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The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor Paperback – June 5, 2012


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Frequently Bought Together

The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor + The Walking Dead: The Road to Woodbury (The Walking Dead Series) + The Walking Dead: The Fall of the Governor: Part One (The Walking Dead Series)
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Product Details

  • Series: The Walking Dead (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (June 5, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250008395
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250008398
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (731 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor:

"Zombie-apocalypse stories are perfect for miserable winter weather regardless, but for those obsessed with The Walking Dead (such as yours truly), this is essential reading. This is the epitome of a page-turner, and makes subway rides just breeze by. And, that end –woof."
—REFINERY29

“An excellent companion to the The Walking Dead comic books. The story is enriched by the novel format, and the characterization of the series' most hated villain is something no fan will want to miss.”
Examiner.com

“This book stands alone and is a compelling read for fans of the series or just fans of zombies. Watch out though, because once you get a taste of the particular Kirkman brand of zombie mayhem, catching up on past issues is just around the corner.”
The Ossuary

“The story makes a great novel. You'll get sucked in and can easily visualize everything that is happening. It's simply a great read.”
Comicvine.com

“It takes great advantage of the literary medium in a way that most tie-in books would not.”
TVOverMind.com

“Not for the faint of heart, this book runs on pressure-cooker suspense, graphically described bloodshed, and dark acts of brutality...This riveting character study adds a new dimension to the oeuvre by fleshing out established characters and plot lines.”
School Library Journal

About the Author

Robert Kirkman is best known for his work on The Walking Dead and Invincible for Image Comics and SKYBOUND. He is one of the five partners of Image Comics and is an executive producer and writer on AMC’s critically acclaimed television series The Walking Dead.

Jay Bonansinga is a critically acclaimed horror novelist whose works include Perfect Victim, Shattered, Twisted, and Frozen. His debut novel, The Black Mariah, was a finalist for a Bram Stoker Award.


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Customer Reviews

The characters are good, and the story flows very well.
zombie phreak
You don't need to know the backstory to watch the show, but you will not see the Governor the same way after you read this book.
Mel64
I'd say that my only complaint is that the novel (again, as others noted) seems to end a bit too abruptly.
MattDoc

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The inevitable expansion of "The Walking Dead" universe continues, and I suppose it was only a matter of time before the series ventured into the realm of novelization. Having been a huge Dead fan since the first graphic novels, I have watched the enterprise turn into an outright phenomenon. Having reviewed every other incarnation of the franchise (all of the graphic novels, collectibles, and AMC's television production), I jumped at the chance to pick up this collaboration by series creator Robert Kirkman and tidy horror writer Jay Bonansinga. "The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor" is an inspired idea for a novel. The Governor is one of the series' most notorious and loathsome villains--and the notion of exploring his back story will undoubtedly be appealing to fans of his dark power.

Well, it turns out that the Governor may not be as different as you might imagine. In many ways, this tale is a familiar survival story. Beginning in the first days of the zombie outbreak, the narrative follows the trials and tribulations of a small band of ragged survivors (including the man who will become The Governor, his brother, lifelong friends, and a little girl). As expected, we see the collective attempt to understand the new world order. Trying to exist in a suburban community, followed by a stint in the city, followed by isolationism--the band tries various strategies to build a new life. Every time peace seems to settle, the real world comes crashing down in the form of a new undead or even human menace. At what point does someone meet their rational limit? The novel takes us on the journey of The Governor until he reaches exactly that spot and then pushes to the other side. The final two chapters, especially, bring everything together in quite momentous ways.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By S. Sokoll on December 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This book is co-authoread and that may be part of the problem. This book leaned too far into graphic horror details and less on the common human bonds exhibited by the characters fighting their way through the horror. This may be due having Bonansinga, a veteran horror author, as a co-author. As a result the book lacks the humanity and the triumph of the human spirit needed to balance out the graphic details.

Also, Deduct a star for factual errors - If you are writing a "muzzle velocity" book you need to get your facts straight. For example, a twenty guage is LESS powerful than a twelve guage.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Saul X. Burroughs on April 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
(Warning: Possible Spoilers for the upcoming Television Season as well as for those who have not yet read the graphic novels but intend to.)

For those not in the know, `The Governor' is one of the primary villains in The Walking Dead universe. (He is set to make his grand entrance later this year when Season Three launches, more info here: [...] ). The man is a vile, misogynistic psychopath who thrives on terror, torture, and rape. He rules a small, barricaded enclave of humanity through psychological manipulation and heinous acts of violence. The hero of The Walking Dead, Rick Grimes, and his motley crew have the severe misfortune of crossing paths with The Governor and his like-minded cronies fairly early in the graphic novels. The ultimate outcome, which I won't ruin here, is as naturally chaotic and destructive as the world around them.

The Rise of the Governor (RotG) tells the back story of Phillip Blake, the man who eventually become The Governor, and his small band as they try to survive the early stages of `The Event': whatever it was that caused the dead to rise and begin making unhappy meals out of the breathing populace. On some levels it succeeds, but when it fails it truly comes up short.

Taking the work out of context, reading it simply as another post-apocalyptic novel and not part of a larger tapestry, its tragic flaw is a slow opening. Yes, zombies pop out of the shadows at every turn and Phillip Blake and his friends narrowly dispatch them in gruesome fashion. It's a zombie novel; that is par for the course. You can almost feel it coming: `been a few pages now, time for some more undead head bashing'.

By slow opening, I speak in terms of character arc.
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97 of 127 people found the following review helpful By Warren Peace on September 22, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoy the Walking Dead franchise and have enjoyed other zombie apocalypse novels so I thought this has to be no-brainer for me to read. Instead it turned out to be a no-brainer... period. Even being a fan of WD I found this book painful. I can generally overlook a few mistakes assuming I can get into and follow an interesting plot line. But the mistakes were so many that I just couldn't get past them.

Firstly, the writing was awkward. It used a third-person, present tense that was difficult to read. The kind of tense that a middle-school student might use in their first attempt at fiction. The author, presumably an established horror writer, seemed to get stuck using the same expressions over and over. "Thunderstruck" was something that every character seemed to be at some point. How many times did the characters feel "gravitational forces suck" them back or forward in the car. Really? It's called inertia, even if you are trying to be poetic how many times can you use the same expression? The over-use of metaphor and simile were more than a little annoying, again reminding me of a juvenile author's first attempts.

Secondly, the characters were two-dimensional. I couldn't empathize with a single one of them. The humanity of the characters (at least the human ones) in the WD series is what makes it so compelling and enjoyable. It's not just about monsters, it's how people interact and deal with the cards they have been dealt. This story missed the mark. I understand this was supposed about the characters losing their humanity but they should have first started with some.

Finally, the facts, or lack thereof, were impossible to overlook. I will not get into all the problems in the story, the "Ford S-10" has already been mentioned in other reviews.
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