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In the Land of the Blind

3.26  ·  Rating details ·  140 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Like everyone else he knew, Steven's heart did not beat. Instead it lay dead in his chest, as docile as his brain and his lungs and his soul. So when he first heard the faint beating sound coming from outside his bedroom window, he didn't know what to think.

"In the Land of the Blind" is a 3,000-word nontraditional zombie story that won the 10th Annual Chiaroscuro Short St
Kindle Edition, 43 pages
Published March 20th 2011 by RMS Press
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Average rating 3.26  · 
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Jun 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Simply brilliant take on the zombie genre.

This was the Google Play Books version.
Nov 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
I picked this up because it was a free Kindle download and it had zombies in it and honestly because the cover looks pretty cool!


So apparently zombies have conquered the world and have created their own society. Our main character Steven, is a 10 year old zombie boy and he hears a strange thumping outside. His friends and his parents can't hear it so he goes out and digs up a small cube of some kind. He meets a living person who he calls a "zombie." Th
Apr 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: zombies
In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.

So imagine a world where zombie and human roles are reversed: the zombie is the societal norm, and human are feared and hunted on sight. A little undead boy one day hears the thump thump thump of a heartbeat and wonders if he's hallucinating. He goes out to the backyard and digs up a mysterious box which is emitting the thumping, heartbeat-like sound. And meets a living human, er...zombie...who tells him about colors and emotions and life.

Jul 31, 2012 rated it it was ok
Confusing. If the author elaborated more on this story, it would be great. It has the potential to be an amazing zombie story. I'd definitely like to read more by Robert Swartwood. ...more
Aug 22, 2012 rated it liked it
Want more. I like the role reversal, just s few things I question, but they could be ironed out in the whole story too.
Christine Hinton
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loves this short.

I don't normally read about zombies. Just thinking they all walk about groaning. This short story made me think again. Give it a read. It won't take long. I will be very surprised if you don't enjoy it.
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very interesting take on the zombie apocalypse that I don't think I've run into before. I liked it and would like to delve more into the story. ...more
Nikki "The Crazie Betty" V.
I'm not giving this story 2 stars because of anything the author did or didn't do per se. Unfortunately I just couldn't get into this. I found the premise to be very new and different which is wonderful for a genre that's been bombarded like this one has, but this just didn't work for me. Part of the reason I love zombie stories so much is the gore and utter hopelessness of a dystopian and dying world but with this kind of story it kinda takes all of that out of it. The zombies in this story are ...more
Robert Zimmermann
Mar 21, 2013 rated it liked it
This was a zombie story, like the subtitle suggests. But it was an interesting take on the genre. The twist to the genre was a little confusing at first. This made me a little iffy on whether or not the story worked for me as a whole. Other elements of it worked well for me though, once I got past the reversal of the zombie label.

This short story was intriguing enough to make me want to know more about the world it was written in. What lead the world to be the way it is, etc.

I’d recommend this b
Nov 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Allegories seldom work well as literary pieces, they're usually too blatant, characters too flat, the moral too simple. 'In the Land of the Blind' is a wonderful exception to the norm as Swartwood handles the story, characters, and moral theme adeptly. The 'reveal' is gradual, gentle, and transparent which allows the reader to enter into the main character's enlightenment, confusion, transformation, and final acceptance with full empathy. Wonderful story about 'zombies' but in a literary vein. R ...more
Robert Beveridge
Jan 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Robert Swartwood, In the Land of the Blind (RMS Press, 2011)

Interesting, though too short, story that reverses the usual zombie conventions: while the scenario is the usual, where the zombie plague has wiped out all but a handful of survivors, Swartwood's story is told from the perspective of one of the living dead who encounters a living human, and must make a tough decision that will alter his existence forever. Swartwood eventually turned this into the novel The Dishonored Dead; judging by th
Kay Glass
Apr 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
The premise here is a surprising one, and a very good one! What if YOU were the zombie? Only, zombie means human? And the humans are what WE would think of as zombies? Confusing? At first... but if we were the ones to be feared, would we consider ourselves zombies? No, we'd call ourselves humans, and fear those different than us.

While this was extremely short, it was also extremely well written, and makes me want to know more about this upside down world.
An interesting short story with a twist. Zombies are the norm (and do not call themselves zombies), while humans are the feared species.

I don't want to say much more than that, as it would be too easy to give too much away. I found this interesting enough, to add the novel that this short story inspired, to my wishlist.
Horace Torys
Apr 01, 2011 rated it liked it
This short story takes place in the same universe as Swartwood's forthcoming novel, The Dishonored Dead. The concept is interesting, but not taken far enough, not fully explored and realized. It will make you think, though. ...more
Coty Lynn
Jan 02, 2012 rated it it was ok
This was only a short story, but it could have been fleshed out a bit more. It's a nice reversal of roles in a zombie world. I realize it was the inspiration for a novel by the same author, and this does make me want to attempt that read. I'd give this a 2.5 ...more
R.A. Holmes
Dec 02, 2012 rated it liked it
This book was... I don't know. I kind of didn't understand it much. I was getting confused reading it. It could be because i was falling asleep AS i was reading it, but I gave it three stars because i was interested, just confused. :\ ...more
Oct 06, 2014 rated it it was ok
Too short to really make up my mind. Made me want for more closure even though it was a bit too esoteric.
Alyssa Greatbanks
Dec 12, 2012 rated it liked it
I thought this was a pretty neat book. It was interesting to see a new twist on the zombie genre, and also on how our perception can affect things.
Jan 25, 2013 rated it it was ok
Good for a tweener book but otherwise my rating is a big "Meh!" :) ...more
Trish Bodine
May 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
Interesting change from the usual zombie stories. Good short story.
Becky Ippolito
Oct 19, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: zombie
A short story where we are the zombies. Beautiful writing and a little sad.
Brandon Jones
Jan 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: zombies
definitely a different take on zombies, a little confusing, still don't know if I get the whole premise. still enjoyed it for some reason though ...more
Adam Light
Nov 20, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror, shorts
Intriguing premise. I found this to be a pretty cool twist on the zombie theme.
May 10, 2013 rated it it was ok
Ron Rodriguez
rated it liked it
Jan 03, 2016
rated it liked it
Dec 01, 2014
Patrick J Dalton
rated it it was amazing
Jan 22, 2014
Marianne Mitchell
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Nov 28, 2016
rated it did not like it
Feb 21, 2015
Amanda Howard
rated it liked it
Jan 08, 2017
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Class of 2014: Matthew 1 5 Feb 14, 2013 09:28AM  

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USA TODAY bestselling author of The Serial Killer's Wife, The Calling, Man of Wax, and several other novels. He created the term "hint fiction" and edited Hint Fiction: An Anthology of Stories in 25 Words or Fewer. ...more

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