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World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie…

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War (original 2006; edition 2006)

by Max Brooks (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
11,702604335 (4)3 / 657
Title:World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
Authors:Max Brooks (Author)
Info:Crown (2006), Edition: 1st, 342 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:all-books-i-ve-read-over-the-years, all-books-currently-owned

Work details

World War Z by Max Brooks (2006)

Recently added byWSelzer, jenknox, KurtWombat, MSaus, rena75, private library, JaniceMonaghan, Melfoy2013
Legacy LibrariesTim Spalding
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(see all 33 recommendations)


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English (589)  French (7)  Spanish (3)  Italian (2)  Danish (2)  German (1)  Hungarian (1)  All languages (605)
Showing 1-5 of 589 (next | show all)
With inspiration from George A. Romero and "The Good War", Max Brooks brings forth a collection of stories and perspectives on the greatest war human civilization has faced. And I love it.

Bouncing from different perspectives as each person tells only a bit of their story about the Zombie War, you can piece together the struggle for humanity and if they will retain it and if so, how will they be changed by such an event.

I've listened to the abridged audiobook, which was fantastic. Given that Max Brooks has done voice work, he was able to recommend other actors to contribute. They have since released a complete audiobook. My recommendation would be to listen to the complete audiobook for a better experience and immersion. ( )
  askmark | Sep 13, 2019 |
I really enjoyed this! I'm a big fan of documentary-style approaches to fantastical events so this book was a ton of fun. I think I enjoy the bureaucratic fallout of a zombie apocalypse more than I'm interested in, you know, zombies ( )
  hatingongodot | Aug 12, 2019 |
The first time I heard this story, I was listening to the abridged audiobook. It was a gift from a friend as I was leaving Alaska. Listening to it as I rode through the desolate off-season roads of Alaska and the Yukon Territory was magnificently creepy, especially the part that happens in Canada.

The third time, I was also listening to the abridged version. This time as my husband and I traveled from North Carolina to Texas and back. That time I had the thrill of crossing the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge as I listened to that part of the story.

This is my first time hearing the full, unabridged version, and it is absolutely worth the extra time. The social commentary, the exceptional performance of the all-star cast, and the fully-immersive experience are all enhanced by the extra details that were lost in the first recording.

World War Z was the first audiobook I ever listened to, and it set an extremely high standard. This will always be a favorite of mine, because, like the best of horror, it says more about humanity than it does the monsters it is only superficially about. ( )
  Zoes_Human | Aug 9, 2019 |
Amazing book. It's exactly what it says on the tin: "An oral history of the zombie war". Instead of giving us the omnipresent bird-eye view of a global zombie conflict, Brooks shows us one of the worst and most real aspects of war: nobody knows everything and there's always another side of the coin.

The historian (and reader) must patch together a coherent narrative with the bits and pieces told by every witness s/he can find, including cold-blooded military men, an unscrupulous drug "salesman" and even your average Joe.

There is horror in the Zombies and their threat, but this book goes well above and beyond that. The horror of war, of an enemy that can't be maimed, coerced or reasoned with. The horror of other human beings on the brink of despair. The horror of other nations being scared. The end of life as we know it. The many ugly reactions to an unknown threat.

Curiously enough, World War Z is all about humans. Who we are during a conflict and the kind of monster/savior we can become. Don't miss this book. ( )
  andycyca | Aug 6, 2019 |
Do you really need me to tell you this was excellent? Does everyone in the world know this by now? Are the only people complaining about it those who don't get or like the construct of being documentary-style, a collection of interviews rather than a character-driven plot? Does it sadden me that those people will never experience the magnificent patchwork of human nature that thus ensues?

Really, I enjoyed it so much that I was reduced to taking little nitpicky notes. Like how the discussion of religion in Russia absolutely does not fit our experience of the country (where religion is on the rise, especially among young people). Or the bit where the Australian says gallons. Or his definition of "total war", which I would define more by the having-done-to-you rather than the doing, but that prompted a minor revelation on the American nature of the scope, so it's just more philosophical grist for the mill of this book.

It's excellent, anyway. ( )
  cupiscent | Aug 3, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 589 (next | show all)

» Add other authors (23 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Max Brooksprimary authorall editionscalculated
Elias, MariaDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Körber, JoachimÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keränen, HelmiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Petersen, JohnIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ramírez Tello, PilarTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reiner, CarlNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Reiner, RobNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tran, DavidCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Henry Michael Brooks,
who makes me want to change the world.
Bana dünyayı değiştirme isteği veren
Henry Michael Brooks için...
First words
Introduction - It goes by many names: "The Crisis," "The Dark Years," "The Walking Plague," as well as newer and more "hip" titles such as "World War Z" or "Z War One."
Setting - Greater Chongqing, the United Federation of China
Chapter One - The first outbreak I saw was in a remote village that offically had no name.
'Fear is the most valuable commodity in the universe' Turn on the TV what are you seeing? People selling you products? No. People selling you the fear of you having to live without their products' Fear of aging, fear of loneliness, fear of poverty, fear of failure. Fear is the most basic emotion we have. Fear is primal. Fear sells. pg 55 (edit)
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0307346617, Paperback)

“The end was near.” —Voices from the Zombie War

The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.

Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.

Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, “By excluding the human factor, aren’t we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn’t the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as ‘the living dead’?”

Note: Some of the numerical and factual material contained in this edition was previously published under the auspices of the United Nations Postwar Commission.

Eyewitness reports from the first truly global war

“I found ‘Patient Zero’ behind the locked door of an abandoned apartment across town. . . . His wrists and feet were bound with plastic packing twine. Although he’d rubbed off the skin around his bonds, there was no blood. There was also no blood on his other wounds. . . . He was writhing like an animal; a gag muffled his growls. At first the villagers tried to hold me back. They warned me not to touch him, that he was ‘cursed.’ I shrugged them off and reached for my mask and gloves. The boy’s skin was . . . cold and gray . . . I could find neither his heartbeat nor his pulse.” —Dr. Kwang Jingshu, Greater Chongqing, United Federation of China

“‘Shock and Awe’? Perfect name. . . . But what if the enemy can’t be shocked and awed? Not just won’t, but biologically can’t! That’s what happened that day outside New York City, that’s the failure that almost lost us the whole damn war. The fact that we couldn’t shock and awe Zack boomeranged right back in our faces and actually allowed Zack to shock and awe us! They’re not afraid! No matter what we do, no matter how many we kill, they will never, ever be afraid!” —Todd Wainio, former U.S. Army infantryman and veteran of the Battle of Yonkers

“Two hundred million zombies. Who can even visualize that type of number, let alone combat it? . . . For the first time in history, we faced an enemy that was actively waging total war. They had no limits of endurance. They would never negotiate, never surrender. They would fight until the very end because, unlike us, every single one of them, every second of every day, was devoted to consuming all life on Earth.” —General Travis D’Ambrosia, Supreme Allied Commander, Europe

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:36 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

An account of the decade-long conflict between humankind and hordes of the predatory undead is told from the perspective of dozens of survivors who describe in their own words the epic human battle for survival.

» see all 16 descriptions

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