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Zombie Turkeys: How an Unknown Blogger Fought Unkillable Turkeys (The Life After Life Chronicles Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 187 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top customer reviews
Sam Melvin is a reporter with the Midley Beacon, it’s a tiny local paper - with an online presence - run by its penny-pinching editor Lisa Kambacher. When Sam sees the two turkey hunters on the slab in the local mortuary, he knows he has a story to cover and he sets out to do so with great gusto. As the zombie turkeys multiply, Sam and Lisa are the leading media team on the ground and the Midley Beacon goes international, solving their financial woes and syndicating their work across the globe. But it’s not all good news. After all, there are those people-killing zombie turkeys heading into town…
This was a book I picked up with trepidation as it seemed all too possible it would be a ‘one trick pony’ stretching a single joke to beyond breaking point across the length of an entire novel. Wrong! It is like a bowl of potpourri on the sideboard of life - lots of subtle blending examples of humour - many of them very American so I suspect there were even more than I noticed, handicapped by my British perspective. This is a book that takes ironic comedy to a whole new level - maybe ‘steelic’ comedy…? Humour is a very personal thing, but this book hit me right on the funny bone.
‘Wanted badly: .30-06 carbine. Will trade hunting dog or wife for it.’
This is a well-written book which takes a totally deadpan approach to a thoroughly - hysterically - funny sequence of events. It is dark comedy, so avoid if you are squeamish. The pace of the book rolls along in a perfect, unhurried way - screaming up into the action sequences and taking time to enjoy the more delicious moments of humour. The story itself is a lot deeper than many real zombie books and the explanation for the zombie phenomenon is as clever as it is satirical.
The characters are well portrayed, deep enough to engage with and care about, but not so deep you get distracted from what they are doing by their personalities. They are the agents through which we see the events unfolding rather than the focus of the story. But the humour is subtle, all-pervading: like the idea of the survivalist organic turkey farmer, part of a network of such, living off grid - except for ordering things from Amazon on his wife’s credit card of course…
‘The most disheartening thing was, she’d stab one through the heart, it’d drop fifteen feet to the ground with a satisfying thud, and then it’d stagger to its feet five minutes later and fly back up fifteen minutes later.’
The downside is that maybe some of the humour is lost on a non-US reader. There were a couple of moments I thought ‘Huh?’ then decided it was probably a reference to something outside my cultural parameters. The only other criticism I had was that it maybe played the theme along a tiny bit too far and perhaps had a few scenes been a bit shorter, a bit less detail on the way the plague spread, or a couple of turkey attacks left out - it might have been a sharper read. But these are very minor nit-picks against the whole.
This is a book I can recommend wholeheartedly to anyone who enjoys slow-boil satire and does not mind a few gory giblets thrown in the mix. If you want a good comedy read, you should gobble this up!
Right off the bat, you have to assume that with a title like “Zombie Turkeys” that this will be a humorous story, yet it unfolds almost like a documentary. I wanted to love it, but something didn’t fully click with me. I did LIKE it, nonetheless. There are some cute running gags about expense accounts and the occasional shift of POV to the head ZT “He felt great. He was full of energy, he had many hens to breed with, and he was the leader of a great flock.” There are plenty of other gags (like ordering a Zombie Turkey killing flame thrower from Amazon Prime) that continue to make things fun, as well as all of the way-out ways they develop to dispatch the undead turkeys.
The central character is Sam Melvin, a reporter with the tiny local Illinois paper “The Midley Beacon”. Sam becomes an internet sensation by reporting on the Zombie Turkey outbreak. He always manages to be in the right place at the right time to get the story. Sam is a VERY mild-mannered reporter and I found him a little too ‘everyman’. Walter Mitty at least had adventures in his head, Sam seemed to get to the scene MOSTLY in the aftermath of the battle. Overall, I think it was the characters that left me in the friend-zone with this story. None of them struck me as endearing, which I think could have gone a long way to make this a better story (for me). Perhaps I should also go on the record as stating that I’m not a Zombie Genre fan. Never watched an entire George Romero movie and switched off “The Walking Dead” after 3 episodes. I’m more of a “Shaun of the Dead” and “iZombie” kind of guy.
Before closing, I also have to say that at the end of ZT, there is an opening chapter of Andy’s second book “My Undead Mother-in-law”. I found it interesting enough to put it on my reading list for the future. Maybe I just don’t like turkeys?
If you have an off-beat sense of humor, give Zombie Turkeys a try. It might be right up your alley.
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