I have always had a strong feeling that if the zombie apocalypse were to occur humanity would prevail. The mad-max style of civilization presented to us in many a zombie story just doesn’t seem realistic to me, which brings me to this week’s book review.
Handed to me by a friend who insisted “This is the best zombie book I have ever read”; Feed (book one of the Newsflesh Trilogy by Mira Grant) certainly had high expectations from the get go. I am pleased to say it did not disappoint.
The story is set in 2040, and as expected the zombies have risen and wiped out a large proportion of civilization. However, all is not lost. Through technological advances and secure gated communities the world has largely returned to some sort of normality. Unfortunately, the zombies are still out there.
When the news media corporations disappeared during ‘the rising’, they were replaced by adventurous bloggers. With the world now relatively safe, these bloggers now investigate both zombie and non-zombie related stories, breaking the news online to their thousands of followers around the world. It’s safe to say that bloggers have become the professional journalists of the post apocalypse world.
Our youthful protagonists are a mixed bag of such bloggers. The lead being factual writer Georgia Mason, who is accompanied by her carefree brother Shaun Mason and their tech expert Buffy Meissonier. The group are traveling around the country following the current presidential campaign (see the world really is getting back to normal), and make a shocking discovery that will change their lives forever.
It isn’t all political drama though. There are plenty of zombie encounter intertwined with the election, especially when the group step outside of the apparent safety of the cities.
The part political thriller part zombie horror book is written from perspective of Georgia; however we often get to read blog postings from the other main characters, which can give differing opinions of situations.
What I enjoyed about this book was its attention to details in areas where other zombie books and movies fail. The world the characters live in is set up fantastically, there is a plausible reason for the zombie virus with plenty of science behind it (I’m no biologist so it’s good enough for me!), and there is continual reference to the zombie fiction of our age as it played a key part in preventing the demise of humanity.
The other clever aspect of Feed is the new age bloggers replacing traditional media. This is clearly a reference to the current situation in the world, where every man and his iPhone can report the news that’s going on outside their front door step. It’s easy to imagine news corporations falling during the zombie rising, leaving the news to be reported by the remaining survivors. I guess if you’ve still got power, writing a blog would help the time fly by in between biters attacks!
For those of you looking for something different in a zombie novel, I think you’ll do well to pick up this interesting read. Furthermore, I would not feel obliged to read the entire trilogy. Feed stands alone nicely with a distinct end, and unfortunately the sequels don’t live up to the dizzy heights of this one, but I’ll write the reviews to those at a later date.
I read this a couple of years ago and quiet enjoyed it. I never had any desire to read the rest of the series though. This seemed pretty self-contained to me.