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The Walking Dead: The Road to Woodbury (The Walking Dead Series) Hardcover – October 16, 2012
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“An entertaining read.” ―ComicBookMovie.com
“The novel fleshes out . . . backstories and connects them, giving depth to people who remained largely mysteries in the comic books. For comic book readers, the novel is full of easter eggs and surprise connections, making it not only entertaining, but necessarily for filling in the gaps left by the comic books . . . ‘The Road to Woodbury' is an essential read for any fan of ‘The Walking Dead'.” ―Examiner.com
“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 on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
“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 on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
“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 on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
“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 on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
“It takes great advantage of the literary medium in a way that most tie-in books would not.” ―TVOverMind.com on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
“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 on The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor
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.
Top customer reviews
ALL CAPS IN DIALOGUE. It's kind of implied that those lines are urgent and shouted, and there's no need to capslock like an excited Tumblr tween. Worse? Caps and italics combined. And it's all over the novel.
I feel as though most of the near-bites are written the same way by this author: "Before < zombie> gets a chance to <attack - usually some form of bite>, <person> <saves the day>." Maybe it's some spillover from Rise of the Governor that's making me feel like I've seen it a billion times.
I would rather see the word "zombie" a million times in a row over seeing the word "thing" in place of it just once. "Dude" in place of "man" (outside of dialogue) doesn't feel right, either.
I'm actually not quite sure what kept me going through the book, overall, and the only positive thing I can say is that sometimes the details and descriptions are pretty well-written. (Though once you use a million-dollar word in a paragraph, you should try not to exhaust use of the same word by the end of the paragraph...)
Still a loyal TWD fan, and maybe to a fault.
I'm not going to place any spoilers here, but the book did not (in my opinion) do justice to what did and what might have happened in Woodbury. It is an enjoyable read, on its own merits, but leaves one wanting more in terms of the storyline with the Governor.
Even though I start this review with praise, it doesn't mean that the little details and issues don't affect the novel's overall quality. I'd honestly give the novel's plot a solid 4 stars, but the ridiculous metaphors and similes rear their ugly head (and Bonansinga's thesaurus gets another hefty workout).
Bonansinga seems to find words that he likes a lot, then he proceeds to sprinkle them throughout the narrative. His greatest hits include "thunderstruck," "erect," "crestfallen", "telltale", and my personal favorite, "half-ajar" (which is just flat out silly). He's an author that desperately needs an editor. He has a bad habit of referring to characters by their first and last names (I affectionately refer to this as "Charlie Brown Syndrome"). He writes like he's only doing so to fill a word count and deadline. However, I applaud the length of this novel. It's far more concise and feels less bloated.
The humanizing of The Governor is quite unbelievable. I don't buy it for a bit. It's hard to believe that the man we know from the comic struggled with any sort of mental or emotional conflict. I'm a big hater of "revisionist tales" that try to tell a prequel story that alters what we already know. This despicable man is not one who'd vomit after the rape of another character. It's ludicrous and almost insulting.
The redeeming aspect, and probably my favorite part of the novel, is the journey of Bob Stookey. A derelict drunk in both the comic and show, he's given a pretty great reason for his behavior in other media.
As with "Rise of the Governor", the majority of the characters are flat and borderline useless. The book would have you believe that everyone in the southeast is a football loving pothead. If you see a name you're not familiar with in one of these novels, don't get attached to them. They're cannon fodder indefinitely. Luckily, through the murder of several characters that don't matter, Lilly is given more of reason to perform her inevitable duty in the comics (and probably the final novel of the "trilogy"). Her journey is far more compelling than the lame tale spun for The Governor.
At the beginning of reading this novel, I expected more of the same. I declared that on my deathbed, I'd ask for the time back that I lost to reading this novel series. I have to take it back... at least for this iteration.
The governor is dramatically different then the show and Woodbury isn’t the cozy community that you see in the show either. It’s definitely painted as a darker place and seems more realistic of a settlement that would band together in the first years of the apocalypse.
It will be interesting where the governor takes the town after his ending declaration in the book. Will it turn into the cozy little community? I know how it eventually ends because of the show but sometimes getting to that point is equally interesting. I will also be interested in what becomes of Lilly after her rebellion, since her hands are tied at the moment.
I won’t rush on to the other books since this didn’t have that compelling hook that was in the first book did but I will eventually get to them once they’re available in paperback.
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