Cannonball Read 5, Book 40: World War Z by Max Brooks

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This book is a remarkable achievement. What could have so easily been a shallow shoot em up (which is what the upcoming movie seems to have gone for, which may explain the negative buzz) is instead an in depth look at all the ramifications of its titular War. The unnamed journalist travels across the world, meeting with key players in halting the zombie invasion that nearly wiped out humanity. From those who witnessed Patient Zero, to rebuilding a shattered Earth, the scope of Brooks’ vision is quite breathtaking.

I’m probably one of the few people on the planet who hadn’t read the book when it was first published back in 2006. I toyed with it, but for some reason never got round to it. Kicking myself for that now. The book is grimly fascinating and breathlessly exciting with it. There were several first person accounts that had my palms sweating. I haven’t been this gripped by a book in a long time.

There are some detractors who bemoan the similarity of the voices telling the story. I don’t agree. Throughout, I marvelled at the dexterity Brooks was demonstrating and how well he differentiated his characters. There are a lot of them, and all of them have a different story to tell. Not one of them is any less than utterly fascinating. To maintain that level of interest and excitement when you’re refracting such a huge narrative through such a large prism is an absolute marvel. Top notch stuff.

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5 thoughts on “Cannonball Read 5, Book 40: World War Z by Max Brooks

  1. Pingback: Popcultureboy’s #CBR5 Review #40: World War Z by Max Brooks | Cannonball Read V

  2. I’ve picked this up every time I see it in a bookstore and yet, I’ve never bought it. I think your blog has put me over the edge and I can finally buy it now. Thank you! I read somewhere that the author said the movie is NOTHING like his book. In fact, it sounded like he’d like to disown the movie.

  3. Apparently they jettisoned all but the core story (ie it’s a Zombie War) for the movie, so I can understand why Brooks is keen to distance himself. Seriously though, this book is AMAZING and if you get even slightly freaked out by zombies, don’t read it at night.

  4. Pingback: Cannonball Read 5, Book 94: The Testimony by James Smythe | popcultureboy's book quest

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