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The Living Dead by John Joseph Adams
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The Living Dead

by John Joseph Adams (Editor)

Other authors: Sherman Alexie (Contributor), Dale Bailey (Contributor), Clive Barker (Contributor), Hannah Wolf Bowen (Contributor), Poppy Z. Brite (Contributor)30 more, Adam-Troy Castro (Contributor), Catherine Cheek (Contributor), Andy Duncan (Contributor), Scott Edelman (Contributor), Harlan Ellison (Contributor), Brian Evenson (Contributor), Jeffrey Ford (Contributor), Neil Gaiman (Contributor), Laurell K. Hamilton (Contributor), Joe Hill (Contributor), Nina Kiriki Hoffman (Contributor), Nancy Holder (Contributor), Nancy Kilpatrick (Contributor), Stephen King (Contributor), David Barr Kirtley (Contributor), John Langan (Contributor), Joe R. Lansdale (Contributor), Kelly Link (Contributor), George R. R. Martin (Contributor), Will McIntosh (Contributor), Lisa Morton (Contributor), Susan Palwick (Contributor), Norman Partridge (Contributor), David J. Schow (Contributor), Darrell Schweitzer (Contributor), Robert Silverberg (Contributor), Dan Simmons (Contributor), Michael Swanwick (Contributor), David Tallerman (Contributor), Douglas E. Winter (Contributor)

Series: The Living Dead (1)

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» See also 6 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
I just finished the first offering, "This Year's Class Picture" by Dan Simmons (of Hyperion fame). This might be my favorite horror short story of all-time. So far, so awesome. John Joseph Adams knew what he was doing and started this anthology off with a huge survivalist story. 5 STARS.
"Some Zombie Contingency Plans" by Kelly Link--1 Star. Couldn't wait to get it over with. Reread it a week later and, yep, just a reductionist tale with no character development. Instead, poppy youth driven dialogue!
"Death and Suffrage" by Dale Bailey--4 Stars. Presidential election won by a zombie girl. Nuff said.
"Ghost Dance" by Sherman Alexie--3 Stars.
"Blossom" by David Schow--5 Stars. NASTY. Could never forget.
"The Third Dead Body" by Nina Kiriki Hoffman--3 Stars.
"The Dead" by Michael Swanwick--4 Stars. Corporatism run amok.
"The Dead Kid" by Darrell Schweitzer--3 Stars.
"Malthusian's Zombie" by Jeffrey Ford--4 Stars.
"Beautiful Stuff" by Susan Palwick--3 Stars (post 9/11 critique of US gov't)
"Sex, Death, and Starshine" by Clive Barker--1 Star. (I KNOW!!! SO DISAPPOINTING.)
"Stockholm Syndrome" by David Tallerman--4 Stars (felt a bit like SK's 'Roadwork'. 1ST PERSON NARRATION WARNING)
"Bobby Conroy Comes Back From the Dead" by Joe Hill--5 Stars. Takes place on the set of a George Romero flick...a love story, somehow enjoyed!
"Those Who Seek Forgiveness" by Laurell K. Hamilton--1 Star.
"In Beauty, Like the Night" by Norman Partridge--4 Stars.
"Prairie" by Brian Evenson--5 Stars. Refreshingly weird, DARK, downright bereft of hope...and difficult to consider.
"Everything is Better with Zombies" by Hannah Wolf Bowen--2 Stars.
"Home Delivery" by Stephen King--4 Stars. Left me wanting more.
"Less Than Zombie" by Douglas E. Winter--2 Stars.
"Sparks Fly Upward" by Lisa Morton--2 Stars.
"Meathouse Man" by George R.R. Martin--5 STARS. SETTING, SETTING, SETTING. What the author achieves in describing this landscape cannot be understated. Hard to read due to the completely likeable, forlorn narrator. In the notes it says Mr. Martin has trouble rereading this story...I can see why.
"Deadman's Road" by Joe Lansdale--5 Stars. Zombie Western with a pinch of the demonic.
"The Skull-Faced Boy" by David Barr Kirtley--2 Stars.
"The Age of Sorrow" by Nancy Kilpatrick--4 Stars.
"Bitter Grounds" by Neil Gaiman--3 Stars. I always WANT to like Neil Gaiman's works. ( )
  apomonis | Jun 2, 2016 |
Really enjoyable anthology that delivered on zombies of all zombie-walks. As with all anthologies, there were a few misses but overall this was a great anthology and I came out of this with a few favourites:

"This Year's Class Picture" - the first story of the anthology is a great set-up. A teacher continues her life's work even after the world goes to Hell.

"The Dead Kid" - A heart-breaking little story about a child zombie that stuck with me for a week.

"Prairie" - Short, believable, and gruesome.

"Home Delivery" - Stephen King's story combines my penchant for his Little Tall Island as a setting and also a female protagonist.

"Deadman's Road" - This old west story was just plain chilling. Compact cast of characters, backstory that evokes disgust for the zombie even before we meet him. I'm sorry that the author's "Dead In The West" isn't more widely available.

"Followed" - Original. I don't particularly enjoy stories in which the monster is implicitly a symbol for some human flaw, but the zombie taking the place of our conscience is effective. ( )
  sweetzombieducky | Nov 28, 2015 |
Took a few days, but i loved every story it contained. There are definitely some strange tales inside, with unique plots. Must-read for a zombie fan! ( )
  darkonelh3730 | Dec 27, 2013 |
Ordinarily, this book would have gotten only two stars because of the ratio of stories that made me glad I'd bought the book to stories I hated or stories which I won't remember in a week.

The first story in the book, Dan Simmons's This Year's Class Picture set the bar high. It's got your basic McGuyver-like adaptations to a broken society, high-tension moments and of course a zombie battle, but it's also got pathos and a bittersweet, heartstring-tugging ending.

In Death and Suffrage, Dale Bailey gives us one look at politics and the dead, and in Beautiful Stuff, Susan Palwick has a different take on the same subject. Both stories are evocative and moving.

Lisa Morton's Sparks Fly Upward has a heroine in a heart-rending situation who nevertheless gets a measure of revenge that a lot of readers might have wanted.

Catherine Cheek's She's Taking Her Tits to the Grave is an artful combination of gore, black humor and pathos.

And it should come as no surprise that The Last Song the Zombie Sang is brilliant in language, character and development, considering that it was written by Harlan Ellison and Roger Zelazny.
( )
  Jammies | Mar 31, 2013 |
I thoroughly enjoyed (and by thoroughly I mean every single selected story) Wastelands, a similar collection by the same editor, wherein the theme was more broadly apocalyptic. The Living Dead was not quite that strong a grouping, but there were some real gems. Zombies, as much as any other end-of-the-world scenario, provide plenty of material for the philosophical, for levels of human interest, and for terrifying situations. Right up front I was interested to read the Poppy Z. Brite story, because I’ve always wanted to see if she’s as good a writer of chilling material as her fan base proclaims. Her contribution Calcutta, Lord of Nerves was exceptionally rich and lurid, and I now have a strong basis for picking up one of her novels.

I had read both the Stephen King story [Home Delivery] and the Joe Hill story [Bobby Conroy Comes Back from the Dead] in their own short story collections, the former being an example of one of King’s less memorable stories (and thus only of a slightly higher calibre than everything else in the book) and the Joe Hill story, while only about zombies in a cultural sort of way, is readable (there are far better examples of his storytelling in his collection 20th Century Ghosts, too).

Two of my favourite stories were, in my opinion, also the sweetest stories. Followed by Will McIntosh in which people are acquiring unshakeable zombie corpses in seemingly direct relation to moral degeneration in their lives, and the narrator is shocked and righteously indignant to find himself followed by a child’s corpse… the other, This Year’s Class Picture is by Dan Simmons. Having read The Terror by that author, I was expecting something much more brutal than a class teacher’s refusal to give up on the children in her care, even after their deaths. I was also quite chilled by Stockholm Syndrome by David Tallerman.

And yet the story I found the most frightening was one that has been decried by other reviewers as not really being about zombies at all… except that the principal character wants to discuss Some Zombie Contingency Plans with a girl whose house-party he crashes. The ending of that one was so unexpected it literally gave me goose bumps, despite (or perhaps because) the bulk of the story was rather repetitive and fell (quite cleverly, I suspect) only a little short of boring. There were plenty of others I enjoyed; 34 stories are a lot for me to remember individually, and I only shrugged my way through a couple.

My favourite story from the collection, though, was Sparks Fly Upward by Lisa Morton who used the zombie scenario to explore the incredibly cruel actions of people who besiege abortion clinics and harass the women who enter, while still telling a good zombie story. When I finished this story I had the strongest urge to applaud. ( )
  eleanor_eader | Jun 4, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
The shambling animated corpses of George Romero's films have lurched into the bookstores in droves in recent months, headlined by high-profile titles like World War Z and Monster Island. In this anthology, editor Adams (Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse) does a remarkable job of collecting a sampling of variations on this theme. These stories range from the truly disgusting (Poppy Z. Brite's 'Calcutta: Lord of Nerves') to the nearly wistful ('Followed' by Will McIntosh) and even one with no supernatural elements at all (Joe Hill's 'Bobby Conroy Comes Back from the Dead'). Included are pieces by big names in horror like Stephen King and Clive Barker but also contributions by less obvious suspects like Harlan Ellison, Sherman Alexie, and George R.R. Martin. The final treat is John Langan's 'How the Day Runs Down' a nasty little play best described as Our Town with zombies. Highly recommended for all horror fiction collections.
added by cmwilson101 | editLibrary Journal
 
Recently prolific anthologist Adams (Seeds of Change) delivers a superb reprint anthology that runs the gamut of zombie stories. There's plenty of gore, highlighted by Stephen King's Home Delivery and David Schow's classic Blossom. Less traditional but equally satisfying are Lisa Morton's Sparks Fly Upward, which analyzes abortion politics in a zombified world, and Douglas Winter's literary pastiche Less than Zombie. Also outstanding, Kelly Link's Some Zombie Contingency Plans and Hannah Wolf Bowen's Everything Is Better with Zombies take similar themes in wildly different directions. Neil Gaiman's impeccably crafted Bitter Grounds offers a change of pace with traditional Caribbean zombies. The sole original contribution, John Langan's How the Day Runs Down, is a darkly amusing twist on Thornton Wilder's Our Town. There's some great storytelling for zombie fans as well as newcomers.
added by cmwilson101 | editPublisher's Weekly
 

» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adams, John JosephEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Alexie, ShermanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bailey, DaleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Barker, CliveContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bowen, Hannah WolfContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brite, Poppy Z.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Castro, Adam-TroyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cheek, CatherineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Duncan, AndyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Edelman, ScottContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ellison, HarlanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Evenson, BrianContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ford, JeffreyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gaiman, NeilContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hamilton, Laurell K.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hill, JoeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hoffman, Nina KirikiContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Holder, NancyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kilpatrick, NancyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
King, StephenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kirtley, David BarrContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Langan, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lansdale, Joe R.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Link, KellyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Martin, George R. R.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McIntosh, WillContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Morton, LisaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Palwick, SusanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Partridge, NormanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schow, David J.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schweitzer, DarrellContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Silverberg, RobertContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Simmons, DanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Swanwick, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tallerman, DavidContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Winter, Douglas E.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"You know Macumba? Voodoo. My granddad was a priest in Trinidad. He used to tell us, 'When there's no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth.'"

-- Ken Foree as "Peter" in George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead
Dedication
First words
(Introduction): When I first started assembling this anthology, I thought to myself: This is not going to be the sort of book that begins with an origin of the word zombie.
Ms. Geiss watched her new student coming across the first-graders' playground from her vantage point on the balcony of the old school's belfry.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
When there's no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth!

From White Zombie to Dawn of the Dead, Resident Evil to World War Z, zombies have invaded popular culture, becoming the monsters that best express the fears and anxieties of the modern west. Gathering together the best zombie literature of the last three decades from many of today's most renowned authors of fantasy, speculative fiction, and horror, including Stephen King, Harlan Ellison, Robert Silverberg, George R. R. Martin, Clive Barker, Poppy Z. Brite, Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill, Laurell K. Hamilton, and Joe R. Lansdale, The Living Dead covers the broad spectrum of zombie fiction.
Collects these stories:
Introduction by John Joseph Adams
"This Year's Class Picture" by Dan Simmons
"Some Zombie Contingency Plans" by Kelly Link
"Death and Suffrage" by Dale Bailey
"Ghost Dance" by Sherman Alexie
"Blossom" by David J. Schow
"The Third Dead Body" by Nina Kiriki Hoffman
"The Dead" by Michael Swanwick
"The Dead Kid" by Darrell Schweitzer
"Malthusian's Zombie" by Jeffrey Ford
"Beautiful Stuff" by Susan Palwick
"Sex, Death, and Starshine" by Clive Barker
"Stockholm Syndrome" by David Tallerman
"Bobby Conroy Comes Back From the Dead" by Joe Hill
"Those Who Seek Forgiveness" by Laurell K. Hamilton
"In Beauty, Like the Night" by Norman Partridge
"Prairie" by Brian Evenson
"Everything is Better With Zombies" by Hannah Wolf Bowen
"Home Delivery" by Stephen King
"Less than Zombie" by Douglas E. Winter
"Sparks Fly Upward" by Lisa Morton
"Meathouse Man" by George R. R. Martin
"Deadmans' Road" by Joe R. Lansdale
"The Skull-Faced Boy" by David Barr Kirtley
"The Age of Sorrow" by Nancy Kilpatrick
"Bitter Grounds" by Neil Gaiman
"She's Taking Her Tits to the Grave" by Catherine Cheek
"Dead Like Me" by Adam-Troy Castro
"Zora and the Zombie" by Andy Duncan
"Calcutta, Lord of Nerves" by Poppy Z. Brite
"Followed" by Will McIntosh
"The Song the Zombie Sang" by Harlan Ellison and Robert Silverberg
"Passion Play" by Nancy Holder
"Almost the Last Story by ALmost the Last Man" by Scott Edelman
"How the Day Runs Down" by John Langan
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A collection of short stories about zombies includes contributions by Clive Barker, Laurell K. Hamilton, Stephen King, and Neil Gaiman.

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