Zombies: A Record of the Year of Infection
By “Dr. Robert Twombly”
I’m a sucker for anything zombie-related. So when I spotted this book on the bargain table at Barnes & Noble, I immediately sold. Zombies purports to be the diary of Dr. Robert Twombly, a survivor of a worldwide zombie outbreak that strikes very suddenly in January 2012. It’s also packed with very well-done illustrations (presumably also by the author), mostly of the zombies he observes during his trek north to find someplace safe. Think of it as the literary equivalent of Diary of the Dead, minus the whiny college students.
It’s a pretty short read, only covering about two months, but it’s a fantastic one all the same. The first-person horror style works surprisingly well in book form, and the illustrations add a lot to the effect. They’re perhaps a little too well-done to have supposedly been done by someone on the run for his life, but they look great, and keep the book from becoming just a series of diary entries.
There are some nice twists on the genre that help the book, too. Such as the possibility that the zombies retain some memory of their lives, and that they may be capable of simple thought and even working together to hunt humans.
The only thing I don’t like about this book is that it’s so short. I get that the nature of the narrative gimmick means there can’t be too many entries, but I read it all the way through in just a couple of hours. As I said before, the illustrations are very nice, but they also heavily pad the page count. I definitely recommend it, but I wouldn’t call it a must-read for zombie fans at full price.
– Review by Ray