A Fresh View of Rotting Corpses
A Fresh View of Rotting Corpses:
Not Your Average Zombie Stories
By: Meg Humphrey
Breathers by S.G. Browne In his debut book, Browne’s Zombie Romantic Comedy (Zom-Rom-Com) hits all the right spots. Zombies aren’t a mass infection taking over the world, they are a random accident – sometimes when someone dies they become a zombie. They can’t turn others into zombies and they do their best to make some sort of life for themselves post mortem. Our protagonist, Andy, attends Undead Anonymous meetings, does his best to stop (or at least cover up) the decomposition, and even falls in love with a fresh suicide victim. How do zombies continue to “live” in a world where they are, at best, ignored and abandoned and at worst…well, you can imagine how well people may react to the undead wandering about.
World War Z by Max Brooks
This is the best zombie media I’ve ever consumed because it isn’t actually about zombies. Sure, there are zombies everywhere, but the book is a collection of war stories. Children, civilians, and soldiers all over the globe are struggling to survive and fight back against the overwhelming and ever growing population of zombified citizens. Every piece is emotional and gritty, but not gory – it showcases the determination of the human spirit. PS. If you didn’t already know, the movie is nothing like the book, so please don’t think you can experience it by watching a Brad Pitt movie.
Pariah by Bob Fingerman
I’ll be honest: I bought this book for $1 from the Half Price Books clearance section so I didn’t have high expectations, but I was pleasantly delighted as I read through it. Pariah focuses on the survivors locked inside an apartment building while the dead mill about outside. These people keep on living as normally as possible despite seeing their supplies and their bodies dry up, refusing to give in to the temptation to just end their suffering. One day, it seems their stubbornness is rewarded – they see an ordinary girl walking through the crowds of zombies without them noticing. Does she hold the secret of getting past the undead?
Dance of the Dead by Richard Matheson
I don’t want to give anything away, but Matheson keeps the tension high and as you breeze through this short story with the constant feeling of “I know this can’t lead to anything good.” After World War III, four college students are out on a double date to the shady part of town where those of the faint of heart should never venture. The focus is on Peggy, the freshman and youngest of the group, and her reactions to the “entertainment” that her companions show her. Not only for those into the horror/sci-fi genres, this story will tie knots in your stomach as it makes you think about any uncomfortable (or even dangerous) date you’ve ever been on.
Death Troopers by Joe Schreiber
Death Troopers is more traditionally gory zombie fun that just so happens to be set in the Star Wars Universe. Taking place just before A New Hope, the Imperial prison barge Purge breaks down and comes across a seemingly derelict star destroy in hopes of aid. Unfortunately, the entirety of the star destroyer’s crew has been ravaged by a disease that messily kills and even more messily turns the dead into reanimated monsters. The few lucky, immune survivors on the Purge (including a couple fan favorites who wouldn’t be out of place on a prison barge *hint*hint*) now have to figure out how to escape the hordes of criminals and Imperials that want to turn them into firstname.lastname@example.org