Nina at Death Books and Tea's Reviews > World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

World War Z by Max Brooks
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Mar 22, 11

Read in March, 2011

Review:This book is written as of series of interviews with survivors of the zombie war, split into sections detailing various aspects such as The Great Panic and Turning the Tide. This is a very original way of giving an account of the war (known hereafter as WWZ), and made it more interesting than if it was just a "this happened then that happened" account.
I like the way Brooks thought about the situations of each person, about 100, if not more of them, and let some individual personalities and back stories shine through. Even the cultural aspects varied slightly yet still matched up, with the Russians talking about the draconian decimation and the Japanese always referring to zombies as saifu, proving that brooks didn’t just write 100{?} random stories and put them in chronological order . The range of people "interviewed" varied widely, meaning you got a full view of WWZ. It was easy to imagine both the war itself, and the post-war world. And while it mostly read like something out of the hunger games, at times the descriptions and actions were a little bland.
You can tell that it was written by one person, with the same writing style. Another thing that let this down: it was annoyingly hard to place in time. You see, it talked about the pre-war world having computers and freezers and things like that, but then you get one guy who would be about 100 at by the time the war was over, and I really can’t see any guy over 80 surviving a ten year war with hunger and harsh conditions and zombies. That’s not ageist, that’s basic common sense. The whole book is in question and answer form, which while entertaining to start with, got a little boring after 20 interviews. You also can’t really get to know much of a character, as each interview is about five pages long. Not enough. Also, there’s one thing that went unexplained throughout the whole book, or maybe I just didn’t pay attention: exactly how did these zombies come into existence anyway?
Apart from these little flaws, it is very good, enjoyable, mid-weight read that, should there ever be a real WWZ, will be very useful to have. And those of you who think "typical, zombies, blood, etc", there is surprisingly little gore.
Overall: I give this strength 3 because there it was fun, and informative, but it got a bit boring at times.
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