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World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War Hardcover – September 12, 2006
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Audio CD, Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
World War Z is a fictional account of a worldwide outbreak of the living dead in the near future and judging from some of the descriptions of places and events in the beginning of the book it won't be too far in the future.Read more ›
It was Romero who took the voodoo myth of the reanimated corpse and popularized an idea of the zombie as a vessel for a communicable plague. He identified a fundamental anxiety and created new monster in response to modern anxieties. However, his use of the zombies as a critique of consumer culture isn't as fresh an observation as it might have been in the 70s, which is the most pertinent criticism of the recent "Dawn of the Dead" remake.
To the modern audience, the idea of zombies carries undercurrents of AIDS, biological warfare, and terrorism, and Brooks is one of the first to recognize and tap into that in an intelligent way. He's taken a specialized, genre subject and elevated it here to something that is literary. And while there will certainly be some who will be disappointed not to find the pages filled with endless descriptions of severed limbs and smashed brains, Brooks lays on enough of the biological details to keep the subject from becoming abstract, while keeping his focus aimed on something more significant.
As Brooks envisions it, the zombie plague encompasses the threat of terrorism and global war, natural catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina or the devastating tsunami, and global disease scares like avian flu and SARS.
There are two outcomes of a story about a zombie plague; either it consumes and annihilates humanity, or it is contained by the organized action of something like a government.Read more ›
World War Z isn't so much a novel as it is a collection of very personal recollections of people who have lived through - literally - hell on earth. In a way, it reminded me of news footage of these walls you see where, during a civil war, or natural disaster, people go and leave notes for loved ones, hoping someone, anyone, will see them. Every time I see something like that, it strikes me as hopeless and desperate, but at the same time noble and uplifting. In short, what makes us human. This book gave me the same reaction. I preordered it from Amazon, received it this morning, and finished it about an hour ago. I wish I'd rationed it out a bit, because I didn't want that feeling to end - the feeling of reading the accounts of some of the bravest souls who (n)ever walked the earth.
The only other book I've read that comes close to this in 'feel' is Warday, by Whitley Strieber and James Kunetka. But even that is too one-sided; the authors' own opinions and views are clearly dominant. In World War Z, each individual vignette is unique and special; from Tibetan smugglers to dirigible pilots to ex-politicians, each 'interview' has its own distinct voice.
In closing, I'd just like to say that while George Romero may be the father of the 'zombie genre', Max Brooks may well exceed him. Blasphemy? Nope. Just my opinion. One that is hopefully shared by millions of others.
PS: Here's hoping they don't butcher it when they make the movie! :D
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Pretty good, the film should have been more along this then the crap they madePublished 1 day ago by Alan C.
An interesting addition to the Zombie literature. I enjoyed the read. However, it is not a novel in the traditional sense. More like a collection of inter-related short stories. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Thomas M. Greiner
I'm not much into fantasy books, but I thought this story was quite well written. Loved the first-person accounts of experiences with the Zombiepocalypse.Published 2 days ago by B. Miller
This book, upon which the well-known movie with Brad Pitt was losely based, is absolutely riveting.Published 4 days ago by Hans Schoemaker
This is easily one of my favorite books, and I have gotten so many people to read it as well. In fact, the reason I just bought this book again is because someone I lent it to... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amy
It's written like a reporter or documentarian is chronicling a huge historical event. The book and movie are nothing alike. The book should've been a mini series.Published 4 days ago by Hikkilove
I loved this book through the first 100 pages. It's a series of interviews, each with a fresh perspective and experience in a shared crisis. I devoured each interview like popcorn. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Katie Hill
I read this book when it first came out and finally decided to write a review about it. This book is the gold standard that all zombie novels should be measured by. Read morePublished 5 days ago by zombie phreak
This book has become one of my favorites. I had to read it for my English class, and I am sure glad that I took that class. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Chris