I am not sure why I got this book. It was probably the note about it being for fans of Neil Gaiman, and I probably looked past the part where it also said fans of Stephen King. I am only a fan of the stuff he writes for babies. I don’t think I’m spoiling anything to say that as much as I love great literature, I can never seem to get enough of a good zombie book now and then. (They are actually called “hungries” in this book, but if you haven’t read it yet, I think zombie is an acceptable substitution.) So come on, it’s summer — time to scare yourself so badly that you have to stay up half the night reading the book, and then sleep the rest of the night with the lights on.
I didn’t realize right away what this book was about (and obviously, I didn’t read any of the many reviews). It almost looked like an innocuous novel I could read with my daughters. The cover looks so happy. Melanie is a genius; she was born with some amazing gifts. For some reason, she seems to be in prison. That’s as much as I read before I requested it. After reading it, I understand that her gifts may be rare and amazing, but ones I never hope to need in this lifetime.
M.R. Carey is apparently the pseudonym for a more famous British writer. Besides that angle, there has been a lot written about this book, and with good reason. It is not just a zombie book (my favorite review called it “experimental zombie fiction”); it is a well-written, edge of your seat thriller. The characters in the book were so well developed I almost forgot at times that I was reading about zombies. And why not? Zombies are people, too, right? Uh, or were, I guess. They have feelings, and super fast speed, and near perfect night vision. There was a time when I only knew a few facts about zombies, and now, I know so much more. So educate yourself, and, possibly, see the sunrise one morning soon, after a night spent reading this creepy, completely awesome book.