Thursday, June 12, 2008

World War Z

After a zombie uprising that leads to a ten-year struggle between humans and zombies, a journalist is sent around the globe to conduct interviews and put together a report based on the events of World War Z. This book (subtitled "An Oral History of the Zombie Wars") is told through the talking-head-style interviews and tracks the path of the zombie uprising and the eventual human victory.

It is a very realistic book - there are many passages where the word "zombie" could easily be replaced with any other foe. With the vivid descriptions in this book, it feels like these events could really happen (which is why it's a good thing Max Brooks also wrote The Zombie Survival Guide, to help us all through the tough times).

I'm personally a huge fan of the talking heads writing style. Last year, I was totally captivated by Chuck Palahniuk's Rant, which uses the same narration style to tell the life story of Buster "Rant" Casey. From what I've heard, many readers have a problem with essentially "starting over" with a new narrator every few pages, but I've found that having all those different points of view make the description of something as global as a World War that much easier to understand. If it were told by one person, the grandiose nature of the story would be minimized from only hearing one side of the story.

Brooks, a former SNL writer, did a fantastic job with this book, and I'd love to see what else he could bring to the page.

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