me viene a la cabeza con este libro es REALISTA, no por creer que los zombis puedan atacar de un día para otro la tierra, sino por la actitud que tomaríamos los humanos ante ello.
Creo que el autor, a través de las diferentes voces que ha utilizado para plasmar esta historia, logra mostrarnos la base de las culturas más importantes sobre la faz de la tierra y cómo los integrantes de cada una de esas culturas puede reaccionar ante el peligro, aunque siempre hay un denominador común, el miedo a perder la vida nos puede llevar a hacer cosas impensadas.
La narración en forma de entrevista me ha resultado sumamente fluida y creo que me ha hecho sentir aún más sensaciones que si el autor hubiera solo narrado la historia.
Y en cuanto a las escenas sangrientas, la descripción es excepcional. Solo eché de menos conocer un poco más del origen de estos asquerosos zetas.
En definitiva, sigo sin querer a los zombis, pero no puedo negar que la lectura de este libro ha sido toda una experiencia. Muy recomendable.
Penny
I didn't enjoy this much the first time I picked it up mainly because there isn't a main protagonist. I think knowing that going in this time made it all the more enjoyable.

It's nothing like the film, which I had been told, but not the extent. The two stories share almost nothing in common. I loved the movie and thought the end of the war idea was very cleverly done, but that wasn't taken from the book. The book is great in its own right, but shares nothing in common. Keep that in mind if you'r I didn't enjoy this much the first time I picked it up mainly because there isn't a main protagonist. I think knowing that going in this time made it all the more enjoyable.

It's nothing like the film, which I had been told, but not the extent. The two stories share almost nothing in common. I loved the movie and thought the end of the war idea was very cleverly done, but that wasn't taken from the book. The book is great in its own right, but shares nothing in common. Keep that in mind if you're reading this because of the film.

The multiple countries and terrains were brilliant. It was awesome seeing how different countries coped with the zombie apocalypse. Very well done.
Emma Sea
This is a book I wanted to love. It's undeniably an important book in zombie-lit. I had to add a star for the Battle of One Tree Hill alone. It's intelligent, insightful, and Brooks is superb in the way he examines the sociopolitical ramifications of a zombie apocalypse.

It's just that I didn't like it that much :(

I found The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead far more enjoyable.
Debbie
World War Z started off with 2 big strikes against it before I even started reading. First, it’s about zombies and I’m one of the few people who are NOT into the zombie craze – I don’t watch Walking Dead or any of the other zombie shows on tv. Second, my husband told me he started reading this book several years ago and put it down because it was too boring. So, I wasn’t too excited when our Sci-fi book club chose it. Fortunately, I was sucked right into this story from the beginning. It’s told World War Z started off with 2 big strikes against it before I even started reading. First, it’s about zombies and I’m one of the few people who are NOT into the zombie craze – I don’t watch Walking Dead or any of the other zombie shows on tv. Second, my husband told me he started reading this book several years ago and put it down because it was too boring. So, I wasn’t too excited when our Sci-fi book club chose it. Fortunately, I was sucked right into this story from the beginning. It’s told as a series of interviews of survivors of the Zombie Wars. It covers the outbreak, how it spread, and the battles to contain it. The book covers the outbreak on a global basis, so you get a view of what happened in Russia, Japan, China, India and many other countries. There is a lot of very intelligent military strategy - the realization that not everyone could be saved and that some would have to sacrificed for the good of the others. I am not familiar with military jargon and acronyms and by the end of the book was tired of the military aspect. I would have been happier if there had been less military and more about individual survivors. Max Brooks did an outstanding job of creating these interviews and makes the entire scenario of a Zombie War seem very believable.
Estefanía Cantoral
Es diferente, crudo, intenso... Todo a la vez. Llevo mucho tiempo leyéndolo y oyéndolo, porque no creo que sea el tipo de historia que se lea de tirón, preferí irme historia por historia, en dosis pequeñas. De esta manera me ha gustado bastante.
Te da la sensación de realidad por el estilo tipo periodístico y por ese motivo siento que si lo hubiera leído como calquier otro me hubiera aburrido.
Para hablar de zombies es de los mejores.
Jackie "the Librarian"
We’ve got zombies. Now what? I really enjoyed this book, which may sound strange, given that it’s supposed to be this really scary zombie horror story. Maybe I’m weird, but this book didn’t scare me at all. It didn’t have that pervasive sense of dread some horror has, and that was okay with me. I liked its practicality, and I think it appealed to my ISTJ personality. Yes, zombies are bad, but being freaked out by them won’t help anything. C'mon! I liked the first person accounts, which gave imme We’ve got zombies. Now what? I really enjoyed this book, which may sound strange, given that it’s supposed to be this really scary zombie horror story. Maybe I’m weird, but this book didn’t scare me at all. It didn’t have that pervasive sense of dread some horror has, and that was okay with me. I liked its practicality, and I think it appealed to my ISTJ personality. Yes, zombies are bad, but being freaked out by them won’t help anything. C'mon! I liked the first person accounts, which gave immediacy to the zombie danger; I liked getting to find out what was happening around the world. I liked how people learned how to effectively fight the zombies, and how the military had to learn to change tactics. I was relieved when it did. Don’t get fancy, laser beams are showy, sure, but a sword works just fine and you don’t have to wait for it to recharge.

This is not SF, in my opinion. This is just horror. The story seems to be contemporary, not in the future. We don’t get any explanation for how the zombies were created to start with, just that bites and wounds are infectious. I liked the fact that zombies don’t need to breathe, and so can exist under water just fine. Okay, yeah, that part was creepy. But I wasn’t scared! I liked the frozen zombies, and the idea that spring thaw would also be zombie thaw.

This was not a cautionary tale, either. As we weren’t given an explanation for the rise of the zombies, I never felt that it was a warning not to mess around in God’s domain, or not to engage in chemical warfare. There was never the sense that if only humans hadn’t done such and such, all this could have been avoided. That wasn’t the point. It was more like the zombies were a natural disaster, and if such an event arose, how would we deal with it, without any handwringing over how it occurred to start with. Because, really, that wouldn’t have helped anything. This was a pragmatic, straightforward charging story.

Ultimately, I liked that this book had a positive ending, which robs it of its impact as horror – true horror puts its characters through hell and never lets up. But I like happy endings better, so I didn’t mind.

A nice change from all the romantic sparkly vampire nonsense. Fun! Highly recommended for fans of grody monsters!
Deborah Markus
The premise is brilliant -- telling the story of the so-called Zombie War from a variety of points of view. And this does feel very much like one of those real oral history collections, especially if you listen to the recorded version. (Just be sure you get the complete one, and not the abridged -- until recently, abridged was all that was available. If you listened to a recording and you don't remember hearing a story from a Russian priest or an American feral child, you got the abridged one.)

A The premise is brilliant -- telling the story of the so-called Zombie War from a variety of points of view. And this does feel very much like one of those real oral history collections, especially if you listen to the recorded version. (Just be sure you get the complete one, and not the abridged -- until recently, abridged was all that was available. If you listened to a recording and you don't remember hearing a story from a Russian priest or an American feral child, you got the abridged one.)

As a writer, I admired and envied Brooks his premise and brilliant execution. I was surprised and impressed by the fact that the scariest part of this story isn't the zombies, but the human beings. The Russian soldier and her story of the "decimations" was especially chilling.

As a reader, I kept groping around for an arc that wasn't possible with this storytelling technique. Although I enjoyed many of the separate chapters and am glad I read the whole book, I think I may find it too difficult to feel genuinely compelled by a story without a hero to root for. (The entire human race doesn't quite count.)

Also -- and this is really a personal quirk -- I think including Alan Alda as one of the readers was a mistake. His voice is so distinctive that I had a hard time just listening to his story. I just kept thinking, "Hey -- that's Alan Alda." Which isn't something that's as likely to happen with, say, Rene Auberjonois (though of course I'm crazy about him and was delighted to see his name on the cast of characters).

Do read this for what it says about people and the scary place our flaws may lead us, and do see the movie for a really great scary time; and don't worry about which order to do those, because they're completely different creations and you can enjoy them separately. I'd love to have a great spoiler-ful discussion about which take on North Korea was more likely to be accurate, the book's or the movie's. They were both brilliant, and creepy as all get-out. And (spoiler alert): the book will tell you what that mushroom cloud Brad Pitt sees in the distance is.
Mandapanda
3.5 stars. This book is written as a series of interviews with survivors of a zombie apocalypse. This is both it's best feature and it's biggest problem. The interview style gives it a gravitas and wide scope. But it also makes for frustrating reading as each story seems to suck you in only long enough to be annoyed when it's prematurely ended. The interviewer is a featureless, unknowable character who acts as the repository for all the stories but doesn't have a character or voice of his own.

My 3.5 stars. This book is written as a series of interviews with survivors of a zombie apocalypse. This is both it's best feature and it's biggest problem. The interview style gives it a gravitas and wide scope. But it also makes for frustrating reading as each story seems to suck you in only long enough to be annoyed when it's prematurely ended. The interviewer is a featureless, unknowable character who acts as the repository for all the stories but doesn't have a character or voice of his own.

My biggest peeve was the amount of crude racial and cultural stereotyping. The reasons why humankind stayed ignorant of the zombie menace for so long were particularly clunky and unbelievable and almost made me put the book down. I'm glad I didn't. Toward the end I got swept up by the narrative. Some of the interviewees started to really stand out as humans began to fight back. e.g. the Japanese otaku, the space station crew, the female pilot, the submarine crew, and the guy whose job it was to clear the underground of zombies. Also the epic world-wide scale of the emergency became more interesting to me.

There are heaps of flaws and plot holes but it's really just a great ripping yarn which is why so many people like it. Plus the zombies of course! I suspect the book will make a kick-ass movie because the storyline will be condensed and we will get to actually meet and see the responses of the interviewer (who I'm presuming is the character Brad Pitt will play). I'm looking forward to it.

Edit: Just checked out the movie trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Md6Dvx...
Charles
Here's the good things. The book is well written and there are some interesting characters introduced. It's a fresh approach to Zombies since it is a set of interviews with survivors of a world wide zombie outbreak. The overall description of events is compelling.

Now here's the stuff that isn't so good. The fact that the zombie war is over when we start the book immediately takes away a lot of the tension. All we're hearing about is how, in the past, humans managed to survive. While interesting Here's the good things. The book is well written and there are some interesting characters introduced. It's a fresh approach to Zombies since it is a set of interviews with survivors of a world wide zombie outbreak. The overall description of events is compelling.

Now here's the stuff that isn't so good. The fact that the zombie war is over when we start the book immediately takes away a lot of the tension. All we're hearing about is how, in the past, humans managed to survive. While interesting at some level there's no real rooting for individual characters.

Second, the "interviews" are mostly relatively short and there are a very large number of interviews with different people. Although some of the characters are revisited at the end of the book, by then they had all run together in my head and none truly stood out. In a novel, I want to identify with a main character or a small cast of characters who must strive to survive some threat. I didn't identify with anyone in this book, although I felt sympathy for some while I was reading their "interview."

Overall, this post danger interview type of process works very well for nonfiction surivors of wars or natural disaster, but even then it needs to have a smaller cast of characters. Using the technique for fiction, while interesting, doesn't really play to the strengths of fiction while also lacking the compelling realness of nonfiction.

Just my opinion.
Matt
More than a decade after the devastating Zombie War, a journalist travels around the world on behalf of the UN Postwar Commission. Interviews with survivors who give an account of their experiences are presented in this book.

What did I like?

The style of the book. The detached journalistic style is a welcome change.
The premise of a non defeatable virus that infects the dead and turns them into zombies and can be transmitted through bite to other people. Lovely.
The cultural differences in dealing More than a decade after the devastating Zombie War, a journalist travels around the world on behalf of the UN Postwar Commission. Interviews with survivors who give an account of their experiences are presented in this book.

What did I like?

The style of the book. The detached journalistic style is a welcome change.
The premise of a non defeatable virus that infects the dead and turns them into zombies and can be transmitted through bite to other people. Lovely.
The cultural differences in dealing with the problem.
The references to the present, especially in the "strategies" of the political and military leaders.

What did I like less?

The footnotes. Hate them. The death to reading fluency, even on the Kindle.
In some places the characters were too stereotypical, too much on the nose.
The description of the military technology and weapons had too much detail for my taste.

All in all, I can say that my first zombie novel has not failed.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Melody
My husband raised the question of how can a book be an oral history? – but I won’t deal with that. Max Brooks interviews the survivors of World War Z to find out how they first heard of the zombie attacks, how they survived the war and what they’re doing now to rid the world of the stragglers – now that the war is “over”. This is some great stuff!!!! These are the George Romero kind of zombies – not the classic zombies on old movies about Haiti. These are the reanimated dead who moan and walk wi My husband raised the question of how can a book be an oral history? – but I won’t deal with that. Max Brooks interviews the survivors of World War Z to find out how they first heard of the zombie attacks, how they survived the war and what they’re doing now to rid the world of the stragglers – now that the war is “over”. This is some great stuff!!!! These are the George Romero kind of zombies – not the classic zombies on old movies about Haiti. These are the reanimated dead who moan and walk with intestines showing and drag themselves silently across the ocean floor to attack you while you’re swimming. Just one bite and you’re infected too and that is the end of you buddy! One of the survivors from Japan recounts his first encounter with “Zack”:

“I called out, “Hello?” I heard a soft, gurgling groan. My eyes were just beginning to adjust to the darkness. I began to make out a shape, large, humanoid, crawling on its belly. I sat there paralyzed, wanting to run but at the same time wanting to ... to know for sure. My doorway was casting a narrow rectangle of dim gray light against the far wall. As the thing moved into the light, I finally saw its face, perfectly intact, perfectly human, except for the right eye that hung by the stem.”

Sarah
18/7 - World War Z was a pretty decent read, but it wasn't exactly a bone-chilling thriller, certainly not because of the zombies. The disturbing part of the story really wasn't the monsters, it was the way the multiple governments reacted to the disaster and the idea that our governments might (and possibly should) do the same thing if avian flu or the zika virus became a pandemic tomorrow.

I think I would have enjoyed the Brad Pitt movie more if it had followed the book more closely in format - 18/7 - World War Z was a pretty decent read, but it wasn't exactly a bone-chilling thriller, certainly not because of the zombies. The disturbing part of the story really wasn't the monsters, it was the way the multiple governments reacted to the disaster and the idea that our governments might (and possibly should) do the same thing if avian flu or the zika virus became a pandemic tomorrow.

I think I would have enjoyed the Brad Pitt movie more if it had followed the book more closely in format - survivors giving interviews years after it's all over in the style of the documentary series The World at War or similar to the way Band of Brothers did it with snippets from survivors followed by 're-enactments' done by actors. As it is I found the movie largely forgettable, in fact other than Brad Pitt as the star and the fact that they're searching for the source of the virus I barely remember the movie at all. I think that, other than the interesting format, the book is going to go the same way. I only finished this two weeks ago and already I've forgotten half of the different survivors and their stories.
Patremagne
I won't lie, I went the entire book thinking Mark Hamill was the interviewer. Turns out it was Max Brooks himself.

World War Z is a book that REALLY lends itself to the audio form. I've never been a big fan of books that are people recounting the past from an old age or via interview (Christian Cameron's work being an exception, though I think they would only improve if changed to present narrative), as I think it takes out a huge chunk of the tension that would otherwise be present. I can hones I won't lie, I went the entire book thinking Mark Hamill was the interviewer. Turns out it was Max Brooks himself.

World War Z is a book that REALLY lends itself to the audio form. I've never been a big fan of books that are people recounting the past from an old age or via interview (Christian Cameron's work being an exception, though I think they would only improve if changed to present narrative), as I think it takes out a huge chunk of the tension that would otherwise be present. I can honestly say I probably wouldn't have like this if I read the book. The full cast was incredible, with character variety in every way possible.
Paige Bookdragon
I watched the movie a year ago and I love it. (Brad Pitt is the main lead so what do you expect?)
I love the concept of the story. Of all the zombie books that I've read, the explanation of why the virus started is pretty "believable".

But this book though...I don't know. It's a bit meh for me..
Chance and his Goosie Scale
I saw the movie first, and it’s very different from the book. This is an oral history of the war with the zombies - interviews with people from around the globe who survived it, and what they’re doing now. The amount of post apocalypse clean up accounts is very interesting, and I only wish there had been more. I love a story that starts from present day life, goes through the apocalypse, and has a pretty solid finale, that at least gives you a keen sense of life after. Again, I only wish that th I saw the movie first, and it’s very different from the book. This is an oral history of the war with the zombies - interviews with people from around the globe who survived it, and what they’re doing now. The amount of post apocalypse clean up accounts is very interesting, and I only wish there had been more. I love a story that starts from present day life, goes through the apocalypse, and has a pretty solid finale, that at least gives you a keen sense of life after. Again, I only wish that this had even more detail and stories. I would definitely have enjoyed more!

Goosie Scale Rating: 5/10
I feel that this is a solid average read for your goosebumps and feels. End of life as we know it. Ya know, it’s moving. But most importantly, I felt that I was reading true accounts from a true event (though so obviously fictitious). That’s pretty cool, so props there.

First Sentence Rating: 8/10
“The zombie war came unthinkably close to erraticating humanity.”
As a continuation of the rest of this review, this first sentence just pulls you in and makes you crave more detail and backstory. Additionally, almost every word used is extremely powerful and heavy. Makes it very difficult to skim over without a second thought.
Sean DeLauder
As the son of Hollywood and Broadway funnyman Mel Brooks, one would expect a book by son, Max, to be rife with the same over-the-top, bawdy and side-splitting humor for which his father is notorious. Especially considering the subject of choice: Zombies.

Brooks' previous effort was a comprehensive Zombie Survival Guide which outlined how the common North American civilian could survive zombie attacks on a small scale, as well as how to survive the catastrophic possibility of worldwide infection ( As the son of Hollywood and Broadway funnyman Mel Brooks, one would expect a book by son, Max, to be rife with the same over-the-top, bawdy and side-splitting humor for which his father is notorious. Especially considering the subject of choice: Zombies.

Brooks' previous effort was a comprehensive Zombie Survival Guide which outlined how the common North American civilian could survive zombie attacks on a small scale, as well as how to survive the catastrophic possibility of worldwide infection (by Brooks' reckoning, zombieism is a condition brought on by the virus Solanum, not reanimation by dark, supernatural forces).

In his latest work, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, the absolute worst has come to pass. Through ignorance, miscommunication, unpreparedness and sheer negligence, the entire world has been overrun by the living dead.

Yet instead of a comic rendition of zombies roaming the earth and being systematically wiped out by the oft-cast, steely-eyed and determined Hero, we are given a vivid recounting of humanity in a war for survival against the overwhelming hordes of undead which very nearly wipes the living human race from the face of the earth.

Brooks presents this history in a series of interviews with principle characters across the globe in a conflict that has lasted, and in some respects continues, for ten years. These interviews are grouped into chapters from the initial detection and outbreaks, to reactions from numerous governments which vary from mobilization to denial to isolation to complete ignorance, through the conflict and the aftermath as the world rebuilds. Those who have survived to offer interviews show the effects of the conflict in very visible ways, from those who are psychologically shattered to those who discover something new and purposeful about themselves when before their value was negligible. They are very often unheroes, with little social worth or self-respect, who rose to the occassion when the world fell under attack.

Throughout, Brooks emphasizes the changes from the world as it was: political disunity, racial and class discrimination; to the world that it has become: unified in the purpose of survival, then victory.

It highlights the wastefulness of government, the shattering of the social structure (who needs actors, entertainers or athletes in a world where survival is paramount?), and the galvanization of the entire species with the purpose of achieving a single goal. The book essentially states, without ever saying as much, that the near extinction of humanity by the living dead is the best thing that could ever have happened, returning a sense of urgency and purpose to a very sedentary people. The book is a statement on how the dominant species of our planet is, in truth, extremely vulnerable.

This book is not utterly without humor, though the younger Brooks does not express it in the same explicit fashion as his father. There are various, subtle references to movies (Ghostbusters), cartoons (Transformers), video games (Myth) and even his own Survival Guide (which is snubbed by one interviewee as "clearly written by an American") which only someone who has come into contact with them will catch. Yet these humorous instances are downplayed because the main thrust of this book was not comedy, as booksellers would lead you to believe.

Perhaps this oral history was created with ironic, comic intentions, but the message it conveys is one of very serious warning. We are a fractured people full of needless bile, and if we could but work together rather than focus upon our differences there is no obstacle we cannot overcome. But if we choose to remain stubborn, indignant and hateful, ignorant of one another and our respective cultures, we will almost surely be swallowed up by whatever disasters, be they zombies or otherwise, which lurk just around the corner.
Preeti
I have a love/hate relationship with zombie movies. I just love watching them, but after they're over, my imagination goes into overdrive for the next week or two, and I imagine them lurking around every corner, waiting for me outside my house at night, etc. Rationally, I know this is nonsense, but that doesn't stop my mind from making up myriad stories of my inevitable demise.

That being said, I'd never read a book about zombies before. To be honest, I wasn't that interested in this, but after s I have a love/hate relationship with zombie movies. I just love watching them, but after they're over, my imagination goes into overdrive for the next week or two, and I imagine them lurking around every corner, waiting for me outside my house at night, etc. Rationally, I know this is nonsense, but that doesn't stop my mind from making up myriad stories of my inevitable demise.

That being said, I'd never read a book about zombies before. To be honest, I wasn't that interested in this, but after seeing previews for the movie and hearing rumblings about how fans of the book were upset over it, I figured I should check it out, especially since it was inevitable that I'd end up watching the movie anyway.

The book was fantastic! It's not your typical (and forgive me because I'm gonna keep comparing it to movies, not having read many (or any?) zombie or even monster books) action, running around, KILL THEM ALL! type story. In fact, I love this description that Karen gave:"this book is about zombies the same way the bible is about god. they are mostly background actors who are the reason other characters do what they do and occasionally they will rarrrr in and kill a bunch of people because they cant help it, but mostly they are an invisible presence, always to be feared but never given a voice."This book is a series of interviews that occur after the "war" is for the most part over. The interviewer is a UN representative who is compiling a postwar report and in the midst of collecting facts and figures, he finds himself collecting "feelings" and "opinions," which the chairperson feels have no place in the report. So he puts the stories together into this book.

The interviews are divided into parts based on how the timeline of the war was divided. For example, "Warnings," "Turning the Tide," "Total War," etc. The interviewees are from around the world, and range from normal, everyday citizens, to doctors, soldiers, assassins; rich, poor, blind - there are a lot of characters.

And their stories are the important ones. The zombies are the background character here - it is how people have survived, how the world continues to turn, that's in the forefront. I loved how the book covered politics, military strategy, psychological effects, even things like how the rich and famous tried to protect themselves. With your typical zombie fare, it's usually focused on one group of characters and how they try to avoid getting bitten. But this book was more like a documentary, covering the whole story from the beginning to (perhaps) the end of the apocalypse.

The most poignant part for me (and this wouldn't be surprising to anyone who knows me well) was when Michael Choi talks about whales at the end. I wanted to quote the whole section but it's super long. I'll leave it at this part:[The sun dips below the horizon. Michael sighs.]

So the next time someone tries to tell you about how the true losses of this war are "our innocence" or "part of our humanity" ...

[He spits into the water.]

Whatever, bro. Tell it to the whales.The book wasn't perfect of course. I agree with the criticism (though after the fact) that many characters tended to have the same or similar voices, especially across different countries. Also, it was very US-centric, particularly with the turn-around, despite covering other countries.

I still enjoyed the book very much.

And of course, I did end up seeing the movie. And to that I say, read the book instead!

Here's a good follow-up article to the book:
Max Brooks Is Not Kidding About the Zombie Apocalypse
Noah Soudrette
When I first heard about the book World War Z my first thought was simply “cool”. This also seemed to be the sentiment amongst most people who saw the book or read about. While reading this book, often at work on my breaks, people would stop and ask questions like, “is that book funny?” or, “that looks neat, how is it?” And, each time questions like these were asked, I would put down the book and begin to tell them about many of the interesting ideas in the book, the fact that the zombie war co When I first heard about the book World War Z my first thought was simply “cool”. This also seemed to be the sentiment amongst most people who saw the book or read about. While reading this book, often at work on my breaks, people would stop and ask questions like, “is that book funny?” or, “that looks neat, how is it?” And, each time questions like these were asked, I would put down the book and begin to tell them about many of the interesting ideas in the book, the fact that the zombie war could act as a proxy for the Iraq war or the hurricane Katrina disaster, or that it is written in a format using fake interviews. People seemed to respond very positively to these comments, yet, I have met only one other person who has ever read this book. It seems to me that your average reader who might be interested in the book, would never be caught dead reading it. No matter how positive or serious reviews for this book are only a select number of geeks like me will ever read this book. Does this affect the quality of the book? Not at all. However, a book that no one will read, does not a good book make. This made the going a bit slow. Also, when I first heard about this book, after thinking how cool it sounded, my first worry was that it would not be terribly original. Honestly, when I say zombie novel, how many people automatically start to wonder if the novel is really any good? Suffice it to say, despite all these first impressions going against it, Brooks’ World War Z is a highly engaging, and exceptionally original work.

While this book could be considered a sort of sequel to his first book The Zombie Survival Guide Brooks eschews the cold hard facts and chooses instead to focus on the lives of the people caught up in this unlikely, yet horrible scenario. We are given a wide range of highly developed and diverse people to get to know. Interviews range from meetings with war profiteers, to generals, to pregnant mothers, to blind gardeners, etc. This variety and detail renders each short interview highly engaging, and one is left with a feeling that these people could easily be your friends, family, or neighbors. However, it is the short interview format that also hurts the flow of the book. Once the reader starts an interview he will be hooked, but there is no sense of continuity, other than linear time and zombies, that links these stories together. We are not given characters to follow through the arc of the story and get heavily invested in. The only consistent character is Brooks himself, however, at the beginning, he states that he wishes to remain as invisible in these stories as possible. So, we are left somewhat high and dry. In the end, this really only results in making the book a bit more slow going, but does divide things up into small, highly digestible pieces.

I do not wish to go into too much detail about the world Brooks has constructed. Part of the fun is finding these small, highly detailed and imaginative nuggets along the way. Please, give this book a chance and do not let the concept or title put you off. This is a serious work of fiction. If I can read a book called Bimbos of the Death Sun you can read a book about a zombie war.
Rita
A new take on Zombies I've never been the biggest zombie-fan, and until I picked this book up, I have never read any zombie novel before. I've seen my fair share of zombie movies over the years, and with the recent heyday and revival, largely thanks to the excellent movies and TV series such as Fido, The Walking Dead, Shaun of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead (remake), 28 Days Later etc. of the past decade, have made me extremely curious about reading this book.This book was definitely a positive surp A new take on Zombies I've never been the biggest zombie-fan, and until I picked this book up, I have never read any zombie novel before. I've seen my fair share of zombie movies over the years, and with the recent heyday and revival, largely thanks to the excellent movies and TV series such as Fido, The Walking Dead, Shaun of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead (remake), 28 Days Later etc. of the past decade, have made me extremely curious about reading this book.This book was definitely a positive surprise to me and a lot better than I expected it to be. I didn't know what to expect of it, and it's also  a bit difficult to articulate and structure what I thought of it, which in part may be due to the fragmented format and style that the book was written in. I read this book more like a collection of short stories connected by a common theme, rather than one unified novel.What I have enjoyed:- how current-day events are tied-in to the zombie apocalypse, such as the current economic recession and the rise of the Asian economies (with the unfortunate consequence of organ trading when the organs are infected). - the epistolary/journalistic narrative style. I think that was a good call of Max Brooks to write it like that, as an attempt to collect a sort of "collective memory" from the survivors of the zombie apocalypse. It gives the book a feeling of being "real history" that is being told by the real people who lived through such fantastical events. - even though the book is packed with militaristic acronyms (which at times was a bit dull to me), it shows a lot of humanity through the eyes of the survivors and how they tell their tales, as an example the recollections of Darnell Hackworth, who ran a retirement sanctuary for the four-legged veterans of the zombie war.- the description of the initial outbreak, when nobody knew anything of what was going on, the blame and finger pointing that followed and the aftermath of the war, has been described in ways that I haven't really seen before in the zombie-genre. I will not plaster this review with example, after all, I don't want to spoil the book for you!All this kept the book fresh and relatively quick to read and is definitely worth giving a chance.This review has also been posted on my blog.
Deborah Ideiosepius
I had not heard of the book when I saw the movie, and based on the movie I almost did not read the book. Then I heard a rumour that the author was so unhappy with the hollywood version that he refused to let images from the movie be used as a cover.

I don’t usually rehash what the cover of a book will tell you in a review but I'll make an exception; this book is about a ‘zombie apocalypse’ which is almost over and it is told by a survivor who had interviewed many people as he discovered how it o I had not heard of the book when I saw the movie, and based on the movie I almost did not read the book. Then I heard a rumour that the author was so unhappy with the hollywood version that he refused to let images from the movie be used as a cover.

I don’t usually rehash what the cover of a book will tell you in a review but I'll make an exception; this book is about a ‘zombie apocalypse’ which is almost over and it is told by a survivor who had interviewed many people as he discovered how it occurred and spread. The zombies are represented as a nebulous ‘disease’ which is never over explained as some stories are inclined to do. The story teller of the book has drafted an official report about the apocalypse; this report is meant to be the human stories behind the report.

I really liked this book and it was perfect for a long flight as it was not, by any means, a fast read. The different perspectives, hop scotching around the world are a fascinating way to build up a composite image of how the ‘zombie war’ started. It also means that you have a lot of new characters, situations and backgrounds to pick up as you go. As pretty much all of them are complex, interesting and absorbing there is almost no speed reading space in this book. I really liked this tactic; I read fast and it is a pleasure to fine a work of fiction that is so crafted that I can’t swallow it whole in a few hours.

I can also see why the author of this complex, intelligent story might not have been happy with the hollywood version (which I still quite enjoyed). Unlike the movie, there are no clichéd family sob stories, no racing meaninglessly around the world, no last ditch hollywood heroics that save us all. Instead there is a patchwork of small stories of bravery, victory and defeat from all around the world coming together to make one hell of a zombie book!
Acordul Fin
I loved both the book and the movie even though they have nothing to do with each other. The book is an exceptional commentary on the geopolitical, religious and social turmoil in the aftermath of a "walking dead" world-wide disaster, therefore making it a delicious piece of food for thought. The movie was fast-paced, suspenseful and very entertaining.
Al
So scary, but I could not put it down. If there ever is a zombie breakout, I hope I go first because I'd just be no good with such poor standards of hygiene.
Pete
FUCK YEAH! I spent an entire week at work plotting what I'll do when the zombie invasion finally comes. See you in the Arctic, bitches!
AJ LeBlanc
I've recommended this book to almost everyone I know. It's not so much a zombie book as it is a layered look at the world.

This is probably the most nuanced book I've read. The amount of research that went into it is astounding, especially because it's not a history book. It's intensely layered and crafted to show the myriad effects of a world war.

Brooks examines all the pieces that are affected - government, religion, culture, infrastructure, military, socioeconomic status, civilians, enemy coun I've recommended this book to almost everyone I know. It's not so much a zombie book as it is a layered look at the world.

This is probably the most nuanced book I've read. The amount of research that went into it is astounding, especially because it's not a history book. It's intensely layered and crafted to show the myriad effects of a world war.

Brooks examines all the pieces that are affected - government, religion, culture, infrastructure, military, socioeconomic status, civilians, enemy countries, medical industry, research and development, military history, war history, psychology, ecology, economy, world leaders - and creates a book that is brilliant.

It's amazing how he used a zombie outbreak to examine all of this. And, of course, there's cool zombie stuff to move everything along.

Massive re-review after reading this book in 2012:

I read this a few years back and recently picked it as the first read for my book group. Why? Because it is awesome.

I am not a fan of the zombie genre. I do not like horror. This book was sort of on my radar because it was on every OMG!!! READ THIS BOOK!!! list when it came out, but it was about zombies, so I didn’t pay attention. But after seeing it again and again as a suggested book on various Fark threads I decided to give it a try.

And I tore that thing apart.

Here’s what you need to know: this isn’t a zombie book. I mean, yeah, the entire thing is about zombies, but it’s not a zombie book. It’s so much more and when I read it the first time and now rereading it, I continued to be amazed and impressed about how smart it is. Brooks researched the hell out of each topic. Even if every chapter isn’t a smash, it’s obvious that he put in some serious work.

The Zombie War lasted for roughly ten years. Another ten years or so have passed, and our interviewer has finished his report for the United Nations, but is frustrated that the human aspect was left out. He returns to his interviews to put faces to the facts and to reconstruct what happened to us all when the zombies came.

Following a fairly chronological arc, he meets with a range of individuals and each chapter is one interview. Medical professionals, government officials, members from differently levels of the military, researchers, scientists, capitalists, religious leaders, environmentalists, average folks, clean up and reconstruction volunteers, historians, and many more make up his book. This is one of the things that made me love it so quickly. You get to see every level of the Invasion from people at the top to J. Random Guy sitting on his couch when his front window gets smashed in. It could have just been a military book or a government book or a civilian book, but he makes it a world book, and it is awesome.

The oral history also did it for me. This isn’t a text book. These are people telling their story in their own voices. Each profession (for lack of a better term) has their own vocabulary and view of what happened and how they reacted, and I really liked comparing priorities and responses. For a mom, her only goal was to get her kids to safety. For researchers and government officials, they had to figure out how to save the most amount of people and decide on an acceptable death rate. The military has to learn an entirely new battle system and completely change the psychology of war.

The oral history aspect of the book doesn’t work for all readers. People in my book group as well as other reviewers felt like all the voices sounded the same and that Brooks didn’t have the talent or vocabulary to write for all these characters. I disagree, but then again, if I was an expert in any one field, I’m sure I would cringe at that section. The first time I read the book, I really liked the entry told from the point of view of a woman named Sharon who was very young when the Invasion happened. She escaped and became a somewhat feral child until she was discovered and brought to a group home. Her feral life has resulted in cognitive impairment and she tells her story in basic language. I really liked it because she was mimicking the sounds and voices and shouts and I liked teasing out what really happened based on her childhood version. However, after my book group, I realized that this chapter doesn’t hold up so well. One of my friends has a three year old and hated how Sharon spoke. She said she sees this a lot – adults writing the way they think kids talk. Sharon speaks like a toddler, yet is able to tell a complicated, sequential story. She doesn’t recognize blood or know the word for cell phone. We tried to figure out how old she was when her story happened based on what she says, but the language and sequential arc do not fit together. This is something I never would have noticed on my own, which is why book groups are awesome.

Another major selling point for me was that each interview was fairly short and because Brooks chooses so many subjects, if you weren’t that interested in a topic, you only had to skim for a bit more to get to the next one. There were characters who I were fascinated with and took my time with, and then there were others that I glossed over because I wasn’t interested in that aspect of the War. It was great to discuss it with my book group because there was a mix of favorites.

In no particular order, my favorites:

--- Breckinridge Scott because I hated this guy. Hated him so much because his character would happen in real life and who knows if he’d ever be punished. HATED HIM. The kind of hate where I get mad all over again when I think of his interview. Yeah, it didn’t happen, but things like this happen all the time, and fuck those guys. SO MUCH HATE!!!
--- Todd Wainio because it was frustrating and heartbreaking to see how unprepared the US military was and how useless our modern weapons were.
--- Colonel Christina Eliopolis because... what really happened?
--- T. Sean Collins because the pop culture aspect was so satisfying. I had forgotten what happened to the Hollywood elite and was as surprised the second time as I was the first.
--- Sensei Tomonaga Ijiro and Kondo Tatsumi because they were representatives of people who were deemed useless to society before the Invasion yet became crucial during the fight and now in the rebuilding.
Anytime anyone asks for a book recommendation, this is always my go to. I feel just about anyone will like it because it doesn’t really fit into any genre. There’s going to be at least one story in here that you relate to or are interested in. I challenge anyone to read this and not try to figure out how they’d react if something like this happened.

Johntaylor1973
A thing of beauty is a joy forever. Sallyboy Keats had it right, folks.

Ladies and gentlemen, behold the true vision of apocalyptic horror. On the heels of Zombie Survival Guide, I sped through this book faster than an invading army through France.

I went to imdb.com and did a search for my man Max Brooks. I found out that they're in preproduction on World War Z. This both delighted and disturbed me. I cannot see this as a movie, unless they do a Band of Brothers serial thing. Movies require a ma A thing of beauty is a joy forever. Sallyboy Keats had it right, folks.

Ladies and gentlemen, behold the true vision of apocalyptic horror. On the heels of Zombie Survival Guide, I sped through this book faster than an invading army through France.

I went to imdb.com and did a search for my man Max Brooks. I found out that they're in preproduction on World War Z. This both delighted and disturbed me. I cannot see this as a movie, unless they do a Band of Brothers serial thing. Movies require a main character or characters--folks we follow throughout the course of the film.

And herein lies why I'm not only apprehensive about the film, I'm also EXCITED! World War Z is a panoptic view of the future zombie outbreak. It's a series of interviews with dozens and dozens of people. We never sit and follow any one individual. We get a look at the totality of this outbreak, and I'm so happy at the prospect of a zombie movie that does NOT involve a tiny group of dullards locked in a mall trying to survive. My fear is that it gets bastardized into an acute look at one of the many stories in the book. And that would be downright yucky. I'd rather be bitten by the living undead.

That's the problem I have with most zombie movies--they're always so narrow in focus. With World War Z, we get to see the world impact. From the Russians fighting off the onslaught (and subsequently turning into a country of olden times) to the near collapse of Europe (poor Iceland!) and the rise of Superpower Cuba, this book is so incredibly thought-out and and so incredibly detailed.

Here's to a script that is more grandiose than any zombie film to date! Huzzah!

Tiny spoilers here

If I could write the script: I'd have the focus on the author, and have the film as one massive flashback.

My favorite part: the first battle back, the battle of Hope.

The scariest part: the cargo pilot trying to find her way to salvation.

Least favorite part: monastic Russian hitman dude. I wanted to hear MORE about that dude.

Most poignant part: the last page, "I love you Mom". RIP Mrs. Robinson, rest in peace you wonderful, wonderful woman.
Sonja Arlow

I think the majority of less positive reviews were due to the fact that the readers didn’t know what they were getting into when they picked up this book. This is not your conventional zombie story, there is no main protagonist, no plot or character development and no happy ending.

What you can expect is a meticulously thought out “what if” hypothesis, outlining in great detail what would happen if a catastrophe on a global scale would happen today. From Arkansas to the Arctic, from Finland to Ca
I think the majority of less positive reviews were due to the fact that the readers didn’t know what they were getting into when they picked up this book. This is not your conventional zombie story, there is no main protagonist, no plot or character development and no happy ending.

What you can expect is a meticulously thought out “what if” hypothesis, outlining in great detail what would happen if a catastrophe on a global scale would happen today. From Arkansas to the Arctic, from Finland to Cape Town almost every major city, country and culture was incorporated.
The story is told in the form of “interviews” with survivors and each interview acts like a little puzzle piece to leave you with the whole at the end of the reading.

And this is precisely why I enjoyed it. I didn’t want a typical zombie book and I certainly didn’t want something that would be hard work to read. My mind has been completely taken over by the stresses of a new job (still) and I found it hard to concentrate with other books I was reading. You can pick up and put down this story at any time, which would make it a nice holiday companion.

I also enjoyed the macro view the story gave me. Normally stories hone in on one or a few people and you never get a sense of how this disaster will affect anyone else. This may not be everyone’s cup of tea but I had a great time reading it and as an added bonus was rewarded with quite a few chapters that focused on my beloved South Africa.

I also had to chuckle at the stories that showed how pre-zombie high earning people were downgraded to lowly farm workers as they basically had no survival skills. I myself can’t even make a fire, the only thing I have to offer is the ability to clumsily milk a cow.

I would have liked it if the novel ended with a bit more of a bang and would have appreciated a few less military stories replaced with a few more average Joe stories but overall this was a fun read and one I can recommend if you want an alternative zombie outlook.
Christine Roberts
It's hard to review this book, especially after having made the (colossal) mistake of seeing the movie first.
This book is so much better, so much more intense, than the movie could ever hope to be. But aren't they always? What was interesting to me was the dramatic difference, both in content and tone, between the two. The events in the film are literally nowhere in the book. I'm not sure how one relates to the other, honestly.

However, I need to rave about this book for a minute now. Both of my It's hard to review this book, especially after having made the (colossal) mistake of seeing the movie first.
This book is so much better, so much more intense, than the movie could ever hope to be. But aren't they always? What was interesting to me was the dramatic difference, both in content and tone, between the two. The events in the film are literally nowhere in the book. I'm not sure how one relates to the other, honestly.

However, I need to rave about this book for a minute now. Both of my favorite "living dead" novels are written by Stephen King ("The Stand" and "Cell") so I have a pretty high bar. The beauty of this book is that it focuses on the humanity, and loss of it, that occurs when normal citizens are suddenly required to take up arms against their loved ones, friends, and neighbors. Since the book oscillates between so many narratives, it is not a situation where you empathize with the survivors and become upset when one of them dies. This is more like a clinical analysis of a zombie apocalypse, with some heart tugging events thrown in to keep it from reading like a government briefing. Just to be clear, though - catacombs collapsing and zombies attacking in waves? Hell no.

Overall, I now have THREE favorite books in this genre, and I recommend it to horror fans and realism fans alike. Well written and exciting.

Side note - I do not recommend reading this book and finishing it on a night you plan to catch up on The Walking Dead, it makes for some interesting dreams. Norman Reedus+Zombies+Escape Plan involving shopping carts and jousting spears= No Sleep
Alice
How would you share your story on how you survived? Or would you not even want to? See how the apocalypse effected the masses, and how it all started...

This is a good book, however, it's not my usual writing style/plot. I usually read action, where this is basically Q & A.
It's got a good story (overall picture), of the zombie attacks, and who knew about it, who didn't, and what their thoughts are about it.
We receive a description of the zombie attacks, where they are effectively dead, and ne How would you share your story on how you survived? Or would you not even want to? See how the apocalypse effected the masses, and how it all started...

This is a good book, however, it's not my usual writing style/plot. I usually read action, where this is basically Q & A.
It's got a good story (overall picture), of the zombie attacks, and who knew about it, who didn't, and what their thoughts are about it.
We receive a description of the zombie attacks, where they are effectively dead, and need to bite to spread the infection.
I wish I enjoyed this more, as it's a good read. It's taken me nearly three months to get to 20%... *sigh* mainly due to the fact that I didn't want to get back to reading it.
The characters all have the same sort-of tone, which is due to it being written by one person, and not actually a recollection of a zombie attack.

Written well, which has a well thought-out plot-sorta-thing. Is intriguing, but is nothing special.

A fairly nice read, which I recommend to the Zombie sub-genre fans.
Angel
Guerra Mundial Z no es lo que esperaba. Es de hecho mejor.
El libro nos presenta un mundo apocalíptico con zombies, pero, lo mejor de la historia no son los zombies en si, sino la reacción del mundo ante ellos. Hay problemas políticos, económicos, éticos. Es la historia de la humanidad en su lucha por sobrevivir. El factor humano está presente en todos los capítulos y todos ellos te hacen pensar que, en caso de que hubiesen zombies, las personas bien podríamos actuar como el libro dice.

Lo qu Guerra Mundial Z no es lo que esperaba. Es de hecho mejor.
El libro nos presenta un mundo apocalíptico con zombies, pero, lo mejor de la historia no son los zombies en si, sino la reacción del mundo ante ellos. Hay problemas políticos, económicos, éticos. Es la historia de la humanidad en su lucha por sobrevivir. El factor humano está presente en todos los capítulos y todos ellos te hacen pensar que, en caso de que hubiesen zombies, las personas bien podríamos actuar como el libro dice.

Lo que no me gustó mucho del libro, a pesar de ser un elemento clave en su desarrollo, es la gran cantidad de personajes. Cierto, cada uno tenía una historia propia, lo que brindaba una gran perspectiva del mundo, pero se me hizo imposible recordar todos los nombres y entonces casi nunca sentí un vínculo con los sobrevivientes. Digo casi , porque si hubo más de una ocasión en la que me preocupaba por ellos. Si me hubiese gustado conocerlos un poco más.
Alex Ristea
Wow.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, but it exceeded anything I could have imagined.

World War Z is told through a series of short interviews with people who have experienced, in some way or another, the Zombie Apocalypse. We have everything from common soldiers, to medical staff, to reclusive Korean boys who don’t even know what’s going on.

Max Brooks truly shines in how quickly he can change his authorial voice. Within sentences of reading each new interview, you feel immediately co Wow.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, but it exceeded anything I could have imagined.

World War Z is told through a series of short interviews with people who have experienced, in some way or another, the Zombie Apocalypse. We have everything from common soldiers, to medical staff, to reclusive Korean boys who don’t even know what’s going on.

Max Brooks truly shines in how quickly he can change his authorial voice. Within sentences of reading each new interview, you feel immediately comfortable with the characters and situation. That is not an easy feat. Most authors take pages and chapters—even whole books—to set up scenes and make you care for the stakes and the protagonists.

This book has no main character, and yet you still feel a powerful connection. It’s a fascinating look into the political and social effects of an undead rising.

It’s also nothing like the movie, so do yourself a favour and read one of the best zombie novels out there.
Sara
I enjoyed this documentary style book about what we went through during the Zombie War, now popularly called World War Z. The interviews the author was able to get were amazing and very informative since many of us surmised a lot about what was happening but no one knew the whole story. We still don't, but this book puts some things in perspective and gives us a different view. We reclaimed the earth for our children. May they grow up in peace.

On another note, the movie made off of this document I enjoyed this documentary style book about what we went through during the Zombie War, now popularly called World War Z. The interviews the author was able to get were amazing and very informative since many of us surmised a lot about what was happening but no one knew the whole story. We still don't, but this book puts some things in perspective and gives us a different view. We reclaimed the earth for our children. May they grow up in peace.

On another note, the movie made off of this documentary starring one of the few actors left from the world before Z, does not do this book justice. Supposedly new information came out that they put in the film that was not in the book but I think there was quite a bit of Hollywoodism in the film. If that's really what happened in Israel, why isn't that in this book?
John Boettcher
The book was an OK read, but I think I made the unfortunate mistake of going and watching the movie before reading the book, and so when I read the book, and it was laid out like a collection of journalistic interviews, it threw me off a bit, just because I was expecting a first person narrative, similar to what I saw in the movie, but it was anything but that.

Brooks does many things that make the story realistic however, especially in the way that the interviews are conducted, and makes the re The book was an OK read, but I think I made the unfortunate mistake of going and watching the movie before reading the book, and so when I read the book, and it was laid out like a collection of journalistic interviews, it threw me off a bit, just because I was expecting a first person narrative, similar to what I saw in the movie, but it was anything but that.

Brooks does many things that make the story realistic however, especially in the way that the interviews are conducted, and makes the reader think about things that probably only shows like "The Walking Dead" even come close to thinking about as they are trying to survive an apocalypse.

It was a good read, but not a great read, and so for that, the three stars.
Miki Mackennedy
This was great on audio. an entirely different experience. It could easily have been a piece on NPR.
The book is done as a series interviews with survivors from all over the world and all walks of life.

The recounted stories of soldiers, villagers, doctors and the people next door make this both scary and realistic. Humanity is examined for both its hubris and its fear, its fragility and its resilience.

As in all documentaries, there are stories that leave you wondering but why? or then what?

This This was great on audio. an entirely different experience. It could easily have been a piece on NPR.
The book is done as a series interviews with survivors from all over the world and all walks of life.

The recounted stories of soldiers, villagers, doctors and the people next door make this both scary and realistic. Humanity is examined for both its hubris and its fear, its fragility and its resilience.

As in all documentaries, there are stories that leave you wondering but why? or then what?

This is a book about people, NOT a book about zombies, this is a book about society and what happens when everything we hold dear is dashed and we have to go on and rebuild.
Netanella
Slow, slow beginning that took me several attempts to really delve into the book - it seemed like there were too many disjointed memoir-ish narratives about the initial outbreak that all seemed to sound alike and drone on forever.

Once past this, however, the book really picked up and I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. What I especially enjoyed were the narratives of those people in occupations that most authors of apocalyptic fiction might not have thought about - the crew of a Chin Slow, slow beginning that took me several attempts to really delve into the book - it seemed like there were too many disjointed memoir-ish narratives about the initial outbreak that all seemed to sound alike and drone on forever.

Once past this, however, the book really picked up and I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would. What I especially enjoyed were the narratives of those people in occupations that most authors of apocalyptic fiction might not have thought about - the crew of a Chinese nuclear submarine, the Australian astronaut stuck on an orbiting space station, the blind Japanese gardener who goes all Zen buddhist in the mountainous forests.
Kate S
This book was a surprise to me. I wanted to read it because there is the new movie out and I like to read the book before seeing the movie. I also have been a fan of Mel Brooks for many years. I did not think this was a book I would enjoy as I am not a fan of the zombie craze. This book could have been dealing with the aftermath of a variety of crises. The zombie factor was extremely low and the responses from characters across the world were believable. I also liked the style in this book. The This book was a surprise to me. I wanted to read it because there is the new movie out and I like to read the book before seeing the movie. I also have been a fan of Mel Brooks for many years. I did not think this was a book I would enjoy as I am not a fan of the zombie craze. This book could have been dealing with the aftermath of a variety of crises. The zombie factor was extremely low and the responses from characters across the world were believable. I also liked the style in this book. The interview set-up was a great way to share this story.
Suzanne
I had to read up on the book vs. movie because as I read this I kept thinking there is no way it could be a movie. I felt like it was a detailed world-building but there were no characters to identify with - nobody was in the story for more than a page or two. I'd give it fewer stars but I'm kind of a sucker for 'what would I do at this world end scenario'.
Jessica
Really more of a 2.5 stars for me. Some of the interviews were interesting, but many were just boring. I didn't care for the military/ship jargon, it was a bit overkill and made it tedious to read all the technical things.
Rachel
Z

This is my second time reading this book. Now that I am older and slightly wiser the social commentary is much clearer. I still enjoyed the method of story telling via interviews with survivors of the zombie war. I still enjoy Jesika's the most.
Kristie
I thought this book was ok. It was my first real zombie book and I liked the idea. There were a few too many military "interviews" for my taste and I had some technical issues, but overall it was pretty good. I'll have to try a different style zombie book for comparison.
Jena
I wanted to love this book. I read the blurb, and it seemed like it would be a perfect fit for a dystopia reader.
But something just didn't click.
Maybe there were too many characters to keep track of, or too few that you could really get attached to and root for, I don't know.
I did love the guy named Todd, and the guy named Darnell who took care of the veteran dogs.
But it just didn't dazzle me like I thought it would.
Cedric Nye
It was very difficult for me to get into Brooks' writing style, and I was unable to finish the book. I was bored, to tell the truth. The only reason I gave it three stars is because of my fondness for zombie fare.
Paul ataua
I didn’t much care for the movie. It washed over me without really making an impact. I had heard so much about the book, however, and from people who were also disappointed with the movie that that I gave it a try. The structure was innovative, some parts were quite interesting, and, above all, it was a fairly easy read. Pretty much entertaining without going much further than that. It was much better than the movie, but it still just washed over me.
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