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The Vegan Revolution... with Zombies Paperback – August 30, 2010
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This is a comedic zombie tale that really works...enough violence and gore to satisfy the gore hounds with enough comedic relief to balance it all out. --Famous Monsters of Filmland
Never before has an attempted conversion to an alternate lifestyle been such crazily quirky fun...The author has a field day poking fun at the complications that ensue from conflicting subgroups. He is unsparing in his comic commentary --Hellnotes
Top Customer Reviews
Being a vegan and a fan of zombie fiction, this was the book I've been waiting for.
David manages to slip in our message (go vegan) in a very humorous way.
He pokes fun at our movement, at the differing philosophies and organizations that promote veganism and at the recent glut of books with the title ...with zombies.
I laughed out loud several times.
The book also stands alone as a great zombie tale based on the premise that crap we put into livestock comes back to haunt us.
I mean, what a dream, right? Suppose eating animal flesh and secretions zombified all the non-vegans, and those who remained could create a peaceable, sustainable future? It's true, I'd lose almost everyone I love, but imagine the world that would be created if everyone descended from people who lived according to their compassionate values? Amazing. I'm pretty jealous of this fictional future.
And the way that this book takes the likes of Michael Pollan (in the book, he's "Michael Poland") to task is practically pornographically pleasurable for people like me. Although the popularly-echoed "arguments" against veganism that vegans hear wax and wane in popularity, right now, the notion I hear the most regularly is that it's OK to eat locally-raised, free-range, organic meat/milk/eggs/whatever. The people who say this almost never actually DO only eat 100% locally-raised, free-range, organic animals, but they pay it lip service. Furthermore, no matter how you keep an animal for slaughter, we're talking about keeping creatures just for the purpose of taking their reproductive secretions and then slaughtering them for meat, all so that people can eat food that is terrible for us, and drives the leading causes of death. And it seems to me that Michael Pollan was the one who really popularized this erroneous, self-serving, and hypocritical path. So when the book's Michael Poland endorses the "Stress-Free" animal products, and it ends up turning flesh-eaters into zombies, well, that's cathartic to read. Thanks, David Agranoff.
Interestingly, the other big name Agranoff parodies is Peter Singer, who in the book is "Peter Sanger." Although Peter Singer's book Animal Liberation is on my Kindle to read, I never really looked into him or his ideas, nor was I aware that there was a disdain for him among many in the animal rights and vegan communities. After some Googling, I learned that Singer is a utilitarian, meaning he believes in reducing total harm to all creatures, and for that reason he embraces some things with which vegans do not relate. In particular, he defends killing human babies who are developmentally disabled, because in his view this will reduce total harm. What a shock for me to learn this! He is not someone who believes in the moral equality of all creatures, he believes in reducing harm to creatures who have "moral standing," which he does not grant to those with very low intelligence. OMGWTF. Obviously, I'll have to read more to understand what the effing eff this ish is about and how someone who promotes animal liberation could think this way, but once again I extend my thanks to the author, this time for tipping me off.
That said, ummm, OK, I'm really not the right person to read a zombie book, or any kind of genre purely-for-fun book. I'm too darn picky. I'm that person who's all, like, "Wait, didn't even ONE human try eating this Stress-Free meat before it went to market?" And, "So, this stuff was just rolled out in Portland and some other areas, had it gone national yet? How could EVERYONE have been zombified? There must have been some meat-eaters who hadn't had any Stress-Free label yet, right?" Also, why couldn't this one book have just been a little different and had it so that people didn't turn into a zombie just because a zombie bites you? There's no reason except for zombie tropes why one of them biting a vegan would zombify them. I just think it would have been better that way, but maybe that's crazy talk. And, yeah, the typos were kinda crappy.
It's also funny! The quiz at the end of each chapter often made me laugh. Somewhere toward the end, the quizzes stopped being consistent in format with the earlier quizzes, but I'm probably the only anal-retentive freak who noticed or cared. The skewering of the hipster obsessions with bacon, beards, 'bots, bicycles and, yes, zombies, was pretty right-on. Even though we vegans often get lumped in with all that (and we do agree about the bikes), really the defining characteristic of a hipster is their tendency to grab onto miscellaneous aspects of culture that have gained temporary currency which may, for a time, include veganism. But another key aspect of hipsterism is apathy, and vegans who delve into it for true reasons (not for short-lived social currency or a temporary excuse to have an eating disorder before they give it up because "they felt sick") are far too invested in caring about stuff to fit in with the people commonly called "hipsters."
My point is, terrific parody here that was incredibly fun and refreshing for me to read. Recommended for zombie fans, vegans, or people who really like the show Portlandia.
However, the first part of the title is actually the real premise of the book. The vegans are revolting AND rejoicing that the nasty meat-eaters are finally gone and at last they can build their utopian meat-free society. If you don't get the idea early on that eating animal flesh is wrong, don't worry, it will be pounded into your brain with every page. This is a vegan manifesto masquerading as a zombie novel. I haven't been this "preached at" since that time my mother dragged me to a prayer meeting.
The typos are innumerable and frustrating. (At least I hope they were typos!) How does one get a job as a book editor without knowing the difference between "to" and "too", and "there" and "their"? There are attempts at humor - namely the quizzes at the end of each chapter, but on the whole, the book is just mean-spirited. Every non-vegan is stereotyped, put into a little compartment and sentenced to death. About the only interesting character development occurs when there is a squabble within the ranks of the vegans - basically over which group is the "holier than thou". It was hard to choose a side. The smug group or the self-satisfied group?
It is an accepted fact of zombie fiction that zombies must be killed. But to have characters ENJOY killing the zombies because they didn't like the people the zombies USED TO BE - that's just wrong. And it leaves a bad taste in my mouth
The characters are well crafted and have enough depth to keep your attention.
The author uses humor to assist in delivering the sometimes not too subtle message that the ever increasing consumption of meat and dairy is wreaking havoc with the environment and the consumers' thereof.