“When the news starts reporting a zombie outbreak in Ireland, B’s father thinks it’s a hoax–but even if it isn’t, the two of them joke, it’s only the Irish, right?
That is, until zombies actually attack the school. B is forced on a mad dash through the serpentine corridors of high school, making allegiances with anyone with enough gall to fight off their pursuers. But when they come face to face with the ravenous, oozing corpses, all bets are off. There are no friends. No allies. Just whatever it takes to survive.”
First of all, the fact that B is a girl took me completely by surprise.
Oh, don’t worry. That’s not really a spoiler. Or, at least, I don’t think so. Her gender doesn’t affect the story much, except how you look at the events prior to the reveal. It actually makes the novel better, come to think about it now.
But before you’re fooled into thinking that this is actually a novel about zombies–it’s not. Well, it is. There are zombies in this book, but this book is not about zombies.
It’s about B. And her dad. And her mom. Her friends. How she chooses her friends. How she forms her relationships, and how she makes decisions, because of her dad, her mom, and her friends.
This book is about B, a girl who has to live up to the demands and expectations of her father. The father she loves. The father she hates.
And ZOM-B is a brilliant book. About the psyche of a troubled child, about racism, and how it’s harder to see the monster in us than it is to see the ones that surround us.
Oh, and sure, the zombies aren’t very original. Author Darren Shan does add a new twist into the mythology, but for the most part, the zombies aren’t that interesting. But then again, we don’t really read zombie novels for the zombies, do we?
We read these kinds of novels for the humanity. The people who inhabit this world that has gone crazy.
And Darren Shan has created a marvelous character study with his protagonist: B.
I’ll probably just continue gushing about how brilliant the character is, so I’ll end this hear–and leave with you with some links that would actually have reviews:
Alexander Gordon Smith
I read through their reviews, and I thought it would be worth mentioning to note that Miss Literati seems to have mistaken B for the first character we meet. Just thought I’d point that out.