Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Book #1 "World War Z" by Max Brooks

~all the spoiler alerts~

I recently watched the movie World War Z for the first time.  I've been fascinated by apocalyptic-type stories for a long time.  I love seeing the different interpretations of how people would survive in a crumbling society or when facing a massive disaster.  I really enjoyed the movie, and I thought it brought up some really interesting ideas.  When I saw that it was based on a book I immediately ordered it.

This book was different than what I expected. It's written as a series of interviews, which I found to be tedious and annoying throughout the book.  The main character in the movie is evidently the one recording the interviews and asking the questions, but he hardly exists, even as a narrator.  There is no mention of his family or his part in curing the epidemic.  In fact, there is no cure.  Almost the entire plot of the movie was unique and not based on the book at all.  The resolution in the book is a typical, slow takeover of the zombie-infested areas by the surviving military.

There were, however, a handful of new ideas about how different personality types would handle a zombie-like disaster.  There were some people (those most susceptible to suggestion and Stockholm syndrome) who pretended to be zombies.  There were military units using trained canines, which was heart-wrenching to read about and also very realistic.  There were scammers who pretended to have cures in order to make money.  There were governments who covered up the epidemic to avoid a panic even though they knew that most people would die.  There were military units who killed massive amounts of people to protect themselves.  There were people who became cannibals to survive.  And there were people who survived, while everyone around them panicked, ran, committed suicide, and hid.

Overall, I enjoyed the perspective on humanity that this book presented, but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone who isn't interested in the zombie apocalypse backdrop.  If you watch The Walking Dead, you might enjoy it.

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