The Rising
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The Rising (The Rising #1)

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  5,388 ratings  ·  348 reviews
Since it's 2003 debut, Brian Keene's THE RISING is one of the best-selling zombie novels of all-time. It has been translated into over a dozen languages, inspired the works of other authors and filmmakers, and has become a cultural touchstone for an entire generation of horror fans.

THE RISING is the story of Jim Thurmond, a determined father battling his way across a post-...more
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Published November 1st 2009 by Audio Realms (first published 2003)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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There are too many things wrong with this book. Despite some original ideas and a few worthy tense moments, it is most of the time laughably bad, and embarrassingly badly written.

The amount of typos and the atrocious grammar was shocking. Someone needs to tell Keene, the copyeditors and publishers that the past tense of "to spit" is "spat" and you don’t tell a person to "lay" but to "lie" down. You also shouldn’t use the word "again" (or any word) again and again three times in a single sentence

Feb 27, 2008 Rob rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people I hate
Recommended to Rob by: Stupid forum user.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I'm sorry - zombie fish? I kind of lost it after that...
Zombified goldfish? Nah.
Filamena Young
Jun 01, 2009 Filamena Young rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
So to be perfectly honest, I’ve been going back and forth on whether on not I actually wanted to write this review. It basically came down to ‘not burning bridges’ in a very small universe, or being honest with my readers. (I know, all three of you.)

When I weighted it out, I decided a bad review treated fairly and note based on gut reaction might be better for the internet as a whole then a blank space. Plus, that way, as new readers show up, (I’ll welcome you, reader number four,) they can feel...more
Edit: When I first wrote this review, I was aghast at the terrible typos. I now know that this was not Keene's fault, and he is in fact a grammatically A-Okay writer. There is now a new author's preferred edition just published, I am sure that it has been polished up!
So avoid this original paperback edition and be sure to get his latest.

Every once in a while, I'll find myself caught up in a novel and, despite some flaws that would bug me, there's that certain something that sets the hook and pul...more
MK (Food actvist)
Mar 09, 2010 MK (Food actvist) rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of survival/zombie horror, smart horror
Multiple characters are trying to survive in a world being overrun by zombies. Jim's fight to survive involves trying to save his son Danny that is across the from WV to NJ. Part 1 of 2. Next City of the dead. Last read in 2007. Read again Dec 2008.

I learned you have to enjoy the story as told by the author and know that they probably would want to write it lots of different ways but only have so much time to finish. Rating a book badly based on grammar is too anal and could maybe account for 1/...more
May 04, 2008 Eric rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Not many people
Shelves: tossed
There were so many things wrong with this book that I couldn't even finish it. Some people will be angry at me for this, but I have my reasons. Firstly, the book was WAY too gory. Some people may be cool with that, but not me. Secondly, WAY too much swearing. Third, the characters seem to be heading to an improvement in their lives, characters like the drug addict Frankie, the scientist Jim, etc. but I can't get to where I like any of them. They just don't have anything that appeals to me. In sh...more
This was the First Brian Keene book that I picked up, and to be honest... I wasn't expecting much. I enjoy a good Zombie film as much as the next person, but had never read a zombie book before. I was pleasantly surprised while reading this book. The characters were (for the most part) very real, engaging, and the type of people the reader cares about.

The zombies were not your stereotypical zombies; they were far more mobile, and capable of using tools, weapons, and setting traps to catch the f...more
Bueno, antes que nada creo que tengo que hacer una confesión… Y es que a estas alturas me siento hasta un poco avergonzada de lo que hice (o dejé de hacer) con respecto a este género literario.
Me refiero a la categoría "Z" más conocida como Zombie.
Sí, sí… Ya lo sé. Había jurado y re contra jurado sobra la tumba de mi gato que nunca caería en una lectura como esta, pero (parezca o no) mi caída fue accidental.
Y vamos, lo admito: Me gustó bastante.

Y es que aL final de año encontré por purísima c...more
Barks & Bites
It’s zombie month and I am reading this one for Jare’s Spills & Chills Release Challenge over at I seem to have quite the backlog of Keene books and they are neatly fitting the challenges. Awesome.

Having enjoyed Keene’s Conqueror Worms post-apocalyptic novel about giant worms (seriously) I’m excited to see what he does with zombies.

The book starts out similarly to The Conqueror Worms with a male protagonist telling the story of how his world collapsed but this time arou...more
Kris Lugosi
I realllly enjoyed this book. It's a zombie book and to be honest the genre has been done over and over with very little variation, but Mr. Keene brings a new voice (yes that's right voice) to the way you perceive zombies. There is no virus or outbreak that causes the people in this book to turn. It's possession. The details of how the demons posses the dead human body are intricate without being confusing. Keene paints an awesome picture of how and why these demons are possessing the bodies of...more
This is a great zombie story, a bit different from the others I have read, as these zombies are demon spirits, accidentally released from the void, following orders from their leader, Ob. The Rising was my first Brian Keene novel and I can't wait to read more. I can tell that Keene is a fan of Stephen King as there is a line straight out of The Shining and a lot of mention of other worlds. Annoyingly poor editing aside, this was a fantastic read. The ending was extremely frustrating, as it didn'...more
Oh please, this is not literature. It's a zombie book. I'm not even going to waste too many words on this review because it's just a simple story. If you're looking for prose, you most certainly wouldn't pick up this book based on it's cover, right?

Merely entertaining, the book equivalent of a B movie, I read it while on vacation. It's the kind of book you can read while also watching your kid go down waterslides. (And kind of make the other parents near by look at you a little funny, which is...more
Scott Rhee
I love the zombie genre, although sometimes I think it's kind of reached a point where there is very little new to add. It is, after all, just reanimated corpses that feed on the living, right? I mean, when they are making zombie comedies starring Woody Harrelson and Abigail Breslin, for God's sake, you know the genre's tired. Then again, AMC's TV show "The Walking Dead" (and the comic book series it is based on) is enormously popular, so what the hell do I know?

Occasionally I come across a new...more
This was my very first "zombie" book. And I'll have to say I was a bit disappointed in his explanation of the zombie phenomenon. That aside, the plot ebbed and flowed. Sometimes it seemed well-paced and other times it was stagnant. I also had a problem with the ending. Either kill them off or let them live, or at the very least, lean one way or the other and let the reader decide. But to have an ending that is completely going to leave the reader hanging doesn't sit well with me. It makes me fee...more
3 Stars

This is a zombie novel that contains enough originality and surprises to be worth your read. This book has a good deal of violence and gore to appease the darker natured reader. There are some cool scenes with rats, deer, and many other undead creatures. The spin and the explanation behind the turning is really cool. I loved a lot about this book but never really bonded with many of the stereotypical characters.

This book and series is worth a read for the zombie-philes.
mark monday
Despite its too-frequent dips into mawkish sentimentality and general corniness, this is a fast-paced, exciting, and at-times surprisingly heartless page-turner. Zombie animals are a first to me. Demon possession is not so new, but the concept is used refreshingly in this novel; it reminded me of peter hamilton's Reality Dysfunction. Overall, a shallow but satisfying and often original read, despite the jarringly abrupt ending.
Oct 27, 2008 Stefanie rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
This book was terrible. Badly written with a cliff hanger ending which means a second book I will definitely not read. I don't even know why I finished this one expect that it was pretty much the only thing I had to read at work. The really sad part about this book is that it could have been good.
Olivia R. Burton
Jan 18, 2009 Olivia R. Burton rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Zombie lovers who don't mind gore
You can sum this book up by saying it's basically, "A Series of Unfortunate Events. With Zombies." The idea behind this book (I hesitate to call it a plot) is that the world has gone to hell due to the sudden zombie uprising. There are, of course, still a few survivors, but mostly, any person or animal that dies becomes a vessel for spirits who are vaguely hinted at being demonic. The first character we meet is Jim Thurmond, whose wife left him several years ago for some investment banker, or so...more
Do you know what the difference is between this book and a B movie slasher film? None, there is no difference. I've seen my 9 year old write a play with a deeper plot and more character development than this book had. I know others enjoyed this book and I'm glad they were able to, but not me.

The first thing that struck me as completely stupid was the zombie fish. Seriously? I was even able to forgive that. The story just got worse from there. Zombies who can speak, drive, use tools, and think wa...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Trev Twinem
Everyone, at some time in their lives, should have the pleasure of reading a good zombie novel. Unfortunately there are many poorly written examples of this genre (refer to my review of "Night of the Nazi Zombies" ) It is therefore most enjoyable to read and review "The Rising" by horror supremo Brian Keene. Zombie books, to be fully appreciated, must contain certain essential ingredients; first and foremost we have a world in meltdown and a population de...more
Having been a fan of zombie fiction since I was a child, I've struggled to find great novels relating to the walking dead. To date, the only ones to impress me have been Stephen King's "Cell" and Max Brooks' "World War Z." Today Brian Keene's "The Rising" joins those favorites.

This isn't your typical take on the zombie genre; the newly risen dead don't shamble and they aren't stupid. Instead, these zombies put an entirely new fear behind the concept of our dead coming back to life - they're inte...more
B. Pope
The Rising is a novel based squarely in the genre "Zombie Apocalypse". It follows characters from differing backgrounds and with a number of different motivations struggling in a zombie-infested East Coast. The three main characters, a construction worker dad, a junkie hooker and a scientist, provide a wide range of insights and opinions that keep the story interesting and different.

Jim, the construction worker, is driven entirely by the hope that his son is alive. He is willing to travel hundre...more
Alejandra Cruz-lopez
Mar 13, 2009 Alejandra Cruz-lopez rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everybody who love horrors!
The Rising is a very interesting book. This book is about the rising of the undead upon the earth. This book is very detailed and you feel like you are at where the author is describing. There are four point-of-views in this book. The four are: Jim, a former construction worker before the rising; Baker, a former Havenbrook scientist before the rising also; Frankie, a junkie; and the last are the soldiers. All these narrators would meet at the end of the book. Jim went in hiding after the rising...more
William Thomas
I have begun reading more modern horror novels as of late. I have been thoroughly disappointed by their lack of quality as well. More often they rely on gruesome scenes of gore rather than frightening a reader and building suspense. They would rather shock us than terrify us. Most times these shocks come off as cartoonish and self-indulgent. There are no more Richard Mathesons, no more innovators within the genre making horror literary.

There is, however, Brian Keene. Although he most certainly s...more
Jim Peterson
2.5 stars

Mr. Keene's story is interesting towards the last 100 pages, but, before that, I just kind of wanted to get it over with. What the story did do effectively was to take a few different storylines and bring them all together in the end. The end itself was also strong. I'm actually kind of surprised this story won a Gram Stoker award. Too bad the winner wasn't given free editing.

There were so many errors (especially towards the beginning of the book), and while the writing style was occasi...more
Although I liked this book enough to give it three stars I'm so glad to be done with it and I don't know if I could've handled it being any longer. It's a well written ugly little book. With ugly things that happen to good characters by ugly people. The more I read I felt like crap. And I felt no hope for humanity.
The good points, there were a few I do agree the man can write a certain type of horror. I loved the orginality of what the zombies here were. You find out pretty quickly so I don't c...more

I was thoroughly enjoying myself until I read a sentence pairing which drove me up the wall and seemed to bring all of the faults of the book to the forefront making my continued enjoyment a bit more difficult. I don't have the book with me so I can't relate exactly what it was but it was something along the lines of "A great eagle slammed into the glass, once a symbol of freedom and liberty, it was now a symbol of corruption and decay."

I rolled my eyes at that and through out the rest of the bo...more
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BRIAN KEENE writes novels, comic books, short fiction, and occasional journalism for money. He is the author of over forty books, mostly in the horror, crime, and dark fantasy genres. His 2003 novel, The Rising, is often credited (along with Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead comic and Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later film) with inspiring pop culture’s current interest in zombies. Keene’s novels have be...more
More about Brian Keene...
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