Publisher/Year Published: 2006 by Three Rivers Press
How I Got This Book: Bought it for my boyfriend, probably at Target
Why I Read This Book: See below :)
Rating: 4 Stars
I bought this book for my boyfriend several months ago. He loved it, so I thought I would give it a try, despite being rather annoyed at the whole preponderance of the zombie genre (it’s totally not my thing, although I do fully intend to read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies one day, just so I can say I did). As it turns out, World War Z was actually pretty awesome.
As it says in the subtitle, World War Z is the oral history of a fictional zombie war, compiled by an unnamed narrator. The interviews all show a different facet of the war—there are civilian, military, and medical standpoints from all over the world. That’s about it for an actual summary; since it’s supposed to be “history,” it doesn’t follow a traditional novel storyline, really.
At any rate, World War Z has quite a few things going for it, its hugely imaginative premise (not the zombie thing, but the history-of-the-zombie-war thing) and fantastic writing being the top two. As with most avid readers, I’m sure, I’ve always felt that a great plot can only survive on its own so long without good writing to support it (see: The Hunger Games—after a while, the choppy, fragmented writing style just irked me), but World War Z didn’t have that problem at all. I was glued to it while I was reading. Now, if only more history textbooks were written like this, I might have actually been interested in/done well in history in school.
It was a little difficult to keep track of all the names of people the narrator interviewed, if only because there were so many unfamiliar foreign names. But that was literally the only thing I could complain about with this book—everything else was incredible. Everything was told with an eerie sense of reality, and the amount of research he must have done for all the military sections, which were all pretty technical, is considerable. Even the amount of geographical research he must have done is mind-blowing. You’re really able to get a sense of complete and total war.
Even as someone who is really not into zombies at all, I found this book utterly captivating. Anyone who wants a good scare and an awesome view of what history just might be like post-zombie-war should definitely give World War Z a try.