The Walking Dead, Compendium 1
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The Walking Dead, Compendium 1 (The Walking Dead #1-48)

4.41 of 5 stars 4.41  ·  rating details  ·  39,482 ratings  ·  1,322 reviews
Introducing the first eight volumes of the fan-favorite, New York Times Best Seller series collected into one massive paperback collection.

In a world ruled by the dead, we are forced to finally start living. With The Walking Dead #1-48, this compendium features more than one thousand pages chronicling the start of Robert Kirkman's Eisner Award-winning story of zombie horro...more
Paperback, 1088 pages
Published May 19th 2009 by Image Comics
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World War Z by Max BrooksThe Zombie Survival Guide by Max BrooksThe Walking Dead, Vol. 01 by Robert KirkmanFeed by Mira GrantPride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith
45th out of 1,119 books — 3,413 voters
The Stand by Stephen KingThe Road by Cormac McCarthyThe Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsWorld War Z by Max Brooks1984 by George Orwell
Best Post-Apocalyptic Fiction
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Community Reviews

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This is my second go-around with this sprawling, epic compendium in preparation for tackling the follow-up. I'm so glad I did a re-read because there was a lot I had plain forgotten and much more I had gotten tangled-up with the television series. Only reading the source material again, did I realize just how much the producers of the show actually changed from Kirkman's comic. The fundamentals of the story are essentially the same, but the devilish details have undergone quite a makeover. I hav...more
Barks & Bites
I cannot believe the dark places this graphic novel delves. No one, and I mean no one, is safe in this ongoing saga. It takes place after the dead have risen and destroyed everything and follows a handful of often rotating survivors as they try to get by in a frightening new world. It starts out a little slow as everything is set up but once it gets going I didn't want to put it down.

It is less focused on the zombies than its core of characters and their interaction and relationships but there i...more
I really, really love zombie movies, and anything really that involves zombies. (Yes, even Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. If you can't like that idea at least a little bit, then I can't like you.) But pretty quickly after my zombie obsession started, I realized that what interests me about these stories isn't the zombie killing aspect at all. Instead, what really fascinates me about zombie apocalypse movies is how they portray the breakdown of society, and how people deal with this. Blowing zo...more
(Some spoilers for both the show and the graphic novel herein. I tried not to include too many. You have been warned.)

Okay. Forget everything you know and hear me out: Zombies are the great equalizing scourge.

One of the first books my younger self fell hopelessly in love with (which probably explains an awful lot) was Stephen King's "The Stand." The book's been out for, like, more than three decades, so it's your own fault if this is a spoiler but all you need to know for this review of an entir...more
Lolly's Library
Feb 26, 2013 Lolly's Library rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone with solid upper body strength
I was going to write reviews of the first three volumes of this series, but I decided to save my creative juices (and they are so little) for the compendium. So here we go...

First off, a general overview: The story concerns a local cop, Rick, who wakes in the hospital to discover the world has gone to hell. All the people have been turned into the walking dead. (I know, overtones of 28 Days Later, but go with it.) We then follow him as he struggles to find out what has happened, where all the zo...more
* How I found it: a friend recommendation
* Type: Paperback
* My initial thoughts: A comic book? Am I a prepubescent 13 year old boy? This book is THICK.
* Why I said "yes": Show is great (which was also recommended from above mentioned friend) and pure realization that I need to step out of my comfort zone when it comes to entertainment. ((You mean I can't read dirty romance novels and period pieces for life?))

This was the only comic book I have ever read before. AMC based a show (which is fantast...more
Crystal Starr Light
Bullet Review:


This compendium is a monster. If I were doing this whole Walking Dead thing again, I would have AVOIDED the compendium all together and just stuck with the trades. Because the compendium is HUGE. Seriously, I was afraid I'd break a limb just dropping it from the top of the bed to the floor. It's heavy, it's awkward to hold (particularly if you are the type to take it to bed to read before going to sleep), it's non-transportable (good LUCK tak...more
Zombies are boring.

There. I said it. And I'm not ashamed.

They are, though. Zombies have no real motivation, they have no goals other than to kill all humans. They are mindless, a kind of twisted force of nature whose great terror lies in their sheer numbers and their unstoppability. As a concept, zombies are interesting, and as a symbol or a metaphor there's a lot you can do with them, but the zombies themselves are kind of dull. They lurch about, slowly decaying, looking for people to devour. N...more
Joshua Batson
I took the all to trite path of tv then book. The series was amazing and I couldn't put the story on hold while they filmed the next season so I picked up my first comic book since pubescence.
First off the two are not the same. They are similar in a few keeps points and milestones but the events and characters diverge greatly from the separate story lines.

Thankfully the one thing the televised version got right was that the Zombies are only a minor part of the story. The writing focuses more o...more
Wow. To say I was disappointed would be an understatement.

Where to begin? I really enjoy reading comics (or graphic novels, if that's the term you prefer) and am constantly on the lookout for something new to enjoy in the genre. For the most part, I tend to read classic, well known stuff like Alan Moore's work or Maus or things like that. Recently I got the itch to try out something a bit more, well, recent! Something new and fresh.

It seems like everybody's reading The Walking Dead nowadays, and...more
Scott Rhee
I'm probably not going to add too much more to all that's been said about this graphic novel/ TV show, other than to say that, yes, I am one of THOSE types who religiously watch the show and eagerly await every Sunday night like it was Halloween. I was hooked from the pilot (which is hard to believe was three years ago), and have been dutifully following the heart-stopping and gut-wrenching escapades of Rick and his family and the band of survivors that fans have grown to love (and, in some case...more
Although I gave it 5 stars, I cannot say that I liked this book, because this is some truly nasty, scary s***! I haven't been this upset, freaked out, disgusted and thoroughly absorbed in a story for a very long time.
Modern-day America is no more. Not only are there no video games, no Internet, no hot showers or even running water, but at any moment you and your loved ones could be eaten by a zombie. It's about as horrific a scenario as they come, not so much because of the scary gory monsters...more

The Walking Dead is, firstly, undeniably entertaining, and equally as thrilling. I mean... zombie apocalypses usually are, but TWD takes it to a new level. It's a lot more fast-paced and -- I'm tempted to say -- more lively than the TV series in my opinion (but really, go watch it. I mean it. Go). It's far, far more interesting to see the deteriorating psychological states of these characters as opposed to the...more
Karla (Mossy Love Grotto)
I've tried to think of what I want to say about this, but my status updates (with many spoiler tags re: the TV series) pretty much says it all in a far more entertaining way.

In short: I knew before going in that comic books weren't my thing (even though I haven't read that many), that I'd feel cheated out of heft and weight to the story and characters. It's like expecting opera at a Broadway musical. Ain't gonna happen.

But what confuzzled me most was how this became such a phenomenon that made p...more
I don't read a lot of comics, uh, graphic novels, so I am unsure really how to rate this. I can't rate it against other comics given my lack of expertise and I sure don't think it is fair to compare it to any actual novels. So, from a naive point of view: if you like the zombie apocalypse or are a fan of the show, you will probably enjoy this. I did. As a note, something I wanted to know before reading was whether the comics contain spoilers that would ruin the show, but I couldn't seem to get a...more
Alex Ristea
I had no idea graphic novels could make me think about so many fundamentally human ideas.

The Walking Dead has been one of my favourite things lately, and it all comes down to one thing: character.

A zombie apocalypse is a great premise and a fantastic vehicle for exploring human nature, and Kirkman really went to town in this series. Because it's not about exploring the zombie theme. The world-building is next-to-none, and there are scant details about any of the larger issues around the world. I...more
Christopher H.
This review covers both Compendiums One and Two (i.e., Issues 1-96) of The Walking Dead graphic novel series--

Who'da thunk it? Me, the great lover of literature would find myself a rabid fan of Robert Kirkman's The Walking Dead graphic novel series, and the equally amazing AMC TV series. Actually it was the TV series that got me onto the cult phenomenon of the graphic novels. I happened to notice that AMC was running all of Season Two of TWD the weekend before the premiere for Season Three. I im...more
Apr 20, 2012 Dan rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
Q: why did i read this? A: because i can't resist zombies. in any form. i've watched the dumb tv show too. and i'll probably continue watching it. i'm 35 years old. what is wrong with me?

i know this series is a fanboy darling, but count me out. the walking dead comics suffer from the opposite problem of the tv series. on the show, everything unravels at a snail's pace and it feels like the only things that ever happen are a million idiotic trips to "the town" for supplies. in the comics, however...more
Raeden Zen
Melrose Zombie Place

“Do you think you’re ever going to watch television again? Go to the bank? Buy groceries? Drop your kids off at school?! Ever?! It will never happen! You can come to grips with that sad fact—or you can sit around wishing for it to happen! You can sit around trying to follow every retarded little rule we ever invented to make us feel like we weren’t animals—and you can die! We will change! We will evolve. We’ll make new rules—we’ll still be humane and kind and we’ll still care...more
Okay, I'm going to say this right up front, and everyone can get as huffy as they'd like: it's all true.

The Walking Dead is highly overrated.

The writing is melodramatic as all get-out. I didn't get the impression that the writers had any idea what characters they had intended to survive - it's an amateurish device to kill off your characters, particularly given how dependent the story becomes upon characters constantly dying. Sure,it's meant to convey the new reality - but we all know how zombie...more
First, a critique of the format... This was my first graphic novel (read outside of college) and my newbie status just threw my whole summer off track. I bought this book with the intent of reading it all summer long. It's about four inches thick; no way I'd finish it in less than a week. Well, here I am, it's not even officially summer, and I'm done with my summer reading. Graphic novels = too many pictures.

Now, some more about me... I became a fan of this story line through the TV show. I don'...more
Megan Kirby
I don't like zombie stories, but customers at my comic store kept telling me "it's not about zombies, it's about peeeeople."

Well, this compendium was mostly about zombies. And the people were all entirely unlikeable, and entirely disposable (with Kirkman slaughtering character after character before we get a chance to know--or care-- about them; don't worry, they're easily replaced by another two-dimensional character in the next scene).

The violence gets gratuitous at times (to be expected) bu...more
Samantha Ace

Oh. My. God. I can't even. My feels are completely broken after reading this.. How can I possibly wait until MONDAY to get my hands on Compendium 2? EVERYTHING I LOVE DIES. It's like, I heard some of these things were going to happen, but WHEN they happened I couldn't help but cry.

This was my first experience with graphic novels and it's not going to be my last!!

Jamilla Rice
In my first foray into graphic novels since Persepolis, I was not disappointed. If you are a fan of the series and have yet to read the text, get a copy and read it! I can't believe I waited so long. It took watching a couple episodes of Talking Dead, and having Aisha Tyler keep hinting at differences between the book and the series to push me over the edge and order it on Amazon. The beginning of the series runs pretty parallel until Rick goes into Atlanta, then everything is markedly different...more
Ok, so when I watched the show, I was hooked in the title credits. Sheesh, apocalypses and small bands of survivors as characters are like, one of my most favorite kinds of things ever in the whole wide world. Not real ones of course, but book ones and screen ones :) I haven't watched Season 3 yet, the whole not having cable kinda bites. So I was a little nervous I'd like spoil myself, but my brother said it was different enough from the show. So I said cool, and borrowed it from him. Once I sta...more
Hit the wall on the Walking Dead about 40% of the way through this compendium. I'll keep it short...the first chapter of this really grabbed me when I read it killing time in the Union Square Barnes & Noble...a different angle on your average zombie apocalypse story that was very character-driven, minimalist, and had no "zombie cure" the characters were working towards. The series is still running to this day, in parallel with the actually not too bad TV series on AMC...part of me is curious...more
David Marwood
Apr 04, 2013 David Marwood rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fans of the TV show / video game - zombie fans - fans of an end of the world type scenario.
Well where to begin..I first got into the comic after being a big fan of the TV show, anyone who's a fan of the show and looking into reading the comic needs to know there two different worlds - different story different characters etc. and in my opinion the comic is a lot better.
The comic is dark and gritty, the characters react to situations with logic and intelligence, many times i was agreeing with some characters choices that they made, and thinking to myself i would do the same in that sit...more
Noah winglob zingbad
I would recommend “The Walking Dead- Compendium One”, by Robert Kirkman to a friend because it is an exciting, suspenseful, action packed graphic novel. There are 3 reasons I would recommend this book.
1. Readers will be wondering nonstop weather their favorite characters will survive much longer.
2. There is plenty of action.
3. Plot twists are common and will keep readers questioning what will come next
“I saw Otis get attacked—I know he didn’t make it. Hershel was bitten” (after the zombies attac...more
Hans Anderson
Pretty sweet. When something becomes very popular it usually has an immediate effect on my appreciation for it. Not wanting to "jump on the bandwagon" I usually avoid these things. Zombie fiction is, however, a bandwagon I'm happy to jump on to when it's done right. I went through this walking dead collection after having watched the first 2 seasons of the show. The 2nd season had some cool episodes but generally the pace of it was much too slow. The format of the comic books is paced a little b...more
I read through this, and wanted to read all through this (granted, with some skimming towards the end), but I have to admit that this reminds me why I'm not a fan of graphic novels. A LOT of exposition in the form of dialogue (though no thought balloons, should be thankful for that), and a rather episodic approach that makes me feel like the storyline is more about "Okay, who can we kill next?" than necessarily digging into something uncomfortably human, but a lot of classic elements here that m...more
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Robert Kirkman is an American comic book writer best known for his work on The Walking Dead, Invincible for Image Comics, as well as Ultimate X-Men and Marvel Zombies for Marvel Comics. He has also collaborated with Image Comics co-founder Todd McFarlane on the series Haunt. He is one of the five partners of Image Comics, and the only one of the five who was not one of the original co-founders of...more
More about Robert Kirkman...
The Walking Dead, Vol. 01: Days Gone Bye The Walking Dead, Book One The Walking Dead, Vol. 08: Made to Suffer The Walking Dead, Vol. 02: Miles Behind Us The Walking Dead, Vol. 03: Safety Behind Bars

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“But honestly... I just don't know what anyone's thinking. To me, that's scarier than any half-rotten ghoul trying to eat my flesh.” 11 likes
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