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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 2007)

by Max Brooks

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
10,180558282 (4.01)3 / 617
Title:World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
Authors:Max Brooks
Info:Three Rivers Press (2007), Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks (2006)

  1. 192
    Feed by Mira Grant (Aerrin99, andreablythe, HenriMoreaux)
    Aerrin99: An awesome look at the world post-zombie-apocalypse with history, politics, and fantastic world building.
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    The Stand {1978} by Stephen King (timspalding)
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    The Walking Dead, Volume 1: Days Gone Bye by Robert Kirkman (Aerrin99)
    Aerrin99: An awesome look at the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse in the longer term.
  5. 91
    Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson (timspalding)
    timspalding: Very similar style.
  6. 60
    Earth Abides by George R. Stewart (timspalding)
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    Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry (stmartins)
    stmartins: Also a killer Zombie thriller and an awesome first book in the "Joe Ledger" series. Teaser and free prequal story avaiable at stmartins.com/JonathanMaberry
  8. 50
    The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham (infjsarah)
    infjsarah: Older sci-fi but still very effective. Survival against mindless, ever increasing enemy.
  9. 62
    Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler (storyjunkie)
    storyjunkie: Both are tales of how to survive a world gone mad, though there are no zombies in Butler's. Both works' treatment of the human questions are equally nuanced, variable, and detailed.
  10. 41
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  11. 30
    Zombie CSU: The Forensics of the Living Dead by Jonathan Maberry (ShelfMonkey)
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    sparemethecensor: Speculative fiction, same piecey storytelling style.
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    yoyogod: The Rising is probably my favorite zombie novel.
  14. 42
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  15. 31
    Handling the Undead by John Ajvide Lindqvist (ijustgetbored)
    ijustgetbored: A completely different take on zombies: here, they're not "out to get you," just beings who may or may not have souls, and Lindqvist treats all those related questions.
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  18. 54
    And the Band Played On: Politics, People, and the AIDS Epidemic by Randy Shilts (timspalding)
    timspalding: Some may take offense at the suggestion, but I think don't think World War Z could have been written without And the Band Played On, an oral history of the all-too-real AIDS epidemic. Shilts' is by far the better book, even if it weren't true and important.… (more)
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(see all 33 recommendations)


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English (543)  French (7)  Spanish (3)  Danish (2)  Italian (2)  Hungarian (1)  All (558)
Showing 1-5 of 543 (next | show all)
Although its biting social and political commentary makes it a true contender for a permanent role in the zombie genre, its format causes it to drag like the living dead. ( )
  Birdo82 | Jan 15, 2017 |
Pucha, no pude enganchar con este libro no más. Me gustaba la premisa, y partí súper interesada porque a todos los que conozco que han leído el libro les gustó, pero conmigo no hubo caso.
Lo primero que no me gustó fue que el estilo periodístico -para mí- hizo que las historias fueran muy planas, quitándole la parte emocional de los relatos. Yo sé que se supone que ya han pasado 10 años desde la tragedia, pero igual me pareció que todos los personajes hablaban súper despersonalizadamente, no te hacían enganchar con lo que vivieron, no te transmitían mucho, y se supone que vieron e hicieron cuestiones brigidas, entonces como que no compré mucho. Y eso mismo me lleva al segundo punto que no me gustó: encontré que todos los entrevistados tenían la misma "voz". Todos eran más o menos parecidos. Cada cierto rato te encontrabas con un aprovechador, luego con un soldado, de ahí una persona con algún tipo de autoridad, después con una persona común y corriente, y de ahí se repite el ciclo. Y aún así, todos eran medios parecidos. A mi gusto, el autor no se lució mucho ahí, no fue capaz de darle aires diferentes a sus "entrevistados", lo que hizo que para mi, con leer 10 historias ya empecé a sentir que el resto era puro relleno. Traté de seguir, pero no me dio para más que el 30%.

En fin, igual no le puse 1 estrella (como suelo ratear los libros que no termino), porque no creo que sea un MAL libro, sólo que no es un libro para mi no más. Ojalá la película sea wena :) ( )
  Danyspike | Jan 14, 2017 |
Zombies usually aren't my thing, but I thought this book was an engrossing, smart vision of the what the zombie apocalypse will look like. There's a perverse thrill to trying to imagine how details of culture, geography, physical capacity, etc, might affect an individual or state or country's ability to cope with such an incredible situation. And I liked the form of the novel also. The alternating voices made for a convincing communal protagonist. Fitting. Zombies have no individuality, so why have the typically individualist protagonist? ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
This comes across as a very unique set up for a book. The plot is just a retelling from each person's perspective of what happened before, during, and after the Zombie War. Having a complete cast. with the author reading as the Primary POV and a different voice actor reading each interview part, makes this a great audio book to listen to.

Some of these voices are too distinct to miss. Kal Penn, Bruce Boxleitner, Nathan Fillian, Jeri Ryan, Masi Oka, Alan Alda... Just those names alone would make me curious.

The sad part is I'm not a Zombie Apocalypse type person, so the base subject matter does get the removal of a star from my rating. The length may also be hurting the overall star count. But for a LONG car ride, it definitely keeps one alert as they drive the US Interstates where all they see is trees...

A bit disappointed with the ending. The book just ... ends. There is no conclusion, no real plot to it to end. Was hoping for a sudden something. Don't know. Still a very good book. Not worth going to the dark side of these books, but worth a listen. ( )
  gilroy | Dec 11, 2016 |
You have to read it for what it is. It's not a novel, but meant to be a compliment to a fictional UN report. In that light, I think it becomes a well designed concept. I just felt like it was rushed at the end. ( )
  Adam.Anderson | Dec 9, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 543 (next | show all)
And while all the action and drama is top notch, it would just be a mechanical exercise if it weren’t for the sociological commentary inserted. It may be out in the open but Brooks does not beat you over the head with it. I love how he shows how both the general public and governments deal with zombie crisis, mainly with denial. If you want, zombies are simply a symbol for the entire real world such as climate change or a dwindling supply.
added by paradoxosalpha | editDaily Kos, billssha (Jul 4, 2011)

» Add other authors (24 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Max Brooksprimary authorall editionscalculated
Elias, MariaDesignersecondary 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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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.

(summary from another edition)

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