Tom asked:

I've seen a lot of zombie films but am yet to delve into zombie books: would this be a good one to start with? (Note: I saw the film and hated it. I found it to be family-friendly, watered-down drivel created just to make money and lacking in any artistic integrity. It wasn't even scary!)

Susan Carpenter The fact that you hated the movie shows promise! (So did I!) The book and the movie have nothing in common except the concept of a world wide zombie infestation. The book however, I will warn you: it will spoil you perhaps from most other zombie books. This is so far reaching and global, and one gets the story from so many different people from different walks of life and different countries not to mention different experiences, it is absolutely fascinating! To quote someone else on goodreads, "It reads like historical fiction". Very realistic.
Tim The film and the book have almost nothing to do with each other. Neither the main character, nor the "solution" from the film are in the book. It is a great book, but not necessarily a good point to start with the genre, as it is entirely unique as far as I know. To start with the genre I would recommend "I Am Legend" (also very different from the movie, don't worry). While it's not technically a zombie-film, it's vampires, they act more like zombies than like vampires and it definitely had a major impact on the zombie-genre despite this. It's not perfect, has some pretty silly fake-science and doesn't go deep enough in my opinion sometimes (I Am Legend that is), it is the best starting point for the genre that I can think of.
Kate World War Z is not family friendly or watered down by any means. It is very gritty with both the gore and the psychological effects on the survivors.

It is told in the form of eyewitness stories of survivors all around the world. There aren't many happy endings.
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by Max Brooks (Goodreads Author)
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