Micro-Review #122: World War Z

by Max Brooks

Forget the movie with Brad Pitt. This isn’t that. The “Oral History of the Zombie War” is more like epistolary reportage, a series of interviews with frontline battlers of the undead after the war has ended. The detail and clear-sightedness of the first-person accounts make this book a lot smarter than your average zombie tale. The author, a senior fellow at the Modern War Institute at West Point (as well as Mel’s boy), gives us a chilling version of world-wide crisis management. This is as believable as a zombie tale can be.

That said, the lack of a nuts-and-bolts story makes the unlinked mini-tellings feel stale after a while. The book displays great breadth of knowledge, but in terms of conventional storytelling, it’s not (if you’ll pardon the zombie pun) something you can sink your teeth into. It could stand to lose 100 pages.

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