Saturday, 16 February 2013
What I've Been Reading:
'Warm Bodies' by Isaac Marion
I've been wanting to read this novel for a while now but the whole idea of pairing zombies and romance kind of put me off. I'm a huge fan of any novel or film that has an apocalyptic back-drop, which is what won me over and made me decide to finally read 'Warm Bodies'. And I'm so glad I did.
'R' is a zombie. He's dead, ceased to breathe. His skin is grey, his eyes are grey and he's caked in the blood of his victims. But there's something different about him. He has a personality. He can string a sentence together, more than the typical utterance of "Brrrains!" that his fellow undead can manage. He can remember the first letter of his name. And he wants to remember more. He wants to connect with the living world that still struggles to go on around him. He wants to live.
This is quite possibly the best Zombie novel I've read. 'R' is a brilliant character - a zombie with a lust for life, with a heart that no longer beats and yet can still feel love. The novel is told in a sort of internal monologue from R's perspective. His insights into life and death and the reasons for our crazy human behaviours are so eloquent, so painfully beautiful that I wish I'd read this with a pen in hand to underline my favourite passages.
There is so much I want to say about this novel and I just don't have the words to accomplish it. I feel a little like R trying to piece together the words to explain the complex new emotions he is feeling. This book kind of broke the mold, it takes the rules of the Zombie cannon and smashes them all to pieces. Surely a zombie and a living breathing human being can't fall in love? Sure they can. Surely as a reader, we're not supposed to connect with a brain-eating zombie? Well, I certainly did.
This book blew my tiny mind. I urge everyone who likes zombies, romance or just a damn good story to go out and read this novel.