Thursday, August 20, 2009

Book 92: World War Z

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks

This book was so much fun. However, that does not do Brooks credit. While he writes about zombies, he also takes a look at globalization, third world vs. first world countries, and takes all these types of things into consideration in a well-thought out novel about zombies. I loved how Israel was the first country to take the threat seriously because, as one of their spies states, it was made up of "a group of people who live in constant fear of extinction" (32). In the United States, on the other hand, the reaction was to buy a bunch of fake vaccines on the market and pretend that it could never happen to them.

Eventually all the countries end up with areas of survivors, usually because the government made the tough decision to decide who was worth saving and where to cut their losses. The novel is an oral history, so there is never any doubt that some kind of humanity has survived, and somehow won the war. The novel is divided up into showing the beginnings of the zombie plague, the first reactions, the expanding zombie hordes and the human losses, until finally the humans can build enough stability in their small remaining territories to start stricking back.

Not only does the Zombie War have a horrendous affect on humanity, but I kept thinking about how badly it must have messed up the rest of nature -escaping humans hunting the forrests empty (and it didn't seem like the zombies really cared too much whether they were eating humans or any flesh in general). It seems like usually when this kind of apocalyptic stuff occurs, at least nature has an upper hand.

Basically, it was very entertaining but Brooks did not take the easy way out with simply portraying a bunch of flesh-eating monsters. He also explored politics and many other current issues to predict how the spread would occur and how different people and countries would possibly react.

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