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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

LBT's Generic Book Corner

Hello monsters, and welcome to my little corner of MOBFD! It took me quite some time to decide what to do. Luckily, I eventually remembered the adage, "write what you know," which narrowed the topics to books and The Golden Girls. As much as I would LOVE to liveblog rewatching the series, I figured books might have more widespread appeal. That is not to say, however, that I am not watching that zany Blanche as I type. I am only human, after all.

So. Books. What I want to do is write about books that have meant something to me, whether it is because of love, or hate, or whatever. I was tempted to start with Bridge to Terabithia but did not want to RUIN my computer with the guaranteed RIVERS OF TEARS.

So instead, Zombies!!!

I am today focusing on Max Brooks' World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, and man, I really like this book. I appreciate Brooks' commitment to the book's universe, and really, anything with zombies is an easy sell for me.

For those who may not know, the set-up is that the narrator (a fictionalized Brooks) conducts interviews with survivors of the zombie apocalypse, and through these interviews paints a picture of both the zombie apocalypse and its effect on the world. However, what struck me the most was the fact that in between descriptions of zombie mayhem and a world gone mad, WWZ has some of the most human moments I have read in a long time. I did not make a fool out of myself in front of Mrs. McMurty's class (thank you, Bridge to Terabithia), but I was genuinely moved at parts.

Plus, you know, zombies.

Next time, I will talk about another book. Or maybe just work through my
Bridge to Terabithia related angst. Whatever the case, 'til then, monsters!



  2. Zombie favorite books: Jaaaannnneeee Eyre. Gravity's Raaaiiiiinnnnbow. Portnoy's Complaaaiiiinnnt. Enders Gaaaammmeeee.

  3. Thanks for this. I've been curious about the book, but didn't now if it was actually good or not. It is really hard to find well written, high quality scary books. It sounds like Savage Detectives with Zombies.

    Let me know a day in advance of the Bridge to Terabithia discussion so I can bring extra tissues to work (or maybe leave my emotions at home).

  4. Mans, you should totally read this book. The thing I thought that Brooks does really well is to take the subject matter very seriously. As opposed to say, The Walking Dead, which basically glorifies the violence of zombie-on-non-zombie munching, World War Z basically asks the question, "What would it be like to go to war against an army of the undead?" The answer is pretty compelling and pretty terrifying.

    Not to give too much away, but just to offer an example, at one point Brooks discusses the idea of a Zombie war being the only possibility of a true "Total War" because of the fact that zombies do not do anything other than attempt to deplete the opposing forces (i.e. they don't sleep, they don't eat anything other than brains, etc). What's worse, any loss incurred by "our" side is a net gain for theirs. It's thinking like this that makes this book much more than just another zombie story.

  5. I am very intrigued, but it doesn't answer the question: "Why does Teacherman like Billy Collins so much?"

  6. It's strange that I remember loving the ending of this so much. Normally my favorite thing about zombie movies is the grim, hopeless, futureless endings (I am very fun at parties). That lack of a happy ending makes them seem more real and less "Hollywood". But then in WWZ he turns that on its head and uses the fact that humans DO survive, and DO record the events, as an authentication of the narrative. It's such a game changer for zombie mythos in general (as well as a great book).

  7. i'm a fan of this book as well! my fave part! (i'm most disturbed by...?) the people who pretend to be zombies even as they are being devoured by zombies.