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Zombies: The Recent Dead Paperback – October 21, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this hefty anthology of 22 short stories originally published between 2000 and 2010, zombies run the gamut from shambling, mindless killers to transformed super-cool high school students. Introductions by Guran and David J. Schow contextualize the zombie oeuvre. In Kevin Veale's darkly hilarious "Twisted," two men manage to escape the zombies by ingesting huge amounts of drugs. In Kit Reed's call-and-response "The Zombie Prince," a strange creature and a recently rejected woman have an increasingly intimate conversation about loss and life. Tim Lebbon's coming-of-age novella, "Naming of Parts," in which a boy and his parents flee zombies across postapocalyptic England, delivers an emotional punch despite its by-the-numbers adult–child role reversal. In "Zora and the Zombie," Andy Duncan combines fact and fiction as Zora Neale Hurston confronts zombies in Haiti. This collection has something for every zombie fan. (Jan.)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Prime Books; First Edition edition (October 21, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607012340
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607012344
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,419,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By TorridlyBoredShopper VINE VOICE on November 18, 2010
Format: Paperback
Sometimes originality can be a blight If you don't expect it. That seems to be the case here, where many people expeected shambling walkers and got a mixed buffet of zombies doing all sorts of interesting stuff. I have to say that I like the original stories, too, and cannot dismiss something when it is changed. Still, a change that is interesting is good news and traditional zombie tales can be found everywhere. So, if you want something a tad bit different, read on. If you don't, I can understand that and say you will be disappoint with almost all of the tales. Honestly, keep an open mind about the book.

In the Max Brooks story, he sticks to something from the Zombie Wars. He also does this in the collection The New Dead, where he explores this topic. Here he looks at the Great Wall and what it meant to the Chinese and the world overall, and it hints to other things that transpired. good stuff BUT hinged on a bigger book. In Brain Keene's Slected Scenes From the end of the World, there was a nice flavor of zombiedom with a lovely taste of fastforward going on. Basically, you see snippets of horror and taste some nicely plotted demise. In the Naming of Parts, tim Lebbon is Tim Lebbon and makes a story well worth mentioning. Other stories also stand out and do it in both the traditional and the new ways.
The book is as follows:
Twisted, Kevin Veale - The Things he Said, Micheal Marshal Smith - Naming th eParts, Tim Lebbon - Dating Secrets of the Dead, David Prill - Lie Still, Sleep Becalmed, Steve Duffy - The Great Wall: A story from the Zombie War, Max Brooks - First Kisses From Beyond the Grave, Nik Houser - Zora and the Zombie, any duncan - Obsequy, David J. Schow - Deadman's Road - Joe R.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Veale on May 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
The fast and dirty version is that I was entirely impressed with the anthology, and found it a thoroughly enjoyable read with some new and interesting spins on the broader zombie mythos.

Given that these are short-stories and I want to avoid spoiling anything, these are going to involve a short precis of what makes the story distinctive, before covering what I thought.

With that said, on to the details! In order of appearance, we have:

"Introductory Sections"

There is an introduction-in-three parts, comprising a "Preshamble" by Paula Guran that provides some crisply-written, useful context to how and where the points of tension and intersection between the modern zombie and the classical vodoun creature are. David J. Schow unpacks the concept further in his introduction, "The Meat of the Matter," which considers both a historical/literary history of zombies and modern popular culture, together with a life lived alongside the films and texts in question. A final "Deaditorial Note," also from Paula Guran, delves into the changes in the zombi-cultural landscape from 2003-2010, a period coming after the period considered in detail within Schow's piece.

I found these sections to be a very interesting start to the anthology, filling in all kinds of contextual details and references that I'd either missed or forgotten in my own encounters with the zombie mythos.

They are also clearly noted on the Table of Contents, so if you just want to skip to the stories they're hardly going to get underfoot. Personally, I found them well worth the time.

"Twisted," by Kevin Veale.

This story is mine, and the fact I'm discussing it personally is a little weird.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Zombie_Gunslinger on May 24, 2011
Format: Paperback
When an anthology announces it has short stories by famous authors, it's easy to get suckered into purchasing it, especially when said authors are some of the true kings of zombie horror. And that is why I picked up "Zombies: The Recent Dead." Not strictly because it is zombies (although that was enticing) nor because it was yet another anthology to add to my already burgeoning collection, but mostly due to the fact that (as the cover states) this collection included stories from some of my favorites: Max Brooks and Brian Keene.

You would think that a book that contains these guys (as well as 20 others) would be a perfect horror anthology...(insert annoying buzzer sound here) but you would be sadly, and frustratingly disappointed with this one.

I suppose I should have guessed from the very get go that "The Recent Dead" was trying much, much to hard to be like the very successful (yet also disappointing) "The Living Dead" anthology by John Joseph Adams. First, before even getting to the real stories, you have to slog your way through three(!!!!!!) different introductions. Of course, that wouldn't be so bad if the intros were any good, or even thought provoking. Believe me when I say that in this one, they aren't. Look Paula Guran, I don't need a 10 page preface explaining to me what zombies are. We all know. Much like every introduction I've read in every anthology I own, Guran just repeats the oft said descriptions of the various kinds of zombies (and yes, I get it, Romero's "...of the dead" zombies aren't even traditional). I also don't need a rambling (and not very funny) essay by David Schow, blabbing on and on about how he became infatuated with the living dead. That would be great in an autobiography or magazine piece, but here, it doesn't do any good.
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