All Things Urban Fantasy's Reviews > The New Hunger

The New Hunger by Isaac Marion
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's review
Jan 11, 2013

it was amazing
bookshelves: reviewed-by-abigail, earc
Read in January, 2013

Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

Another reviewer described Isaac Marion’s writing as “gruesome yet poetic.” That is the absolute perfect description for THE NEW HUNGER, the prequel novella to WARM BODIES (the movie version hits theaters on February 1st). In it we follow R from the moment he becomes a zombie, a sixteen year old Nora trying to stay alive with her six year old brother, and a twelve year old Julie traveling on the literal road trip from hell with her increasingly hostile parents.

Unlike WARM BODIES, which is essentially a fairy tale, grim though it is in moments, THE NEW HUNGER is significantly more bleak. There are bursts of humor especially between Nora and her brother, but for the most part, this is a powerfully somber story full of death in all its ugly colors. It was wonderful to see all the familiar characters from WARM BODIES and see how they all began (M’s story was very unexpected) and crossed paths unaware. The story that resonated the most with me was Nora and Addis’s.

Scavenging for food while knowing it’s not enough to keep her little brother from growing more skeletal by the day, running out of excuses for the parents who deserted them, knowing that if she stops moving the zombies that are following will devour them. That is Nora’s life at sixteen. She’s young enough herself that she doesn’t see the need to coddle her brother and try and shield him from the harsh realities of the world they now live in. The way they tease and amuse each other feels hearbreakingly real and often shocking. Likewise, watching the demise of Julie’s parent’s marriage was equally fascinating in a voyeuristic way.

THE NEW HUNGER isn’t very long (it’s 128 pages), but every element from a zombie’s hunger pangs to the helpless terror of watching a loved one die is captured with such beauty, such simplistic language, that it feels immense. As much as I loved WARM BODIES and will be first in line to buy a movie ticket come February 1st, this is the story that will remain with me. This is writing at its absolute, gut-wrenching best.

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