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The Living Dead Paperback – September 1, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Recently prolific anthologist Adams (Seeds of Change) delivers a superb reprint anthology that runs the gamut of zombie stories. There's plenty of gore, highlighted by Stephen King's Home Delivery and David Schow's classic Blossom. Less traditional but equally satisfying are Lisa Morton's Sparks Fly Upward, which analyzes abortion politics in a zombified world, and Douglas Winter's literary pastiche Less than Zombie. Also outstanding, Kelly Link's Some Zombie Contingency Plans and Hannah Wolf Bowen's Everything Is Better with Zombies take similar themes in wildly different directions. Neil Gaiman's impeccably crafted Bitter Grounds offers a change of pace with traditional Caribbean zombies. The sole original contribution, John Langan's How the Day Runs Down, is a darkly amusing twist on Thornton Wilder's Our Town. There's some great storytelling for zombie fans as well as newcomers. (Nov.)
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"The best collection of zombie fiction stories ever." --Paul Goat Allen, Barnes & Noble.com
"Believe the hype. The Living Dead is absolutely the best zombie anthology I've ever read (and I've read many)... If you have even a vague interest in zombie fiction, you MUST buy this book." --HorrorScope
"The Living Dead contains stories of heartbreak, drama, and man's eternal struggle against himself. The focus doesn't fall squarely on violence and horror, which earns it a place among the best of zombie fiction. The Living Dead is not a book to be ignored; it demands a read through--maybe a couple."--Robert Kirkman, writer of The Walking Dead and Marvel Zombies
I just finished letting my rotted fingers turn the pages of the best zombie anthology ever. If I was told to think of one word to sum up all the greatness that is this anthology, that one word would be PERFECTION, and yet, that might not give it justice. THE LIVING DEAD, Edited by John Joseph Adams, is bursting at it binding with 34 wonderful zombie stories from the best horror authors in the world." --The Walking Dead Fan Club blog
"This superb anthology, which assembles some of the best zombie short fiction from the past 30 years, is noteworthy for going beyond the typical undead apocalypse scenario so common in horror today. Instead, editor Adams has chosen works covering the full gamut of zombie fiction. [...] Named one of Publishers Weekly's 2008 Best Books of the Year, this collection contains a story for every zombie fan." --Library Journal
Top customer reviews
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Missing stories: 1) "This Year's Class Picture, 2) "Ghost Dance", and 3) "Less Than Zombie".
This book suffers the usual Anthology's curse : A few really good ones (who knew I'd love a zombie cowboy story?) and a few just awful ones, as if they were technically proficient freshmen, without the time to take more than one step past current formulae in creative writing of this subject.
Give this a lazy read. Read a story now and then, don't forget about the book (you don't want to miss one of the good ones,) but don't waste important time alone : I brought this book with me always, at work, in waiting rooms, etc, so I have a fair opinion of it as a whole.
The only true bias I had to this, is some of the best stories I'd already read before (Clive, Poppy, etc.) and wanted more from some of the 'new (to me) material.' Some passed, some failed.
Read the titles to the stories, if some are from your favourite authors, and then weigh-in. If you haven't, at least get the book for these, and the other two or three wonderful surprises i'd found. If I could, I'd shave the content by half, and make this an excellent read.
Well worth your time, if you like zombies.
Some of the stories were fantastic and a few were not nearly as good, but I loved the collection as a whole.