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The Sunday Backtrack: Zombie Renaissance

We talked a while back about how popular zombies had gotten.  Since that post, I’ve seen previews for more than one new zombie movie, seen a couple more books about zombies come out, and there are apparently many more in the pipeline.

Here are the brief reviews of three books about zombies.

I try to always follow up on as many of your reading recommendations as I can, so today I’m going to add a book to the zombie list, recommended by frequent commenter John Owens: 

Breather: A Zombie’s Lament

Breathers is a about a man who has recently become a zombie.  He spends most of the book trying to come to terms with what this means.  It’s funny, it’s smart enough to be a worthwhile satire of several things, and it still has its share of predictable zombie action, for anyone who just likes gore and exploding heads.

Going into it further would spoil it.  You probably already know enough to know if you’re interested.

One of my favorite things about my job, and about the blog, is that 90% of what I read I either stumble onto or it is recommended to me.

For any horror readers and fans: if you can recommend a horror book or ghost story or anything in that vein, please do it in the comments section.


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  • Laura August 23, 2009, 10:42 am

    Have you read The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson? It’s not precisely a horror story, but it’s got supernatural elements and some memorable writing. For instance:

    “For the most part my childhood was not agreeable, but I was never sexually auctioned so my guardians might crank up. Still, a man should be able to say better things about his youth than that.”

    Also, The Great Gatsby _was_ given the zombie treatment, in movie form, back in the 1970s. It doesn’t work nearly as well as you might think.

    • Josh Hanagarne August 23, 2009, 11:19 am

      Laura, I’ve never heard of the Gargoyle. I’ll take a look, thanks.

  • We Fly Spitfires August 23, 2009, 12:04 pm

    Awesome stuff, thanks 🙂 Here’s a “it’s so bad it’s good” book about zombie terrorists: Patient Zero by Joe Ledger.

    My favourite quote:

    “When you have to kill the same terrorist twice in one week, then there’s either something wrong with your skills or something wrong with your world. And there’s nothing wrong with my skills.”

    Awesome. In an Arnie-smoking-a-cigar-I’ll-be-back way.

    • Josh Hanagarne August 23, 2009, 12:08 pm

      WFSpitfires. I’ve never heard of Patient Zero. I’m going to check it out. Great quote! I just watched Raw Deal for the first time, speaking of Arnie and cigars.

      “You shouldn’t drink…and bake.” Best line in the movie.

  • Panayiotis Pete Karabetis August 24, 2009, 5:09 am

    Today marks the day that Netflix sends me 28 Days Later. The last zombie flick I saw with Planet Terror by Quentin Tarantino, which, much to my surprise, I thought was crazy stupid good! Rose McGowin with a machine gun for a leg… sexy 😉

    Pete | The Tango Notebook

    P.S. I impatient… will one of the dances you will be doing be the Tango?

  • Ilana August 24, 2009, 9:34 am

    This isn’t really a book, but you may nonetheless find it more than a tad entertaining:

  • Jon Owens August 24, 2009, 1:24 pm

    Hey Josh, I’m glad you enjoyed “Breathers” — having said that I may never enjoy venison again.

  • Gubernatrix August 26, 2009, 7:40 am

    There was a story on the BBC recently about a new British zombie film which has got theatrical distribution. It was made on a camcorder for £45 and is about a zombie called Colin.

    Got ‘modern classic’ written all over it!

    • Josh Hanagarne August 26, 2009, 8:22 am

      Gubernatrix, please tell me it’s finally the revelation that zombie Colin Firth has been posing as a human all this time.