Max Brooks’s WORLD WAR Z: Can the World Survive a Zombie Plague?

March 7 2014

I first encountered World War Z  by Max Brooks on vacation in 2008. My friend Ashley was so focused on reading it that I had to say her name three times to get her attention. She told me about the book and said she loved it so much that this was her fourth time reading it. I said, “Ooh. I love zombie stuff, can I read it when you’re done?” She gave it to me that night. I tore through it in two days.

From three dozen oral “interviews” emerges the heart-pounding story of how the world has survived a ten-year zombie plague. How did the Chinese government handle the warning signs? What about the Israelis? How did American suburbanites not only survive, but adapt to create new living communities? Why did the military screw up their response? What did moviemakers do to help society cope? Where does a blind Japanese gardener find the courage to fight the undead and help rebuild his homeland? What happened to our own government? Why is Cuba a new world superpower? This book takes on every angle you could imagine.

Pop culture’s zombie mania may be cooling down, but this is not any zombies-take-over-the-world story.  It shows you international, multidisciplinary perspectives of what happened and why things went so right or so wrong — how, for example — the Israelis took early threats seriously and how a slick American huckster sold faulty zombie-bite medicine. You’ll love this if you like deep strategic thought and truly terrifying moments with clever comedic flair. Just wait till you read the interview with “Sharon”. It is mind-melting. Trust me: I re-read it to this day, and it still scares the life outta me every single time.

 

 

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