World War Z – Where were you during the war with Zack?
We tend to look back on historical events as single points, solitary entities amidst an endless sea of others. The assassination of Kennedy, where were you? The Twin towers, where were you? The Israeli voluntary quarantine, where we you? These are not hermits in history though. Dominoes fell in cascading events leading up to the big splashes that we memorize where we are, what we’re doing, and how out lives have changed. In World War Z, Max Brooks has managed to capture that feeling. We dance through the events leading up to the horrors of the zombie uprising and the lives that were lost and the ones who lived through it. From early musing in China to spy networks through the old cold war nation states, so many people have stories to tell. In the end, one by one, their puzzle pieces fit together and we learn more of the truth of what was, and how much worse it could have been. Wherever you were during the crisis that almost made Homo sapiens another extinct breed on the evolutionary scale, you’ll find something touching in this documentary book.
World War Z is a wonderful Imagined documentary of the aftermath of a decade long war waged against the undead. Set during the second quarter of the 21st century, the novel takes the form of the aftermath of a UN probe into the events that lead to the outbreak, the actions of people responsible and impacted by the events of the world government, and the changed world after the end of the war and how people are cooping. Max Brooks writes himself into the novel as a researcher analyst gathering the information for the report and eventually succeeding in presenting a very emotional and heart filled report. From the first outbreak and the doctor who witnessed patient zero, a soldier on the front lines, the former VP of the United States, and activists throughout the world.
One of the strongest parts of the story is that it isn’t US centric. While the US has the largest percentage of voices, people throughout the world have their voices heard through the report. Cuba, China, Europe, south Asia islands, Canada, and other nations throughout the world share a piece of their presence in the war. Max takes care at looking at the effects the war has on the economies and futures of various nation states and how they not only coop with the outbreak but how their culture and outlook are infected by the spread fleeing masses of humanity. The plague years bring more than just the undead in terms of changes.
I would recommend World War Z to fans of zombie mythos who want to see a story outside of the typical last man standing stories many other zombie themed novels present. Max’s work creates a realistic view on an impossible situation. The reactions of countries and cultures as the events shift back and forth leave the planet convulsing in death throes. While the very existence of the book provides the answer on if humanity survived, reading the path the people of the world take in order to make it through at all costs will leave you amazed with awe and disgust. This book works great with both text and audio editions.