26 November 2012

Review: Zom-B (Zom-B #1) by Darren Shan

Zom-B (Zom-B #1) by Darren Shan

Published: 27 September 2012 by Simon & Schuster

Pages: 217 (hardcover)

Genre/s: Young Adult, Horror, Zombies

Source: Own library

Check it Out: Goodreads ~ Amazon ~ Amazon UK ~ The Book Depository

Synopsis

Zom-B is a radical new series about a zombie apocalypse, told in the first person by one of its victims. The series combines classic Shan action with a fiendishly twisting plot and hard-hitting and thought-provoking moral questions dealing with racism, abuse of power and more. This is challenging material, which will captivate existing Shan fans and bring in many new ones. As Darren says, "It's a big, sprawling, vicious tale...a grisly piece of escapism, and a barbed look at the world in which we live. Each book in the series is short, fast-paced and bloody. A high body-count is guaranteed!"


My Thoughts

I've never read a Darren Shan book, but everything I heard about him is positive, so as soon as I saw Zom-B, I had to buy it.  A zombie book written by an author with an excellent reputation, set in the UK?  Yep, I was hooked in.

Zom-B is a quick read, taking me just over two hours to get through, and definitely has a one-more-chapter feeling.  There are also some awesome illustrations throughout the book, which I wasn't expecting but added an extra touch to the story.

Zom-B begins with the story of a zombie outbreak in Ireland, which is initally laughed off by B, the main character of the book, and B's friends.

B is a fantastic character with a tough background.  An abusive, racist and possibly alcoholic father, a hen-pecked mother and a bunch of friends that enjoy terrorising local shop-keepers and their teachers, although there's a lot to dislike about B, I couldn't help but feeling sympathetic - Zom-B really shows just how your upbringing can shape your attitude and actions in life, and it all felt incredibly realistic.

The zombie action doesn't start until more than half-way through the book, which would normally have disappointed me, but that's not the case here - there was so much going on with B that I actually didn't mind at all, and started to suspect that maybe this was a zombie story in name only.  Rest assured, there are zombies, and when they do arrive things go to shit pretty fast, and in a very gory fashion.

I love reading books set in the UK - to me the language and setting is very familiar and I love the quirks of the English, which have come through very well in Darren Shan's writing.  The writing is perfect for a teenage and adult audience - it's fast, straightforward and yet incredibly entertaining.

Zom-B ends on a huge, and quite shocking, cliffhanger but as part of a 12 part series, the next book is scheduled for publication in 2013, so there's not a long wait to see just what Darren Shan can dream up next.


9 comments:

  1. I have been hearing such wonderful things about this book. I may have to give it a try.

    Great review, Kat!

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  2. I enjoyed this one as well, though slightly less then you did. Then again, I'm not as good at handling hardcore zombie mayhem, and this one got pretty gross. I know some reviewers hated the stuff with B's dad, but I thought it added some needed depth to the novel, showing how no matter what the kid thinks the parent poisons them with such attitudes.

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  3. ohhhhhhhh,
    i want to read it i want to read it!

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  4. 12 parts? Holy smokers! I have this one on my shelf and it'S so tiny! I have been hearing good things though it sounds like a very entertaining read even though the zombies only make an appearance half way. I also love illustrations in book! Great review, chickie!

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  5. Oooh I like that this one has a slow build up! I like meeting the characters and coming to like them before shit hits the fan. I have seen this one around and like that it is super short, quick reads are always good!

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  6. 12 books? Woah, buddy! I have this one on my list and will get to it, someday, I hope. I definitely love his traumatic background. Bring on the broken characters!

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  7. I, too, have heard wonderful things about what Shan has written and Zom-B nearly tops my list of things to read. I'm super happy to hear that it's everything it was supposed to be! I love broken characters, it makes the tragedy of an event like this feel so much more impactful. I can't wait to read it, definitely in the mood for something a bit shorter!

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  8. Well, I have heard of the author, but I have not read anything by him. this book looks very creative and i love the cover. But, OMG! a 12 part series? It looks like the author has a LOT of ideas to go through. Amazing review, Kat
    I am adding this to my full TBR :P
    Your constant reader,
    Soma
    http://insomnia-of-books.blogspot.com/

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  9. I'm glad you enjoyed this one since I'm such a huge fan of Darren Shan! I have to get my hands on it as soon as possible

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