Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion
Genre: horror, science fiction,
Date: April 2011
Reviewed by: Lori Twichell
Fiction Addict Scorecard: A
Hold on to your socks here folks. This is a different kind of review for a very different kind of book. (Yes it has a cover, title, pages with words strung together into sentences…like most other books. And it even has an amazing romantic love story in it. But that’s where everything that you might recognize in a book stops.) This book is about dead people. Fleshies. That’s a zombie that you can’t really tell is dead because they still have flesh on their bones. And yes, if you connect those sentences that makes this a zombie love story. No, really.
BUT BEFORE YOU LAUGH AND MOVE ON…WAIT. This is one of the most amazing, beautiful and gorgeously written stories that I have ever read. I do not say that lightly. I was immediately drawn into this story and couldn’t stop myself from reading even though it took me into very late night hours.
Let me fill you in briefly on the story itself. The main character, R, is a zombie. The book is written from his perspective and even though we know a lot about his daily life and we can guess some things about what life was like ‘before’ we still don’t know much. What we do know is that he knows he’s dead but he doesn’t know how he became a zombie. He’s well dressed and well preserved. We also know that he longs for more. He wants more than to just eat brains every now and then to live again. (Brains cause a reaction in zombies that allow them to re-live the lives of the owner.) He understands the dilemma of killing people to survive. He wants more. And then he eats the brain of Perry and it changes everything for him.
This book was not a book I wanted to read. When we got the standard email with the trailer, I saw zombie love story and blinked out. (Probably like a lot of people reading this review have.) I sent it off to Jake and asked if he was interested and I was shocked when he wrote back an enthusiastic YES! I thought he was kidding but then I went and watched the book’s trailer. Here. Check it out for yourself. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBv7cC_qU30 I was immediately interested. Some of my favorite authors were endorsers of this book.
And then I got the book in the mail and found it to be so much more than what ‘zombie love story’ would make you think. With entire passages devoted to what existence is supposed to mean versus what it actually does mean – all from the mind of a zombie, it’s more difficult to dismiss this book.
Even if you aren’t a fan of the zombie genre, this book will engage you in ways you never imagined. It’s sharp and witty with syllable counting dialogue that will stick with you long after you’ve read it. It’s revolutionary, beautiful and engaging in brilliantly imagined ways. This book has settled firmly onto my favorites of 2011 and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Do not miss this book. You’ll be glad you took the time for it.