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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet.…

World War Z

by Max Brooks

Overall Book Review:

If you just accept that there are zombies, World War Z is actually a very enjoyable read.  As ridiculous as they are in science fiction, Brooks does manage to make zombies work for this novel.  The novel itself is a collection of short stories–“personal accounts”–of survivors of the zombie war.  It’s hard to imagine the author not laughing a little bit as he wrote some of this novel; he’s just so serious about the zombies it almost comes off as parody.  However, Brooks does manage to somehow cast a realistic feel on the first half of the novel.  Unfortunately, as the novel progresses into its second half it loses its way a bit and begins to feel a tad silly, even for a zombie novel.  While every character feels unique, some of their stories begin to feel like zombie daydreams rather than zombie stories, and the author begins to both downplay and overrate the zombies in several ways.  While this may turn most readers off, lovers of zombies, hardcore science fiction, and apocalypse novels will definitely love World War Z.

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language: 15 religious exclamations; 60 mild obscenities; 7 religious profanities; 30 derogatory names; 40 scatalogical words; 39 anatomical terms; 1 offensive hand gesture; 67 f-word derivatives.

Violence/Gore:  Several scenes where zombies eat people involving graphic description of blood, entrails and brains; multiple scenes of violence involving guns, gas, and explosives resulting in death and injury.

Sex/Nudity:  It is mentioned that some zombies are nude because their clothes rotted off (non-sexual); 2 sexual references; a character mentions the use of “skin flicks”; and on two occasions rapes are reported, no details.

Mature Subject Matter:

Death, humanity, cannibilism.

Alcohol / Drug Use:

Characters drink and smoke on occasion.

Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

I enjoy reading adventure books like Gary Paulsen’s The Hatchet, probably because I like to lead an active life. Outside of reading, I camp, hike, run cross country and work on a farm, and a lot of these experiences let me appreciate the content of a good book, as well as the unlimited possibilities that can happen between its covers.