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World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
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Manufacturer: Three Rivers Press
Average Customer Rating: Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5Average rating of 4.5/5

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Binding: Paperback
Dewey Decimal Number: 813.6
EAN: 9780307346612
ISBN: 0307346617
Label: Three Rivers Press
Manufacturer: Three Rivers Press
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 352
Publication Date: 2007-10-16
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Release Date: 2007-10-16
Studio: Three Rivers Press

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Editorial Reviews:

“The end was near.” —Voices from the Zombie War

The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.

Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.

Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, “By excluding the human factor, aren’t we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn’t the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as ‘the living dead’?”

Note: Some of the numerical and factual material contained in this edition was previously published under the auspices of the United Nations Postwar Commission.

Eyewitness reports from the first truly global war

“I found ‘Patient Zero’ behind the locked door of an abandoned apartment across town. . . . His wrists and feet were bound with plastic packing twine. Although he’d rubbed off the skin around his bonds, there was no blood. There was also no blood on his other wounds. . . . He was writhing like an animal; a gag muffled his growls. At first the villagers tried to hold me back. They warned me not to touch him, that he was ‘cursed.’ I shrugged them off and reached for my mask and gloves. The boy’s skin was . . . cold and gray . . . I could find neither his heartbeat nor his pulse.” —Dr. Kwang Jingshu, Greater Chongqing, United Federation of China

“‘Shock and Awe’? Perfect name. . . . But what if the enemy can’t be shocked and awed? Not just won’t, but biologically can’t! That’s what happened that day outside New York City, that’s the failure that almost lost us the whole damn war. The fact that we couldn’t shock and awe Zack boomeranged right back in our faces and actually allowed Zack to shock and awe us! They’re not afraid! No matter what we do, no matter how many we kill, they will never, ever be afraid!” —Todd Wainio, former U.S. Army infantryman and veteran of the Battle of Yonkers

“Two hundred million zombies. Who can even visualize that type of number, let alone combat it? . . . For the first time in history, we faced an enemy that was actively waging total war. They had no limits of endurance. They would never negotiate, never surrender. They would fight until the very end because, unlike us, every single one of them, every second of every day, was devoted to consuming all life on Earth.” —General Travis D’Ambrosia, Supreme Allied Commander, Europe

From the Hardcover edition.

Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: The ultimate zombie war review
Comment: This book makes you see how the war against the living dead was seen on several fronts. Highly recommended, a must have.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: Zed Heads rejoice!
Comment: WWZ is the first piece of zombie anything that actually scared me! It's not just the horrifying way the Zeds are described, but the collapse of society that sends a realistically chilling shudder through you. A must have for any fan of horror!

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: WORLD WAR Z

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: An excellent and original take on a tired idea
Comment: It's finally happened. The zombie apocalypse has come and devastated civilisation...but in the end, civilisation rallied and won. Using tactics pioneered in South Africa and bankrolled by Cuba, the largest nation to remain infection-free, the world's armies successfully defeated the undead menace, but only at a staggering cost in lives and resources. Ten years after victory was declared, a journalist travels the world, listening to the stories of the survivors, from those who were there when the outbreak began to those who listened in the corridors of power as key decisions were taken to the stories of everyday men and women thrust into circumstances beyond their control. From Hawaii to China, even to the isolated crew of the International Space Station, this is the story of that war.

World War Z is that most beloved of Hollywood ideas, 'high concept'. One of those ideas that makes other writers go away smacking themselves in the head thinking, "Why didn't I think of that?" Zombies are very much 'in' these days, but after several years of zombie movies and computer games the appeal was waning, until Brooks' interesting take on the concept revitalised interest. Most zombie fiction is somewhat nihilistic, ending with the world overrun by the undead hordes or humanity reduced to tiny enclaves battling the mindless hordes, so the fact that World War Z features a victory is interesting enough. The stories of what sacrifices were necessary to achieve that victory makes up the book, which is essentially a 'mosaic' novel rather than a standard work of fiction. The book shifts between the different interviewees, some of whom appear only once but most of them reappear periodically throughout the book, as we find out how they survived the decade of the war and what happened to them along the way.

It's an excellent device and Brooks employs it skillfully. Some of the stories border on the silly - the blind Japanese gardener taking on the zombie hordes with a sword in a park full of traps stretches credulity - but elsewhere Brooks nails the feeling of total horror, with the computer nerd trying to flee his infested Japanese apartment block or the soldiers fighting to clear the catacombs under Paris. Elsewhere Brooks takes the capabilities of the zombie menace to their logical conclusion, with heavily-armoured divers fighting off zombie forces underwater, or the US army making full use of dogs (who are driven wild by the presence of zombies) in fighting the hordes and the fates of both the animals and their handlers during and after the war.

This is a widescreen story, with a truly global perspective, told economically and well. There are some good laughs (the new US zombie-dispatching firearm is nicknamed a 'Meg', as it resembles a Megatron toy from Transformers; during one battle a nun and REM lead singer Michael Stipe help fight off the zombie hordes), but Brooks takes his subject mostly seriously and sounds some cautionary notes along the way. To some extent the story isn't really about the zombies, but about people and what they are capable of when their backs are against the wall.

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War (*****) is a gripping, page-turning, memorable read which throws some fresh impetus on an old idea, and makes it work brilliantly. The book is available in the UK from Duckworth and in the USA from Three Rivers Press. A movie version is in development, with a script being written by Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: nice gift
Comment: I bought this book as a gift for my son,
He loved it. He is all in the Zombie thing.

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