I came into this book expecting nothing much more than a trashy, blood-soaked zombie story. I wasn't even really expecting it to be a good one, and I certainly wasn't expecting it to be a well-written one. I am happy to say that "Feed" surpassed all of these expectations. This book is less about zombies and more about people, less about gore and more about the role of truth in media.
The story takes place not too far into the future, and more than twenty years after the outbreak of a disease that results in a world where both the humans and the zombies survive. People have found a way to exist in close proximity to the constant threat of infection, but not necessarily to live in spite of it. Society has adapted to the threat by means of complex security, blood screening and quarantine procedures. What is really interesting to me, is the way in which the media has adapted to favour bloggers over mainstream media channels, and the new breeds of journalists this has produced.
The two lead characters are brother and sister who, while not related by blood, are essentially two halves of the one person. The book did leave somewhat open the reason for this closeness, and I hope that the next instalment of this series will shed further light on their relationship. The one niggling concern that I had was that the book goes into great detail about what changed in the world after the zombie uprising, however the character telling this story was born after the fact. I did wonder how she could possibly have known about all the mundane things that changed before she was born, such as the tensile strength of pantyhose nylon!
Mira Grant writes with humour, heart and intelligence. I found myself jotting down quotes all the way through this book, most centring on the theme of truth - a topic that's near and dear to me. I highly recommend this book. Come for the zombies, stay for a witty exploration of the value of truth, the price we pay for personal security and the meaning of family.