Review: Zombies for Zombies

Posted by Cory Casciato On October - 28 - 2009

zombies4zombiesBitten by a zombie? You need help. The kind of help offered by Zombies for Zombies: Advice and Etiquette for the Living Dead by David P. Murphy. Aimed squarely at those who prefer their zombies with a twist of humor – and there are plenty of those folks out there, especially among casual zombie fans – Z4Z is a “Dummies”-style self-help book for the newly turned (or, more precisely, about-to-be-turned) zombie.

In Z4Z’s world, a mad-cow like disease called the Provo virus has created zombies and a massive corporate-government conglomerate has taken drastic steps to stop it – and profit from it in the process. If it sounds like the world of Fido, you are not wrong, although this is more modern and Halliburton-y. In this world, the moderately zombified get shipped off to special “retirement” homes, while the full-on zombies are the Horde, kept at bay (barely) by high fences and intense security measures.

With chapters such as “The 14 Habits of Highly Effective Zombies: Etiquette and Behavior” and “You Are Who You Eat,” and detailed suggestions for medication options, sex tips (yes, there’s an entire chapter on zombie sex, if you like that sort of thing) and even post-life fashion, Z4Z takes a much broader, frequently silly look at the undead world than, say, Max Brooks’s work, which is humorous without being precisely funny.

The brief looks at the behavior of the Horde and the effects of the zombie virus on society were fascinating – there’s a more serious (although probably somewhat light hearted, still) book in there if Murphy wants to write it. The book would have benefited by including more of that sort of material and a little less of some of the other, less-zombie specific humor. The few serious elements work really well.

The problem is it’s more than a little drawn out at 230+ pages. It would have been twice as good at half the length, most likely. The zombiecentric humor gets stretched plenty thin (seriously, the brains thing is done in just about every possible way) and too much non-zombie humor gets thrown in, seemingly at random. Z4Z is funny – there are several laugh-out-loud moments and plenty of chuckles to be found, and it’s a decent read. It just run out of steam before it runs out of pages.

3 Responses to “Review: Zombies for Zombies

  1. Biddie says:

    I think that this is the kind of thing that I would enjoy reading. I do love all things zombie. I might skip over the zombie sex parts though. Something about that just doesn’t feel right. *shudder*
    Have you seen Dog House? I watched it on line the other night and I loved it. It is a zombedy, along the lines of Shaun Of The Dead. I think that the British are on to something with these movies.
    I loved the comic book geek and his pure joy at finding a much sought after toy robot (in original packaging no less)in a toy store when he was under attack by the zombies. Pure genuis, if you ask me.
    I STILL haven’t seen Dead Sno. I can’t wait much longer, I am dying to see it!

  2. Dead Snow is out in Canada, as of Oct. 20! You definitely need to see it, is great.

    Haven;t seen Doghouse, but will as soon as I can. And I agree. The Brits have a peculiar affinity for the zombie.

    Good to hear from you again, too!

  3. […] for Zombies Play & Werk Buk (book trailer embedded below) should fill the need. Me, well my review of Zombies for Zombies will tell you I already thought the original book was a bit too much Zombies for Zombies. (Buy […]

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