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The Monster Librarian Presents:

Reviews of Zombie Fiction

Some are slow, some are fast….some are chatty, some moan, and some are dead silent… the thing that they all have in common is that they are dead and would like you to join them for dinner.  There has been a recent resurgence in zombie books, movies, and video games. 

A list of various zombie titles can be found here.  

A list of zombie graphic novels is here

The Walking Dead dedicated page is here


We have a special blog post from one of the premiere zombie authors Jonathan Maberry here.


Buddha Hill by Bob Booth*New Review

Necon Publishing, 2013

Available: New paperback and Kindle edition

ISBN-13: 978-1492260011



        Part of the Necon Novellas series, Bob Booth’s Buddha Hill was originally written in 1986, and has been published as written.  It tells the story of a young man serving in Vietnam.  Just outside the base where the main character is stationed lies Buddha Hill, the site of an old cemetery and abandoned monastery of the Cult of Kali, believed to be haunted.  After a strange series of events, the young soldier and his superior, Peranzzi, discover the remains of a mutilated “dog soldier”.  The men are sent to Saigon on leave, where they witness a Buddhist monk immolate himself in protest of the war.  After they return, the base comes under attack by something that is not alive, but not entirely dead.  The young soldier races into the nearby village in hopes of stopping the attack, but can he?


        Zombies lie at the supernatural heart of Buddha Hill, but it is so much more than a zombie story.  Having served in Vietnam himself, Booth takes us through the difficulties of a green soldier arriving in a war zone for the first time.  He does so in a way that allows the reader to almost feel the heat that our characters feel, and smell the same stench.  Buddha Hill is a story about deep belief and what the peaceful Buddhist monks would do to try and stop a war that killed tens of thousands of people on both sides.  The scene involving the monk who immolates himself in protest is disturbing, but goes to the motivations of what happens later on.  Buddha Hill is an excellent read that I highly recommend, with a fantastic introduction by Weston Ochse, who is also a member of the military serving overseas. Highly recommended.

Contains: violence, gore, adult language, and sexual situations

Reviewed by Colleen Wanglund



Kill Town, USA by Joseph Love
ISBN13: 9781469923307
Available: Paperback and ebook edition

        I wasn't sure what to expect going into this book. It's crowdfunded, self-published and a zombie book… a recipe for disaster? But this is exactly the kind of book crowdfunding is for. Though short, this tale of one man's journey through both the Appalachian wilds and the zombie horde is poignant and soulful. It leaves a lot unsaid, and a lot of the gore and violence aside. That’s not to say it doesn't include the essential zombie story elements-- monsters trying to eat people, people becoming monsters, and tragic loss. I definitely recommend this one. It's a great read.
Contains: violence, gore, language
Reviewed by Michele Lee


Escape From Zombie City by John McCuaig*New Review
Severed Press, 2012
ISBN: 9781479186
Available: Trade paperback, ebook edition

        Escape from Zombie City profiles the near minute by minute explosion of the zombie apocalypse. Based mostly in a hospital in London, it features the typical flesh-eaters, dirty military people, and normal people just trying to survive (and usually failing.) The stand-out feature of this book is in the action-based pacing. The plot is straightforward, the characters not terribly inspired and the writing technique doesn't rise past decent. But it's zombies eating people, which some audiences can't get enough of. Recommended for die-hard zombie fans.

Contains: violence, language

Review by Michele Lee


Lesser Creatures by Peter Giglio

DarkFuse Publishing, 2013

ISBN-13:  978-1937771584

Available: Limited hardcover, paperback, Kindle edition.



        Lesser Creatures is set 15 years after the dead started returning to life, but it is not a traditional zombie novel. While the returned dead share some traits with Romero zombies, in that they are mostly brain dead and slowly decaying, they are not hungry for brains or flesh: mostly they just hang around. This is not a zombie apocalypse, it’s more like a new zombie reality.


        The returned dead, known as second-lifers, are gathered in group home environments that reminded me of the housing our society currently makes for the mentally ill. There are second-life rights advocates, and people who hate them. The main characters are a pastor from the Glory's Children church, who sees a divine purpose in the second-lifers, and Cric Cooper, whose ex-girlfriend, who tried to kill him, is now a member of the walking dead.


        Lesser Creatures is a truly odd novel. I loved that it shared no tropes, no common structure, with any other horror novels or the zombie subgenre. This felt like a truly original novel. A reader looking for a paint-by-the-numbers zombie novel is going to be bummed. Anyone looking for a challenging, weird, exploration of loss and love, however, will be stoked.


        Having just finished reading the book ten minutes ago, I am struggling with the many themes that Giglio explored, and I think the best thing I can say about this novel is that I think I might need to read it again.


        I have said a lot of nice things… is there anything I didn't like? The novel is marketed as being similar to the works of Phillip K.Dick, and the author dedicates the work to him. However, while Giglio nails the weird concept feeling of Philp K. Dick with his descriptions of the odd nature of the second-lifers (which reminded me of the android animals in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?) his work lacks Dick’s broken paranoid insanity. That is pretty hard to do, however, and more of a marketing misstep than a reflection on the quality of Gigilo’s writing.


        In the end I thought this was a fantastic novel, and I am really excited to explore more of Giglio's work after reading this. I suggest a paperback copy of Lesser Creatures for all library collections. Your patrons who happen upon this in a new release rack will thank you for finding this independently published gem.  


Reviewed by David Agranoff



Rise Again Below Zero by Ben Tripp

Gallery Books, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-1451668322

Available: New


        In this sequel to Rise Again, it has now been two years since the dead rose, hungry for human flesh.  The survivors have evolved into stronger, battle-ready individuals, but the undead, too, have evolved, many retaining their memoires and ability to communicate.  Sheriff Danielle (Danny) Adelman now leads a band of survivors through the decimated Midwest, heading for a small town rumored to be a safe haven. Unfortunately, with this safety must come a price; Danny is forced to use every ounce of strength and determination to battle an evil so horrifying in the hope of preventing the deaths of more innocents.

        What makes this series stand out from other zombie fiction is Tripp’s skilled examination of humankind as it is forced to deal with the most horrific of situations.  Watching Danny evolve from a small-town sheriff to the only individual able to withstand the grasp of the undead is incredibly rewarding.  She withstands enough trials and tribulations to last a dozen lifetimes but rather than succumbing to the pain and loss, she uses it to fuel her fight against the undead.  Her character is one we would all want fighting alongside us in a zombie apocalypse!

Perfect for fans of The Walking Dead.  A must-read for any fan of zombie fiction. Recommended.


Contains: mild gore


Zombie Fever: Malaysia Outbreak by B.M. Hodges

Saarala Books, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-1477503614

Available: Paperback and Kindle edition


        There are loads of zombie tales out there intricately (or stodgily) detailing what the uprising looks like in the States.  But what about the other areas of the world?  In this title, zombies take Asia. Did I mention it involves a reality show race with a million dollar prize?


        Absolutely charming and fun, zombie fans should really look for this one. The details of the setting and blazing personality of the characters set this one aside from your average Destroy-The-Brain horror/slasher book. Definitely recommended.

Reviewed by Michele Lee


The Colony: Genesis (Book 1 of The Colony Saga) by Michaelbrent Collings

Createspace, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-1492154709

Available:  Paperback, Kindle edition


        Ken Strickland, high school teacher, is going about his normal routine when the world literally comes to an end.  The students notice millions of bugs gathering on the classroom window, and then all Hell breaks loose.  Planes fall from the sky, the students attack each other, cars are blowing up, and Ken has to find his family at the bank.  The story follows Ken on his quest to find his family.

As he searches, he meets a few other survivors, Dorcas and Aaron.  The three of them are chased by zombies, bees, and other bugs, all of whom seem to be zombie-like.  These zombies aren't mindless, though.  They react together to try and catch their human prey.


        Ken tells Dorcas and Aaron that he needs to get to the bank to rescue his wife and family, who were in the bank trying to get a loan.  Ken is convinced they are still alive, and Dorcas and Aaron agree to help.  Along the way they find that events happening are world-wide.  The President of the United States, all the Cabinet members, and Secret Service agents, are all dead.  Moscow and England have been overrun.  Ken, Dorcas, and Aaron make their way to the bank, fighting zombies all the way.  The first book ends with a cliffhanger as they reach the bank and see a note from Ken's wife in the elevator.


        If you like zombie apocalypse books, this book is the one for you.  Michaelbrent Collings again hits it out of the park.  I can't wait for the next book. Highly recommended.


Contains: violence, gore, zombies eating people.


Appropriate for high school age and older.


Reviewed by Diana Lord



Day by Day Armageddon: Shattered Hourglass by J. L. Bourne

Gallery Books, 2012                             

ISBN: 978-1-4516-2881-4

Available: Paperback and Kindle ebook


Shattered Hourglass is the third installment of the Day by Day Armageddon series. As with almost all zombie novels it is the story of the end of the world. The military is fighting a losing battle, and the government is nearly non-existent, controlling things from a clandestine location. There are hordes of zombies, radioactive ruins, and the human race struggling to survive.


Unfortunately, the latest installment of Day by Day Armageddon didn't live up to its predecessors. There were many characters, but there is no main character that the reader can focus on, and though each character stands out a bit, it's like recognizing faces in a crowd—some familiarity, but no real attachments. There are several different story lines taking place, but some, such as one that takes place at a polar research station, seem lacking, and are hardly connected enough to be part of the novel. The research station would have made a good story on its own, but in this story it almost felt like filler. Finally, the ending felt rushed. As I approached the climax of the novel I guessed that there would be a fourth novel, as there was a lot of territory to cover, but not enough pages to cover it. Unfortunately, the ending was abrupt, when it could have been much more.


On a brighter note, there were some interesting concepts presented. Cities were nuked to kill the zombies, but that backfired, preserving them and making them stronger, smarter, and toxically radioactive. Also, an alien storyline was presented, although it fell flat with the abrupt ending.


If you've read the other stories in the Day by Day Armageddon series then you might give this a shot to complete the series, but don't expect the same quality as the first two books.


Reviewed by: Bret Jordan


Starers by Nathan Robinson

Severed Press, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1480041929

Available: Paperback and e-book


        Nathan Robinson’s debut novel Starers begins with an interesting premise. The Keene family is the classic dysfunctional crew that many of us can relate to. They wake up one morning to discover a few of their neighbors staring in their windows. Creepy, yes, but it gets worse. As the day progresses, more and more zombie-like creeps arrive and the family is literally trapped in their own home by the growing horde.

While the premise is interesting, the novel itself doesn’t live up to it. Toward the middle of the novel, the action slows down considerably as the Keene family nightmare moves from hours to days. The characters themselves are not compelling, and by the midway point, I found myself struggling to find something to capture my attention. The writing style was either confusing, with lines such as “Another sense of sound vibrates mutely against his eardrum, a voice calling,” or dull with lines like “Hope was waiting for an opportunity.” Robinson builds suspense throughout the novel by slowly revealing the creepy peeper secrets, but it ends like every zombie novel out there. Cars, crushed bodies, straining engines, and “the sounds of death left in their ears.”


        Starers began on a very promising idea, but somewhere about mid-novel, it lost focus and retreated far too much into zombie territory—territory that’s become all too familiar. This is definitely an adults-only novel for a general library collection.


Reviewed by: Drake Morgan




The Road to Woodbury  by Robert Kirkman & Jay Bonansinga

Thomas Dunne books, 2012

ISBN: 978-0312547745 

Available: New and used hardcover; e-book; audiobook (paperback due 6/2013)


The Road to Woodbury is the follow-up to Rise of the Governor, the first novel based in the world of The Walking Dead. Rise of the Governor followed the pre-Woodbury experiences of Philip Blake, the infamous Governor of Woodbury, Georgia, in the early days of the zombie apocalypse. In The Road to Woodbury, the Governor tries to maintain control of his minions as he struggles with the duality of his personality.


This book follows the star-crossed adventures of a small group of survivors who start out in a doomed tent city and eventually make their way to Woodbury. If you're a fan of the comics, you will find discrepancies in the backstories of some of the characters in this book.


The leading character is Lilly Caul, an insecure, fear-addled young woman who joined the tent city after the death of her father. She has found a protector in Josh Lee Hamilton, a giant of a man who was a well-known chef in pre-zombie times. Josh portrays the stereotypical "magical Negro" character that has become a familiar horror-story trope (for example, Duncan in Stephen King's Green Mile). After Lilly and Josh are forced to leave the camp under unfortunate circumstances, they hit the road accompanied by Bob, an alcoholic ex-military medic; Lilly's friend, Meghan, a druggie who has begun using her body as a means of income; and Scott, Meghan's stoner boyfriend. We follow their short road trip as they meet up with a few zombies, confront the Governor's thugs, and arrive in Woodbury, where the find Governor in the early stages of his rule over the ragtag population. From their first moments in Woodbury, Lilly and Josh sense that bad things are happening behind the scenes, and of course they are absolutely correct.


This book doesn't have the punch that Rise of the Governor had. That book was a grim but fascinating study of the development of a major Walking Dead character. This book deals with supporting characters, and it doesn't provide many details about their pasts, so we don't always know what is driving them to do the things they do. Lilly's rebellious actions near the end of the book seem to come out of nowhere. All along, she's been a relatively passive creature, living most of the time in crippling fear. Then, all of a sudden, she dreams up a revolutionary plan and talks some relatively tough characters into following along with her—all of which comes across as highly improbable.


I listened to the audiobook as well as reading the print version, and I highly recommend the audio version. Fred Berman does a great job of telling the story—differentiating the voices and emphasizing the suspense, tension, and horror of the frequently graphic situations.


There were a few scenes that seemed to be included solely to give the reader a graphic comic impression, and they don’t work as well on the printed page because they tend to slow down the story's flow while the reader pauses to imagine what a graphic artist would do with each scene.


Fans of Walking Dead will want to read the book just for the bits of back story on Lilly, the Governor, and others (even though they frequently contradict the comics). As is always true in Walking Dead stories, this one overflows with seriously gory graphic violence and dark acts of brutality. It's not for the faint of heart, but if you're at all squeamish, you wouldn't be reading Walking Dead books anyhow—right? Recommended for all libraries.


Contains: graphic violence and gory descriptions


Reviewed by:  Patricia O. Mathews


Dead Tropics by Sue Edge*New Review

Permuted Press, 2012

ISBN: 978-1618680366; ASIN B0084PLVT2

Available:  New paperback and Kindle e-book


The zombie apocalypse has come to Cairns, Australia—but instead of the truth, the government is telling the residents that there is an outbreak of encephalitis among miners.  Lori Nelson is a nurse at the hospital, and sees firsthand what is really going on.  A widow and mother of three, Lori is determined to protect her family at any cost and see them through this catastrophe.  In a desperate attempt to escape the area, Lori, her kids, and some other survivors try to flee, but are stopped at an Army checkpoint.  Their realization of what the government plans to do about this outbreak forces Lori and the others to attempt to leave by some other means—and it won’t be easy.


A well-written novel, Dead Tropics is another viewpoint on the beginnings of a potential apocalypse.  I’ve read many books about zombies; some have been great and others have been disappointing and cliché.  While Dead Tropics has a lot of the core pieces of any zombie story, I really like the main character, Lori.  She is a strong female who will do whatever she can to save her children.  She is like a lioness protecting her cubs.  The development of all the characters is excellent, and I will say that the end had a twist I was not expecting—which is always a good thing, as far as I’m concerned.  Dead Tropics is a really good zombie novel for fans of the genre. Recommended.


Contains: violence and gore


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund


The Awakening by Brett McBean*New Review

Tasmaniac Publications, 2012

ISBN: 978-0987194923

Available: Limited edition hardcover


Toby and Frankie are best friends, living in the “perfect” town, with an almost zero crime rate.  The summer has just begun for the boys, who will begin high school in the fall, and life is good…..until the night the boys are viciously attacked in the woods and left for dead.  Waking in the hospital almost a month later, Toby finds out that his best friend is dead, and no one knows who attacked the boys.  Toby also learns that his life was saved by Mr. Joseph—a strange old man whom the neighborhood children have made fun of and tormented for years.


Toby is lost, not understanding why his almost idyllic life has been shattered in such a brutal manner.  Sure, he is spending a lot of time with Gloria, the girl of his dreams, but Frankie is dead and Toby’s life is changed forever.  He makes his way over to Mr. Joseph’s house to thank him for saving Toby’s life, and discovers a kind but lonely old man who has taken the awful pranks and property destruction quietly and without complaint.  Toby begins spending time with Mr. Joseph, learning about his life in Haiti before coming to America.  What Toby eventually discovers about Mr. Joseph will shock Toby and test his loyalty to his new friend.  However ,what Toby discovers about his “perfect” little town is even more shocking and ugly than anything he has ever known.


The Awakening is a beautifully written story that involves Haitian zombies, racism and the ugliness of the human race.  The zombies, it turns out, are not the real horror of McBean’s novel.  Toby and Mr. Joseph are deeply human and sympathetic characters that I really felt something for.  I was fully invested in these people.  While the identity of Toby and Frankie’s attackers wasn’t surprising to me, the town’s reaction to Toby’s situation and to Mr. Joseph is most disturbing.  The Awakening is easily one of the best books I’ve read this year.  It includes an amazing introduction by author Ray Garton, beautiful interior artwork by Erin Wells, and a fantastic cover design by Deena Warner.  I highly recommend you pick this one up. Highly recommended


Contains: some adult language, violence and gore


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund


Amongst the Dead by David Bernstein*New Review

Samhain Publishing, 2012

ISBN 978-1619210691; ASIN B008JF3DXE

Available:  New paperback and Kindle e-book


Years into the zombie apocalypse, twelve-year-old Riley has just lost her father to the plague and she is now alone.  Trying to survive in a well-stocked cabin in the woods, she is soon found by a local militia and must leave before they kill her—or worse.  Jack, a former militia member who wants to redeem himself, gets Riley away, but unfortunately, not without losing his life.  Once again on her own, and sick, Riley is found by a family, the Milners, who take her in. 


Things seem to be going well for a while, but then the Milners receive some unwanted visitors who take them to Poughkeepsie, a city run by gangs.  Riley is taken to the Sisters of Life, a glorified breeding center, where the Hag who is in charge tells Riley she is special.  Riley refuses to break under the Sisterhood’s psychological bombardment, and in her attempt to escape discovers something about herself that no one was expecting.  With her new family, Riley leaves the city and makes her way to a settlement where she may finally get some answers about who she really is.


David Bernstein has given the zombie apocalypse a neat twist with Amongst the Dead and his character Riley.  She is a strong female character, as is her adopted mother, Joanne ,which is nice to see in apocalyptic fiction.  The story is solid and believable and characters are well-developed.  I was kind of freaked out by the Sisters of Life and their disturbing ways.  Riley has a great depth to her and doesn’t read like a twelve-year-old girl.  She is wise beyond her years but craving human contact and love.  Samhain has a huge hit on their hands with Amongst the Dead and its refreshing and not-so-bleak take on the apocalypse. Recommended.


Contains: violence, gore, adult language and sexual situations


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund





Sadie Walker is Stranded by Madeleine Roux*New Review

St. Martin's Griffin; First Edition edition, 2012
ISBN-13: 978-0312658915

Available: New, Used, e-book


Let me start by saying that I completely LOVED Madeleine Roux’s debut novel, Allison Hewitt is Trapped, with its unique format (the first half is written as blog entries, complete with comments),  and a point of view character(Allison Hewitt) as smart as she is tough. However, although Roux’s second book in this world  is a reasonable contribution to the zombie subgenre, it is a disappointment as a follow-up to the first.


The story begins six months after the end of the first book, in Seattle, now a walled city. Sadie Walker (I keep wanting to call her Sadie Hawkins) is an out-of-work illustrator fascinated by Allison Hewitt. Sadie finds herself responsible for raising her nephew when her sister is killed. When zombies breach the city wall, she is rescued by Andrea, a friend with access to a boat. Once the boat is out at sea, zombies attack and kill the captain of the boat, leaving Sadie, her nephew, Andrea, and the other passengers lost and, eventually, stranded on an island infested with zombies that is already home to another group of survivors.


The biggest problem with the book is Sadie, the point of view character. She constantly makes poor decisions and judgments, both in her actions and in how she deals with other characters.  She’s impulsive and emotional, and more than once swings from liking and trusting someone to acting out of anger, fear, and guilt. Shane, her nephew, is little more than a plot moppet, mainly useful for motivating her bizarre mood swings.  Sadie’s impulsive behavior and lack of self-preservation skills does save the lives of several people during zombie attacks, but she ends up doing as much harm as she does good.  Even she can’t figure out why anyone would turn to her for leadership or romance (and of course, they do) And, of course, it isn’t enough to be stranded with strangers on an island full of zombies—there’s something else out to get them as well (Roux’s idea is clever, but it’s overkill here) It’s more difficult to care about the other characters, as well. In Allison Hewitt is Trapped, the trapped characters were knew each other superficially and were easily introduced in the first few pages, leaving room for the characters to grow as the story continued, but the characters in Sadie Walker is Stranded are almost all strangers, and there are many more—so character development is on the light side, although when Roux does take the time, it’s effective.


Roux has moved from the experimental nature of her first book to a conventional  story for the zombie subgenre.  Pop culture references and witty dialogue still pepper the story, but the book lacks the emotional depth and character development of Allison Hewitt is Trapped. Readers in the zombie subgenre should enjoy Sadie Walker is Stranded, but it’s just not as strong as the first book.  Roux is a talented writer, and I look forward to seeing what she comes up with next.


Contains: gore, torture, violence, cannibalism, sexual situations


Reviewed by: Kirsten Kowalewski




Dead Earth: The Green Dawn by Mark Justice and David T. Wilbanks*New Review

Permuted Press, 2010


Available: Kindle e-book

Something strange has happened in Nevada, but no one is talking.  Deputy Sheriff Jubal Slate of Serenity, New Mexico has his hands full with a mysterious illness making its way through town.  A woman drives into town with a strange story of a military weapons experiment that went horribly wrong.  Now, the disease is spreading, the sunrise is an eerie green and the dead are coming back.


I love zombies because they still truly scare me.  What I loved about this particular zombie story is that it involves a government cover-up—which is doubly scary.  What makes this zombie story different from others is that the zombies seem to have an otherworldly leader.  The action is quick and the characters are well-written.  The collaboration was seamless, and I look forward to reading book 2 in the series.  Dead Earth is a great addition to the world of zombie lit. Recommended.

Contains: violence and gore


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Zee Bee & Bee (a.k.a. Propeller Hats For The Dead) By David James Keaton

Open Casket Press, 2011

ISBN: 1611990408

Available: Paperback and ebook


Lauded by other reviewers as “Clerks with zombies”,  Zee Bee & Bee is about a bed & breakfast where newlyweds can pretend to survive the zombie apocalypse, only something starts going wrong. For the intelligent zombies that is. The problem is that the reader knows from the beginning that even the patrons are just zombies pretending to be newlyweds. The metafictional possibilities of zombies pretending to be humans pretending to be zombie victims could be very interesting. But the effort to cram in social commentary and zombie humor (very little of which is biology based) weighs the prose down badly. As a reader, it was easy to forget any forward momentum the story had when the action stopped every few paragraphs  to load in a few pages of the zombies making zombie-movie jokes.


The comparison to Clerks is misleading because I struggled to find a moral or theme (other than zombies) that tied the story together. Jokes didn't feed into each other, or tie together at the end. The potentially interesting psychology paled quickly under tired jokes and references to obscure B-movies. The idea was great, and could have been done well, but ultimately, the book was lackluster and frustrating. Recommended only for hard core zombie fans. As an addendum, I think the author has excellent potential and will be looking for future works, hopefully with more meat.


Contains: violence, gore, sexual references, language


Reviewed by: Michele Lee


Dead Things by Matt Darst

Matt Darst, 2001


Available: Kindle

Dead Things is a stand-alone novel by Matt Darst. It’s a bold and daring attempt to tell a world-altering political adventure, set during a zombie apocalypse. At the heart of this story are two young cadets, Ian and Van. When their airplane crashes in the middle of the deep southern backwoods, they begin a journey to escape the ravages of a zombie infested world.


This book showed a lot of promise, but it also had problems. While the politically religious backdrop of the new American government is compelling, it also threatens to consume the story as a great evil onto itself. There are several flashback sequences to Chicago during the time the zombie plague first struck that break the story’s structure. Also, the third person perspective for the narrator is incredibly creepy. Some readers may like it, I did not. This book is ultimately a beautiful mess. If you like books that are very big on ideas, but might not hit the landing so effectively, this is a read for you. Otherwise, I cannot recommend this book.


Contains: Violence, Gruesome Imagery, Profanity, Adult Situations. 


Reviewed by: Benjamin Franz




Dead Hunger II: The Gem Cardoza Chronicle by Eric A. Shelman

Dolphin Moon Publishing, 2012

Available new paperback

ISBN 9780984925551

Flex, Hemp, Gem, Charlie and Trina are back in the sequel to Dead Hunger: The Flex Sheridan Chronicles, and they have recently lost the safety of Flex’s home in the Georgia woods and are on the move.  They stop back at the CDC to get Max, Cynthia and Taylor, who are running out of power and in danger of being overrun by zombies.  The ragtag group of survivors decides to make their way into Alabama, to a military facility where they might be able to get some help, and to give them any information Hemp has discovered through his experiments on the undead. 


            In the first Dead Hunger, the virus attacked the living with symptoms of severe headaches prior to turning.  Now the survivors have discovered that after prolonged heavy rains, the previously dead are making their way out of the cemeteries.  The group finds an almost empty steel warehouse that proves to be perfect for their needs—a safe place to hide where Hemp, the scientist, can continue his research.  While out on various supply runs, the group discovers something strange occurring to poison ivy plants.  They also discover something very odd in pools of standing water.  After Hemp makes some very good progress, the group decides it is time to move on and possibly find other survivors and maybe help end the zombie scourge ravaging civilization.


            Dead Hunger II picks up right where the first novel left off, after Gem’s very brief description of her experiences with the outbreak before making her way to finding Flex (the story is told entirely from Gem’s point of view, like a journal).  The continuing story and character development are very good and as strong as in Dead Hunger.  I have some issues where certain scenarios seem too-good-to-be-true and some incidents are a little too convenient, but there is plenty of gore and zombie action to make up for that.  These are so far the ultimate survivors who just might end up saving the world.  Dead Hunger II is a lot of fun and keeps a good pace.  I will say that you must read the first book before reading this one so you are up on all that is happening.  Overall, I think the series is a good one, and I look forward to more Dead Hunger books from Eric Shelman.  Recommended.


Contains: violence, gore, adult language and sexual situations


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Rotter World by Scott M. Baker

Permuted Press, 2012

ISBN 9781618680280

Available: New paperback


            When a zombie virus was created in a government lab, vampires stole the virus and released it into the population, believing that humans would be so busy with the zombies they would stop hunting vampires.  What those vampires hadn’t counted on was that they would also become zombie food—and make more fearsome zombies when infected.  Eight months later, six people are rescued and brought to a compound of survivors.  One of those rescued is Dr. Compton, who created the virus in the first place.  Compton also created an antidote, and now must make his way, with some help, to the military bunker where his research and equipment is kept, to produce it. 


            Robson, a former Sheriff’s Deputy, will lead a group including Natalie (head of camp security and the Angels of Death), some camp muscle, and six vampires, on a mission from Rhode Island to Pennsylvania in the hopes of producing enough of the anti-virus to get it to what’s left of the US government in hiding.  Not only does the group have the zombies to deal with, but they also must contend with hatred and mistrust of the vampires and each other.


            If you were looking for a twist on the usual zombie lit, well you’ve found it in Rotter World.  A zombie virus created by man but unleashed by vampires—that’s definitely original.  What’s very cool about the story is that the vampires are just as vulnerable—if not more so because they need to hide in daylight—as the humans.  Supernatural beings are on the same playing field as the humans they wanted to avoid, and now need them, just to survive.  Baker’s characters are nicely developed, and not all of the monsters are the flesh-eating kind.  The setting and scenarios are believable (for a zombie story) and sufficiently bloody and violent.  Baker keeps a good pace throughout and manages a less-than-predictable ending.  I highly recommend Rotter World.


Contains:  graphic violence, gore, and adult language


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund





Zombie Tarot by Stacey Graham, illustrated by Paul Kepple and Ralph Geroni

Quirk Books, 2012

ISBN: 978-1-59474-569-0

Available: New box set-- 96 pages with 78 playing cards


          Obviously, those who can predict the future will survive the zombie apocalypse better than those who merely live moment to moment, trusting to luck. Clairvoyants, fortune-tellers, seers, and other prescience-abled folks definitely have an edge.

Therefore, Zombie Tarot: Insight & Ammunition for Surviving the Zombie Uprising, a box of 78 cards and instructions, is legitimate emergency equipment.


          This is more of a literary-based party game than an actual book, but it’s clever and worthwhile, nonetheless. It would make a really great gift, especially for collectors of the glut of zombie-based material currently available.  For these fanatics, the set offers something unique.


          The box itself is artfully designed, hip, vintage, and sturdy enough for classroom use. Inside are really gorgeous cards designed by Paul Kepple and Ralph Geroni. 78 original illustrations that look like Grant Wood’s (American Gothic) hideous nightmares. The fifties’ style artwork is dark and comical, ironically juxtaposed with our modern love affair with the decomposition phases of the undead. Purchase of the set is justifiable based on the cards alone.


          The instruction booklet, written by Stacey Graham, is witty, and well-worded, but reiterates the zombie warnings and information found in other literature, although it departs from the bulk of them by suggesting multiple routes to peaceful co-existence. It ends with a cute page of old-timey ads for comfort products designed for the Z-age. The cool thing about the booklet is that it is an actual guide to Tarot, which means that you can learn to use the cards for readings. This is a fun, unique twist on a very old pastime, like playing Harry Potter Uno - it’s not a new game, but re-theming makes the old one a bit more amusing. Recommended for ages 11 and up.


Contains: Mild graphic artwork, based on reference to the occult!


Reviewed by: Sheila Shedd



The Killing Floor (a novel of The Infection) by Craig DiLouie

Permuted Press, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1618680754

Available: New

         The Killing Floor picks up right where The Infection left off. Sarge, Wendy, Todd, and Anne, the survivors remaining after the events of the first book, split up and go off on separate missions. Ray Young, a survivor of the final bridge battle in The Infection thinks he has been given what should have been a fatal sting from one of the infected creatures. Believing that Ray might be the source of a cure for the infection, the military sends a unit out to find him.

        While we see some more of DiLouie’s creatures from The Infection in The Killing Floor, this book focuses on individual survivors as they change and try to adapt to this new world. In the case of Ray Young, DiLouie takes a step back and makes him a more complicated and compelling character.

        To appreciate The Killing Floor one really needs to read The Infection first, as that is where DiLouie does a great deal of his world building. It’s worth it to do so, as The Killing Floor is far more than a traditional zombie novel, and actually could have wider audience appeal, especially for readers of post-apocalyptic fiction and fans of the Gears of War video game and books. Recommended for public library collections.  Highly Recommended. 

Contains: Violence, gore, murder

Reviewed by: Dylan Kowalewski


Survivors (The Morningstar Strain) by Z.A. Recht and Thom Brannan
Permuted Press; Original edition, 2012
ISBN-13: 978-1451628821

        The third book in the Morningstar Strain series follow various groups from the first two books, with the focus on the group with Anna Demilio and Francis Sherman. Anna and Francis have made a base in Omaha, where they attempt to survive as Anna tries to find a cure for the virus that turns people into zombies. The book also follows a group of sailors trying to reach Omaha with a man who has apparent immunity to the virus, and might just be the cure. In the meantime, a separate military faction is looking to capture Anna, with hopes to control the cure and the power that would come with it. In this book, the true enemy is the rogue military faction (and other survivor groups) rather than the zombies.

        It should be noted that the author Z.A.Recht passed away before the book could be finished, and Thom Brannan stepped in to complete it. The book isn’t as strong as the first two, and while there is a good re-introduction to the Omaha contingent, the characters in other group aren’t well developed, which makes it difficult to care much about them. The book would have be well served by having a opening table of the characters so people can become reacquainted with them. As in The Killing Floor by Craig DiLouie, readers will want to read the previous books in the series. The Morningstar Strain remains one of my favorite zombie titles, but I think that the sad passing of the author has taken its toll on this book. While Brannan did a decent job, it is clear that it is missing the immersive story in the author’s mind when he started the book. Still, libraries will want to get a copy of The Survivors if for no other reason that it is the finishing book of the Morningstar Strain series.

Contains: Violence, gore

Reviewed by: Dylan Kowalewski






Zombie Hospital by Angela Verdenius

Amazon, 2012


Available: Kindle Edition


Zombie Hospital is a snarky short story about a pair of nurses at a l ow-quality hospital struggling to deal with a zombie uprising. It's a fun read, but abbreviated, like the opening chapter of a longer tale. There is a lot of zombie material out there, but this one is solid and funny and worth the $.99 for budding ebook collections.


Contains: Violence, Language


Reviewed by: Michele Lee



Eat Slay Love by Jesse Petersen

Orbit, 2011

ISBN: 978-0316102926

Available: new and used mass market paperback; e-book

This is the third book in Petersen’s Living with the Dead series, which follows a troubled married couple as they journey across the U.S. during the early months of a global zombie plague. As Eat, Slay, Love begins, Sarah and David are in Oklahoma on their way east toward the Wall. They’re not sure that the Wall actually exists, but they have heard rumors that the Eastern part of the U.S. (on the other side of the Wall) is zombie free. Their goal is to deliver their tiny vial of zombie-cure vaccine to the authorities so that the plague can be stopped. On the way, they pick up two travelers: Nicole Nessing, a stalkerazzi-type celebrity TV reporter, and, later, Colin McCray, a drugged-out, washed-up rock ‘n’ roll star. The couple is getting along fine, except that David seems to be getting stronger and stronger (lifting 350-pound weights) and he doesn’t sleep very much anymore. Oh, and the rhythm of his breathing has become very weird. Sarah tries not to worry about all this, but Nicole—ever the sharp reporter—picks up on the situation and demands an explanation. Their trip is interrupted early on by a cult that kidnaps them and steals their supplies, but they manage to escape due to some miraculous work by David.

When the group finally reaches the Wall, the situation is not at all what they expected. Needless to say, there are lots of soldiers on the East side of the Wall and even more zombies on the West side. I don’t want to reveal too many details, but I will tell you that this book is a great addition to the series, with action, angst, and heartbreak every step of the way. Petersen balances the blood-and-guts zombie battles with just the right amount of wisecracking humor. Recommended.

Contains: the usual zombie gore.

Reviewed by: Patricia Mathews




Frail by Joan Frances Turner

Avon, 2011

ISBN: 978-0061964404

Available: new and used mass market paperback; e-book


This is the second book in the zombie apocalypse series, The Resurgam Trilogy; the first book was Dust. The surviving population is recovering from a plague mutation called the “feeding plague”, which causes its victims to become extraordinarily hungry all the time—hungry enough to eat anything, from grass to paper to plastic to asphalt. By the time the plague has run its course, each of the survivors belongs to one of these three groups:

ex-zombies: They look like humans, but have a rotten smell. They crave flesh, are extremely strong, heal from any injury, and are for the most part unkillable and immortal.

ex-humans: Like the ex-zombies, they are also hungry, strong, and immortal, but without the ex-zombies’ bad smell. Amy calls groups 1 and 2 “the exes.”

pure humans: Untouched by and seemingly immune to the effects of the mutation, they are mortal and can die from disease and/or violence.

The heroine, Amy, is one of the rare pure humans, called frails because they are so much weaker than the exes. Amy is alone, wandering from one town to the next as she gathers supplies and tries to ignore the apparition of a fierce dog that seems to be following her. She soon meets up with Lisa, who is the ex-human sister of Jessie, the zombie heroine of the previous book. Lisa and Amy form a fragile partnership and travel on together, but are soon captured by a group of exes and humans, in which the exes are in charge and the humans are their slaves. Amy must deal with secrets from her past, hallucinations (or maybe demonic spirits) in her present, and total uncertainty in her future.

This book sheds light on the mysterious activities taking place at the labs on the shores of Lake Michigan that were also mentioned in the previous book. Those labs have a direct connection with Amy and her mother, Lisa and her sister, and several other characters in this book. Maggie and Billy, characters from the previous book also show up: neither is friendly toward Lisa or Amy. Frail has much less blood-and-gore violence than Dust, but more sadistic cruelty, particularly in a near-rape scene and in the way the exes abuse their human “pets” physically and emotionally. This book is also more mystical, with its phantom dog and the “friendly man,” both of whom have demonic overtones. The ending leaves Amy and her ragtag group on the road again, ready for their adventures in book three.   

This is an entirely different kind of story than the one told in Dust. Frail overflows with metaphorical language and mystical experiences, sometimes to the point of perplexity for the reader, whereas Dust was a novel of fairly straightforward, if strange, relationships. Also, Amy comes across as a sullen teen-ager, swinging back and forth between blaming herself for every bad thing that happens and whining that “It’s not my fault.” Frail can easily be read as a stand-alone, but it will be a richer experience if you also read Dust. Recommended.

Contains: graphic violence and zombie gore

Reviewed by: Patricia Mathews




Zombielicious by Timothy McGivney

MLR Press, 2010

ISBN: 1608202631

Available: Trade paperback and Kindle ebook


Zombielicious is equal parts sex and zombie apocalypse, in a fast-paced, over-the-top tale of finding love in the middle of disaster. Twins Molly (a spoiled brat whose greatest aspiration is to win a singing contest and have people do what she wants) and Walt (a perfectionist deeply ashamed of his sexuality who tries to make up for it by pleasing the people around him) meet up with Jill (an ex-porn star turned nurse who can't even use scientific terms for body parts), Ace (the security guard who thinks Jill owes him sex because he's a fan) and Joey (a teen who is selling his body to science to get the money to run away from his hateful parents) and have to support each other through the zombie uprising.


For zombie apocalypse fans, Zombielicious might be a good choice; this book has lots of fight scenes, some hot smut scenes, and lots of gore. But for those who want a little more, this may be unsatisfying. The characters are unsympathetic; they’re either completely deplorable people or super-sensitive damsels in distress, and while there's a lot of action, there's nothing original about the plot, which consists mainly of the characters surviving all the stuff thrown at them. Traditional zombie fans will no doubt find Zombielicious exciting and fun, but, outside of a romantic male/male relationship, it's not a whole lot different from other books out there. Public collections will find other books better suited to diversity of theme.


Contains: Violence, gore, very crude language, explicit sex (hetero and homosexual), rape


Reviewed by: Michele Lee


Carnage Road by Gregory Lamberson

Print is Dead (an imprint of Creeping Hemlock Press), 2012

ISBN 9780984739431

Available: New paperback


The zombie apocalypse has begun.  The Floating Dragons motorcycle gang has hung on as long as possible.  Now Boone and Walker are the only ones left, and they have decided to hit the road and head to Hollywood.  It is a long and dangerous road that takes them to an enclave of right-wing fascists, an abandoned movie theater where the zombies are also enjoying the film, and an eerily familiar last stand in Texas.


Gregory Lamberson’s first foray into zombie lit has proven to be a good one.  Carnage Road holds up extremely well in the subgenre with a well-written and interesting story.  Even though Boone and Walker are from an outlaw gang, they are very likable characters.  The ending has quite the “wow” factor and was anything but predictable.  Carnage Road is like Easy Rider (1969) meets Night of the Living Dead (1968).  It’s a very cool read. Recommended.


Contains: gore, violence, adult language and sex


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Hissers by Ryan C. Thomas

Permuted Press, 2011

ISBN: 9781934861608

Available: New paperback


It’s the weekend before Connor, Seth, Nicole and Amanita begin high school.  They are preparing to attend a huge party when tragedy strikes.  A plane crashes in their small town, obliterating the location of the party and everyone there.  The four teens were in the local park before heading over and see the devastation.  They rush to help but are told to back off by local police responding to the scene.  It’s really bad, but it gets worse.  The dead begin to rise and feed on the living. 


The kids attempt to get to their families, but it is too late.  The zombies are making their way through town and they are spreading….and mutating into something else.  In an attempt to get to safety the teens come across Lt. General Winston Davis who tells the kids what he knows and begs them to kill him so he isn’t torn to pieces by the mutated zombies. 


The teens spend the night hiding in the high school and baring their souls to each other.  A very strong bond forms and now they are ready to try to get out of town before the military carries out its plans to contain what was unleashed by the plane crash. 


I don’t know if Hissers is meant to be a Young Adult novel, but it certainly will appeal to both teens and adults.  Yes, the main characters are teenagers but they are real and completely relatable, no matter how old you are.  Connor is an average kid with a great life; Nicole is a classic over-achiever; Amanita feels that her parents don’t care so she looks for attention anywhere she can find it; and Seth carries the guilt of not being able to prevent his sister’s kidnapping years earlier.  Their time in the school is heart-wrenching and cathartic, and makes them even more endearing.  Thomas has given readers a cool twist on the usual zombie fare, including an interesting conspiracy/origin story, and the ending is unpredictable and tragic.  The story flows smoothly and it held my interest throughout. Hissers is a great read.  Recommended.


Contains: gore, violence and adult language


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Dead of Night by Jonathan Maberry

St. Martin’s Griffin, 2011

ISBN: 978031255219051499

Available: New


               In Dead of Night, Jonathan Maberry has the zombie apocalypse start not in a large city, but in rural Stebbins County, Pennsylvania. A supposedly dead serial killer, Homer Gibbon has been transferred there so that he can be buried on his family plot.  It turns out that Homer is not dead; he has been injected with a serum that makes him a carrier for the zombie plague.  It is up to the local police, Desdemona “Dez” Fox and her partner, JT Hammond, to save as much of Stebbins County as they can from the zombies, with the military trying to stop the zombie menace before it spreads further.


             I highly recommend Dead of Night to both fans of zombie fiction and those new to the genre. Maberry offers up authentic characters, a cause of the zombie plague that doesn’t involve too much suspension of disbelief, and what I would consider a new terror; a victim of the zombie virus who is awake and aware of what is happening, and unable to control his body’s actions as it attacks and kills family, friends, and neighbors.   In the past decade, horror fiction has been overrun with zombie books; they number as many as the teeming undead that are found within their pages.  Dead of Night is a step above the rest; it has excellent pacing and will keep you reading until you have finished the book. Highly recommended.


Contains: Gore, violence, language.




Revive by Thomas James Brown

Lulu Publishers, 2011

ISBN: 9781447836766

Available: new paperback


It is Christmas time, and the holiday rush is on.  Phil lost his construction job and is trying to support his wife and kids as a department store Santa.  He is miserable and worried. Looking for a quiet place to relax and have some coffee, Phil stumbles upon an out-of-the-way coffee shop called Revive.  Phil has also recently been spooked by some very scary hallucinations while at work—those of an emaciated young girl.


Tammy is hoping to help support her sick mother and two younger brothers as well as try to make a nice Christmas for them.  Getting a job at Revive, she is surprised the place can make any money.  It seems as though the only people ever in the coffee shop are a handful of withered old regulars.  What Tammy doesn’t know is that in an attempt to save the business, the owner has changed his coffee supplier to someone cheaper… and now Tammy has begun to see things that shouldn’t be there.


Just hours before midnight on Christmas Eve, the regulars have gathered at Revive for their usual coffees and snacks.  Something is not right with the newer coffee beans and tonight Tammy, Phil and the regulars of Revive will find out too late what drinking the coffee has done. 


At its core, Revive is a zombie story with a very unique means of infection.  It is deliberately paced and subtle in its delivery but when the story reaches its climax it hits quick and hard.  Both Tammy and Phil are good people down on their luck and just trying to get through the holiday season.  They each have their issues, but in the grand scheme of things, it all really just comes down to survival.  All of the characters are well developed and most are likeable and sympathetic.  I loved how the story kept me reading and wondering what was going to finally happen.  In the end, Revive delivers the goods with, while not a totally unexpected ending, certainly an interesting one.  Thomas James Brown has added a subtlety to zombies that I really enjoyed. Recommended.


Contains violence, gore, and adult language


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Dead Hunger by Eric A. Shelman

Dolphin Moon Publishing, 2011

ISBN: 9780966940046

Available: New paperback



When the zombie apocalypse happened, Flex Sheridan was on the phone with his sister Jamie.  Flex knows something is very wrong so he makes his way to Jamie’s house, only to find she is a zombie and her husband and daughter Jesse are dead.  Flex does find his niece Trina as well as his lost love, Gem.


A virus has attacked the living and turned them into zombies by destroying the brain.  The main symptom is a migraine-like headache.  Flex and Gem decide to make their way to the CDC in Atlanta to look for other survivors and hopefully find a cure so they can save Jamie.  Along the way they pick up Hemp, a scientist who is determined to find the cause of the apocalypse.  What they ultimately discover about the zombies is truly frightening.


The first in a planned series of zombie apocalypse novels, Dead Hunger reminds me of a pulp novel.  Some of the scenarios are a little too-good-to-be-true, as were the main characters, but it is very entertaining.  The novel is well-written, and a fast-paced read.  Character development is very good, as is Eric Shelman’s curve ball where the zombies are concerned.  Dead Hunger has some interesting twists and an unpredictable nail-biter of an ending, which is a great thing in my opinion.  Overall, I enjoyed Dead Hunger. Shelman has penned a cool addition to zombie apocalypse lit. Recommended.


Contains: violence, gore and adult language


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Holiday of the Dead : A Zombie Anthology

Wild Wolf Publishing, 2011

ISBN 978-1-907954-05-4

Available: new paperback and kindle edition


A vacation cruise, a family gathering for Thanksgiving, a fishing trip, and the Fourth of July are just a few of the events interrupted by zombie uprisings in Holiday of the Dead.  As a lover of all things zombie this anthology is right up my alley and for the most part, I enjoyed it.


One of my favorites is “A Dark Moon Honeymoon”  by Rob Smith, about what can happen in a small village when a newlywed is not accepted by his new wife’s family.  Another favorite is “The Day I Discovered the Truth about the Man in the Red Suit” by Phillip Roberts, about a family on an isolated farm during the zombie apocalypse and their annual Christmas ritual.  “Home for the Zombie-days” by A.P. Fuchs is a very cool story about a man who goes searching for the perfect Christmas tree during a blizzard; and “One Dead Whore” by Wayne Simmons is a great take on Jack the Ripper with a little bit of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein thrown in.


Other great stories include “Where Moth and Rust Destroy” by Thomas Emson, about a world run by zombies and the terrorist organization Human First; “Larry and Hank’s Big Dead Fishing Adventure” by Eric S. Brown, about a couple of friends who head out on a fishing trip but get caught in the zombie apocalypse; “Thanksgiving Feast” by A.M. Boyle about zombie turkeys; and “Squawk” by Remy Porter, about the start of the zombie uprising during an annual gathering of Gypsies. 


There are many other really good stories in Holiday of the Dead, but as with any anthology there are a few misses.  I found “Ladykiller” by Ricki Thomas, about a serial killer whose victims come back for revenge to be just okay, as was “Apocalypse Noo” by Vallon Jackson, about a rushed vaccine for swine flu that backfires horribly.  While a few of the stories didn’t seem to have anything to with holidays or vacations of any kind, overall this book was a really great read.  There really wasn’t any story that I disliked and that says a lot about an anthology that’s packed with thirty-eight short stories. Recommended.

Contains: violence, gore, sex and adult language

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund


Undead Nocturne: Even Dead Men Die by William Todd Rose

Smashwords 2011


Available: ebook format


Maxwell Lazlow is a private investigator in the corrupt town of Beat City.  He is looking for a missing woman named Ginger, who also happens to be his sister.  He has followed Demetrius Sloan, the man Ginger worked for, to the docks late one night.  Sloan, the biggest crime lord in the city is waiting for a cargo ship from Thailand. 


Sloan’s men discover Max and just when it looks like Max’s life is going to end, the cargo ship crashes into the docks, and the crew members leap overboard, attacking Sloan’s men.  Max gets away and with the help of a good cop finds Sloan’s warehouse.  Max discovers the cargo and is horrified by what he sees. What does Sloan have planned for his unique and deadly cargo?  Will Max survive long enough to find out?


The first in a planned series, Undead Nocturne is a well-written novella with engaging characters and a nicely paced story.  Max Lazlow is a likeable character and Sloan is a real bastard who you will love to hate.  Even though Undead Nocturne is about the zombie apocalypse, it has a great noir feel to it.  It’s a quick read, mostly because I couldn’t put it down.  I love zombies and William Todd Rose always writes them very well. Recommended.

Contains:  violence and gore

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Dying Days by Armand Rosamilia

 Books 2011

Available e-book edition

ISBN 978-1-257-06333-8


Darlene is trying to survive in a world ravaged by zombies.  She has made her way to northern Florida in the hopes of finding other survivors.  What she finds is an outpost of survivors, a kind of early warning system for the city of St. Augustine. 


While with this group of survivors, Darlene learns that there are cities all over the country—the world—that have managed to rebuild in the wake of the apocalypse, including her hometown, which she left after losing everything.  Now she is helping to locate a large group of refugees from Orlando, which has not fared so well.  Unfortunately, when Darlene and her fellow guides find the refugees, they get a lot more than they bargained for.


With an apocalyptic story that began in Highway to Hell and the short story “Rear Guard”, Armand Rosamilia continues the trials of his characters in a world overrun with zombies that are not only hungry, but horny too.  Rosamilia’s take on zombies is definitely unique, and that makes his stories stand out from the rest of the pack.  Well-rounded characters and fast-paced action are abundant here.  There is also a bonus short story called “Sons of the New Patriots” which gives a clue to what happened to the refugees making their way from Orlando to St. Augustine.  I love the way Rosamilia’s zombie apocalypse novellas and short stories weave together.  You don’t necessarily have to read Highway to Hell before reading Dying Days, but I strongly recommend it.  They really are more fun that way. Recommended.

Contains: gore, violence, adult language and sexual situations

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Breathers by S.G. Browne

Broadway, 2009

ISBN: 0767930614

Available: Print and multiformat ebook



Andy is at rock bottom. He lives in his parents' wine cellar, and has no social life other than weekly support group meeting and appointments with a therapist who can't be bothered to care. Worse, because he's dead, he has no rights to reclaim any semblance of a life.


While it has threads of zombie apocalypse, Breathers is remarkably different because of the main character. First, Andy spends most of the book mute. Second, because he is an intelligent and overall nice guy, Andy’s journey to reclaim his life and deal with the seriously impairing physical and mental injuries left behind by his death (accompanied by a few nasty revelations about his relationship with his parents) is easy to relate to.


Breathers is a deeper read than your average zombie tale, but doesn't forget its genre roots. Browne has written a book that is fun at times, terrifying at others and absolutely compelling. Highly recommended for public collections and an essential addition to modern zombie collections.


Contains: Sex, gore, language


Reviewed by: Michele Lee



The Fields by Ty Schwamberger

The Zombie Feed, 2011


Available digital edition


Set in the post-Civil War south, The Fields tells the story of Billy, who is trying to make his dead father’s tobacco farm a success.  Unfortunately, Billy is failing miserably: he is barely able to earn a living to sustain himself through the coming winter.  One day, Mr. Stratford pays a call to Billy, explaining that he knew Billy’s father and is there to help with the farm.  Billy is unsure of Mr. Stratford’s offer but decides to sleep on it. 


Mr. Stratford returns the next morning, and Billy accepts his offer of help.  The first thing Mr. Stratford tells Billy he must do is to dig up the dead slaves buried on the farm’s property and place the bodies in the barn overnight.  Billy does what he is told, but doesn’t understand why he’s doing it.  The next morning, Billy finds Mr. Stratford with the reanimated corpses, ready to do the work they used to do while alive.  Billy convinces himself that what he is doing is okay: he won’t treat them the way his father did.  Unfortunately for Billy, his good intentions go horribly awry.


While I like the idea of The Fields, I was disappointed in its execution.  There are far too many unnecessary details and ramblings.  The story is all over the place.  There is obviously a message here, with Billy’s dead father having abused his slaves and beating some to death, but the message gets lost.  Billy wants to be better than his father but it doesn’t work out that way.  There are a couple of weird dreams that Billy has that seem out of place in the story.  This novella might have been better as a short story or chapbook.  I recommend that you pass on this one.


Contains violence, gore and adult language


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Dead Tide Rising by Stephen A. North

CreateSpace, 2010
ISBN-13: 978-1453731420

Available: New


In Dead Tide, Stephen A. North introduced us to various people attempting to survive and escape the newly begun zombie apocalypse in Pinellas Park, Florida.  Dead Tide Rising continues with those chaotic first few hours and days of the collapse of civilization.  The president’s wife and children were in St. Petersburg when the apocalypse hit.  A cruise ship was attacked by the military for violating the quarantine imposed on the city and surrounding suburbs.  Two groups of people, including public servants, attempt to make it out of the station and get to one of the supposed safe evacuation zones.  Another group, who escaped the carnage at the harbor is assessing their situation in a boat on the bay.  And one soldier has gone completely off the deep end. 


Not everyone will survive.  The military initially issued a shoot to kill order for both infected and uninfected alike.  The government is in shambles and dealing with mutiny in the ranks.  Not even the president is safe in his hidden bunker.  People are dying at the hands of the zombies and each other.  Will anyone make it out alive?


I really liked North’s first book Dead Tide and now love its sequel Dead Tide Rising.  The book seamlessly continues the initial chaos from the first book and in the same tone.  There aren’t any scenarios that would or could be considered too ridiculous even for apocalyptic fiction.  Character development is just right for the run-and-gun style of North’s writing.  The story’s pacing is quick and even and keeps the attention to the unpredictable events throughout the story.  No character is sacred.  Stephen A. North once again does a great job with the zombie sub-genre. Recommended.


Contains violence, gore, adult language, sexual situations


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Zone One by Colson Whitehead

Doubleday; First edition, 2011
ISBN: 978-0385528078

Available: New and Digital


When a plague hits the entire planet, Mark Spitz is just one of the few survivors. With only a miniscule fraction of living left to clean up after the onslaught, ensure the dead stay dead, and make the world inhabitable once again zone by zone, it’s no wonder 100% of the survivors are coming with PASD (Post Apocalyptic Stress Disorder). Mark is right there with the rest of them, and being part of the militia designated to clean-up duty, we see his PASD in all its destructive glory over the course of three days as he and his team set out to clean sweep portions of Manhattan, New York. He and his team go block by block, building by building, floor by floor, seeking out any remaining zombies to destroy them. Mark begins to question all their efforts as the hours and days pass.


Zone One is a zombie post-apocalyptic novel that explores the possible devastating effects after a nearly complete annihilation of the human race. While not full of action-packed, page-turning scenes of suspense, Zone One still horrifies as the reader ponders the question of, “What would happen if the world really was plagued by zombies?” This is a work of literary fiction, with horror elements at its core.

Recommended for public library horror collections.


Contains: scenes of gore and a bit of violence


Reviewed by: Kelly Fann




Asylum by Mark Allan Gunnells

Apex Publications, 2010
ISBN: 978-0984553563

Available: New and Digital

Asylum is one of the first releases from a relatively new Apex imprint, The Zombie Feed. If this bold, but recognizable zombie apocalypse story is any indication of things to come, readers have a lot to look forward to.

Curtis is new to the gay nightclub scene, but he allows Jimmy to drag him along to a club called Asylum despite his discomfort. It’s too bad zombies are coming to the party too. While in many ways a straightforward zombie uprising tale, it's nice to see a new range of stereotypes being pulled out and slapped around.

Asylum also sneaks in a true barb or two about the relationship between gay and straight cultures, and the relationship gay culture has with itself. With a multitude of similar titles about zombies and zombie uprisings, Gunnells provides a breath of fresh air. Publishers take note: there need to be more books like this one, which focuses on the different kinds of people affected instead.

Definitely recommended as a horror tale, and as a savvy example of inclusive fiction.

Contains: Violence, gore, m/m sex scenes

Reviewed by: Michele Lee




Pain by Harry Shannon
Dark Regions Press, 2010

ASIN: B00472O814

Available: Kindle edition

     Harry Shannon is a talented writer. I have yet to read any of his novels, but I have always looked forward to his stories and their appearances in various magazines and anthologies. Pain is the first in a series of novellas published by Dark Regions Press. It is a zombie tale that, to me, shares much in common with The Crazies(the Romero original more so than the excellent remake). It is the story of a small mountain town besieged by zombie-like folks infected by a chemical weapon.

     The book starts with an introduction by Jonathan Maberry, a bestselling author and past winner of the Bram Stoker Award. The introduction serves as a “zombie genre for dummies," which is probably unnecessary for fans of zombie fiction, who are the likely readers for the book. It did remind me what makes a great zombie movie/novel: Maberry points out that the best of these are not really about the zombies.

     Nine times out of ten horror writers who grew up reading Stephen King, Peter Straub and Clive Barker have the problem of overwriting, exemplified by those masters, who sometimes could stand to be edited back. In Pain, I experienced the opposite. My biggest complaint with this novella is that I felt like I was just seeing the tip of the iceberg with this story. Sometimes, we don't want the whole mystery revealed immediately, but I felt rushed through this story and the characters. There are lots of cool moments of suspense, and obviously cool storytelling, but I felt like a lot was missing.

       It is obvious that this book began life as a screenplay. If you have ever read a screenplay, they are like skeletons, covered in blood, guts and clothes by an entire production team and director. In this case, Pain feels like a skeleton with a very cool looking robe on it. You can still see bare bones.  I almost never say this, but Pain is a neat little zombie book that could have been even better with another 50 to 100 pages of depth.

Reviewed by: David Agranoff


The Loving Dead by Amelia Beamer

Night Shade Books, 2010

ISBN: 9781597801942

Available: Trade paperback & multi-format digital


Kate and Michael, a pair of twenty-something hipsters, are the point of view characters of choice for this attempt at a wry, offbeat, new take on the zombie apocalypse.


Unfortunately, it’s an unsuccessful attempt. Kate and Michael aren’t sympathetic characters. They witness two full zombie transitions (one during coitus and one their friend who pluckily tries to rape the first zombie) but instead of doing anything helpful they get high and watch zombie movies.There are bizarre, disconnected sex scenes (everyone on the sight-seeing zeppelin tour is being eaten, so let's go have blood-covered sex in the bathroom) and bits of “cleverness” that just come off as eye roll-worthy (an iPhone app that sounds like a whip saves the day?). Kate and Michael seem uninterested in their own story, so it's hard for readers to get involved either. The book just failed to connect with this reader.


For readers who like zombie stories where most of the action happens off screen while the leads make Jesus jokes and have lots of sex, The Loving Dead will be a huge hit. For readers looking for a smart, funny zombie apocalypse story, there are better choices out there.


Contains: Explicit sex, language, gore


Reviewed by: Michele Lee


Shelter from the Dead by Keith Adam Luethke

Library of the Living Dead Press, 2010

ISBN: 9781453790427

Available: New paperback



            The zombie apocalypse is a few years old and pockets of humanity are trying to survive.  There are the Survivors who barricade themselves inside fortified structures with guns and supplies; the Marauders, a biker gang who move from camp to camp scavenging and stealing whatever they can; and the Watchers, men who also scavenge and steal, as well as kidnap and rape, though they believe they’re doing what’s necessary for the survival of the human race. 


Then there are the individuals like Alex.  He is alone in this world, having watched his uncle, his only surviving relative, murdered in front of him by Graves, the leader of the Marauders.  Alex’s goal now is to survive long enough to get his revenge and kill the man who killed his uncle.  Along the way he meets up with Joelle and Sarah, also Marauders, but taken captive by the Watchers.  He decides to help them escape in the hopes that they’ll lead him right to the Marauders and Graves.  Can they overcome hungry zombie hordes and dangerous people to finally reach the gang?


I love post-apocalyptic stories….especially the ones with zombies.  This one was pretty good.  I usually like an explanation as to how the world ended, and there isn’t one here, but I liked that the book focused more on the people trying to stay alive after the end of the world.  I liked the characters, especially Alex and Joelle. 


I also enjoyed the social commentary. Zombies have overrun the planet, but there will always be bad people out for themselves to take advantage of a world gone to hell.  The apocalypse doesn’t seem to have an effect on human nature in that regard.  The bikers and the Watchers want food, guns, women, and power. They just take what they want without any authority to stop them.  They ARE the authority, it seems. The Survivors just want to be left in peace, but that won’t happen.


          The biggest issue I have with Shelter from the Dead is that I thought the end moved a little too fast.  Joelle’s “confession” seemed to come out of nowhere, and I was expecting a more dramatic showdown between Alex and Graves.  It was too neat for me.  I think with a story like this, a few loose ends are a good thing.  Leave some things up to the imagination of the reader, especially when it’s an ongoing scenario…in this case the fight for human survival in a post-apocalyptic world.  Recommended.

Contains:  violence, gore, and some mild sexual content

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor by Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga, Fred Berman (Reader)

Macmillan Audio; Unabridged edition, 2011
ISBN-13: 978-1427217684

Available: Audio book and hardcover



    In The Walking Dead, the character that is worse than the shambling dead and more of a threat to Rick Grimes and his band of survivors is the Governor. In fact, in 2009, The Governor was ranked as IGN's 86th Greatest Comic Book Villain of All Time. However, every villain has an origin, and it isn't always exactly what you expect it to be.  In The Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor, we are introduced to Phillip Blake, his little girl Penny, his brother Brian, and their friend Nic, in the first few days of the zombie invasion.  The group is merely looking for a safe place to live, and has to deal with both the living and the hungry dead.


   Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga spin a good origin tale that works well as a stand alone story, even though it is the first book in a trilogy. The book does very well in its standing amongst the plethora of zombie titles out there. While this is very much a character piece, there is plenty of action, gore, and violence.   They do a great job of giving us insight into the main characters without having it bog down the story.   If I was reading this as a book, I would call it a definite page turner.     Fred Berman is the reader of the audio book and does a fantastic job.    For an audiobook, the reader is critical in bringing the listener into the story, and Berman delivers.  Berman's tone and inflections really bring the story to life. He successfully portrays the atmosphere of death and gloom, and gives the characters authentic voice.  This is a great audiobook for zombie lovers, especially if you have a long car trip to take, as it clocks in at 11 hours.


    I highly recommend that libraries look to add Rise of the Governor to their audiobook collection. 


Note for librarians:  The Governor is a character that has already been introduced in the graphic novel series. He has not been seen yet in the television show. If you have readers who have only seen the TV show they will not know who The Governor is.   Other note:  If this book were a movie it would be R rated,  This is definitely not for kids.  The following are readalikes zombie books: World War Z by Max Brooks, Undead by John Russo, Day by Day Armageddon and Day by Day Armageddon: Beyond Exile by J. L. Bourne and  Dead Sea by Brian Keene.


Contains: murder, rape, gore, violence.



Beyond The Dark by Patrick D'Orazio

Library Of The Living Dead Press, 2011

ISBN-13: 978146108155

Available: New and used


At the end of Into the Dark (book two of the Dark Trilogy), Jeff Blaine and his friends (and enemies) were trapped in an RV, surrounded by zombies. Beyond The Dark, book three of the trilogy, starts sometime after the end of book two (although we do get a flashback, to see how the group made their escape), as Jeff, George, Megan, Jason, and the rest play zombie hide and seek as they try to survive. But zombies aren't the only thing Jeff and company have to worry about. There are humans out for their blood, as well.


I once said, in a review of Midnight's Angels by Tony Richards, that there is no such thing as "non-stop action." Patrick D'Orazio has done his best to prove me wrong. In a book of 205 pages, the characters don't get a moment to rest, until around page 150. That respite only lasts a page or two. But, I suppose, running for your life in the face of a zombie apocalypse will do that.


D'Orazio's writing has improved from the first book to the third: his growth as a writer is clearly evident. And, while I prefer the more character-driven second book, Beyond The Dark is a compelling read. The character stuff is still there, but the action trumps all. While some characters dig deep, finding hidden strengths, others crack under the constant barrage of the walking dead, while still others use the end of the world as an excuse to let their true nature run free. D'Orazio deftly weaves all of the separate characters’ adventures into one seamless narrative, keeping the suspense ratcheted up.


In a time when zombie novels seem to outnumber all the other types of horror stories out there, Beyond The Dark stands out. I have no problem recommending this book.


Contains: Violence, Gore, Strong Language

Reviewed by: Erik Smith




The First Days by Rhiannon Frater

Tor, 2011

ISBN: 0765331268

Available: New


         A zombie plague has rapidly descended on the world, and no one knows its cause. People in cities are perishing overnight by the tens of thousands, so survivors are seeking refuge in rural areas. The First Days is the first book in a series set in the Texas Hill Country, where two very different women have fled, both of them having lost loved ones to zombies. Jenni watched her abusive husband turn zombie and attack her two young sons—one just a baby. Katie saw her lover, Lydia, become a ravening monster. Yes, Katie was a partner in a gay marriage—a new twist on the usual horror heroines. 


     As the story begins, Katie saves Jenni from being eaten by her oldest son, and they take off for the countryside in an old pick-up truck, shooting and running over zombies along the way—all in glorious, gory detail. They find two survivors—Ralph and Nerit Toombs, a married couple who own and live over a hunting supply store—and briefly stay with them. Next, the two women rescue Jenni’s stepson from a rural campground. After a harrowing rescue effort, they arrive in the small town of Ashley Oaks, where some survivors have built a fortified safety zone. The rest of the book focuses on that tiny society as they appoint their leaders, reinforce their perimeters, and deal with the zombies.


     A few supporting characters are well developed, particularly Ralph and Nerit, as well as Travis and Juan, who become the love interests once the women reach Ashley Oaks. The rest of the townspeople fall into stereotypical roles: the red-neck bigot, the ineffective mayor, the young but courageous policeman, and so on.


     Although the story is compelling, there are a few problems. First, the fact that an entire metropolitan area could be overrun and wiped out in just one day is a bit hard to swallow. Also, if the cities are wiped out, why does Ashley Oaks still have electricity? The zombie deterioration is also a problem, with some becoming skeletal and bald overnight while others retain their human appearance far longer.


     Jenni’s character is also problematic. Unbelievably, she goes from a shell-shocked, abused, suburban mother to a cold-hearted zombie killer to a romantic damsel all in one 24-hour period. The most unbelievable thing she does is to go all man crazy for Travis the day after she sees her zombified husband eat her baby son. Unlike Katie, who grieves endlessly for Lydia, Jenni doesn't look back very often—hard to believe.


Note: This series was self-published in 2008 and has now been published in revised form. Warning: the 2008 version is available used, but it’s not the same as the new, revised version. Next books: Fighting to Survive (11/2011) and Siege (4/2012). Additionally, Frater has published a book of three novellas set in the world of the series: As the World Dies: Untold Tales, Vol. 1 (CreateSpace, 2011; ISBN: 1441440461).




Reviewed by: Patricia O. Mathews




The Infection by Craig DiLouie

Permuted Press, 2011

ISBN-13:  978-1934861653

Available: New paperback, multiformat digital



               In The Infection, DiLouie summons forth a new kind of plague, It starts with people suddenly starting to scream, only to fall down in a catatonic state. Later, they wake up with a homicidal rage bent on killing and devouring others.  Society quickly unravels and small group of survivors struggle to survive in this new world.   The Infection sounds like initially it could be any number of zombie titles, but then DiLouie adds another component: strange creatures start to appear- otherworldly, deadly creatures that add a new challenge for the survivors to face.  


            The Infection is as much about the characters as the plague and resulting monstrosities.  The group is a mixed lot with remnants of a military unit led by Sarge; Ethan, a school math teacher, who lost his wife and daughter in the madness of the screamers; and Todd, a school geek who has found a new life in the chaos that came with the infection.   The Infection offers up solid story telling and DiLouie keeps the pace of the book up so that readers will be turning pages to find out what happens next.    The Infection will have some appeal to fans of Dead Sea by Tim Curran and The Mist by Stephen King.  Note: Craig DiLouie has written another zombie/infection turning people into homicidal monsters Tooth and Nail, this is not a sequel to that book which is a stand alone work.

Contains: Violence and some gore. 





Dirge by Ken Knight

Authorhouse, 2010


Available new paperback


Mickey is a loser.  Picked on throughout school and ridiculed by the girl he wants, he seems to be going nowhere fast.  Finally, after winning big on a lottery ticket, Mickey attempts to redeem himself to her only to be struck down in a terrible accident.  Now, the zombie apocalypse has begun in the Southeastern United States….and it’s being led by that same loser.  No one outside of a four-star general and a handful of people working for a company called DIEWINN knows the true beginnings of this new cataclysmic event. 


Washington, D.C. has fallen to the zombies, who seem to be able to think and react as readily as when alive.  Society has begun to unravel, and the government and military are unable to stop the unprecedented contagion.  With an administration more concerned with civil rights, a CEO looking to cash in on experimental nanotechnology and a potential military conspiracy, can anyone stop the horde of resurrected dead before it’s too late?


Ken Knight has taken the zombie sub-genre to an all-new level with Dirge.  It is a fresh take on the causes, results and outcomes of a zombie apocalypse.  Character development is great, leaving the reader able to understand and even sympathize with Mickey and his situation.  Dirge is populated with some very interesting people including Luciana Belacourt, the CEO of DIEWINN, who is the perfect evil genius.  I genuinely disliked her as an individual.  The pacing of the story is spot on and quick, holding the reader’s interest until the very end without any lag.  The ending took me completely by surprise in its unpredictability….and as anyone who knows me can attest to, I hate predictability.  One complaint I have with Dirge is with the character Hoochie.  For whatever reason I just couldn’t connect with the character.  Another is that sometimes the grammatical usage got a little repetitive.  Other than that Dirge is a great and refreshing read that had me hooked from page one. Recommended.


Contains: gore, violence, adult language and sexually explicit content


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



United States of Armageddon by Jeffery Thomas Crooms

Living Dead Press, 2010

ISBN 1935458701

Available New, e-book


        I have to say, I love the concept of the book. In United States of Armageddon, the rest of the world teams up to destroy the United States. Unfortunately, the idea was poorly carried out. The book starts off with a story of a zombie attack on a couple in an apartment. There is no tie-in of the attack to the story, nor does it have anything to do with the rest of the book. There is a lot of military jargon, some of which refers to equipment that doesn’t exist, and some referring to equipment that was used in a way that, to your average veteran, makes no sense . This gives the impression that Crooms attempted to copy the military style of Bourne’s Day by Day Armageddon, unsuccessfully. The book’s ending tries for suspense but really leaves the reader cringing in confusion. I would not recommend this book, at least until further editing is accomplished.


Contains: Violence, language.


Reviewed by: Denize Toms




The Brain Eater’s Bible by J.D. McGhoul and Pat Kilbane

Mythodrome, 2010

ISBN: 978-0984632909

Available: New Hardcover

Finally, a practical guide for those who won’t go down easy – The Brain Eater’s Bible is graphic, gruesome, and hilarious. If you find yourself faced with the awkward and painful transformation from human to ghoul, don’t whine about flesh decay,

stumbling awkwardly forward into your enemy’s fire...embrace your tenacious new self, learn to survive--seek to conquer! Build your armies around you; eat brains till you puke! 


          J.D.McGhoul’s story is gripping. Waking from a terrible nightmare, he breaks uncontrollably into a murderous rampage, cannibalizing his victims and devouring their brains. He’s aghast at his behavior, until he realizes his incredible euphoria and just how yummy brains really are. Smart and fast, McGhoul claims supremacy, psychs up for world domination, and keeps a journal.


          Fully illustrated in disgusting detail, everyone needs to read this manual before the apocalypse. It details the body’s reaction to the lab-spawned PACE virus, which, if left untreated, creates the slow moving, moronic, zombie of old. Quickly seek one of McGhoul’s elite, intelligent ranks: successful transformation allows one to retain one’s intellect and become a lean, stealthy, pack leader, celebrating the ominous beast within.


          The practical philosophies, social commentary, and survival tips in the Brain Eater’s Bible are indispensable in any disaster. However, zombies must travel light. That’s where the iPad app comes in. Created in absolute gory realism by Emmy-awarded effects artist Dean C. Jones (Deep- Space Nine, Toolbox Murders), The Brain Eater’s Bible App, which you can check out at, is your interactive field guide. One can quickly access animated ambush tactics, refer to hundreds of illustrations, and take advice from a consortium of real-world zombie experts, savvy militarists, scientists and other professional devastationists. 


          Co-author and zombie insider Pat Kilbane spent three years on Mad TV, and, ironically, played a scientist turned zombie in Steve Miner’s 2008 remake of Romero’s Day of the Dead. “I loved picturing the world through cloudy, undead eyes,” he says. Kilbane’s vision is now perfectly clear: “Eating brains is an orgasmic experience...One mouthful of lumpy cerebrum makes you feel immediately justified. The sense of wholeness and empowerment it gives you is like nothing else. If the freshies had any idea how incredible it feels, they would willingly join the ranks of the infected”.


Contains: graphic violence, gruesome photo-realistic illustrations.


Reviewed by: Sheila Shedd



Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim by Mark Twain and W. Bill Czolgosz

Gallery Books, 2011

ISBN: 978-4516-0978-3

Available: Trade Paperback



            Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim follows the new tradition of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. With this sort of storytelling, you take a classic novel and alter it to include monsters, the undead or both. In this version of Huckleberry’s story, the world has been hit with a horrible disease called The Plague. Those who contract the plague end up as “baggers” – so named because they start their zombie lives in body bags. Baggers are the new slaves, having taken the place of living blacks.  In this version of the story, Huckleberry Finn escapes his violent and abusive dad in the company of the bagger, Jim.


Jim is a special kind of zombie. Much like the zombies in Shaun of the Dead, Jim is trainable. He’s decided Huckleberry is his best friend, so he won’t eat him. That doesn’t stop Jim from eating a lot of other humans, though. Besides the bagger angle, and the ways in which it somewhat changes the story, this is the same story that Mark Twain wrote, about a 13 year old who realizes that slavery is flat out wrong. This book is highly recommended for adult fiction collections, readers of zombie novels and literary classics, or for those who enjoy the mashup style of storytelling.


Contains: Cannibalism, Grotesque Imagery, Profanity and Violence.


Reviewed by: Benjamin Franz




Zombies for Zombies:  Advice and Etiquette for the Living Dead by David P. Murphy

Sourcebooks, Inc., 2009.

ISBN:  978-1-4022-2012-8

Available:  paperback/Kindle ebook

The “host”, David Murphy, starts off by stating, “So you’ve been bitten by a zombie. Bummer.” Zombies for Zombies is a parody of the popular “for dummies” books. This time, zombies are the target audience. In the world of the book, zombies are capable of retaining some sort of intelligence if steps are taken at the very beginning of the transformation. This book aims at helping the newly minted keep their brains about them. Each chapter focuses on many different topics, such as how to dress as a zombie, fitness ideas, how to overcome the dreaded zombie stigma and even how to enjoy the ‘kama sutra’. Also included are actual brain recipes that should make any hungry reader salivate. Tossed among the pages are quirky quizzes and humorous illustrations that add a bit of snark to the text.


The author writes in a real tongue-and-cheek fashion which will have any zombie fan laughing out loud. The book is clever, and not overly gory in details, so even the most light-hearted zombie enthusiast could read this book over breakfast. Okay, if they’re squeamish maybe they should skip the brain recipes. All in all, this book is an entertaining addition to the many zombie books shuffling into the genre. Besides, if a reader actually becomes a zombie, this book could very well save not their lives (they are undead after all) but their wits during the whole transition period. Readers who like this might also try the newest addition to this series titled Zombies for Zombies: The Play and Werk Buk: The World’s Best Selling Guide for the Living Dead. I would highly recommend this book for general nonfiction collections in public libraries.

Contains: some mildly graphic descriptions and illustrations, references and illustrations of sexual positions.

Reviewed by: Dawn Stahura


Dust by Joan Frances TurnerPenguin, 2010
ISBN: 978-0441019281

Available: New and used soft cover and in Nook and Kindle e-book formats.

If you can get past the fact that the heroine of this novel is a flesh-eating zombie, you might just enjoy this stand-alone novel.  While the gross-out level is very high (these are zombies, after all) the story does have some poignant and tender moments (really, it does).

     In this world, buried bodies rise as zombies; only cremated bodies stay dead. Nine years ago, 15-year-old Jessie was killed in an automobile accident along with her parents. Now, Jessie lives in the woods near the Indiana-Illinois border just south of the southern tip of Lake Michigan, living off the local wildlife. The first third of the book deals with Jessie's life with her ragtag gang of fellow zombies—the Fly-by Nights. The middle section explores the mystery of strange physical changes that are occurring both among the zombies and the hoos (humans). The final section functions like a supernatural
Book of Revelation, with an apocalypse followed by a redemption of sorts.

     As the story moves along, Jessie's relationships with her gang members change, and she has some unsettling experiences with her long-lost brother and sister when they show up in her zombie world. The plot has some definite parallels to Steven King's
The Stand (e.g., a man-made plague, multiple characters having the same dream and feeling compelled to travel to a certain place). The book ties into the butterfly effect— the theory that one innocent action can ripple out and affect the entire world, and not in a good way. In this case, though, it's not a butterfly flapping its wings in the rain forest; it's a zombie's one-time attempt to reconnect with her mortal sister.

     The violence factor is very high, with lots of gnashing of teeth, bloody body parts, maggots and beetles crawling out of various body cavities, and rotted limbs falling off and being left to decay in the woods. Jessie is a true urban fantasy heroine—more rural than urban, but on her own and filled with angst about her "life" and her relationships. Jessie's gang members are in various states of "zombieness"—from newly turned 'maldies (formaldehyde-preserved corpses) to bug-infested feeders to dusties on the verge of final death—and they all have their own personalities and problems, so the group dynamics are interesting—kind of like the gang from
Lord of the Flies, only undead.

Contains: Violence and gore.


Reviewed by: Patricia O. Mathews



Married with Zombies by Jesse Petersen
Orbit, 2010
ISBN: 978-0316102865

Available: New and used soft cover and in Nook and Kindle e-book formats.


        This is the first book in Petersen’s Living With The Dead series, and I’m not sure whether to classify it as romance, horror, romance, or urban fantasy. It has a bit of all three.  Although the cover blurb for Married with Zombies calls it a romantic comedy, the humor is dark, there's not much romance, and it certainly doesn’t have the “happily ever after” ending  generally expected in paranormal romances. The premise of the series is that a zombie-causing plague hits Seattle, beginning with an accident in a scientific lab. The plague soon spreads worldwide (10 to 25 minutes from first bite to full zombification), with the majority of the population becoming zombies. Sarah and David, a struggling married couple, are the protagonists, with Sarah narrating the story.  Luckily, they escape the plague, but unluckily, they live in Seattle and must escape from the zombie-filled city.


Married with Zombies follows the couple as they leave Seattle and head south, battling zombies every step of the way. The plot is heavily influenced by the couple's troubled marriage(they were on their way to couples therapy when the zombie plague hit).  By the end of Married with Zombies, Sarah and David have been forced to work closely together and depend upon one another in life-threatening situations, and their relationship has grown stronger.  The dark comedy comes from scenes in which the couple's marital woes intrude into their zombie battles. For example, when David leaves the toilet seat up, Sarah is initially furious, but then the situation turns to her favor when she smashes the seat down on a zombie's head when it attacks her from behind the shower curtain. Since this is a zombie series, there are many, many graphic zombie-killing scenes with spurting brain matter, sludgy black zombie blood, and exploding body parts.

Contains: Graphic violence and gore


Reviewed by: Patricia O. Mathews





Flip This Zombie by Jesse PetersenOrbit, 2011
ISBN: 978-0316102957

Available: New and used soft cover and in Nook and Kindle e-book formats.


        This is the second book in Petersen’s Living With The Dead series, and it picks up a few months after the zombie plague has hit. Sarah and David have made their way south and are in their first weeks in their new business, Zombiebusters Exterminators, Inc. They have become mercenaries who will wipe out your zombie infestation for a price. Oddly enough, their relationship is getting better and better—almost as if their constant togetherness and their finely honed teamwork are working together to strengthen their personal relationship.


In this book, the couple is hired to provide a scientist, Dr. Kevin Barnes, with fresh zombies. As they begin to gather the required zombies, they discover that they are running into zombies who are much faster and much smarter than the average undead creature. In the meantime, Kevin starts to put the moves on Sarah, much to her delight and David’s displeasure. Eventually both the personal and professional situations come to a head, and Sarah and David must fight their way through a fierce battle with the super zombies. I guess it just goes to show that there is always a mad scientist mixed up in every single zombie plague?


Since there are many zombie battles, blood and body parts and other gore are spurting in many of the scenes. The dark humor continues, although not as much as in book 1 (Married with Zombies).

Contains: Graphic violence and gore


Reviewed by: Patricia O. Mathews



Allison Hewitt is Trapped by Madeleine Roux

St. Martin’s, 2010

ISBN: 978-0312658908

Available: New



Allison Hewitt is a snarky graduate student at work in the local bookstore when zombies invade, trapping her in the break room with her coworkers and a couple of regulars.  These are not people she would choose to spend time with, so she hooks into a military wireless network and starts blogging.  


Allison Hewitt is Trapped actually started out as a blog. The blog is still up, and the entries have an immediacy that brings the story to life.  As Allison’s story progressed, some of the blog’s followers started to comment, adding originality, context, and believability to the situation. Unfortunately, some of this is lost in the book. That’s partly due to the author framing the story as historical (someone tracks down Allison’s blog entries in hopes that she will be included in a book on heroes of the apocalypse) and partly due to her signing a contract with St. Martin’s, which led to her writing the rest as a novel. In the case of Allison Hewitt, format really does make a difference.


Allison and the bookstore crew do eventually escape, and she goes on a search for her mom. She stays for a short time at a refugee camp at the university, where she quickly falls for the guy in charge, who also happens to be married. His wife shows up just before a newly formed cult of deranged housewives decides to take prisoners, and, after showing what can really be done with a laptop, Allison is back on the road searching for her mom.


Allison Hewitt is Trapped is a gripping, literate read. Allison’s dark humor, passion, determination, and decisive action carry the story, and the secondary characters are a lot of fun. I will say it’s hard to believe a religious cult could develop as quickly as the Black Earth Mothers- the story takes place over a very short time, less than three months. Allison’s love affair is also very brief, if intense, and it’s confusing (and annoying) that her friends have such immediate antipathy towards the wife. But these things didn’t slow me down or prevent me from enjoying the book.  I fell in love with Allison the day she went scavenging for food in the bookstore and instead started grabbing armfuls of books, knowing that she’d probably draw unwanted attention (she did).


Allison Hewitt is Trapped has been packaged as an urban fantasy, and it’s been blurbed by MaryJanice Davidson as being incredibly funny. I’d say that’s misleading. Yes, parts of it take place in a city, but there’s nothing supernatural (zombification is caused by a virus), and the romance is understated. It’s not funny in a laugh out loud sense, either. Although Allison often writes with humor, she isn’t playing for laughs. She’s doing her best to survive, and trying to reach her mom. MaryJanice Davidson’s readers aren’t the audience for this… but smart, literate women who love zombies (or can at least handle the gore) will love Allison Hewitt is Trapped.  Highly recommended for public libraries and lovers of zombie fiction.

Review by Kirsten Kowalewski


Dead Stay Dead by Paul Jessup

Apex Publications (The Zombie Feed), 2011


Available: New and used

Natasha sees dead people. She is a ghost whisperer, who helps restless spirits pass to the other side. Unfortunately, everyone else is now seeing dead people. Zombies have risen and they are hungry. With the help of her college roommate, who has a special talent of her own, and a friendly ghost, it's up to Natasha to save the world.


With Dead Stay Dead, Paul Jessup has written a fast and fun little zombie tale. 72 pages of horror and humor showcase Jessup's ability to mix gore with comedy. The action starts on page one and barely lets up, with heads exploding, zombies chowing down, and jokes flying left and right. The dialogue crackles between Natasha, her roommate Melissa, and the few survivors they encounter along the way. Even the zombies are funny, on occasion. Jessup also manages to give us some back story that puts a twist on the whole zombie apocalypse.


If you are a zombie fan, looking for a gruesome and humorous story, or a library looking to add a nice zombie novella to your collection, I recommend Dead Stay Dead.


Contains: Gore, violence and strong language.

Reviewed by:  Erik Smith




Zombie, Ohio: A Tale of the Undead by Scott Kenemore

Skyhorse Publishing, 2011

ISBN: 1-61608-206-2

Available: New

With the first page we know there is something “different” about Peter Mellor. Peter is a zombie. He wakes up not knowing who he is or where he is. It seems that he has been in a fatal car accident, hence the zombification. His memory of anything before the wreck is spotty at best. Title of the rock song on the radio? No idea. The year? Clueless. The Simpsons? Yes, and he specifically remembers Chief Wiggum. This is what makes Peter special. He is a zombie, but he can remember some events, feelings, and memories. He can even remember what sarcasm is and on more than one occasion uses it.

Peter sets out to find people (not to eat them, though). He learns he has a girlfriend who he really cares about, and decidesf to find her. At this point Peter is still passing as a human, albeit a sick-looking one. He has not had any of the delicious zombie staple, brains. Gradually, the human that Peter was before and the zombie that he is now, meld. Peter is able to justify the eating of human brains because zombies are higher on the food chain. He gathers his own gang of zombies and they travel throughout the countryside, feasting on any humans that cross their path. This makes him happy for a while, or at least as happy as a zombie can get. In the end, though, Peter’s residual humanness rears its head and he finally has to decide who or what he is. This book is in turns funny and profound. It definitely left me with unexpected thoughts and feelings. It left me with ideas and concepts that I mulled over days after I finished the book. I would highly recommend it for library collections. 

Contains: Strong language, gory violence.

Reviewed by: Brandi Blankenship


Dr. Dale’s Zombie Dictionary: The A to Z Guide to Staying Alive by Dr. Dale Seslick (Ben Muir), illustrated by Jack Knight

Allison and Busby Ltd., 2010

ISBN: 9780749008055

Available: New


Dr. Dale’s Zombie Dictionary is just that—a dictionary of all of the terms and phrases you might need to know in the event of a zombie apocalypse.  It contains some very practical information, like what types of weapons to use; the best kind of clothing to wear; panic zones to avoid if you want to live; and where the best places are to hide.  Dr. Dale even gives advice on the proper soundtrack (playing in your head of course—the zombies would hear you otherwise) to aid you in your survival.  Of course one crucial bit of information that is repeated found throughout the book is that there is no cure!


Along with the practical stuff there’s also some not-so-practical information to be found in the dictionary.  For instance, you can’t use a hedgehog as a weapon; musical instruments that might make good weapons; why Michael Jackson will be responsible for many deaths because of the “Thriller” video; and how to train a sheep to attack.  Dr. Dale doesn’t take himself too seriously here.  Even the common sense info (and there’s actually quite a bit of it) is sprinkled with comedy. 


Dr. Dale’s Zombie Dictionary is a fun and practical guide to survival.  It did take me a while to read but only because it’s laid out like a dictionary, not a regular book.  It is definitely a fun (and informative) read.  I feel I am now fully prepared to survive the zombie hoards when they finally come. Recommended.

Contains:  Adult language, creepy illustrations, lots of sarcasm

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund



Into The Dark by Patrick D'Orazio

Library Of The Living Dead Press, 2010


Available:New And Used



            When last we saw Jeff, Megan, George, and Jason (at the end of Comes the Dark, the first book in the Dark Trilogy), they had survived hordes of flesh-eating zombies, only to be captured by a small group of gun-wielding humans. Into the Dark starts right where the last book left off. Jeff and his friends are taken at gunpoint to a camp fortified by circled RVs, led by Michael. Michael is the leader of a group of survivors that number about a dozen. He is friendly enough, introducing our intrepid heroes to, among others, his crazy girlfriend Cindy;  Ben, the strong, silent one; Frank and Marcus, a couple of good ole boys; and Lydia, the mother hen. Everything seems fine, until Michael tells the newcomers that no one is allowed to leave. He wants to use the camp as a base for rebuilding civilization, and he won't allow anyone to upset his plans. Of course, the zombies don't care what ANYONE has planned. They just want to eat.
     Comes the Dark was a fine, if unspectacular, zombie novel with good characterization, but didn't add much to the undead canon. With Into the Dark, D'Orazio has stepped up his game, writing a thrilling page-turner, in which the zombies don't even show up (!!!) until about halfway through. The addition of Michael and his crew brings some fresh blood to the mix, and adds some great drama. Michael has depth; it seems as though some secret is driving his need to control and his desire to rebuild. Cindy is that crazy chick you love to hate, and you just know she is going to cause some REAL trouble. Lydia is a caregiver, seemingly soft, but with hidden depths of strength.

     The two groups clash early and often. There is plenty of stuff going on, aside from those pesky flesh munchers waiting in the wings. Once the zombies do show up, the action is fast, bloody, and frightening. D'Orazio builds the tension with the human conflict, until it explodes into violence against the undead. But even when the survivors must work together to fend off the slavering zombies, their fears, anger and jealousies bubble just under the surface.

     It seems to me that D'Orazio has improved between the first book of this trilogy and the second. The dialogue crackles, the characters have more depth, and he doesn't need to throw in a zombie fight every few pages. This is much more of a character driven book, and the story is all the better for it. If D'Orazio keeps up this quality of writing, and, perhaps, branches off into other horror territory, I could see him making quite a name for himself.

     Into the Dark ends with a cliffhanger, just as the previous book did. Only this time, I can't wait to see what happens next. I recommend Into the Dark for libraries, zombie fans, and anyone just looking for a thrilling read.

Contains: Violence, strong language, and gore.

Reviewed by: Erik Smith



Confessions of a Zombie Lover by Zoe Whitten

Smashwords Press, 2011

Available: eBook

ISBN: n/a

In this second book of the Zombie Era series, we find Eugene “G” O’Donnell two years after his acquittal on murder charges.  G has been searching for his friend Kate and his daughter Susan.  His search has led him to an Army base where he hopes to find his lost companions and work on a cure for the zombie plague.  G thinks he may have an understanding of how the organism works, and although he cannot stop the zombies from being dead, he believes he may be able to reverse the damage done to the brain and body. 

During the course of his experiments G has “created” a child—that’s what he calls them—named Reggie.  With Reggie he is able to demonstrate his theory.  Reggie obeys commands, can sense other zombies, and has been weaned off of human flesh.  G eventually has a breakthrough, discovering how to increase Reggie’s brain capacity to the level of an adult.  Ultimately, though, G’s experiment suffers a major setback that could cost G his life.

Zoe E. Whitten has quite the imagination for telling zombie stories.  While I did not read the first book in the Zombie Era series, I don’t feel it was particularly necessary for reading Confessions of a Zombie Lover.  Character development is well done, and the story flows nicely.  While it can be tough to write something “new” in the zombie subgenre, I think Ms. Whitten has done an excellent job here.  I like the background of an organism causing the dead to rise, as well as G’s theory for a possible cure.  I can also appreciate the hints of hope for the human race, as well as condemnations for typical behavior.  One drawback for me was the advancement of time in the story.  I know that detail is not always necessary, but at times I felt as though I had lost the overall timeline of the events taking place.  Overall, Confessions of a Zombie Lover is an enjoyable read. Recommended.

Contains adult language, violence and sexual themes

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Half Past Dead by Zoe Archer & Bianca D'Arc

Brava, 2010

ISBN: 0758246978

Available: New, used and multi-format digital

       Someone must have told these women that zombies can't be romance heroes because they pulled out all the stops to prove that theory wrong. Half Past Dead is a pair of novellas. The first is The Undying Heart by Zoe Archer, a historical paranormal tale of Cassandra Fielding and Samuel Reed. Cassandra is a Blade of the Rose, a member of a mysterious guardian sect trying desperately to prevent magic from being used for nefarious purposes. Samuel is a victim of an evil man, killed on the battlefield by his commander only to be raised and used as tool to tear through enemies. Together they must recover the magical artifact that animates Samuel, even if it costs him his life. Simon Says by Bianca D'Arc is a modern tale pitting a Special Forces soldier with a tragic past against mutated undead in order to save the woman he left behind years ago, before his...accident.

      Both are stellar tales, solid, enjoyable love stories, though Simon Says holds closer to the traditional zombie story format. The real winners in this book are readers who get strong, fascinating leads, blistering hot love scenes and, of course, (non-rotting) zombies.

     Contains: explicit sex scenes

     Review by Michele Lee




Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dreadfully Ever After by Steve Hockensmith

Quirk Books, 2011


Available: New

ISBN: 978-1-59474-502-7


          Disgrace is not the lowest point to which one can sink. Death, or rather undeath, is somewhat less acceptable. Nevertheless, whenever possible, one should avoid succumbing to either.


          In 2010, Hockensmith continued the storyline from Seth Grahame-Smith’s popular mashup of Jane Austen’s classic, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, with the release of a prequel,  Dawn of the Dreadfuls.  Dreadfully Ever After completes the P & P & Z trilogy.


          Regency England is overwhelmed by a plague causing the dead to rise and commit unspeakable acts.  London has been sectioned off to prevent the spread of infection, but the rotting population of mutilated, cannibalistic corpses continues to thrive. Ninjas are imported and hired to protect the upper classes, and wealthy men and women undertake rigorous training in the “deadly (martial) arts.”  


          The courageous and outspoken Elizabeth Bennet-Darcy is particularly skilled, as is her loving husband, Fitzwilliam.  Unfortunately, a momentary lapse of caution leaves him viciously bitten in the neck by an unmentionable (zombie).


           Fitzwilliam’s formidable aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, knows of a rumored cure. She offers Elizabeth her help in securing it, but at the cost of her honor as a lady.  The experimental serum is the closely guarded brainchild of Sir Angus MacFarquhar; Elizabeth must disguise her identity and romance it away from him.  The fallback plan is for Kitty Bennet to seduce MacFarquhar’s dandy son, Bunny.  They are assisted by highly disciplined warriors, including the mysterious Mr. Quayle, who exists, well amputated, in a black wheeled box.

          Dreadfully Ever After is a masterpiece of parody and wit.  The parlance is brilliant; the humor is subtle at times, and rollicking at others, and not a page passes without an ingenious phrase or insight. Hockensmith pulls no punches with the carnage, skillfully working the dichotomy between a novel of manners and a work of depravity. This is not a superficial reworking of a classic for easy laughs. The entire novel is rich in social, racial, and gender commentary, and a genuine page-turner; possibly an improvement over the original. The book (and series) is surprising and unique, a real delight for fans of any level of horror. Highly recommended.


Contains: graphic mutilation, decapitation, cannibalism, relatively happy ending.


Reviewed by: Sheila Shedd



Brains: A Zombie Memoir by Robin Becker

Eos, 2010

ISBN: 9780061974052

Available: New


Brains is billed as an intellectual zombie novel. It's about college professor Jack Barnes, who becomes a zombie during the zombie apocalypse, but retains his mind and ability to write. He finds other zombies who have retained their minds, and various other skills, and sets out to find his place in the world.


Brains is quite literate and well-written. Unfortunately, the main character is a complete pompous jerk who spends the entire book prattling on in academic and pop culture references about how stupid all the humans and other zombies are, while also making zombies out to be total victims of the human evil. If you like to be constantly talked down to by a gore-loving, cannibal killer who alternates between thinking he's Jesus and a tragic victim of human racism (at one point he likens his situation to that of the Katrina victims) under the guise of making a statement about human nature you might like this book. If you want a semi-Christian, intellectual zombie book then pick up one of Kim Paffenroth's books instead.


I want to note that I think Robin Becker is a skilled, powerful writer, I just loathed being in the head of her main character, which made reading this book like scrubbing the bathroom after a toilet overflow—that is I didn't enjoy it and felt gross afterward.


Contains: Violence, gore, language, sexual language


Reviewed by: Michele Lee




The Reapers are the Angels by Alden Bell

Holt, 2010

Available: New, trade paperback & most eBook formats

ISBN: 9780805092431


The Reapers are the Angels is an unexpected treasure, and might easily be overlooked by otherwise avid horror readers. A gothic southern tale of a girl who lives alone after the zombie uprising it does for zombies what Interview with a Vampire did for vampires.


Temple is barely a teenager, left to survive in a failing world. She's illiterate, and has never know family or a world without zombies, yet she's searching the world for something she can't put a name to. Despite her very different way of thinking, she's easily an Everyman for a wide swath of the readers who find this book.


Intensely strange, deeply emotional, this is a zombie tale not to be missed, or underestimated in the sea of knockoff  bio-horror/apocalyptic books. I cannot recommend this book highly enough/ Readers should be aware that Bell's intoxicating tale will pull you in and make it very hard to let go. An absolute must-have for modern horror collections. Highly recommended.


Contains: language, violence, attempted rape, sex


Reviewed by: Michele Lee


The Weaponer  by Eric S. Brown

Coscom Entertainment, 2010

Available: New paperback and ebook

ISBN:  9781926712710

            Generations after the world fell to zombies, What’s left of the United States has reverted back to the life and technology of the Old West, and the zombies control everything else. Hyattsburg is a safe haven behind a wall that keeps the zombies at bay.  One morning a family is found slaughtered, and Alan, the last Weaponer, is called upon to help find out who or what attacked the family.  What Alan and the rest of the posse discover is worse than they could have imagined.

             Eric S. Brown has taken zombies and added something extra—cannibals.  That’s right it’s not just the zombies who are looking for food.  The Weaponer is a romp through a future that is much like the Old West, but includes blood, guts and plenty of feasting on flesh.  There are reminders of the old society, before the apocalypse, in the form of weapons and some electricity as well as references to the military, but the resources left to the few survivors once all hell breaks loose are no match for what’s to come.  The Weaponer is a quick read full of action that doesn’t let up.  There are also a few surprises in store.  Eric S. Brown has proven yet again that he is an author at the top of the zombie sub-genre. Recommended.


Contains: blood, violence, gore and cannibalism


Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Dead Beat by Remy Porter

Wild Wolf Publishing, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-9563733-6-6

Available: New and used

            When zombies attack, the small town of Haven, population 2000, is on its own. Police officer Johnny Silverman does what he can to safeguard the populace and maintain law and order. After a fence is built around the entire town, and the zombies inside have been eradicated, it seems that everyone is safe, if not comfortable. But there is a rift among the people of Haven. Not everyone agrees on the best way to live. And soon, the monsters outside the fence begin to pale in comparison to those on the inside.


            Zombie books are a dime a dozen. The permeate bookstore shelves. An author needs a unique approach to get noticed, whether it's the talking, driving zombies in Brian Keene's The Rising or a mash-up like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. What’s different here is that the zombies of Dead Beat are window dressing. This story could have taken place in the midst of a nuclear war or natural disaster. The real horror here is the human horror. It's the story of the breakdown of civilization; those who attempt to keep the world on track, and those who wish to take advantage of a terrifying situation. The zombie apocalypse brings out the true nature of the characters, and sometimes that is more frightening than the flesh-eating corpses shambling around, trying to eat your brains.


            Remy Porter tells a fine tale of the collapse of the known world. The characters are more than cookie cutter survivors- they have distinct personalities. There is growth here. And there are twists, and one hell of an interesting ending. Purists need not :worry, there is plenty of bloody zombie goodness. Dead Beat isn't the greatest zombie novel out there, but reading it isn't a bad way to spend an afternoon.


Contains: Sex, violence, and strong language


Reviewed by: Erik Smith 



The Great Richmond Zombie Book  introduction by James Moffitt

Sink/Swim Press, 2010

Available: New paperback, at

ISBN: 5800046984709

Legends of the undead roaming our cities are popular these days.  But deep in the backwoods of Virginia, along swampy trails and among an older, more superstitious folk, stories are told that chill the bones and make even the sane among us question our reality.  Several of these gruesome tales from Richmond writers were gathered by an independent publisher and offered for your morbid pleasure in The Great Richmond Zombie Book.  Here’s a warning sample of the contents within:


Fort Hope by James Moffitt is a shocking reminder of how impossible it is to kill the dead.  Decapitation is just not good enough.  Covered in grime and desperate to gnaw some serious brain, Mr. Waite listens distractedly to the preacher’s eulogy, and pieces together the details of his own violent death.  Beware, mourners: six feet of dirt just might not be enough. Written poker-faced and tight, Moffitt presents a terrifying view humans normally hope to avoid.


Morgan’s Tale, by Matthew Fisher, is the graphic story of an abused teenage girl who has just about had enough of her disgusting, drug-addicted uncle. Outside their house, the world is burning down, and the phones are dead.  But Morgan’s personal armageddon begins and ends in her own kitchen. Murder can be justified in an adolescent mind, but is there enough strength in the girl to kill again?  Dramatic language and gory details intensify this confessional, first person account of how to deal out justice and gain your freedom.


The Quick and the Undead by K. Thayer rides further west into the lunatic sunset than most lily-livered Virginians ever go. Their stench palpable under the Texas sun, hordes of rotting zombies run amok on the range, devastating towns and turning cattle into a menacing herd of undead meat.  A greedy scoundrel controls the population of oozing flesh eaters, and only a true hero can save the day.  Thayer’s gift for satire is as black as a pool of diseased blood and gore, her story a comedic nightmare for campfire terror.


Seven more gripping stories of world annihilation, infiltration, and zombie devastation are contained in this original anthology.  Author biographies are included,and gorgeously disgusting artwork graces the cover.  The Great Richmond Zombie Book is a great choice for short reads. Highly recommended.


Reviewed by: Sheila Shedd



How to Speak Zombie: A Guide for the Living by Steve Mockus

Chronicle Books, 2010
ISBN: 9780811874885

Available: New

Librarians take note: in the field of humorous mix-genre zombie books here's one that finally has a place in a public collection. There's little story, but lots of kind-of gross illustrations and a high interaction quotient as each page in this book is a scene and corresponds to a button that when pushed plays one of many zombie ‘drone’ sounds. This book is sure to engage readers because it is so interaction based. It's not aimed at children, but the illustrations are much vaguer when it comes to explicit gore than the combat manuals and guides. Most of the scenarios are adult based (at the club or at the gym) but don’t contain content inappropriate for younger readers.

At the very least this would be a fun book to play around with to engage difficult patrons, or that both kids and parents can have fun with. Recommended.

Contains: vaguely gory illustrations, pushbutton sounds.

Reviewed by: Michele Lee


The New Dead edited by Christopher Golden

St. Martin's, 2010

ISBN: 9780312559717

Available: New and used

The New Dead tries to play around a bit with the very idea of the zombie story, experimenting with both the concept of a zombie (such as in “Copper” by Stephen R. Bissette) and the story form itself (“Twittering from the Circus of the Dead” by Joe Hill, which is told in Twitter form). Sadly, outside of the contributions by the powerhouses of the zombie genre many of the stories fall flat.

Brian Keene, Max Brooks and Jonathan Maberry all deliver strong stories, as does Kelley Armstrong (who successfully brings a magical twist to the typical zombie tale). The good stories are quite good, but the rest are mediocre, though not necessarily the typical expected tales of a zombie apocalypse, making this an inconsistent collection. Avid zombie readers will find tales to enjoy here, but collections aimed at more general audiences will find other anthologies suit their needs better.

Contains: violence, language, gore

Reviewed by: Michele Lee



Highway to Hell by Armand Rosamilia

 eBooks, 2010

Available eBook


Randy has been trying to stay alive for the last six months, ever since the dead began to rise.  He’s finding it more and more difficult, and has resigned himself to death.  Luckily for him, Becca has found him and taken him back to her secure building.  Randy is amazed by how much food Becca has managed to store away.  She even has a garden for fresh fruit and vegetables.  They manage to secure some other supplies and Randy is content to spend the rest of his days secure with Becca.  Randy’s contentment is short-lived when the young couple receives an unexpected visitor.  Crow has returned from Baltimore and wants Becca to return with him. 

Becca falls into a very somber mood, but Randy thinks she may be returning to normal when she accompanies him on a pharmacy raid to complete a deal Randy has made for a truck.  Unfortunately, when Randy wakes up the next morning he finds Becca gone.  Randy is determined to bring Becca back and make sure Crow never bothers them again.

Armand Rosamilia has turned zombies on their heads with Highway to Hell.  They don’t just feed on the living they completely eviscerate the genitals of the living.  He has given a nod to Edgar Allan Poe by setting his story in and around Baltimore and has established a pocket of humanity, such as it is, with the Poe House as its center.  Crow, it turns out, is even more dangerous than the zombies and is one depraved son of a gun.  His Hellfire Club uses and abuses humans and zombies alike.  Rosamilia has also included the short story “Rear Guard”, about a ragtag group of survivors led by ex-military men who are no prize, either.  He joins the stories with this group passing by Randy and Becca’s hideout along the highway.  Both stories are brutal and leave no room for happy endings.   If you’ve got an e-reader you should check it out. Recommended.

Contains violence, gore, adult language and graphic sexual images

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund





Rise Again: A Zombie Thriller by Ben Tripp

Simon  and Schuster, 2010

Available: New

ISBN: 978-1439165164



          Rise Again by Ben Tripp is the latest foray into zombie novels in a fairly crowded area.   Rise Again follows Danielle (Danny) Adelman, an Iraqi war veteran who has become sheriff of a small California town.   Danny’s day starts off badly when she finds her younger sister has run away. Then during the annual chili festival, a strange and unexplained event occurs. Hundreds of people swarm the town screaming and holding their heads and then drop dead.  The dead then rise again, first as relatively docile creatures, but then the zombies develop an unhealthy interest in the living and start to attack.    Danny finds herself in the position of having to lead the survivors to safety, which at times competes with her desire to find her sister.   Danny and the survivors also face a human danger, in the form of paramilitary units that have filled in where the military is no longer present.   


          There is a growing body of zombie titles, and generally readers of the subgenre are either looking for similar story tropes or looking for something completely new.  Tripp’s title would appeal for the first group of readers, as many familiar zombie tropes are used in the book.   Tripp offers up an amusing collection of characters, and Danny is a well-developed character as an Iraqi War vet with physical and emotional scars from the war.  Those who have read many of the zombie novels out there will find ind ind Rise Again to be a comfortable, familiar tale, well-written and entertaining.  For readers just starting to read zombie titles, this one is a good representation of the types of stories out there, and I find it to be one of the better written ones.  Rise Again would make a good fit for a library display related to the television miniseries Walking Dead, or any other zombie related display. Recommended.

Contains: Violence and  some gore


Undead by John Russo

Kensington, 2010

Available: New

ISBN-13: 978-0758258731

If there are fathers of the zombie craze, they would have to be George Romero and John Russo, the screenwriters for the classic zombie movie Night of the Living Dead, which brought forth a plague of slow moving flesh eating zombies in popular culture.   While Romero went on to direct the Living Dead movies, Russo wrote Return of the Living Dead in the 1970s, which went out of print until it was republished in 1997, and then went back out of print for years becoming a relatively obscure zombie title.  Return of the Living Dead, is far different from the film of the same title.  It is set 10 years after the original Night of the Living Dead, when the original zombie plague has been brought under control.   A freak bus crash in rural America suddenly becomes the focal point of a new zombie plague.


Undead is a collection of both the original Night of the Living Dead and the long lost Return of the Living Dead.  Zombie fans will be interested in these initial tales of the zombie plague.  In and of themselves, the tales are not extraordinary, but they seem to fit in fine with the ever-growing, shambling mass of zombie titles that have risen up over the past few years.  As Undead contains the seminal titles that started it all, it would be wise to have a copy of the book in your library collection, and bring it out anytime there is a zombie horror movie or TV show.

Contains: Violence and gore

Note: John Russo also wrote a zombie graphic novel Escape of the Living Dead from Avatar Press.


A Zombie Apocalypse by Keith Adam Luethke

Createspace, 2010

ISBN:  978-1453720011

Available: New

Rachel Cormac’s dead husband is locked in the basement, zombies are starting to gather outside of her house, and her food is running out.  Thinking she sees a light at night in a house down the street, she investigates to see if there are any survivors, but discovers that they are all dead.  Rachel decides to make her way from her home in Tennessee to (hopefully) find her sister Cora and Cora’s daughter Brittney in Ohio.  Along the way she meets a dying man who hands her a briefcase and implores her to take it to a research facility.  Rachel takes the green liquid and hypodermic needles, but doesn’t go to the facility.  Instead, she continues on, but runs into some nasty roadblocks along the way.

Written entirely in journal form, A Zombie Apocalypse tells this story completely from Rachel’s point of view.  At times harrowing and at others almost poignant, you will find yourself rooting for Rachel to make it alive to her ultimate destination. The book gives an interesting look at one woman’s attempt to survive at all costs, with no real survival skills to speak of.  This was a quick little read and Luethke keeps it interesting throughout.  I thoroughly enjoyed it. Recommended.

Contains: violence and gore

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund


The Official Zombie Handbook (UK) by Sean T. Page

Severed Press, 2010

Available: New

ISBN: 9780980799613


Ever wonder how you would survive the zombie apocalypse?  Where you would go to be safe?  What you would need for basic survival?  Wonder no more.  The Official Zombie Handbook is the definitive survival guide.

The Official Zombie Handbook is an easy-to-read, easy-to-understand guide book for the survivalist who wishes to prepare for the coming apocalypse.  While it deals specifically with the United Kingdom, all of the information contained can be easily applied to whatever country you live in. 

The book begins with a bit of a lesson on the definition of a zombie as set forth by zombiologists….yes the science exists.  It lays out the difference between Haitian zombies and “regular” zombies, as well as the prevailing belief that they are of the slow, shambling kind (a la George Romero), as opposed to their depiction by modern movie-makers.  It discusses the generally accepted cause for zombies and gives a standard alert system for the degree of outbreak.  Sean T. Page gives the reader a brief overview as to how the various government agencies will fare (or fall), as well as a guide for the survivalist based on a 90-day period for staying alive.  He covers defenses, weapons, food, other necessary supplies, and keeping up morale. 

This is a work of fiction, but it reads like non-fiction.  Page includes some of the dry humor that Britons are famous for such as referring to a zombie’s reach as the “snack radius”  and giving politically correct terms for zombies such as “living-impaired” and “mortally-challenged”.  At one point he even discusses using music to try and block out the incessant moaning of the living dead.  He cautions against hours of Phil Collins’ Greatest Hits as it may drive others into the arms of the horde.  I actually was quite impressed with Page’s use of history to point to actual zombie outbreaks through the ages. The Official Zombie Handbook is a bit on the serious side, but still an enjoyable read. Recommended.

Contains: descriptions of violence and weaponry

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund


Note: Other Zombie Guides

The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks

The Zombie Combat Manual: A Guide to Fighting the Living Dead by Roger Ma

The Do-it-Yourself Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse by Bud Hanzel and John Olson

Zompoc: How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse by Michael G. Thomas

Zompoc: Weapons & Tactics for the Zombie Apocalypse by Michael G. Thomas and Nick S. Thomas

The Zombie's Survival Guide: Thrive In The Zombie Apocalypse After You Calvin A. L. Miller II

The Zombie Survival Guide: How to Live Like a King After the Outbreak byEtienne Guerin DeForest




Comes The Dark by Patrick D'Orazio

Library Of The Living Dead Press, 2010

ISBN-13: 9781453701287

New and used


When the zombies come, Jeff Blaine does what he can to protect his wife and children. But he is one man, and, eventually, he fails. With everything he loved taken away from him, Jeff sets out to take revenge on the creatures that have destroyed not only his life, but the entire world.

Zombie novels are everywhere. They clutter the shelves of bookstores. Whether it's zombie versions of old classics, how-to guides for surviving the zombie apocalypse, or just plain old zombie horror, you can't escape this new wave of the undead. My enjoyment of a zombie tale comes down to two things: writing and character. Of course, these two things are important in any work of fiction, but since there is only so much you can do with flesh-eating ghouls, they become that much more important in the zombie genre.

                D'orazio does just fine with both. The action is fast-paced, taking place over just a few days. In fact, almost the entire first half of the book occurs in one day. The zombies keep on coming, a wave of rotten flesh that knows only hunger. Gory descriptions abound, the stench of the undead practically wafting off the pages. For a first-time novelist, D'orazio has already established his voice, and it is clear and concise.
             As for the characters, D'orazio gives us a small but well rounded cast. Jeff Blaine is a man who has lost everything, and wants to take out as many of the creatures as he can, before they take him out. An average guy, Jeff makes mistakes, but he learns from them and does his best to do better. Eventually, Jeff meets other survivors. Megan is a terrified woman, with hidden reserves of strength, George wants to find out if his family is still alive, and Jason is a troubled teen, alone and trying to find his way. Together, they become an odd family, fighting their way through the dark days of the end of the world. There are other survivors as well- some just want to be left alone, while others want to take what little Jeff and his group have. Jeff and the rest must do horrible things to stay alive in a world gone mad, and each of their actions has repercussions, for themselves and those around them. D'orazio makes his characters into living, breathing, changing people.
    A word of warning. Comes The Dark is the first book in a planned trilogy, and it does end with a cliffhanger. Still, I recommend this book for libraries and zombie fans.

Contains: Graphic violence, gore, and strong language

Review by Erik Smith


Season of Death by Eric S. Brown

Pill Hill Press 2010

ISBN 978-1617060205

Available New Paperback

                   Season of Death is a collection of four great stories by Eric S. Brown.  In all of his stories Eric teases the reader with hope for the characters’ survival, but they are all pretty bleak.
              “Undead Down Under” tells the story of a world overrun by zombies and various animalistic demons.  England has survived the apocalypse under the leadership of Kyle, a mysterious man who possesses some knowledge of magic.  Kyle has made an agreement with Bug demons—they gave him the ability to use magic to protect his people but he’s paying a high price for that knowledge.  Kyle has learned of a group of survivors in Australia living in an old military instillation called The Rock.  They have battled zombies and Croc demons to stay alive but their time is running out.  Kyle sails to Australia with a unit of SAS and convinces the survivors to help him defeat the demons.  Kyle manages to kill the leader of the Croc demons but the survivors don’t fare so well.  Kyle sails back to England to continue his war against the other demons of the world.
              “Kinberra Down” is a sci-fi story written by Eric S. Brown and Jessy Marie Roberts.  Earth is at war with cat-like aliens called the Darians.  The Kinberra is a naval starship transporting Marines and a very special Darian prisoner to Alpha Centauri when the fleet is ambushed.  The Kinberra jumps to an uncharted solar system and crash landson an Earth-class planet.  The crew sets about making repairs and scouting the frozen planet for any signs of life.  The ship is attacked by giant ant-like creatures looking for food.  They continue their mindless search for food even though the ship is protected (for now) by an energy shield.  They are a lot like zombies.  The captain decides to release Xar, the Darian prisoner to help fight off the aliens and hopefully get the crew rescued.  Now the leader of the squad of Marines has decided to mutiny and the crew may not last long enough to get off the frozen planet alive.
              “How the West Went to Hell” is a religion-based tale, previously published by Pill Hill Press. The town of Reaper’s Valley is about to be overrun by demons.  Louis is a book editor looking to get the real story behind a manuscript about another town that was completely destroyed.  O’Rourke is taking the job of sheriff of Reaper’s Valley, but has no idea of what he’s getting into.  Nathan is trying to do God’s work by destroying the demons and hoping to protect the human population from demons.  All three are headed to Reaper’s Valley but only Nathan knows what’s coming.  Lee (Legion) is destroying town after town in the West.  No one is left alive and the dead come back inhabited by demons.  Can they stop Lee in his tracks and prevent the End of Days?
              Finally “Ragnarok Island” is about the zombie apocalypse.  Humans and zombies are fighting a war.  The zombies can think and function as though they were still alive, except they aren’t and they need food.  They have set up breeding centers to expand their numbers and to maintain a steady food supply.  Admiral Pressley leads a rag-tag fleet of mostly civilian ships that have picked up the sole survivor of The Queen, a large ship loaded with humans that were raiding ports and freeing people from the camps.  That survivor, Scott talks them into taking an oil platform that the zombies are getting back online.  Things don’t go exactly as planned and Scott takes Sarah to Ragnarok Island, an old Air Force base that has been left alone until now.  Scott convinces everyone to start raiding the land and freeing people from the camps in the hopes of building an army to fight the zombies.  Initially, the plan works and they decide to go on another raid.  Unfortunately, the zombie armada has found the island.
              All of the stories are well-written and character development fits the stories perfectly.  Each one ends with a nice little twist and they are all very dark and bleak.  Once again Eric S. Brown proves his mettle as a storyteller and Jessy Marie Roberts holds her own with “Kinberra Down”.  Recommended
Contains: blood, gore, adult language and some sexual themes

Reviewed by: Colleen Wanglund




Faith and the Undead by Benjamin Rogers

Library of the Living Dead Press, 2010

New paperback 194 pages

ISBN 9781452869827


The war between good and evil has waged for centuries with the Creator and Satan being forced to keep their interference in the lives of man to a minimum.  Now it appears that Satan is no longer content to sit on the sidelines in the war for souls.  He is creating an army, the likes of which has never been seen before. 


Frank Payens has been searching for something ever since he left the Navy.  He has been looking for his place in the world.  Frank may have found that place in The Home, a monastery established for veterans of all conflicts from anywhere in the world regardless of the country they fought for.  It provides a safe haven for those afflicted with the deep scars of war who cannot find solace anywhere else in the world.   As Frank and his fellow vets soon find out, the monastery will also stand as a beacon of humanity’s survival in the coming apocalypse.


Not long after arriving at The Home and deciding to stay permanently, Frank is shown a military-style command center under the grounds of the monastery equipped with the finest and most powerful of military weapons and machinery.  It is there that they learn of the zombie apocalypse.  Frank, with Adam, who runs The Home, head to Washington D.C. to get their orders from the President.  Those orders include establishing a safe city called New Hope for survivors, as well as safeguarding the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.  While they are out looking for survivors, the encampment is attacked and Adam is taken hostage.  The enemy wants to lure Frank to them and the reason why is quite unexpected.


Faith and the Undead is an entertaining, religious-based horror novel rumored to be the first of a trilogy.   Using the war between God and Satan with men caught in the middle, the zombies do the bidding of Satan, but not everyone can be turned.  Faith in something, anything, can save the soul and humanity, much to Satan’s dismay.  What I liked about this book was the interaction between the living.  Instead of turning on each other, the characters of Faith and the Undead are made stronger by each other’s presence and their very real faith in something greater than the individual.  At times I felt some explanations went on too long, but I let that go since Rogers is setting up the story to come.  For the most part the story flows nicely and at a fairly quick pace.  There is plenty of gore to go around, so zombie fans should be quite satisfied.  I look forward to the next installment in Benjamin Rogers’ story. Highly recommended


Contains:blood and gore, violence and some adult language


Review by Colleen Wanglund



The Zen of Zombie: Better Living Through the Undead by Scott Kenemore

Skyhorse, 2007

ISBN: 9781602391871

Available: New


    Kenemore's style is laugh-out-loud hilarious and oddly encouraging. This is, in part, a serious self-help book and also an enjoyable, sarcastic parody. Loaded with humorous graphics, it is an essential for hardcore zombie lovers (or anyone who needs less stress and more brain eating in their lives).


    The Zen of Zombie is definitely a gift-style book. If it's your style you should definitely own it, not borrow, so its value to public collection is limited to those with very popular zombie theme sections.


Contains: Bad (and good) puns, comic gore & violence

Review by Michele Lee


So Now You're a Zombie: A Handbook for the Newly Undead by John Austin

Chicago Review Press, 2010

ISBN: 1569763429

Available: New


    So Now You're a Zombie appears to be a book in the vein of Scott Kenemore's The Zen of Zombie and Z.E.O, but rather than mix the undead and self help it crams loads of in-jokes into a beginner's guide to zombies. While it's not a novel, (there's no real story), it's not quite nonfiction either, and it's often too grim to be pure humor.

Rather, it is a reflection of our current obsession with zombies and all the forms their stories have taken. Another must-have for the collections of zombie enthusiasts, and also a good addition to public collections that cater to lots of zombie fans.

Contains: Violence, gory illustrations, bad puns

Review by Michele Lee




Dead Practices by Shells Walter

Sonar4 Publications, 2010
ISBN-13: 978-0615386683

Available: New

    Jerrod Hikens is a lawyer, and he is also zombie.  He is one of many Zombie Citizens living and working among the human population, thanks to the tireless work of researchers during the War.  Jerrod has been asked by Rusty, a cop and a zombie to take the case of a murder defendant as a public defender.  Unfortunately, Jerrod’s potential client, Ken Yerns, has just broken out of jail, blowing up the police station in the process.  Ken has figured out a way to cause the zombies to revert back to their old ways of eating flesh and tearing people aparat. Now he is on the move with a zombie horde, committing robberies and murder.

    With the help of Rusty and Jerrod’s ex-wife Janice, a researcher on zombies, Jerrod hopes to find his client and find out how he was able to turn Zombie Citizens back into mindless, flesh-eating zombies.  Jerrod finds a folder in his office that basically tells how the research was originally done and how scientists were able to create the Zombie Citizens.  From there Jerrod and Rusty follow the trail of Ken’s arrest record to a doctor at a psychiatric hospital and then Janice.  What was the process and can it be reversed?  Can they find Ken before his zombie horde gets too out of control?

    While I thought this was a pretty good story it fell a bit short.  I didn’t like Jerrod just  

happening to find a folder with the research information into the “how” of Zombie Citizens in his office.  Where did he get it from?  I also would have liked more of an explanation into the “how” in the first place.  There just wasn’t enough backstory. I also wondered where all of the city’s cops were.  A police station was blown up killing all of the cops inside, but what about other stations or other cops?  What about state or federal police to help out while this zombie horde was running around?  I expected more characters and maybe more meat (no pun intended) to this story.  I was a bit disappointed in Dead Practices. It does read like a YA title, and it seems to be just the first part of a series so maybe more of what I expected will come along as the story unfolds.  However I’m still skeptical.  Unless you’re a young adult, I say pass on this one.

Review by Colleen Wanglund



Deadfall by Shaun Jeffery

Leucrota Press, 2010

ISBN: 9780982471340

Available: New and Used

    Security consultant Amber Redgrave is having a bad day.  Her latest client was killed on her watch, and she’s been told by her “boss”, John Richmond, that she should take a break from her job.  This doesn’t set well with her, however, so when an emergency call comes in about the rescue mission Richmond is getting ready to go on, she talks herself up and onto the rescue team without his knowledge.  Needless to say, once Richmond shows up at the meet-up point and realizes Redgrave is there, he is not happy, but it is too late to find anyone else at that point.  The team is briefed on their mission, rescuing two children held hostage at an abandoned mining village, and then are on their way.  Once at their destination, the team doesn’t find what they are expecting, however.  Instead, all seems quiet… until the undead start coming out to attack!
Putting a fresh new spin on the zombie sub-genre, Shaun Jeffrey has created a new species of zombies.  Jeffrey’s zombies don’t shamble about slowly and stiffly.  They move fast and will hunt you down!  And that’s not the ONLY thing special about these zombies, but I don’t want to spoil the surprise.  Following up his previous release, The Kult, Jeffrey has managed to come up with yet another story that will leave readers flipping the pages frantically to see what will happen next.  For both zombie fans and those who aren’t, this is a thriller novel that you don’t want to miss.  Shaun Jeffrey is an author to be remembered in the horror industry as his novels keep you on the edge of your seat.  Highly recommended!
Contains:  Adult language, Violence, Mild Gore
Review by Rhonda Wilson


Beyond Exile (Day by Day Armageddon Series) by J. L. Bourne

Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing Group, 2010

ISBN: 9781439177532

Available: New

    Day by Day Armageddon was a refreshing, riveting, entry in the ever-growing zombie genre.   Day by Day Armageddon: Beyond Exile give us a continuation of tale of our survivor. After he and a small band of survivors have successfully survived an attack by marauders he finds a small group of Marines who are in need of leadership, and discovers that there is still a remnant of the U.S. Military left.  He also is discovering more and more that the zombies that come from the irradiated lands seem to be disturbingly faster and possibly smarter than the other zombies.
    Day by Day Armageddon: Beyond Exile is written in the same first person diary journal format.  Bourne continues his world building and I suspect that the direction he has decided to take this book will leave fans of the first title to either love it or hate it.  Bourne leaves more questions than answers with mysterious high tech weapons drops, continued insinuations that the zombies from the radioactive land are more than they appear to be, and at the very end, hints that the source of the zombie plague will be a stretch of the imagination.     The pacing is good and the action keeps rolling along, and the book does have moments where it reverts to the original lone man in a world filled with zombies from the first book, which Bourne does very well.   In this book our character ends up with more people to command and more resources at his control, so in some ways it has a very different feel than the first.   I was a fan of his first book, and I would say that libraries should include this sequel so that fans and readers will get a chance to decide for themselves whether they like the direction Bourne is taking this tale.
Contains violence, and gore.



Sex in the Time of Zombies by William Todd Rose

Ebook edition 124 pages

Sex in the Time of Zombies is not a book of erotic horror. The title refers to the lengths some people will go to for survival. The book is a collection of seven short stories that take place at various times during and after a zombie apocalypse. They are laid out in chronological order from the very beginning to some years later. The stories don’t deal with the zombies as much as the effect they have on the living. We see the collapse of civilization—not just the physical collapse but the psychological collapse of the survivors. How do you cope when you can’t even hear the zombies coming? When the zombies are fresh they’re fast….they slow down as they rot and they make no sound. There is no moaning or groaning. They surround their prey before taking them down.

My favorite stories out of the seven are the last two. “Hips” tells the story of a woman, her boyfriend Jeremy and her mother, fighting for survival, who are found by a man from a colony called The Garden. He convinces them to come back with him by telling them about the lofty ambitions of The Garden. They are gathering as many survivors as they can find to someday rebuild society. They wish to build an army and finally wipe out the zombies. What the woman, ultimately called Hips by the men discovers is that women are held captive and forced to “mate” with every man in the colony until they become pregnant. Rape is justified by proclaiming it is for the survival of the human race. I sympathized with her and understood her decision to end her torture.

“Skinning the Freshy” is the last story in the collection, and is set some years after the apocalypse has happened. It takes place in Free Town, formerly a walled junkyard, which, since the apocalypse, has become a safe shantytown for many families. Most of the children know nothing of the world before the zombies. They play a game called Refugees vs. Rotters—half are living, half are undead and if you’re tagged by the undead you become one of them. As they grow up some join gangs.

Unfortunately for the main character, Smitty, the initiation for the gang he wants to join will ultimately end up in his banishment from the safety of Free Town.

There isn’t a bad story here. “Food Whore” tells about the women who sell sex for food and water; “Tender is the Nightmare” is about a couple who consummate their relationship with zombies pounding on their trailer trying to get in; and “Night of the Living Furries” has a former Army corporal looking for a safe place to sleep for the night and finding a convention of “Furries” all turned to zombies. I laughed my butt off reading that one! “Dance with the Dead” starts it all off with a stripper hell bent on survival at the beginning of the apocalypse, and “Tiffany Shepis and the Fanboy of the Apocalypse” about a stalker so obsessed with his favorite scream queen he’s oblivious to the zombies closing in. That was another one I laughed while reading. This is the second book I’ve read by William Todd Rose and I thoroughly enjoy his writing style. I highly recommend Sex in the Time of Zombies to any horror fan.


Contains sex, violence, and mild language.

Review by Colleen Wanglund


Zombie Zoology by Tim Curran, Ryan C. Thomas, et al.

Severed Press 2010

ISBN 978-0-9806065-9-1

Available: New


            Zombie Zoology, an anthology by Severed Press, is no ordinary zombie anthology.  There are no human zombies here….it’s all Mother Nature’s finest creatures hungry for the taste of flesh.  If you’ve ever wondered what happened to the animals during a zombie apocalypse, wonder no more.  From a failed NASA experiment on the old Skylab, to a boy and his horse, as and a pet goat that won’t die, there’s something here for everyone.

            The first story in the anthology and one of my favorites is “Monkey House” by Tim Curran.  The Necros-3 virus has killed off and then reanimated two-thirds of the world’s population, but through the efforts of the military and scientists creating an anti-viral for the survivors, people are starting to come out of hiding and are talking about rebuilding.  Emma and Gus have managed to survive in their fortified home and Emma is ready to move on to Ft. Kendrix even if it means leaving Gus behind.  What they discover, to their horror is the virus has apparently jumped species and everyone forgot about the Primate Research Center.  This is a great story, and the end is priceless.

            Another favorite of mine is “One Man and His Dog” by Wayne Goodchild.  While doing a job at the Kelson house, exterminator Burt finds a large pale cockroach that he thinks is too beautiful to kill.  He spares it and finds that the three-inch bug is smart and eats other bugs—providing Burt with a chemical free way to run his exterminating business.  Connor, Burt’s only employee isn’t so sure.  The two men soon discover that this is no ordinary roach, and eradicating other bugs is not what it has in mind.  This story really freaked me out along with “The Roo” by Anthony Wedd, about a couple of travelers in the Outback whose car accident exposes them to something horrifying; and “SWAT” by Brian Pinkerton about a SWAT team sent into Clarkson in the swamps of Louisiana to control a zombie outbreak that they soon find is being spread by mosquitoes.  All three of these stories gave me the creepy-crawlies and they’ll do the same for you.

            One other story I liked but found very disturbing is “Dead Dog Tired” by Anthony Giangregorio.  In this story we learn that Rufus’ wife divorced him because he abused her but he fought her in court for custody of her beloved pit bull and won.  To punish his ex-wife for leaving him, Rufus allows the dog to starve to death over a period of four days and even enjoys it.  Now I despise anyone who abuses a dog and reading this story really bothered me…even after the dog becomes reanimated.  Anthony Giangregorio gets total props for making me uncomfortable while reading his story.

             I didn’t care for “Why the Wild Things Are” by Carl Barker, only because I didn’t think it flowed as well as the other stories.  A story about local wildlife turning into zombies and the government’s response, I found myself losing interest while reading about how it happened via a newspaper article along with the main character (he’d read it repeatedly).  I also wasn’t crazy about “The Yule Cat” by Ted Wenskus, about a story told about a cat that eats little children in Iceland who don’t wear the knitted garments given them at Christmas.  I was a bit confused when Jon, the protagonist, finally finds a whole family of these cats living in a volcano.  I think a single cat would have fit the story better.  With these two exceptions I loved this very unique anthology and highly recommend it.  It will make you think as well as make you squirm. 

Contains moderate use of language and lots of gore.

Review by Colleen Wanglund



Better off Alone by Yolanda Sfetsos

Damnation Books, 2009

ISBN: 9781615720514

Available: Digital Only

       Better off Alone is definitely a horror bite, clocking in at about 40 pages. It is set in a post-zombie uprising world, where the main character, Nell, escapes her basement stronghold after an attack, and stumbles into a band of survivors with a dark secret. She wants to rescue Todd, the man who kept her hopes up over the last month through email, but first she has to survive her rescuers.

      Better off Alone is ultimately incomplete. There are many potentially interesting things mentioned, but then abandoned, and even the description and storytelling itself feels unfinished. Sfetsos flirts with a good story here, but doesn't quite deliver. As for its place in collections, those libraries with booming digital collections and lendings might find this tale popular, especially if zombie stories are in high demand, but if not, then it's best to wait for Sfetsos's next published work.

Contains: some gore

Review by Michele Lee


Valley of the Dead by Kim Paffenroth

Trade Paperback: Permuted Press, 2010

Limited: Cargo Cult Press, 2009

ISBN: (Trade) 978-1934861318

Available: New


            Valley of the Dead is classic Paffenroth, a moody, dark, delicate blend of religion and zombies. In this "True Story" version of Dante's Inferno, it's easy to see why Paffenroth is drawn to horror and religion simultaneously. Valley of the Dead is a deceptively straightforward tale. Dante, author and narrator of the classic fourteenth century epic poem The Inferno, finds himself wandering in a strange valley filled with people besieged by a plague of the undead, who live their lives with a fierce, often sinful, form of passion. Paffenroth really captures the original feel of horror, beauty and devotion from Dante's Divine Comedy with sweeping strokes that simply should not be missed by true horror fans.

            The zombies themselves are also metaphors, filled with "rage at [the living], with seething jealousy that they were alive, and overwhelming frustration that [the zombie] could not make them dead." Oversensitive, depressed and caught up in hell on earth, Dante sees the worst humanity has to offer, where undeath just seems like a blessed end to a pitiful life.

            Highly recommended, no, essential for public collections as an example of the depth and soul horror tales can possess.

            Contains: Violence, language, gore



Tooth And Nail by Craig Dilouie

Schmidt Haus Books, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-1930486980

Available: New

            In Tooth and Nail,  a widespread plague immobilizes the United States and the military units abroad are recalled to help maintain order. What starts out as a humanitarian mission for Lieutenant Todd Bowman and his unit, though, turns into a fight for survival when they are trapped in New York City while a second plague sweeps through, turning its victims into mindless violent animals, or "mad dogs".
            The victims of the “mad dog” plague will seem familiar to those who have watched the movie 28 Days Later.  While not technically zombies, they serve that role for practical purposes.  While the book fits into the well-worn genre of zombie fiction, with plenty of action and gore, Tooth and Nail seems to defy traditional storytelling. While there are few characters that I would consider memorable or well developed, Dilouie's thoughtful and unusual approach to the material had me turning pages. He examines what happens to the military as there is a breakdown in civilization, as Bowman and his unit tackle an impossible situation.   For those fans of zombie fiction will find Tooth and Mail to be a satisfying read with plenty of action.  Recommended.  This would be a recommended read for those who enjoyed Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne.

Contains: suicide, violence, gore, murder




Zombie World: Books 1 and 2  By Keith Adam Luethke and Lester Crowley

Createspace, 2010

ISBN: 9781451587111

Available: New

The zombie apocalypse is a few years old, and pockets of humanity are trying to survive.  There are the Survivors who barricade themselves inside fortified structures with guns and supplies; the Marauders, a biker gang who move from camp to camp scavenging and stealing whatever they can; and the Watchers, men who also scavenge and steal, as well as kidnap and rape, though they believe they’re doing what’s necessary for the survival of the human race.  Then there are the individuals like Alex.  He is alone in this world. His uncle, his only surviving relative, was murdered in front of him by Graves, the leader of the Marauders. Alex's goal is to survive long enough to get his revenge and kill the man who killed his uncle.  Along the way he meets up with Joelle and Sarah, also Marauders, but taken captive by the Watchers.  He decides to help them escape in the hopes that they’ll lead him right to the Marauders and Graves.  Can they overcome hungry zombie hordes and dangerous people to finally reach the gang?

            I love post-apocalyptic stories, especially the ones with zombies.  This one was pretty good.  I usually like an explanation as to how the world ended and there isn’t one here….but I really did like that Zombie World focused more on the people trying to stay alive after the end of the world.  I liked the characters as well, especially Alex and Joelle.  I also enjoyed the social commentary….zombies may have overrun the planet, but there will always be bad people out for themselves to take advantage of a world gone to hell.  The apocalypse doesn’t seem to have an effect on human nature in that regard.  The bikers and the Watchers want food, guns, women, and power and now they just take what they want without any authority to stop them.  They ARE the authority, it seems. The Survivors just want to be left in peace, but that won’t happen.  The biggest issue I had with Zombie World was that the end moved a little too fast.  Joelle’s “confession” seemed to come out of nowhere.  I was expecting a more dramatic showdown between Alex and Graves.  It was too neat for me.  I think with a story like this, a few loose ends are a good thing, especially when it’s an ongoing scenario, because that leaves something to the reader's imagination…in this case the fight for human survival in a post-apocalyptic world.  Overall, I highly recommend Zombie World: Books 1 and 2 to any fan of horror.

Contains violence, gore, and some mild sexual content.

Review by Colleen Wanglund



The Zombie Cookbook edited by Kim Richards
Damnation Books, 2009
ISBN:  9781615720361
Available:  Used and New

        The Zombie Cookbook is an enjoyable collection of short stories by a variety of authors. Some of my personal favorites include "A Zombie's APB", by Cinsearae Santiago, the story of a disgruntled zombie; "Secret Ingredient", by Lisa Haselton, in which a husband hires on a zombie to help his wife run her restaurant; and "My Big Fat Zombie Wedding", by Karina Fabian, which tells a story of a girl falling in love with a zombie and trying to gain her family's acceptance of the situation.  In addition to the short stories, several pieces of zombie artwork are included, and recipes are sprinkled within for the daring reader to use their brains to make, literally.  The Zombie Cookbook is a must-have for zombie enthusiasts, and also a welcome addition to the collections of all horror fans.  I would recommend it for all library collections. 

Forward by members of the metal band, The Zombie Cookbook.
Wokking Dead By Karina L. Fabian
Secret Ingredient by Lisa Haselton
A Zombie Named Clete By Lisa Haselton
Beer-Battered Zombie with Butternut Squash By Becca Butcher
The Right Recipe By Lin Neiswender
Quick & Easy Zombie Pastie by Kate Sender
Express Cuisine by Dawn Marshallsay
Brain Food By Carla Girtman
Brain Salad for Dummies by Scott Virtes
A Zombie’s APB By Cinsearae Santiago
My Big Fat Zombie Wedding by Karina Fabian

Review by Rhonda Wilson


The Changed by BJ Burrow
Apex Publications, 2009
ISBN: 9780982159675
Available: New

    The blurb on the back of The Changed will have you believe that it's about zombies, but not a zombie apocalypse book. Don't be fooled- hese zombies rot, gnaw human prey and will devastate the world we know... they just might not kill us. The Changed follows a handful of characters, some alive, some dead, who have "changed" into something else. Retaining their personalities and skills (and with the help of  embalmers, retaining their bits as well), the Changed quickly become the world's largest minority, facing prejudice and oppression, plus flamethrowers. With open hunting season declared by the military (shown more as bullies than any kind of defense against the invasion) these undead can't be sure who are their friends, and who are their foes. Then Chris changes. A middle-of-the-road, plain-looking man, he finally finds a political cause that inspires him. Chris quickly organizes a new political party, The Changed, fronted by a shock jock DJ recently fired for having the gall to die. The whole landscape of America changes as The Changed party not only grows in number and drive, but becomes the only surety the living have to look forward to- how do you fight death itself?   The Changed still manages to give zombie fans plenty of their favorite elements. There is a sort-of apocalypse, and plenty of violence and gore, and there are tongue-in-cheek asides hinting at what pop culture would be like if the undead walked. The Changed is an excellent addition to the zombie genre, something new and fun in a tiring routine. Recommended for public and private collections- it's an excellent read through and through.

Review by Michele Lee



Xombies: Apocalypticon by Walter Greatshell
Ace Books, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-441-01845-1
Available: New

    In Xombies: Apocalypse Blues, Agent X wiped out most of human life on earth, creating blue-skinned, undead creatures that ravaged the living, adding to their numbers. In this sequel, teenaged Sal DeLuca and the remaining survivors from the first book are trapped aboard a submarine, with dwindling resources, flaring tempers, and a group of "tame" xombies. When the sub stops off the coast of Providence and sends a foraging party ashore, they discover that the deadly xombies are not the only thing that they have to fear.
Xombies:Apocalypticon picks up right where the previous book left off. Greatshell gives enough backstory that those who haven't read the first book, should have no problem following along. There are some good characters and great action scenes. There are chapters that had me turning the pages faster and faster, wanting to know what was going to happen. Occasionally, I found some chapters slowing things down. The scenes on land were great, but the scenes on the submarine just bogged things down. There are some far out ideas thrown around. Some work, some fall flat, and one tells me that there must be another book on the way.
    Fans of the original book should enjoy this one, and zombie fans looking for something different may enjoy it as well. Recommended for libraries and horror fans.
Contains: Strong language, violence and gore.
Review by Erik Smith


Night Of The Living Dead novelization by Christopher Andrews
Rising Star Visionary Press, 2009
Available: New
         It's the classic story. Barbra and her brother, Johnny, go to the cemetery to visit their father's grave. While there, they are attacked by a strange "man", and Johnny is killed. Barbra runs, ending up at a farmhouse, where she meets Ben, Tom, Judy, and the Coopers. News of the dead rising from their graves reaches the group, who end up surrounded by walking, flesh hungry corpses. But, there is just as much danger inside as there is outside.
         Novelizations are tricky business. When done wrong, the reader gets a frame-by-frame description of the movie the book is based on. When done correctly, which Christopher Andrews has done, the reader gets much more than that. You get added depth and dimension. You get to see inside the characters' minds. Andrews gives us this insight and more. The best thing he does is flesh out the backstory of all the main characters.  The first four chapters of the book tell us what each character was doing before encountering the living dead, and show us how they all ended up at the farmhouse, where the bulk of the action takes place. For anyone who hasn't seen the movie, they will get to read a classic, perhaps THE classic, zombie tale. For those who have seen the film, there is enough new material to make the story fresh. I would recommend this for libraries and horror fans alike.
Contains:Gore, some strong language.
Review by Erik Smith



Revolution of the Dead by Anthony Giangregorio

Living Dead Press, 2009

ISBN 10: 1-935458-17-5

Available: New and Used

       Five years ago, a deadly plague killed off 97% of the world’s population.  Society virtually collapsed; there was no one left to run the power plants, to harvest the crops, to pick up the garbage.  More importantly, there was no one left to bury the dead.  Science eventually came to the rescue, with a way to reanimate the dead.  Someone realized that the reanimated corpses are docile and with some training can be used as cheap labor. The menial jobs are filled, leaving the remaining population free to get back to some semblance of the lives they used to have. Soon, reanimated corpses were mowing our lawns, walking our dogs, and serving us our burgers and lattes.  Civilization was slowly making a comeback, although it would still take some time.  One day, however, something changed.  The dead refused to be our slaves any longer.  The dead revolted.

            The core story of Revolution of the Dead is fantastic. Throughout history, people have revolted against those that would use them; the zombies are no different.  Even the way the revolt begins is brilliant….how could it NOT happen?  Humans have a way of bringing about their own destruction, yet, by some bit of luck, avoiding total annihilation at the last minute.

            Although I really did love the story and all the gore, I think Revolution of the Dead would have been better as a novella. I thought there were some unnecessary elements that bogged things down, and there was a little too much repetition in regard to the zombie attacks on the police or military, which disrupted the flow of the story for me. I do think there is a lesson here about we’re headed as a society.  Overall, I’d say Revolution of the Dead is a little better than average. 

   There’s also a bonus short story that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Contains: a lot of gore

Review by Colleen Wanglund





The Best of All Flesh: Zombie Anthology edited by James Lowder

Elder Signs Press, 2010

ISBN:  1934501166

Available: New

   In 2001,  before the recent great wave of zombie  popularity, James Lowder started publishing a series of zombie anthologies through Eden Press. These were titled The Book of All Flesh, The Book of More Flesh, and The Book of Final Flesh.  The first two titles are out of print, and the third is still available.  The series presented zombie tales from a variety of viewpoints and time periods, with tales written by both established horror authors and new names.  Since the first two titles are out of print, and are only available used at significant prices, it is fortunate that Elder Signs Press has brought Mr. Lowder back to pick out his favorite stories from the anthologies for a new one, The Best of All Flesh

    As with the other titles in the Books of Flesh series, The Best of All Flesh has a wide variety of tales that go beyond the standard "crunch and munch", which makes the book a worthwhile read for those who might not normally read zombie titles or for those zombie readers looking for something new.  Many zombie anthologies have been released over the past few years, and the market has become somewhat crowded.   The Best of All Flesh is one of the stronger titles out there, offering a good variety of tales, with strong writing by both well-established horror authors such as Tom Piccirilli and newer but talented voices.  My only complaint about the book is the cover, which looks like it came from a video game, especially when compared to the more effective covers of the original series.  The Best of All Flesh is highly recommended and belongs with core zombie anthology titles Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead edited by John Skipp and The World Is Dead edited by Kim Paffenroth.  

Contains: Violence and gore, implications of necrophilia.



Dead America by Luke Keioskie

Severed Press 2009

ISBN: 978-0-9806065-2-2

Available: New and Used

    Dead America takes place in a world where the newly dead reanimate.  It started twenty years ago and no one knows why.  They don’t want to eat our brains, though.  They want equal rights.  They are Dead Americans. 
    Jon Faraday is a private investigator hired to find Cherry, a missing runaway. That missing girl turns up dead... and stays that way. Faraday is determined to find out what happened, even if it means butting heads with NYPD detective Ray Gannon—his ex-partner.  When the Arnie twins, a pair of mixed life brothers, turn up at multiple crime scenes, Faraday begins to ask more questions.  When he has multiple run-ins with a couple of z-boys, undead gangsters who work for the biggest undead crime lord in the city, Grandpa Hob, Faraday realizes it’s not just a coincidence.  What’s the connection between Grandpa Hob, the Arnie twins, and a dead girl with an unknown substance in her system? 

    What a great story….the concept is brilliant.  The zombies don’t want to eat us, they want to be able to work, to marry, to do whatever they did when they were alive.  They don’t want to be called zombies, either.  Luke Keioskie has taken crime noir and turned it on its head.  He’s thought of everything, a Life Supremacist group, dead rights lobby groups, and an undead crime boss.  It’s a really good crime story that has been tweaked with the added element of zombies….and it works well.  For those who say zombies are played out, here’s an example of why they aren’t, and why zombies is still my favorite sub-genre in horror lit. Readers advisory note: Readers who enjoyed Generation Dead by Dan Waters may also like Dead America.
Contains references to sex and drug use; contains foul language.

Review by Colleen Wanglund


Snow by Ronald Malfi

Leisure Books, March 2010


Available: New

    When Todd Curry's flight from Chicago to Des Moines is canceled due to inclement weather, he and three other stranded travelers rent a car and head out into the snowy night. As they crawl along the frozen highway, they come across a man who claims that his car won't start and his daughter has vanished. Todd and his companions try to help, but when they arrive in the nearest town, things get strange. There are fires burning, no one is around, and there is something in the snow. Something deadly. Something hungry.

    Snow is Ronald Malfi's first mass market paperbck release, and it is a winner. From the well-rounded characters to the unique creatures in the snow, Malfi has crafted a wonderfully wicked tale. Todd Curry is a sympathetic, flawed character; a man attempting to gain control of his life, even in the face of unthinkable horror. Along the way, he meets Kate, a likable, if complex, woman. Together, they face the unknown, in a strange town, surrounded by deadly snow.

    Malfi's writing is crisp and clean, and he doesn't pull any punches in the telling of the story. There are twists and turns, deaths and daring escapes. I found it difficult to put the book down, when it was time to call it a night. The story was that compelling. I look forward to Ronald Malfi's next effort, and will certainly look for his older works. Highly recommended.

Contains: Strong Language and graphic violence.

Reviewed by Erik Smith



Z.E.O.: A Zombie's Guide to Getting A(Head) in Business by Scott Kenemore
Skyhorse Publishing, 2009
ISBN: 9781602396487
Available: New

    Z.E.O is a small, off-sized book that's part humor, part business survival guide and part "for dummies" book. Presentation seems to be as important as content, with sidebars, zombies in the workplace illustrations and chapters that one suspects would make excellent PowerPoint presentations. Nonfiction, yet completely silly, Z.E.O shows a strong correlation between the sort of minds that conquer the business world and zombies- not an entirely kind metaphor, though it has an amusing point.
    Because of the over-the-top comical writing and the lack of a story, Z.E.O is really a gift book, particularly for office Secret Santas or zombie fans, or even not-quite gag gifts to college grads, because the kind of person who would adore this book should own it, not borrow it.
Contains: Gory illustrations
Review by Michele Lee



Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls by Steve Hockensmith

Quirk, 2010

ISBN: 9781594744549

Available: New

     Yes, it's another mash up, a prequel to last year's smash hit Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. The dreadfuls fit rather well into the repressive, judgmental setting of Regency England (and into "stuffy" literature similar to what many were required to read in high school English class). The tone is wry, utterly sarcastic, and intelligent as well. The story follows a young family of girls, whose father makes them pariahs by inviting a ninja master for the Orient to his home to train them, and pits them against the trickling return of the undead hordes from long ago and against love, society and preconceived notions. What follows is a classic comedy of errors.

    This book is simultaneously a mocking of classic literature, and a glorious example of fine writing, a metaphor for war against the aging and loss of innocence of children, and a call to stand up for what's right and not what's deemed proper by society. Austen's work hasn't been abandoned to a hack looking for easy money with this volume, but has been imprinted upon by an award winning, savvy writer who simply gets it, and deftly reminds readers that literature can be fun and unexpectedly poignant as well.

    Highly recommended for libraries, particularly those looking to expand a bare bones horror collection or meet the need of readers who prefer more mainstream tales to the hardcore horror books.

Contains: Gore, poop jokes

Review by Michele Lee



Pallid Light: The Waking Dead by William Jones

Elder Signs Press, 2010
Available: New


    In the small town of Temperance, Illinois, unexplained lights in the sky accompany a storm that results in flooding, power outages, and disruption of all communication, throwing everything into chaos. On top of that, the dead are coming back to life and are attacking the living. Rand Clay and his friend Cada are seeking a way to survive and escape Temperance.
    Pallid Light
  is written in the first person through the eyes of Rand, an ex-convict, which ultimately is both a rewarding and frustrating experience. Rand is a character type often found in horror and adventure genre fiction: hardened and emotionally distant, with extensive combat abilities and plenty of smart-ass remarks. Jones makes an effort to flesh Rand out, developing him so he becomes more than a stereotype. Jones makes Rand more human, and the reader will start to care about him along the way. His relationship with Cada is complex and realistic, and develops well throughout the story. However, there comes a point where Rand and everyone else are so obsessed with his status as an ex-convict that it detracts from the story. Honestly, in the throes of a zombie apocalypse, how many people are actually going to care whether it's a good idea to give an ex-convict who hasn't caused a lick of trouble since he has been in town a gun?
    The story is interesting, but feels incomplete. Jones does a good job of keeping the plot moving and the reader turning pages to see what happens next,  but the end feels unfinished, possibly to leave room for a second installment. In a crowded field of zombie books, Pallid Light in its current form is slightly better than most of the current shuffling masses of undead titles. However, with some slight modifications it has the potential to be one of the stronger titles out there. Recommended.
Reader's Advisory:  Fans of Brian Keene's The Rising and City of the Dead will want to check out Pallid Light.

Contains: Violence and gore.


Resurrection: A Zombie Epic By Tim Curran

Severed Press, 2009

ISBN 978-0-9806065-5-3

Available: New

             Torrential downpours are plaguing Witcham, Wisconsin in the Black River Valley.  It’s been raining for four straight days and the Black River has burst its banks, sending a wall of water, mud, and debris into the Black Town and Bethany sections of the city.  It has also unearthed the dead from Hillside Cemetery….there are bodies and caskets everywhere.  However, the dead are now rising.  On day three of the rains, there was an explosion at the Fort Providence Army Medical Research Facility, sending an odd yellow-green cloud into the night sky.  Is this ground zero in the apocalypse?

            Lily Barron hasn’t been right since her twin sister died three weeks prior.  Now she’s listening to some guy calling himself Brother John on the radio talk about the dead rising.  Her daughter Chrissy is out with friends and now Lily wants her husband Mitch to go find her and bring her home.  The rain has subsided somewhat, and after checking the local teenage haunts, Mitch decides to stop by the Army/Navy Store.  There he meets up with his childhood friend Tommy Kastle, and they listen to all the rumors and theories making the rounds among the locals.  What starts as a normal visit turns into a most bizarre afternoon when the store is attacked by zombies.  Soon after, they watch as two police officers out on patrol begin to burn and melt when a yellow rain begins to fall.  Mitch knows he must find Chrissy, and he’ll do it with Tommy’s help.

            The rain continues to fall, the water continues to rise, people are disappearing, and zombies are coming out of the water.  Disturbing incidents are occurring all over.  Mitch and Tommy are in a race against time to find Chrissy and the cause of the strange and deadly happenings in Witcham.  With the help of local “witch” Wanda Sepperly, they are led to an abandoned mannequin factory, the army base, and finally, a haunted orphanage.  Is Chrissy still alive?  Will they find the cause of the zombie apocalypse, and can they stop it?  Will they all survive?

            This was a great book.  Tim Curran doesn’t waste any time getting into the story.  He introduces characters at the right moments and you get a feel for who they are, whether they survive or not.  He puts a new twist on the zombie tale, introducing some that are out of the ordinary and scary as hell.  These zombies are not necessarily mindless, but they’re also not all just the resurrected dead.  Grimshanks, Mrs. Crowley, and the dark figure in black are more than zombies….they can scheme and manipulate.  Mitch and Tommy are regular, likeable guys that the reader can relate to….the usual heroes of zombie lit.  The conspiracy theory of the zombies and the yellow rain coming from the army base are front and center but the story will still leave you guessing until the end.  At almost seven hundred pages it’s quite a read, but definitely worth it. 

Contains: Strong language and disturbing sexual content.

Review by Colleen Wanglund


Alice in Zombieland by Lewis Carroll & Nickolas Cook
Coscom Entertainment, 2009
ISBN:  978-1-926-71229-1
Available:  New and Used
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    Alice in Zombieland is a parody of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.  Unlike the original, Alice doesn't fall down a rabbit hole, but rather into a grave in a graveyard where she enjoys spending her time.  While in Zombieland, Alice deals with her own flesh rotting as well as hair loss.  She can't quite comprehend what is going on with her and as she runs into the inhabitants of Zombieland (including the Dead Hare, the Corpse Turtle, and the Black Rat who takes the place of the White Rabbit from Wonderland) she grows even more disturbed by her surroundings and just wants to find a way to return home. 
     Since I had just read the original, I was able to compare the two pretty closely.  Unfortunately, I felt like I was just reading the same books back to back.  Cook takes Carroll's classic story and changes a few passages here and there, but overall it's not that different from the original story.  There were some added scenes, however, that were very good.  One that sticks out in my mind is the game of zombie croquet, where instead of the flamingos and hedgehogs that were used as the tools of the croquet game in Wonderland, this version was played with dismembered legs for mallets and zombie heads for balls.  It's a grotesquely fun scene that zombie fans should eat up!  Alice in Zombieland, though an interesting concept, just didn't blow me away.  Had the story been re-written completely with general references to the original telling of the story, I think it could have been a cult classic.  Still, I think zombie fanatics will at least want to give this a read to check out the croquet game as well as some of the other intriguing scenes.

Review by Rhonda Wilson


U.S. Army Zombie Combat Skills by the Department of the Army edited by Cole Louison
Lyons Press, 2009
ISBN: 9781599219097
Available: New

    A disturbing trend in zombie fiction is the role of the military in the zombie uprising. It seems to play one of two roles, either the perpetration of the disaster, or bungling idiot failure. Rare is the book that shows the military in a vital role. With this book, which should be a shelf resource for any writer wanting to do more than fiddle about with zombie tales, perhaps that will change.
    U.S. Army Zombie Combat Skills gives zombie fans an explicit, precise look at how the military is prepared to handle all threats, even the forces of the undead. The detail is elaborate, including the best defense strategies based on the number of of men, first aid, equipment specifics and detail on effective communication. This book is both a parody (complete with figures and tables featuring the moaning hungry dead) and completely serious. A valuable addition to zombie based libraries, especially for writers, one has to wonder why the military has this particular kind of foresight.

Review by Michele Lee



Zombie Bastard by Jerrod Balzer
Novello Publishers, 2010
Available:  New
    Novello Publishers is known for publishing books in the comic horror sub-genre.  Their latest release by Jerrod Balzer definitely falls into this category as it starts off with some crazy bathroom humor.  Poor Trevor happened to eat some bad Chinese food right before receiving a phone call from his brother saying that his mother had been admitted to the hospital.  In his rush to get out the door, he didn't take the time to hit the john and as soon as he hits the road, his stomach started rumbling.  Driving through an area where there are no rest stops, his options appeared to be either to run into the woods somewhere and drop his drawers, or else just have an accident in the car.  When he had just about given in to the idea of cutting loose in the woods, he saw a light at the end of the tunnel... a gas station!  Said gas station happened to have a really run-down restroom on the side of the building.  Rushing into the single stall once the station manager came out, he didn't think twice about there being an audience outside listening to him "go" so he just let everything out.  While he continued his business he heard another "guest" enter the room.  Trevor heard some struggling over at the sink and the next thing he knew there was a zombie tearing the hinges off the stall door.  That's a sure fire way to make someone crap themselves!  Luckily, Trevor was in the right spot for that, but then the zombie went to attack and the chase was on! 
    Balzer has created a great piece of comic horror fiction with Zombie Bastard.  Filled with bathroom humor throughout, it still has a great plot. The story behind how the Zombie Bastard came about is quite an interesting tale.  Obviously it's about a bastard child, but there is a lot more to it than that, and Balzer describes the tale of the Zombie Bastard and the curse that was put on the town with added humor to give it more flair.  The Zombie Bastard himself is an interesting character, as you discover from how he was "created", but one of my favorite characters in the book comes in to play towards the end... The Witch Bitch.  The story really ties together when Trevor finally gets to meet her.  There is a lot discovered with Trevor's visit to her house and The Witch Bitch amused me both in her actions and just her name alone.  I found myself laughing throughout this entire book and would've finished it in one sitting (no pun intended) had I not been interrupted with other things going on in real-life.  Definitely a must-read for the comic horror fans out there.  Highly Recommended!
Contains:  Adult Language, Adult Situations, Bathroom Humor
Review by Rhonda Wilson


Dead Tide by Stephen A. North
Library Of The Living Dead Press, 2008
ISBN 978-1448643042
Available: New

    When zombies overrun St. Petersburg and Pinellas Park, two cities on a peninsula of Florida's west coast, things go from bad to worse rather quickly. Citizens are panicking, the police don't know what to do, and the dead just keep on coming. It seems to be a worldwide epidemic, but the locals are concerned with saving their own lives. The government has a plan. Some of the upper echelons of St. Petersburg's citizenry have a plan. But, for most of the populace, it is kill or be killed. And if they are killed, hope they don't come back.

    Dead Tide is a difficult book to describe, without giving too much away. There is a huge cast of characters, including soldiers, policemen, thugs, a stripper, a cab driver,and a janitor. All of the characters are well written, each having distinct features and characteristics. Cops go bad, and bad guys end up as heroes. Each character's true nature is revealed.
    The reactions of people seem realistic. The mayor comes up with a plan, which I don't want to say too much about, as it is a major part of the plot. Mills, a firefighter, tries to survive while saving as many people as he can. And, of course, there is looting and rioting. As with the best novels of this nature, there are some characters to root for and others you can't wait to see get what they deserve. And, also as with the best novels of this nature, you don't always get what you want.

    The story is compelling, and there came a point where I didn't want to put the book down. Unfortunately, that happened after I was well into the book. The one flaw of this story is that the chapters are, for the most part, very short, with 147 chapters in 272 pages. Short chapters aren't necessarily bad, but in this case they jump from character to character, breaking the flow of the story. Some characters disappeared from the story for so long that when they returned, I had to stop reading and try to remember who they were and what they were doing the last time I saw them. Each chapter "title" is a character's name, which helps, but I was halfway through the book before I felt that compelling need to keep reading.

    Overall, Dead Tide is worth reading. If you are patient, get to know the characters, and find the flow of the storytelling, you will be richly rewarded with a very good zombie novel from a promising author. I hear that there is a sequel in the works, and I look forward to revisiting this undead world.

Contains:Violence, sex, strong language and gore
Review by Erik Smith




Zombies: A Record of the Year of Infection by Don Roff

Chronicle Books LLC, 2009

ISBN: 9780811871006

Available: New

       From the journal/diary of hematologist Dr. Richard Twombly, comes an account of the 2012 zombie uprising, complete with some very lovely pictures. This oversized book is complete with drawings, watercolors, handwriting styled font, coffee cup stains and dirty fingerprints. The book is very attractive and if only it were a hard cover, it would make quite the coffee table book for your zombie enthusiast family member. As far as looks and presentation I would give this book 5 stars, I was unbelievably surprised at how attractive it was.
            Unfortunately, the story does not hold up to the artwork and presentation. It's not that the tale is bad, it's just nothing that we haven't heard before from the token scientist found in every other zombie tale. A rather dry recounting of first we did this, then this happened so we ran, then we did this blah blah blah. Nothing particularly new here, zombies show up - if they bite you, you're a zombie too. They are slow, move in packs, head wounds do them in, they like to eat folks for no particular reason. No one knows why this outbreak is happening, though it is alluded to that a chemical preservative in food may be the cause. Our hero, scientist that he is, heads to where he believes the source is - but finds little there to satisfy the reader.

            In the end, I was not so much dissatisfied by the lack of clarity about the source of the outbreak, as much as the cold, dry, unfeeling narrative coming from the journal entries. Twombly is no literary genius, and in fact much of this is about as exciting as reading a technical manual. If there had been more feeling, more connection with the various characters, then I think this book would have packed more of a punch. As it is, most of the entertainment came from the artwork. This book adds almost nothing new to the zombie genre, so don't go expecting something exhilarating or world-changing. Most of what you see is almost identical to scenes and bits from other movies or books. If you are considering the purchase of this book, buy it for the artwork rather then for the story.

Review by KDP



The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks by Max Brooks and Ibraim Roberson

Three Rivers Press, 2009

ISBN-10: 030740577X

Available: New


    Recorded Attacks is a graphic novel by Max Brooks, author of The Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z.  In The Zombie Survival Guide Brooks offers some brief narratives chronicling zombie attacks over the years. In this graphic novel, Brooks takes some of the attacks from the “Recorded Attacks” section of The Zombie Survival Guide and adds some new stories, providing a chronology of when the zombie plague has appeared from prehistory to present day.  The stories last anywhere from a few pages and skip around to different periods in time.

     The book captures the look and feel of his other two titles and makes a fine companion. The art is black and white and is able to convey the gore of a zombie attack.  It is clear that a great deal of effort went into the stories and art and is an enjoyable read.  Recorded Attacks is highly recommended for libraries to add to their graphic novel collection. Fans of the book will appreciate having a chance to check it out, as it is a fast read and on the pricey end, and it is an ideal title to bring out when there is a mainstream zombie movie coming out. The primary issue with this title is that one wishes that Brooks would have been able to expand on these stories.

Contains: Gore


The World Is Dead edited by Kim Paffenroth

Permuted Press, 2009

ISBN-10: 1934861251

Available: New

    There is little doubt that zombies are the “in” monster these days, and the number of zombie anthologies and collected works seem to be rising faster than the corpses coming out of the ground.   The World is Dead is a collection of zombie stories about life after a zombie plague has ravaged the world.  The interesting thing about The World is Dead is that it provides the reader with different aspects of existing in a world with zombies. Paffenroth divides his book into four sections: work, family, love, and life.  The World is Dead offers up a wide variety of stories from some very talented authors and I would highly recommend the book.  The thing to keep in mind about the book is that while there are some chilling stories, there are some that are actually very touching such as “December Warming" by William Bolden.   The World is Dead is a book for fans of the zombie concept, not just for those looking for zombie gore.  The cover of the book doesn’t really do the book justice, it shows a couple of authority types moving a bloodied restrained zombie in a facility which implies more a chew and chop type book than you actually get.     Rest assured, there are some stories that have action and gore,   but others are thoughtful, humorous, and touching.  The World is Dead is one of the strongest zombie anthologies that have come out recently and should be definitely be added to a library collection. 




Dubaku by Edward M. Erdelac

Damnation Books, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-6157202-3-1

Available: New and Used

    African shaman Dubaku knows his wife and unborn child have been taken on the white man’s slave ship and is ready to submit himself for capture in order to rescue his family. Once on board the ship, Dubaku understands his higher purpose as a shaman and invokes the necessary black magic to sacrifice the slave cargo on board and take revenge on the white captors.

    In his 42-paged horror novella, Edward M. Erdelac invokes the dark elements of voodoo intermixed with zombies to create a dark, foreboding, and terrifyingly gruesome short story. The suspense and pace of the story never relents allowing (or is that forcing though sheer terror?) the reader to finish it in one sitting. As expected with short horror stories, the pace is incredibly fast and the scare is compacted into a few short bloody pages to create a heart-pounding read. Available for Kindles, public libraries might find purchasing this short story in e-book form versus paperback a bit easier on the budget line. Age appropriate for the adults.

Contains: Violence & Gore

Review by Kelly Fann


Hungry For Your Love: An Anthology Of Zombie Romance, edited by Lori Perkins

Ravenous Romance, 2009


Available: New

    While at a convention, editor Lori Perkins was told "you can't do zombie romance".  The anthology Hungry For Your Love is her response to the challenge. As responses go, it succeeds much more often then it fails. Filled with stories ranging from the hilarious to the horrific, with zombies both voodoo and "Romero", and with feelings both romantic and lustful,  there is something here to tug at the hearts (and brains) of any zombie lover.

Highlights include:

 "Undying Love" by Regina Riley, a story of a love that lasts beyond death.

"Captive Hearts" by Brian Keene, is a short, sharp, shock of a tale, a treat for fans looking for a new zombie story by one of the authors who re-invigorated the genre. As an added bonus, this story takes place in the world of Keene's novel Dead Sea.

"Eye Of The Beholder" by Stacey Graham is a cute piece of zombie boy meets zombie girl fiction.

"My Partner The Zombie" by R.G. Hart is a fun romp with a supermodel P.I. and her zombie partner, who must take on a megalomaniacal midget set on zombifying the world.

"Apocalypse As Foreplay" by Gina McQueen sees star-crossed lovers fighting off undead admirers as they attempt to re-unite in a zombie plagued world. (Ms. McQueen’s style is quite like that of horror icon John Skipp. Hmmmm.)

"Last Times At Ridgemont High" by Kilt Kilpatrick just may be my favorite. It is a cinematic zombie thrill ride.

While a few of the stories in this collection seem to lack style and heart, most are well worth reading. Highly recommended for anyone’s collection

Contains: Violence, gore, explicit sex and strong language.

 Review by Erik Smith




Johnny Gruesome by Gregory Lamberson
Bad Moon Books, 2007 (Limited)
Medallion, 2008 (Trade Paperback)
ISBN: (Trade) 978-1934755457
Available: New, Used or Limited
    Johnny Gruesome is what you might get if you took all the emo out of J. O. Barr's The Crow and replaced it with hardcore, attitude-filled metal. Johnny Grisson is not a good person. He's your familiar wayward angry youth with an alcoholic father, a dead mother and a serious problem with the way life is treating him. When he ends up dead, Johnny's determined not to take it lying down and instead decides to make a mark on the world by kicking the ass of the little town of Red Hill where he lived and died.
    Overall the book has a familiar feel, but it’s too well written and enjoyable to be cliché. It is, in many ways, a classic slasher flick in book form. Science and logic are fudged at times for effect, but it's a fun romp through rage and blood and zombies, and would be a solid addition to private and public horror collections.
Contains: Violence, drug use, sex, language

Review by Michele Lee


Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead edited by John Skipp

Black Dog and Leventhal, 2009

ISBN: 9781579128289

Available: New

    There is little doubt that zombies are the monster du jour these days. Independent presses have even sprung up dedicating themselves to publishing zombie fiction.  John Skipp has been involved with zombie tales for two decades, long before their current popularity. In 1989, he co-edited the zombie anthology Book of the Dead with Craig Specter. Skipp and Specter followed the first volume with another anthology, Book of the Dead 2: Still Dead. Skipp moved on to edit Mondo Zombie(2006) on his own. With Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead, Skipp has compiled a massive tome of his favorite zombie tales to date. He has drawn a great number of stories from his previous zombie anthologies.

    Book of the Dead, Book of the Dead 2: Still Dead, and Mondo Zombie are all out of print so Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead presents readers and librarians with an excellent opportunity to read what John Skipp picked out as his favorite stories from his previous books in addition to new tales that Skipp has uncovered..  It is important to note that not every tale from his previous zombie anthologies have been included.    One interesting note about Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead is that with the explosion of zombie titles that have come out over the past few years and authors who have specialized in writing zombie stories, the stories in the book are written by a who’s who of well known horror authors such as Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, and Robert McCammon who don’t specialize in zombie fiction but happen to write excellent zombie tales. Max Brooks, who is known best for his bestselling zombie title World War Z also contributed a story.   In addition to the zombie tales, Skipp has added two nonfiction pieces. “Zombie Roots: A Historical Perspective” by Christopher Kampe and Anthony Gambole delves into the history of the zombie, and “They’re Us and We’re Them: Zombies in Popular Culture” by Skipp and Cody Goodfellow examines how and where the zombie has appeared in various media.  These pieces provide some excellent context and thoughtful analysis for those who might be new to the zombie subgenre. 

    In regard to collection development I would highly recommend Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead for libraries and would say it belongs in a core horror collection.  Zombie fiction is riding a wave of popularity right now, and while it may not continue with the same strength and frenzy in the future, John Skipp’s love for the undead and keen eye in picking out some of the best zombie tales out there will make Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead a book you will always want on your shelves. 

Do note some of the stories are definitely adult in nature.  



Season of Rot by Eric Brown

Permuted Press, 2009

ISBN: 9781934861226

Available: New

    Season of Rot is a collection of five novellas by zombie author Eric S. Brown.   In The Queen, a group of survivors of a zombie plague find themselves on a former cruise ship on the run from intelligent zombies. The Wave offers a scenario in which zombies are created by a celestial event and it is up to a handful of survivors to survive in a military complex. Dead West gives us a zombie plague after the Civil War. In The Rats, zombies are a result of demonic rats another realm, and in the title story, Season of Rot, a group of survivors are shacked up in a hospital until a stranger comes to save them. The novellas feel very much like variations on a theme. In each story there are a group of survivors under siege during a zombie plague- the main difference is the source of the plague.  I suspect that Season of Rot will have appeal to fans of the zombie genre. It is the epitome of a genre book that offers up variations along the same theme, it offers up something familiar with each novella giving its own unique twist.    I would not recommend it to first time readers of zombie fiction, who might find the repetition tedious, nor to those who are looking for significantly different zombie short stories.   If anything, I would say that the book was written to fans of zombie titles by an author who clearly has a passion for the subgenre.

  For libraries, adding Season of Rot to the collection makes sense if circulation levels of current core zombie titles indicate a higher level of demand. A stronger collection of diverse zombie works would be Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead


Contains: Violence and gore




Don of the Dead by Nick Cato

Coscom Entertainment, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-926-71203-1

Available: New

    Nick Cato's first full-length novel, Don of the Dead, introduces us to several of the main characters in the Barrlucio Crime Family, most notably Antonio Barrlucio (the newly assigned don) and Henry Capuzzio (nephew of the recently deceased don). Soon, it is made quite clear that Capuzzio has turned against his family and has joined forces with the other mob in town, the Piranzza family. With their assistance, he abducts Barrlucio, drags him to a construction site, and turns him into the latest part of the landscape by pouring cement over his still living body, causing him to lose oxygen quickly. Who could survive that, right? Later that day Barrlucio's corpse starts slowly digging his way out of his rock solid grave. That can't be be possible, can it? This is the point in the book where things really take off and also the start of the zombie outbreak.

   Don of the Dead is a quirky read from a hot new author. Nick Cato takes a refreshing new look at zombies and knocks 'em dead... Italian-style! Cato mixes humor in throughout the book in order to give his readers more than they might expect from a typical zombie novel. In particular, he uses some very catchy nicknames for some of his characters in the book. I probably missed some of the jokes within as there are a lot of Italian references within the book, but you could tell that Cato knows his stuff. The approach he took on zombies was very unique from what I've seen from other authors as well and I love how he also was able to connect it to the whole Italian theme. This is a great first novel from Cato. I am definitely looking forward to checking out more by this author in the future. Highly Recommended!

Contains: Violence, Adult Language, Adult Situations

Review by Rhonda Wilson



The Estuary by Derek Gunn

Permuted Press, 2009

ISBN: 1934861243

Available: New

    Permuted Press has carved a niche for itself in the small press by catering to the readers of thezombie sub-genre that has been all the rage for the past few years. Their latest offering, from Irish author Derek Gunn, is very much in keeping with what one has come to expect from the publisher. The novel’s premise of a Nazi contagion released in an Irish village that transforms the locals into the silent, stalking undead, hungry for human flesh, is an interesting “mcguffin”, and Gunn keeps the action frantic and tension filled. The Estuary is populated with dozens of characters and the author, despite the frenzied pace he has established, does a fair job of introducing the large cast and giving just enough characterization to make you care about them as they invariably become victims of their transformed friends and neighbors. Gunn has written a solid story with a lot of promise. The book falls short not because of the writing, but because it lacks the seasoned hand of a professional editor and proof reader, a responsibility which falls squarely on the shoulders of the publisher.


Contains: violence and gore

Review by Bob Freeman


Road Kill by Anthony Giangregorio

Living Dead Press, 2009

ISBN 9781935458128

Available: New

    In Road Kill, a comet enters the Earth’s orbit, reanimating the dead.  The book starts with a series of short passages about people getting killed by their recently deceased pets and New York being over run by dead rats and birds. The story’s focus then changes to follow Beth, a hitchhiker. Beth is on the run from zombified road kill and other undead forest creatures and finds refuge in a dinner where fry cook Jake works. The roadside diner ends up under siege by the undead critters leaving Beth, Jake, and the rest of the staff and patrons to try to find a way to survive.  

    While the publisher on the cover is Living Dead Press, there is an author’s note in the beginning of the book that he has done all his own editing, suggesting that this is a self-published book.   The grammar didn’t pose an obstacle, though. A greater flaw is that the romantic element of the story feels forced, to the point of not being believable.   For example, while she is running to the diner, chased by undead creatures, Beth notices how cute Jake was.  The entire subplot could have been taken out and the story would have been better off.   The author’s obvious passion for the zombie tale carries the story. Giangregorio is a prolific writer of zombie tales who has explored many variations in the subgenre, and this seems to be his nod to the undead animals of the apocalypse. There are also a few human zombies, and two former patrons of the diner who end of dead do offer up some chuckles. While the idea of undead animals big and small is intriguing, Road Kill feels like an unfinished work that could be stronger, and at 132 pages there is plenty of room for growth.   For libraries, there are stronger zombie titles out there, for readers this is for the zombie fanatic only.   Readers who liked the idea of zombie animals from Brian Keene’s Dead Sea will want to check this out.

Contains: Violence, gore, and a sex scene



Rot by Michele Lee

Skullvines Press, 2009


Available: New

    In a world where the force of will can raise the dead the Silver Springs Care Community isn’t just any care community. It is a home for the undead. A place to send your zombie wife when you love her too deeply to let her go, but not enough to keep her yourself, when your boy’s soul is in danger of going to hell it gives you more time to talk him to salvation. The only problem with the Silver Springs Care Community is that residents are checking in, but not checking out - just vanishing. It’s a problem that Dean, a security guard at the facility, notices. When Amy, his favorite undead girl vanishes he and her undead friend, Patrick decide that they are going to get to the bottom of things and save her.

    Just when every aspect of the zombie genre seems to be covered a new one suddenly comes to light. Rot is an excellent new twist on an old tale. There are smart zombies and horrifying zombies and at times it is hard to tell which is which. This is a story not only of horror, but also of love, compassion and friendship. Rot is a novella that makes the reader take a new look at what zombies are and what they could be while asking if a loved one could be brought back from the dead would it be right and just, or cruel and inhumane. It is a must have for any zombie book collection! Highly recommended.

Note: Michele Lee is a reviewer for

Contains: Violence, Gore

Review by Bret Jordan




Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith

Quirk Publishing, 2009
ISBN: 9781594743344

Available: New

    "It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains." So begins the literary transformation of the famous first line of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, one of the world’s most beloved works of fiction, now in the public domain. If you are like me, or many others, though, you wouldn’t read Austen to save your life… unless of course, your life was being threatened by zombies! Seth Grahame-Smith delivers a hilarious mash-up of Austen romance, Austen dress, Austen manners, and now Austen-style zombies (note the zombie woman who wastes such a fine wedding gown while praying on brains. ‘Tis a shame). Now, with open arms, I am taking in my Austen as I never thought I could.

    Readers with a taste for Austen, a taste for zombies, or any variation of the two will revel in the satiric re-telling that aptly plays on the original heroine (Elizabeth Bennet) as the spirited and determined central character she always was. Now Ms. Bennet, who has a singular talent at slicing and dicing the demon dead, carries a Katana and has martial arts training! Enter Mr. Darcy, an arrogant zombie fighter who is drawn to Ms. Bennet and her skill to kill. Their affaire de couer takes them through all the woes and wins of the original work but transforms them into a cutting edge dance with “unmentionables” (a more Austen-esque term than undead, I think) at the core. For those of you who abhor romance this is the romance for you. And for those of you who abhor violence, well, dare I say: this is the horror story for you! It must be noted that Grahame-Smith does an excellent job at seamless transitions from Austen to zombie moments, with plenty of romance and comedy in the mix with violence and mayhem. Fans of Austen and of zombies will get a kick out of it, and it’s a great choice to get reluctant readers hooked on a literary classic. Not surprisingly, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is already being optioned for a film. Highly recommended.

Contains: Violence

Review by Courtney Lerner



The Rage Plague by Anthony Giangregorio

Permuted Press, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-934861-19-6

Available: New

     Civilization has ended and the human race has gone violently insane.  A deadly virus has swept over the nation taking away everyone’s sense of reason and replacing it with a desire for death and mayhem. A small portion of the population is immune. Bill Thompson is one of the lucky ones - maybe. He and a small group of survivors are immune to the virus, but they are trapped on a rooftop. Below them the infected wait for them to come down, wait for them to make a mistake. In another part of the city one infected man has kept his intelligence, but he is far from unaffected. He can communicate with the Plague victims and command them - unfortunately he has a grudge against mankind and wants to see its downfall.

    The Rage Plague is an action packed zombie-like novel that starts off fast and never slows down. The characters vary from selfless heroes to self-absorbed bullies and mesh together to create a believable group of individuals. The plague victims are animals, driven by their base needs, but their leader is a remarkable villain - flippantly evil in a way that makes him interesting and memorable. Some of the antagonists will get the reader’s sympathy to a certain point while others come across as wholly evil and thoroughly twisted.  At times the story is a little over the top and almost feels choreographed and every escape plan seemed to need a distraction to work, but these are mild complaints about a book that is a thrill ride from beginning to end.

Contains: Violence, Gore, Rape

Review by Bret  Jordan 



The Kill Crew by Joseph D’Lacey Publishing, 2009

ISBN: 1600761410

    The world as everyone knew it is gone. Pencil pushers, programmers, secretaries and office executives have become Commuters, zombie-like creatures that come out at night and hunt. The rest of the world lives in The Station, a sealed fortress in the center of the city. The Kill Crew are the Stoppers, folks in The Station who go out at night and hunt the hunters. Things are changing though. The Commuters are becoming smarter and deadlier. Seven is a lucky number and the number of The Kill Crew. Some are volunteers while others are chosen through a lottery. Sheri is one of the seven that form The Kill Crew, a volunteer who is good at what she does - possibly the best. She’s beginning to see the writing on the wall as The Station’s numbers dwindle a little each day. Her goal is survival no matter what.

    The Kill Crew has the flavor of a zombie story, mindless masses hungry for a small group of humans, but it isn’t a zombie story. It is a story of survival, of beating the odds. It is a tale of where desperation can drive the human spirit. Most of the story is narrated by Sheri, a beautician turned warrior. She is a hard woman because she has to be - anything else would get her killed. This isn’t a zombie story but I would recommend it to anyone who loves zombie fiction or anyone who likes a strong story brimming with emotion, adventure and horror.

 Contains: Violence

 Review by Bret Jordan



After Twilight: Walking with the Dead by Travis Adkins

Permuted Press, 2008

ISBN-10: 1934861030

Available: New

    After Twilight is the sequel to Twilight of the Dead. In Twilight of the Dead, the world is struck by a zombie apocalypse. Survivors reside in the fortified town of Eastpointe. In the sequel, After Twilight, the survivors of the zombie apocalypse are still residing in Eastpointe. They are protected by the Black Berets, a group trained specifically to outmaneuver the undead.  A stranger, Dr. Dane, arrives at the gates of Eastpointe, claiming to have a cure for the plague. Retrieving the antidote means leaving the safety of Eastpointe and venturing into a world run by the undead. Eastpointe’s “leaders” send several Black Berets with Dane on a journey to an abandoned ship where he claims the cure exists. Instead of a cure, though, the Black Berets fall into a trap, and must fight for their lives.

    Vaughn Winters, the most mentally unstable of the Black Berets, escapes from Dane’s marine zombie laboratory.  While a few other Black Berets are able to commandeer a vehicle and return to Eastpointe relatively unscathed, Vaughn must travel by foot, followed by thousands of zombies, thirsting for human flesh. We learn that Vaughn has been working with the Odd Fellows, an elite group of Eastpointe residents desperate for the cure in Dane’s possession. Upon his return to Eastpointe, Vaughn loses what semblance of sanity he had and decides to take the fate of the Eastpointe survivors in his own hands.

    Although After Twilight is technically a sequel, Adkins provides sufficient background material from Twilight of the Dead to allow the reader to catch up in just a few pages, and can serve as a good stand-alone. 

    After Twilight is extremely character-driven. The reader has a glimpse inside the mind of each character, seeing what they see, feeling what they feel. Adkins does an amazing job.  His writing is addictive and makes you want to press the pause button on the rest of the world.   

Contains: Violence, gore, sex

Review by Jennifer Lawrence



Eden by Tony Monchinski

Permuted Press,2008

ISBN: 9781934861172

Available: New

    If you are looking for a down and dirty zombie novel, look no farther, provided of course that you can wade your way through multiple typos. The zombies in this book are what many zombie lovers would consider “old school”, mindless shambling hordes of the undead. The author has successfully adopted common patterns and stereotypes of zombie books: masses of undead, survivors banding together, total government breakdown, slow zombies, fast zombies, loud zombies, good survivors and bad survivors - it's all here.

    What is interesting is that even though there isn’t a single aspect of this novel that has not been done or seen before, the book reads as an all-new story. The narrative has a nonlinear structure, with the timeline leaping back and forth. The story begins within the walls of Eden, now a sanctuary for survivors from the undead, prior to the zombie outbreak. This is followed by scenes of the pandemonium that followed. While this format may be frustrating for readers who prefer a more straightforward story, I personally didn’t mind it. Monchinski also excels at characterization. His characters are very real- human and flawed. Some are tortured by the loss of loved ones, while others must deal with what they have done to survive.

    If you don’t mind typos, and there are plenty of them, I would consider this a must have for your zombie library. Highly recommended for older teens and adult zombie fans.

Contains: gore, violence, language both profane and racist, strong allusions to sex. .

Review by KDP




Drop Dead Gorgeous by Wayne Simmons

Permuted Press, 2008
ISBN: 1934861057

Available: New

    This novel grabbed me from the beginning and pulled me along like a hooked fish through the bloody messy ending. Blood, gore, zombies, psycho militants, alcoholics, rapists, crashing helicopters and dead people everywhere... what else could you ask for in a book?

    The gist of the story is that after most of the world drops dead, the survivors try to band together in groups to support each other and rebuild some sort of society. Just when we think the survivors may have a handle on things, it turns out that some of the corpses aren’t decomposing the way they should, and may not stay where they are for long.  

     When I read the first page I got a little worried... Oh NO... It's in Irish slang! It really wasn’t that bad (nothing like Irving Welsh or James Joyce). There were a few sayings that I wasn't exactly sure I knew what they meant, but I knew that they were profanities of some sort and that's enough.

     This is one of the most well written zombie novels I've encountered. The characters are interesting, human and deeply flawed. Readers will like some of the characters and  detest others, but each one evokes some sort of emotion. My only complaint is that the character that the author seems most infatuated with is one of the ones I care the least about. Still, there are plenty of people in this novel to root for and against.

This is also a very attractive novel. The cover art is great, and the feel of the book is nice and weighty without the obnoxiousness of being a hardback.  Drop Dead Gorgeous is the beginning of a series, and isn’t intended to stand alone, so don't go into this looking for a neat, tidy ending. Recommended for public library collections.

Contains: language, violence, sex and zombies

Review by K.D.P


Dying to Live: Life Sentence by Kim Paffenroth

Permuted Press, 2008

ISBN: 1934861111

Available: New


    In the sequel to Dying to Live, we are thrust forward twelve years. The community confined to the museum in the last book has ventured forth and reclaimed much of the surrounding city thanks to the help of Milton, who continues his mission of collecting the dead and keeping them in various compounds so that they cannot hurt the living.   Dying to Live: Life Sentence has two plotlines. The first follows a girl, Zoey as she comes of age.  The other plot thread follows Truman, a recent zombie who is slowly piecing together what he is and who he was in the past.  Much zombie literature is fairly focused just on the action, and Paffenroth does supply action, but he also provides a thoughtful look of how society might develop after an apocalyptic zombie plague.  It is this thoughtful examination that makes the book enjoyable. Character development is key in Paffenroth’s book, and he does a fine job of fleshing out Truman and Zoey. For those who like zombies but might be suffering from “zombie fatigue”, Dying to Live: Life Sentence is a breath of fresh air. Paffenroth leaves the door open for a third book, so we may see more of his post apocalyptic world.  Recommended for libraries, zombie fans, and those looking for a thoughtful take on a post apocalyptic zombie world.



Blood of the Dead by A.P. Fuchs

Coscom Entertainment, 2008
ISBN-10: 1897217803  

Available: New

    Readers should be aware that Blood of the Dead is the first book in Fuchs' Undead World Trilogy and as such it does not offer a resolution in this volume.  What it does have is a zombie apocalypse, four humans fighting against hordes of the hungry undead and struggling to survive in a desolate world, and some excellent pacing and tension. Fuchs obviously understands how to thrill the reader and how to give die-hard zombie fans exactly what they're looking for in a rotting dead uprising tale. However, from the view of a more discerning horror reader there are aspects of Blood of the Dead that nag at the back of the mind. Set eight months after the uprising, the lead female, Billie, still had perfectly cut dyed pink hair. She talks with her best-friend-because-he's-all-that's-available, Des, primarily online at the beginning of the book. It also doesn't help that Billie seems largely useless through the whole book, serving only to make the two main male characters fight each other (with weapons in one scene, despite the fact that they are being chased by the undead).  And after page 216 the story takes a bizarre turn, a leap out of the logic of a zombie uprising and into an unexplained, nebulous twist of religion. Blood of the Dead is strongly targeted to zombie fans, who will find within its pages a nice balance of gore, danger and close calls with the survival of ordinary, relatable people on the line.

Review by Michele Lee


Xombie: Dead on Arrival by James Farr

Epic Level, 2007

ISBN: 78097972802

Available: New 

    Xombie: Dead on Arrival is based on Jamie Farr’s Flash-animated serial Xombie. Xombie is the tale of Dirge, a sentient and very intelligent zombie, and his zombified dog Cerberus, who find Zoe, a small girl separated from her family during a zombie plague.  The book follows the serial’s storyline of Dirge and Zoe’s search for a human outpost.  Along the way they cross paths with a female Egyptian mummy named Nephthys and her pet raptor, as well as hostile aliens and hordes of undead.  Told in a visually rich diary format, it is a fun read with an imaginative twist on the zombie genre.  While the book can stand alone, it also works well as a complement to the flash serial, and vice versa- both are good fun. Fans of the serial will see a new approach to familiar material, but readers newly introduced to the story should try out the book first and then go here to see the continued adventures. Recommended.

Contains: Zombie violence

 Note: Xombie also has a comic line from Devil's Due Publishing



Bits of the Dead edited by Keith Gouveia

Coscom Entertainment, 2008


Available New

    Bits of the Dead is a package of zombie bonbons, with little bite size pieces of zombie goodness that you can devour quickly… and you can’t eat just one.  The stories in this collection range from one to three pages in length. While I was initially leery of a collection of super short zombie stories, I was pleasantly surprised. I was impressed with the quality stories the authors wrote with such a limited word count.  A wide variety of horror authors, both well known and new, contributed to the collection. The stories range all over the spectrum of zombie fiction, and there is enough variety that even the most well read zombie fiend will find something new.  In short, Bits of the Dead is more than simply a novel idea for a zombie anthology… it’s the best kind of mind candy.  I recommend  Bits of the Dead to fans of the zombie genre in particular and horror readers in general. 

Contains: gore  



Axiom-Man: The Dead Land by A.P. Fuchs

Coscom Entertainment, 2008

ISBN: 9781897217832

Available: New


    When a boy disappears from his bed in the middle of the night, Axiom-Man shows up to help, only to be pulled into an alternate world while examining the boy’s closet. The city is Winnipeg, but not the one that Axiom-Man is familiar with. This Winnipeg is a ghost town of deserted streets and abandoned cars. Just as Axiom-Man begins to fear that he is the only one left in this desolate world he finds a man beating a garbage can. It’s not any sort of human that Axiom-Man has ever run into before, though. This man is dead, and he has lots of friends.

    Axiom-Man The Dead Land  is a unique take on the zombie genre, as it pits a superhero against the ranks of undead. These zombies are the classic Romero style monster, but these creatures will exhume more than one surprise. A.P. Fuchs presents a believable superhero tale that still has the punch of a comic book. Fuchs doesn’t hold back on the zombies, either, as the reader witnesses what happens when a superhero unleashes all of his power against rotten flesh and brittle bones. I would certainly recommend Axiom-Man The Dead Land for both a superhero collection or to add to a zombie book section.

Contains: violence

Review by Bret Jordan



Thunder and Ashes (Morningstar Strain) by Z.A. Recht

Permuted Press, 2008

ISBN: 1934861014

Available: New

    Thunder and Ashes is the sequel to Plague of the Dead: The Morningstar Strain, Z.A. Recht’s tale of a worldwide zombie apocalypse caused by a virus named the Morningstar Strain, and readers would definitely benefit by reading the first book before trying this one.  Thunder and Ashes picks right up where Plague of the Dead  left off, with General Sherman taking a group of survivors to Omaha, where he hopes to meet up with Anna Demilio and Agent Mason, who are traveling from the East with rogue government agents hot on their heels.  On his way to Omaha, General Sherman comes across a small town that has survived the zombie outbreak and is now being harassed by a group of living raiders.

    While the first Morningstar Strain book was about a global zombie epidemic, Thunder and Ashes brings the Morningstar storyline to a much more local level.   Recht keeps the action and the plot flowing very well, but with the main plot lines being Sherman’s and Demilio’s journey to Omaha, the bigger problem is human beings, and not the zombie menace.  Some fans of the zombie genre might be a bit disappointed that their favorite undead seem to take a back seat to a group of living ne’er do-wells. The bottom line, though, is that while Recht has narrowed the scope of his zombie tale, he writes a compelling bit of action and suspense, dealing with a familiar theme of zombie apocalyptic fiction- that humanity can be just as horrifying as the mindless, hungry, dead.  





Empire by David Dunwoody

Permuted Press, 2008

ISBN: 1934861022

Availability: New

     David Dunwoody introduces new and imaginative concepts into the zombie subgenre in Empire. The zombies he imagines are unique, because when they feed they actually regenerate, look more human, and regain a semblance of intelligence. Dunwoody also includes as a character the physical manifestation of death, who has appeared in one of his previous short stories.

      The novel’s premise is that a zombie plague has broken out, leaving a handful of survivors to deal with the undead.  Death, who finds zombies abhorrent because they are undead, meets with the band of survivors who are trying to survive an onslaught of zombies guided by Baron Tetch, a man who seeks to create a zombie empire.  All this takes place in Jefferson Harbor, Louisiana, one hundred years from the beginning of the zombie outbreak.

     The frustrating thing about Empire is how crowded it feels. The various plot threads aren’t explored as they could be, and there are too many elements that don’t get the attention they deserve.   There are many interesting plot lines and characters and one could easily see them being expanded into their own books, set within Dunwoody’s universe.   The ending does leave room for a sequel and it would be nice to see more development of some characters and concepts that Dunwoody has introduced.   While Empire could have been a stronger story by not being so ambitious in all it was trying to include, it is still well worth reading for fans of zombie fiction looking for something new.  Recommended for public libraries, while not a core title it is worth adding to support a population.

Note: Dunwoody's Death character was first introduced in the short story "Browlee's Blue Flame" in The Undead, volume 3:  Flesh Feast


Contains: Violence and gore.



Every Sigh, The End. (a novel about zombies) by Jason S. Hornsby
Permuted Press, 2006, 2007
ISBN: 978097897078950595
Available: New

    Ross Orringer is a loser who smokes weed, sleeps with underage girls, and sells unauthorized copies of cult horror movies. Or is he? The author hints that he may be someone else entirely. The first hundred pages describe Ross’ life in tedious detail, so readers will have to wait awhile to get to the action.

    Once the zombies arrive, however, hold onto your hat. They attack during a New Year’s party and keep attacking through the rest of the book.  There is more than enough graphic violence and gore to keep the veteran zombie story reader interested. The zombie passages are standouts, comparable to scenes by Max Brooks and George Romero. What makes this novel different is that cameramen converge on the party, filming the zombie attack as part of a new reality show. As the novel progresses, Ross learns that the zombie attack and the reality show are both part of an experiment by a “shadow agency” of the government, along the lines of The X-files.. Hornsby’s imaginative writing can be gripping when he shoots straight. However, he often interrupts the action to provide exposition, and in the end fails to use this background to tie up his loose ends. This leaves the reader confused, and, ultimately, unsatisfied.  The writing is self-conscious in places as well, referencing the importance of horror, and of zombies specifically, to literature and culture. This is intrusive, disrupting the reader’s engagement with the text.

In Every Sigh, The End, Hornsby has offered us an intriguing premise, and some excellent writing.  While zombie fans will enjoy the attack scenes, the overall novel is disorienting and disappointing.

Contains: Violence, gore.

Review by "Horror Master"



The Unblemished by Conrad Williams

Virgin Books, 2008

ISBN: 9780753513514

Available: Pre-order (April 2008)

            Conrad Williams intertwines two tales that lead to the eventual down fall of London in The Unblemished.  The first story introduces the reader to Bo Mulvey, a photographer who receives a map from a stranger that is needed for a race of creatures to start their conquest of London.  The second story is that of Sarah Hickman, who, along with her daughter Claire, is being pursued by a psychopath.  As the action moves along, London is infiltrated with inhuman beings with an urge to dine on human flesh and seek revenge on a city that has wronged them in the past. All come together in a terrifying tale of violence and determination to survive.  Williams’ writing is engaging, and he does a fantastic job of painting a picture through his writing through out the story. His portrait of a London is chaos is effective and will satisfy those who enjoy zombie and apocalyptic tales. Even those who might not normally read zombie horror may enjoy The Unblemished, as the strength of Williams’ writing a wide range of readers into the story very effectively. Highly Recommended for public libraries.

Contains: Gore, torture, violence

Note: Winner of the 2007 International Horror Guild Award for Best Novel

Note the 2nd:  Condrad's creatures are not zombies, nor are they rabid diseased people such as in 28 Days Latter but they produce some of the same mindless animalistic violence that fans of zombie fiction will enjoy.




The Undead, volume 3:  Flesh Feast  ed. by D.L. Snell and Travis Adkins

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 0978970756

Available: New

Flesh Feast is the third volume of zombie short stories edited by genre veterans D.L. Snell and Travis Adkins. The book starts off strong with “Street Smarts,” a tale of a young man learning how to survive in a zombie filled world. It has a variety of stories, ranging from the bizarre and grotesque to thoughtful and entertaining, with space for both the disturbing induction of a new recruit to a zombie disposal squad  and a zombie Santa Claus. "Brownlee’s Blue Flame" by David Dunwoody is a standout story, and readers are in for a special treat with Tim Curran’s novella of zombies in the Old West, “The Legend of Black Betty.” Flesh Feast is a solid collection that zombie lovers will enjoy. Recommended for public library collections.

Contains: Necrophilia, Gore, Violence
Contains stories:
Street Smarts by Steven Cavanagh
Adam Repentant by Matthew Masucci
Memory Bones by Michael Stone
Spoiled Meat by Ryan C. Thomas
Basic Training by Rick Moore
Deadtown Taxi by Matthew Bey
Killing the Witch by A.C. Wise
Fetalfield-Gigolo by Andre Duza
Under an Invisible Shadow by David Bain
IIe Faim by Eric Turowski
Browlee's Blue Flame by David Dunwoody
As the Day Would Quake by Scott Standridge
Wall-Eyed by Kriscinda Meadows
The Legend of Black Betty by Tim Curran


History is Dead edited by Kim Paffenroth

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 0978970799

Available: New

        The zombie stories collected here by editor Kim Paffenroth all take place in the past, in different times and places. Linda Donahue’s intriguing A Cure for All Ills is set in plague-ridden London in 1665, while Juleigh Hobson-Howard’ s “Hell Soldiers” takes place during the Civil War. Standout stories include Ed Turner’s “Edison’s Dead Men” and Jenny Ashford’s “The Anatomy Lesson.” Many of the tales have unique twists that capture the imagination. The stories are diverse, well written, and interesting enough to keep even the most jaded zombie book reader glued to the book.  It’s also noteworthy that seven of the twenty-one stories are by women, an unusually high number this reviewer has rarely seen in the zombie subgenre.  Highly recommended for public library collections.

Contains: Gore, murder, violence

Contains stories:

The Reluctant Prometheus by David Dunwoody

The Gingerbread Man by Paula R. Stiles

The Barrow Maid by Christine Morgan

Harimoto by Scott A. Johnson

The Moribund Room by Carole Lanham

Theater is Dead by Raoul Wainscoting

The Anatomy Lesson by Jenny Ashford

A Touch of the Divine by Patrick Rutgliano

A Cure for all Ills by Linda Donahue

Society and Sickness by Leila Eadie

Summer of 1816 by James Roy Daley

The Hell Soldiers by Juleigh Howard-Hobson

Junebug by Rebecca Brock

Starvation Army by Joe McKinney

Pegleg and Paddy Save the World by Johnathan Maberry

The Third Option by Derek Gunn

The Loaned Ranger by John Peel

Awake in the Abyss by Rick Moore

The Travellin' Show by Douglas Hutcheson

Edison's Dead Men by Ed Turner




Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne

Permuted Press, 2007


Availability: New

            Permuted Press has released a re-edited, repackaged version of Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne which was originally published through  Told in the first person, as a journal, Day by Day Armageddon is the story of a Navy pilot caught in the middle of a zombie outbreak, who encounters other survivors seeking a safe place to hide.  The survivors soon discover that the dead aren’t the only thing that that they need to fear.  Permuted Press has done an excellent job of using the journal format in the design of the book. The pages are filled with notes, hand-drawn maps, and other little asides. The zombies are the relatively slow moving Romeroesque kind, but the book clearly indicates that there will be a sequel, and hints that readers might see something a little different.  Bourne spins a good zombie story that zombie fans will appreciate.Readers advisory note:  This book may be appreciated by readers who enjoyed Max Brooks’ World War Z. Recommended. 

Contains: Gore



The Undead Volume 2: Skin and Bones edited by D.L. Snell and Travis Adkins

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 0978970748

Available: New

          This is the second collection of zombie stories edited by D.L. Snell and Travis Adkins.  Many of the included authors will be familiar with readers of the genre. The editors present a wide variety of approaches to the zombie tale. For instance, “Agent Red” by Philip Hansen treats the subject seriously, while other stories, such as Joel A. Sutherland’s “Something Fishy This Way Comes,” where a boy’s zombie apocalypse begins with his dead pet goldfish, are more tongue and cheek. Overall the stories are strong, and while not every story will appeal to every reader, there should be something for everyone. Recommended for library acquisition.  Volume 1 has been previously reviewed here. Volume 2 will be followed by The Undead Volume 3: Flesh Feast. Contains: Violence, gore.

Cyclopean by David Wellington

The Abbot and the Dragon by David Dunwoody

The Wranglers y Eric S. Brown

Casual Friday by Matther Shepard

Agent Red by Philip Hansen

Something Fishy This Way Comes by Joel A. Sutherland

The Finger by Matt Hults

Food for the Dead by Meghan Jurado

The Traumatized Generation by Murray Leeder

Alive Eye for the Dead Guy y Ryan C. Thomas

‘Til the Lord Comes  by Scott Standridge

Ravenous Angels by A. Kiwi Courters

Misfortune by Vince Churchill

Skin and Bones by D.L. Snell


Deadneck Hootenanny by Mark Justice

Novello Publishers, 2007


Available: Used

          In the small town of Possum Hollow, Frank Sparks finds himself in the midst of a zombie outbreak.   After the whole town has been zombified, the town’s now dead residents who still have their faculties try to decide on how to go forward.   Frank and his friends have a the deck stacked against them having to face decay, the U.S government, and even aliens.  Deadneck Hootenanny is a hilarious enjoyable zombie tale that leave the reader in stitches. Unfortunately, Deadneck Hootenanny was done as a limited print run of 125 titles. Recommended

Contains: zombie violence and gore



Chronicles of the Apocalypse: Species by Michael McBride

Elder Signs Press, 2007

ISBN: 097798768X

Available: New and Used

            Chronicles of the Apocalypse: Species is comprised of the original novel Species and the sequel Species: The Hive. The basic premise behind Species is that alien organisms have landed on earth in a meteor shower that results in the deaths of almost all humans.  The aliens choose the dead humans as their hosts, reanimating their bodies and modifying them to make them more deadly.  A small group of survivors on the run from these alien zombies are accompanied by a small boy, William, who has a special connection to the creatures.   McBride does a fine job of making his characters work and exercises his excellent imagination in this unique apocalyptic zombie title. A minor flaw is the pacing: it seems like it takes McBride a great deal of text to get readers where he wants them to go. An additional frustration is the treatment of William’s character by the other survivors. Although William warns them of danger many times, he is repeatedly ignored.   McBride has written a good story that, if told in a more efficient manner, would have been even better. For the zombie lover looking for a new take on the dead, Chronicles of the Apocalypse: Species makes for an entertaining read. 

Contains: some gore



Rise and Walk by Gregory Solis

Hadrian Publishing, 2007

ISBN: 9781430306009

Available: New

    A group of college students are on a geology expedition in the mountains when a meteorite crashes to earth nearby. All hell breaks loose when the students retrieve the fragment at their professor’s insistence. The dead start to rise, and it doesn’t take long for them to follow their senses to a campground and begin infecting the unwary campers. The story focuses on two adventurous paintball champions and two women who work in the campground store, as they struggle to escape the camp and battle their way off the mountain and back to civilization. The tension is further increased by the paintball champions’ rival, a spoiled man who cheats them out of a paintball victory and then hunts them down to gloat about it. Rise and Walk is an action packed zombie story with a villain that the reader will dislike more than the zombies. The two paintball champions as tough men who know what they are doing in on the battlefield, but the author adds some realism by giving them human flaws. The point of view shifts between the characters are a little disorienting, but the book is still a good read. Recommended for public and private libraries building zombie horror collections.

Contains: Violence, Gore

Review by Bret Jordan






Zombies II: Inhuman by Eric S. Brown

Naked Snake Press, 2007

ISBN: 9781424333639

Available: New

    Zombies II: Inhuman is a dessert buffet of zombie short stories. This chapbook, in its 31 pages, includes tales of superhumans in a world filled with zombies, such as “Evolution Like Lightning,” “Ghost,” and “Inhuman,” the title story. “Reapers At The Door” and “With the End in Sight” are a futuristic science fiction zombie stories.  Also in this chapbook are “Deadlier Country,” about a zombie plague that consists of more than just humans; “Deadtown,” a Wild West zombie tale; and “Sunday Watch,” a traditional zombie tale.  The brief stories are well-written, and showcase Brown’s creativity.  Zombies II: Inhuman sports an eye catching cover, and Brown’s solid writing makes this an excellent choice for fans of the zombie subgenre. Unfortunately for most public libraries, it is questionable whether it could survive for long in circulation. 

Contains: gore, murder, violence.




Dead Sea by Brian Keene

Leisure, 2007

ISBN: 084395860X

Available: New

     In Dead Sea, a deadly virus that brings its victims back to “life” as flesh craving zombies is brought to New York City by rats. The virus spreads through the human and animal population in an apocalyptic bloodbath. In the midst of this chaos, Lamar Reed is trying to save himself and two small children.  Reed thinks he has found salvation in the form of a coast guard cutter turned into a museum, but finds he is mistaken in thinking he can leave the horror by going onto the open seas.  Keene’s lead character is a middle aged gay black man, unusual for mainstream horror. However, although his race and sexual orientation occasionally come into play, the real focus is on the zombies. Dead Sea is a treat for zombie lovers who like the old shuffling dead. The plot is fast-paced, and Keene dives right in.  Readers’ advisory note: Dead Sea is unrelated to  Keene’s zombie novel The Rising, or its sequel, City of the Dead. Recommended for public libraries and as part of a core collection f zombie fiction:   

Contains: Violence and gore





Autumn: Purification by David Moody

Infected Books, 2005

ISBN: 0955005124

 Available: New and Used

    Autumn: Purification picks up where Autumn: The City left off. The survivors are being held in an underground military base. When the base becomes overwhelmed with the dead, they run until they meet up with a new group of survivors. These survivors have a game plan for long term survival and the means to accomplish it. All they need is a little time. Out of all the Autumn books this one seems to be the best developed, with characters that are varied and believable and a story that steadily builds to an exciting conclusion. Some of the questions from the other Autumn books are answered, and the book reaches a solid conclusion. This third book in the Autumn series is a must: the series isn’t complete without it, The book could possibly stand on it’s own, but the story does rely heavily on the prior books. Like the other books in this series, Autumn: Purification would make a nice addition to zombie or general horror collections in public and private libraries.

Contains: Gore, Violence

Review by Bret Jordan



Autumn: The City by David Moody

Infected Books, 2005

ISBN: 0955005116

Available:New and Used

    Autumn: The City starts off at the same spot that the first book started, moments before a devastating plague infects the population. This time the story is told from the viewpoint of different people trapped within a busy metropolis. Millions lie in the silent streets of a once busy city as the few survivors hide inside their office complexes and places of business. The story continues to unfold as the dead begin shuffling around and the survivors try and figure out what is going on and what they should do. The first part of the story centers around a group of people trapped within a college campus, a woman who barricades herself on the top floor of an office building, a night worker, a teenage girl who has lost both parents, and a fearful music shop sales assistant, all facing the horrors of a world torn apart and the quest for other survivors. The second part of the book begins to pick up where the first book left off. Michael and Emma are surviving in a mobile home where silence is the key to their survival. The story becomes more interesting as a group of the military begin exploring the world outside of their plague-free underground bunker. Unlike the other survivors they still cannot breathe the tainted air without suffering from the horrifying plague and must wear sealed, protective equipment just to step outside their safe underground dwelling. When a soldier finds his way to the campus and lets city survivors know that the military exists in an underground bunker outside of the city, the people begin to have hope of escape. The story builds momentum as the survivors come together at the college campus and are forced to either evacuate the city or be swamped by legions of undead. Autumn: The City is an apocalyptic tale about the survival of the hopeless. The characters range from those who are fighting to survive to those who have given up and are simply waiting for the world to end. There are horrifying moments and touching moments, and enough action and story twists to make the reader wonder what will happen next. Recommended for any library with a zombie horror collection and for public libraries building their general horror section.

Contains: Gore, Violence, Sex 

Review by Bret Jordan



Monster Island: A Zombie Novel  by David Wellington 

Thunder's Mouth Press, April, 2006

ISBN: 1560258500

Available: New and Used

    A zombie plague has destroyed most of the civilized world, with the remaining population of the living in Africa.  In order to assure his daughter’s future, former UN Weapons inspector Dekalb travels to New York City in search of AIDS drugs with a team of teenage girl soldiers.  There they run into a horde of shuffling mindless hungry undead, as well as Gary, a zombie who still has his intellect. Monster Island is another fine addition to the zombie fiction genre.  The story is fast paced and action packed.  Although the title and plot summary make it seem like the book belongs to the horror/humor cross-genre, it is a serious zombie novel.  Wellington gives us an engaging read in the first part of his zombie trilogy. Monster Island is followed by Monster Nation and Monster Planet. Contains violence and gore



Autumn by David Moody

Infected Books, 2005

ISBN: 0955005108

Available: New and Used 

    One person begins to cough and hack, his airways swelling up, cracking and bleeding, and suffocating to death. Within twenty-four hours the world becomes a silent graveyard. A few lucky survivors seem to be immune to this sickness. They think the worst is behind them, but they are wrong. Within a week the dead begin to stand and shuffle harmlessly around. Within two weeks the reanimated corpses are actively seeking human flesh. Autumn follows the struggle of three survivors as they search for a new home and struggle for food and supplies. The zombies are the classical slow moving variety, who singly are easily overcome, but en masse are unstoppable. Adding to the tension of the book, the three survivors have completely different personalities, so on top of dealing with day-to-day survival, they must also overcome their differences. Autumn is a must have for any library with a collection of zombie books. Strongly recommended for any public library looking to strengthen their horror collection.

 Contains: Gore, Violence Review by Bret Jordan


The Queen by Eric S. Brown

Naked Snake Press, 2007

ISBN: 1411670639

Available: New 

    The zombies in The Queen  have taken over the world from the living. Brown’s zombies are intelligent, organized, and able to plan, with some being able to speak, and all hungering for human flesh.  These zombies have even established camps to keep a breeding population of humans.  In The Queen, we meet Scott, a human captured by the zombies and sent to a camp, and Hannah, one of the few remaining free living people, who is trying to flee with her family before the encroaching zombies find them, Scott and Hannah both cross paths with Captain Steven of  the Queen,  a former luxury cruise liner that is humanity’s last hope for surviving the zombie plague. Eric Brown has written a fast-paced chapbook that fits a great deal of story into a few short pages, and there are enough possibilities and in Brown’s zombie universe to merit expanding  The Queen into a full length book. A complementary title about trying to survive a zombie plague via boat would be Brian Keene’s Dead Sea, although the zombies in Keene’s book are more of  the Romeroesque slow mindless type. The Queen is a great choice for anyone needing a quick zombie fix. Recommended. Contains: violence and a little gore.




Roses of Blood on Barbwire Vines by D. L. Snell

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 0978970713

Available: New

    The world is over. Zombies have taken over the planet and all that remains are small groups of survivors, and the City of Roses, a barbwire shrouded haven for vampires and their flocks of human cattle. Shade, the empress of the vampires, is trying to keep the city alive in the face of the extinction of their food source and the ever-pressing zombie hordes. Her top military advisor, General Frost, is recommending they start over by moving their clan and their flock to an island off the coast, where the humans can run free to be hunted like they were meant to be. It is a plan that he will do anything to accomplish. Roses of Blood on Barbwire Vines is an amped-up, zombie/vampire tale filled with adventure and gore, with a bit of Cthulhu thrown in. The amount of gore in this story will even make the most hardened of stomachs roll, the adventure will keep the reader on the edge of their seat from the first page to the last, and the twists and turns in the plot will keep the reader wondering what will happen next. The constant references to and descriptions of sex are distracting, but that doesn’t stop Roses of Blood on Barbwire Vines from being a unique and action packed read. Recommended for personal and public library collections. Review by Bret Jordan

Contains: Explicit Sex, Rape, Torture, Explicit Gore, and Violence






Dead City by Joe McKinney

Pinnacle Books, 2006

ISBN: 0786017813

Available: New and Used

    Joe McKinney gives us another entry in the Romeroesque style of zombie horror novel, with fairly slow plodding mindless zombies.  San Antonio cop Eddie Hudson suddenly finds himself in the middle of a zombie plague apparently originating  from hurricane ravaged areas of Houston that has quickly spread to San Antonio.  As the city starts to crumble around him, Eddie searches for his wife and child with a horde of the hungry dead following him.   Dead City is a fast-paced good zombie read, although it doesn't break any new ground.  My one small gripe is after a while it becomes tiring to hear the main character continually ask where the horde of zombies is coming from.  For those looking for a new twist on the zombie tale, as the police would say, "there is nothing to see here,  move along," but for those readers looking for a well-written zombie yarn in familiar territory, or an introduction to the genre, Joe McKinney delivers.  Contains: Gore, violence



Dying To Live  by Kim Paffenroth

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 097897073x

Available: New

    Dying to Live is set in a world where zombies have overrun the living.   Jonah Caine, at sea when the zombie plague broke, has returned to land to search for his family.  Unable to find them, Jonah travels alone across the country. His journey leads to a small community of the living, led by an enigmatic philosopher trying to rebuild society with new rules for the zombie ridden world, and a soldier who is responsible for protecting the community,     Just as Jonah starts getting used to the idea of living in a community, he must face a vicious threat beyond the undead: another group of survivors.     Dying to Live takes a different look at the "world overrun by zombies" scenario by concentrating on what happens to the surviving pockets of humanity in that world, what type of society might they form, and what happens when all the old rules fly out the window. Paffenroth takes a thoughtful and intelligent look at the possibilities, while keeping the plot moving, although it would have been interesting to see him elaborate further on other aspects, rituals, and rules that might have developed in Jonah's community.   The zombies in the book are slow and mindless, with attributes typical to current zombie literature. They provide a backdrop for some of the action and gore, but are not central to the story.  However,  the unique twists and turns of Paffernoth's story will  satisfy even the most well-read fans of the zombie subgenre.  Recommended. Contains: Gore, violence, rape.


Monster Nation: A Zombie Novel by David Wellington

Thunder's Mouth Press, 2006
ISBN: 1560258667

Available :New and Used

    Monster Nation tells  of a zombie epidemic that is slowly spreading across the United States.   It is up to Captain Bannerman Clark to try to contain the zombie threat and find out the cause, with the help of Nilla, a zombie girl who has retained her intelligence but has amnesia and is herself trying to find out what her role is in this nightmare.   The zombies in Monster Nation are the relatively slow mindless types, and die with the usual shot to the brain.     The character of Clark is developed a little more than the standard army commander character in a zombie book, but ultimately his character's presence doesn't really differentiate the book from other zombie titles.   What makes Monster Nation different from other zombie books is the character of Nilla, who is tormented by not knowing her name or her past and caught between the world of the living and the dead.  Wellington's development of her character gives zombie readers a new angle on a familiar storyline.   Contains: gore and violence. 


The Night Boat by Robert R. McCammon

Pocket Books, 1980

ISBN: 067173281

Available: Used

     On the little Caribbean island of Conquina, local inn owner and wreck diver David Moore accidentally uncovers a German submarine thought to be lost during a naval fight during World War II.   When an old depth charge explodes, releasing the sub from its watery grave, it is towed into the boat repair yard.   What the residents of Conquina don’t know is that the crew members have become mummified zombies thirsting for human blood.  It is up to Moore and island constable Steven Kip to stop the zombies before the island is destroyed.   Zombie aficionados will be interested to know that these zombies are relatively fast, can use tools, and have some form of intelligence in addition to their thirst for human blood and flesh. McCammon has produced a very readable zombie tale, an enjoyable fast paced romp that gets the reader flipping through the pages. Although the book is unfortunately out of print, used copies of the reissue paperback can be easily found. Contains: gore, violence.




Down the Road: On the Last Day by Bowie Ibarra

Permuted Press, 2007

ISBN: 0978970721

Available: New

     Down the Road: On the Last Day tells the tale of a world where a virus causes the dead to come back to life to eat other people, both living and dead. The story focuses on the small Texas town of Beeville, where local law enforcement and volunteers have kept the local zombie population in check. However, a ruthless UN military commander is sending everyone to internment camps and dealing with dissenters with lethal force.   An interesting stylistic move on Ibarra’s part is that each chapter is narrated by a different character, either a visitor to or resident of Beeville. This method of telling the story does have disadvantages: some characters are more fleshed out than others, so it’s hit and miss as to how well you get to know them and whether you care about their fate.   Ibarra’s zombies are traditional Night of the Living Dead types- slow, awkward, and mindless, but deadly none the less.   Ibarra’s story doesn’t break into any new territory, instead going back to basics. Definitely an entertaining read, especially for fans of the zombies in the original version of the movie Night of the Living Dead. Down the Road: On the Last Day is a sequel to Ibarra’s previous novel, Down the Road, but works fine as a stand alone novel as well. Contains: Violence, murder.



The Dead Shall Inherit the Earth by Vince Churchill, Inc, 2002

ISBN: 1591130409

Available: New

Gale is the leader of a band of mercenaries, a hard-core group earning money by doing dangerous jobs that require their unique expertise. They accept a job to bring back survivors from the colony of Avaric, where a strange plague, which forces its victims to commit vile acts, has devastated the population. In addition to completing the job, Gale must deal with the anger and resentment he feels about the loss of his girlfriend on an earlier mission. The Dead Shall Inherit the Earth is a unique blend of science fiction and horror with a fast-paced style and loads of action. It is a well-written book with characters who are often larger than life. There was more than a couple of times when I shuddered with anticipation, knowing what was in store for the zombie attacks. Gale’s flashbacks to a previous mission that had gone terribly wrong are also very powerful. A minor complaint I have with this book is that the pages have very narrow margins, meaning that some words are folded into the spine, making it difficult to read. However, the action and excitement of this book made it worthwhile to deal with this inconvenience. I would recommend this book for any library whether it be personal or public. Contains: Gore, Violence, Sex.  Review by Bret Jordan



Day by Day Armageddon by J. L. Bourne, 2004

ISBN: 1411608313

Available: New and Used 

    Day by Day Armageddon is written in the style of a journal by an enlisted man, on leave from the Navy, and tells us of his daily struggle to survive in a dead world gone mad. For five months the reader travels with this soldier by foot, car, and plane, as he crosses from his home in Arkansas to the coast of Texas.  The narrator is familiar with combat, combat strategies, and lethal hardware, but he is still a man who is afraid of tomorrow, a man who often wonders if the dead are the lucky ones. He is joined in his struggles by other stragglers who do a wonderful job of filling out the book, revealing aspects to the story that would not otherwise be addressed by the main character. I liked the fact that the story was told in a military, no-nonsense way, but the main character does not come across as a bloodthirsty warrior in a tough guy story. He is a man with depth and feelings, and remorse for what he has to do, but he does these things nonetheless to survive. This book would make an excellent addition to a zombie section of a library, or anyone’s own home collection.

Contains: Violence, Gore

Review by Bret Jordan

One Rainy Night by Richard Laymon
Leisure Books, 2000
ISBN: 0843946903
Available: New and Used
    When black rain begins to fall on the town of Bixby, all hell breaks loose. Anyone touched by the foul rain turns into a homicidal maniac. The story centers on several different characters, a police officer, a pizza delivery girl, an older married couple during a night on the town, and a babysitter and her boyfriend as they deal with a world falling apart. The characters are well-conceived and believable. I loved the heroes and heroines, felt compassion for the victims, and hated the bad guys with a passion. The story is action packed from the start. It takes off and doesn’t let up. There is plenty of action and terror, and a surprise around almost every corner. The book had a zombie-like feel to it, almost on a mini apocalyptic level. Librarians and readers should note that this title contains gratuitous nudity and sex that does not serve to advance the story. Still, One Rainy Night is well written and thought out, and those brave enough to try it will find that it is well worth reading. Review by Bret Jordan


The Undead: Zombie Anthology edited by D. L. Snell and Elija Hall
Permuted Press, 2005
ISBN: 0976555948
    The Undead: Zombie Anthology is best described as a cornucopia of zombie mayhem. The collection of twenty-three short stories includes a forward by Tracy Adkins, author of Twilight of the Dead, and an afterward by Brian Keene, author of Conqueror Worms. The tales span a variety of topics, from the depraved depths of a man's love with his zombie ex-girlfriend to the story of a blind African American girl who not only has to deal with a world full of zombies, but also the racism and lack of human decency in some of the living. The stories range from good to fantastic. There were no bad ones in this anthology. My personal favorite was the action packed story Undead Prometheus by Rob Morganbesser. Zombies aren't the only monsters that grace this anthology; one story is about a werewolf caught in the midst of zombie carnage, while another story stars Frankenstein as a main character. Stories Include:
Chuy and the Fish by David Wellington
Pale Moonlight by D. L. Snell
Hotline by Russell Calhoun
Home by David Moody
Reapers at the Door by Eric S. Brown
The Diabolical Plan by Derek Gunn
Dead World by Meghan Jurado
Two Confessions by E. W. Norton
13 Ways of Looking at the Living Dead by Eric Pape
Grinning Samuel by David Dunwoody
Ann at Twilight by Brent Zirnheld
The Last Living Man by Kevin L. Donihe
Only Begotten by Rebecca Lloyd
Undead Prometheus by Rob Morganbesser
Hell and Back by Vince Churchill
The Dead Life by Mike Watt
Donovan's Leg by Eric Shapiro
Cold as he Wishes by C. M. Shevlin
Death Row by James Reilly
Existence by John Hubbard
Graveyard Slot by Cavan Scott
The Project by Pasquale J. Morrone
Like Chicken for Deadfucks by Andre Duza
Contains: Violence, Gore, Sex

Review by Bret Jordan


Down the Road by Bowie Ibarra
Permuted Press, 2006
ISBN: 0976555980
    Down the Road is the story of George Zaragosa, a schoolteacher trying to live through a zombie apocalypse while traveling from his home in Austin, Texas to the town he was raised in. The normally short trip becomes a harrowing ordeal as he has to deal with zombies, FEMA, and small time crime lords who are trying to make a name for themselves in the chaotic new world order. Along with these problems, the main character is haunted by the recent murder of his fiancé. Down the Road is full of action, unexpected twists, and surprises that will leave your hair standing on end. Having lived through Hurricane Rita myself, and seen how the government handled that disaster, I can honestly say that Mr. Ibarra wasn’t far off in how the government would handle such a crisis. My only complaint would be that occasionally the main character’s actions toward government officials are harsher and more remorseless than I would expect, especially for a schoolteacher. Contains: Gore, sex, violence. Review by Bret Jordan

Blood Crazy by Simon Clark
Leisure Books 2001

ISBN: 0843948256

Available: New and Used
    Blood Crazy is a tale of the collapse of civilization in a zombie style apocalypse, where parents rise up one day and have a desire to kill anyone under the age of twenty, especially their own children. The story centers around a fellow named Nick who is struggling to survive in a world that has become barbaric and brutal from both the now zombified adults and bully children who are more vicious than the zombies at times. The characters are well written and believable. Mr. Clark did an excellent job of following the main character through the story and showing how he goes from being a self-centered teenager to being a leader of a new community in a new world. As the reader you really develop link with the characters in this book. During much of the book I worried right along with Nick as to what would happen to his new friends. The surviving teens in the book are very believable and scary, and they steadily get worse as the book progresses. By the end of the book they are more vile than the zombies, and hated twice as much. One last thing to be pointed out is the horror factor. The book is scary! There is a scene at a farmhouse that truly gave me the jitters, and not too many books have done that.  All in all it was a fantastic book and one that I am proud to have in my personal library. Contains: violence and gore. Review by Bret Jordan .


The Morningstar Strain: Plague of the Dead by Z A Recht

Permuted Press, 2006

ISBN: 0978970705

Available: New

    Permuted Press provides zombie lovers with another fix in Plague of the Dead, a tale of the Morningstar virus, which causes the infected to go berserk and violently attack any non-infected person in the area.  To make matters worse, when a person infected with the Morningstar virus dies, the virus keeps the body functioning, creating a slow-moving zombie.  The viral plague starts in Africa and threatens to spread across the globe.   The story focuses on two military officers who have to deal with the plague.   Major General Francis Sherman is in charge of a military operation to cordon off the spread of the disease from Africa to the Middle East through the only land bridge, and Colonel Anne Demelio, works with the US Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Disease and is trying to warn the public with the help of a television reporter.    The reader gets to know and appreciate Sherman, but Demelio's character isn't fleshed out as much.    The book starts off with e-mail correspondences between Sherman and Demelio, which give the reader needed background on  the virus and the political atmosphere.  Recht then throws the story into full gear, and zombie mayhem ensues.   The story feels like a combination of the films 28 Days Later and Day of the Dead, as the characters face both the rampaging living infected "sprinters" and the slow moving dead "shamblers".   Ultimately,  Plague of the Dead is a gripping read from start to finish, with interesting characters and a fast-moving plot.  The ending does have a "to be continued" feel to it, which suggests a sequel might be in the works.   Recommended.  Contains: violence, gore, and description of torture/interrogation.



The Resurrection and the Life by Brian Keene with woodblock images by George Walker

Biting Dog Press, 2006


Available: New

    In the novella,  The Resurrection and the Life,  Brian Keene presents a new twist on the zombie tale . He gives us a tale of Ob the demon responsible for the zombie outbreak in Keene's books The Rising and City of the Dead, set in biblical times.     The story is focused around Jesus Christ's resurrection of Lazarus. When Christ goes to bring back Lazarus after he dies he finds Ob there instead.    The Resurrection and the Life is a respectful treatment of the Lazarus story, written in a style that will be recoginzed by readers familiar with the language and feel of the Bible. It truly shows Keene's maturity and flexibility as an author.  The woodblock images by George Walker are beautiful and lend to the overall feel  of the book.  The book and the story itself combine to form a beautiful work of art. The Resurrection and the Life is a strong reason why libraries should be active in the acquisition in of small press titles.  I feel fortunate that I was able to review this title as Biting Dog Press indicates that this is a limited release of 250 copies.  In the debate on whether to "give them what they want" or "give them what they need" this small press title, like many others reviewed here, fits in both categories. It is a book by a popular author of the genre that would not be available in mass publication, a well done piece of writing that will make people think in a new way. Libraries are in a unique position to make some of these limited release works, such as he Resurrection and the Life, widely available to the reading public.



World War Z; An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks

Crown, September, 2006
ISBN: 0307346609

Available: New

    World War Z tells the tale of the beginning, middle, and conclusion of a zombie plague that sweeps the world, told in interview format. The interviewer travels to various parts of the world, talking with survivors who played many different parts in the zombie uprising.     From a Chinese doctor who witnessed the initial outbreak to a soldier who was at a crucial battle in New York, the stories are told in a way that effectively pieces together the zombie apocalypse.  In the world of zombie books, and there are many, finding a new and different way to tell the story is crucial. Brooks' interview format allows him to effectively take the reader all over the world and introduce many different characters as he moves the story along. From response to its release, World War Z is the next big zombie book. Currently sitting at #52 in the Amazon sales, libraries should definitely have this as part of their horror collection.  In addition, this also becomes an opportunity to bring out other zombie related books and titles as part of a zombie display.  World War Z could also be used as a bridge book both for bringing non-horror readers to horror,  and for connecting horror readers with other fiction and non-fiction written in a similar format.   Contains: violence and gore. 


The first comic strip to be set in a public library,Unshelved, recently did a Book Club strip on World War Z, check it out here.



Song of the Living Dead by Soren Narnia  

iUniverse, September, 2003
ISBN 059528924X
Availability: new and used
    Before there was Max Brooks's World War Z, there was Song of the Living Dead, Soren Narnia's oral history of a zombie plague which also happened to bring out the worst aspects of modern day America and its population. In this book, the author keeps the gore to a minimum and focuses instead on caustic satire and human drama. As politicians, military officials, and social historians comment on the crisis, the story follows unemployed waiter Lionel Gathers and his close friends as they drive across the country both fleeing and embracing the disaster. The novel's balance of humor and darkness keeps the pages turning until the ending laced with bitterness and personal tragedy. This unusual finale is just one of the twists which make the slim Song of the Living Dead something a little more weighty than the typical zombie novel. Contains some graphic violence. Entry by Stan Lahn


Long Horn, Big Shaggy by Steve Vernon

KHP Publisher, October, 2004
ISBN: 097476809X

Available: New and Used

    Steve Vernon spins a tale of zombie fun in the Old West.  Bank robber Jonah Walker, on the run, finds himself in the sights of undead gunman Leadbetter and a group of zombie crawlers.  It is up to Jonah, Zachaeus, and the camel Two Bump to face the horde of undead, Leadbetter, and their master, Moon Man.  At just over 100 pages ,the story moves quickly.  It is a true illustration of Vernon's talent as a writer and storyteller that he has packed so much into a short story that flows so well (and managed to include a zombified head as another player in the story).  Long Horn, Big Shaggy is an entertaining  zombie romp with the right mixture of horror and humor, and makes for an easy and enjoyable read. This novella has the potential to attract a slightly wider scope of readers than most zombie stories and is recommended for general library collections. Contains:  violence and gore.


The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Three Rivers Press, September, 2003
ISBN: 1400049628

Available: New and Used

      Brooks has written a guide for those who find themselves in a world overrun by zombies. He details the phases of a zombie outbreak, discusses various weapons and their effectiveness in killing zombies, expounds on zombie hunting strategies, and explains how to defend yourself during a zombie attack.   This book was written with tongue firmly planted in cheek and is utterly enjoyable.  It makes the perfect reading material for fans of the zombie subgenre. However, readers unfamiliar with zombie books and movies may not "get" the book.  Brooks has touched upon many plot staples and zombie attributes found in zombie books and movies.  While not a true horror book, this guide will be a welcome addition to any zombie fiction collection. Recommended for fans of the zombie subgenre, and for libraries building zombie fiction collections.  Brooks has since come out with another zombie book, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War .


  Mondo Zombie edited by John Skipp
Cemetery Dance Publications, June, 2006
ISBN: 1587670402

    The zombies are loose again!! Mondo Zombie is an anthology of 27 short stories from various authors covering tales about the living dead and the humans that have to deal with them. There is such wild variation in the stories from wrestling zombies, to zombie presidents, to my favorite samurai zombies.  As in other collections of zombie stories, there are a wide variety of tales here that thankfully give us something other than the same old same old. As with any collection of short stories there are some hits and misses but the overall quality of the writing  is great and there are sure to  be a few tales that will appeal to any zombie fan. I would recommend the book for fans of the zombie genre and for collections for libraries. The book makes an excellent addition to the Book of All Flesh, Book of More Flesh and Book of Final Flesh zombie anthologies. Stories include:

Anne Abrams - "Next To Godliness"
Jay Alamares - "Rise"
Richard Laymon - "The Living Dead"
Caitlin R. Kiernan - "Two Worlds. And In Between"
Lucy Taylor - "Fuck The Dead"
Jack Ketchum - "The Visitor"
Marc Levinthal - "Kids"
Adam-Troy Castro - "From Hell It Came"
Yvonne Navarro - "Feeding The Dead Inside"
Robert Bloch - "Maternal Instinct"
Dana Fredsti - "You'll Never Be Lunch In This Town Again"
Ian McDowell - "Dead Loves"
John Skipp & Marc Levinthal - "God Save The Queen"
Simon McCaffery - "Connections"
Steve Rasnic Tem & Melanie Tem - "Pit's Edge"
Jack Ketchum - "Twins"
Robert Devereaux - "Holy Fast, Holy Feast"
Lisa Morton - "Sparks Fly Upward"
Del James - "Eye Gouge"
Nancy Kilpatrick - "Going Down"
Stephen L. Antczak & Gregory Nicoll - "Levanta Muertos"
Brian Hodge - "Naked Lunchmeat"
Buddy Martinez - "Anonymous"
Terry Morgan & Christopher Morgan - "Zaambi"
M. Christian - "The Buried And The Dead"
Douglas E. Winter - "The Zombies Of Madison County"
Adam-Troy Castro - "Dead Like Me"

Recommended as a core to a zombie collection. Contains: violence, gore, incest, graphic sexual passages.



Deathbringer by Bryan Smith

Leisure Books, February, 2006
ISBN: 0843956771

Available: New and Used

    Here is a story that could have gone either in the supernatural/occult or the zombie area.  I chose zombies becasue they are the creatures that our main characters have to deal with throughout the book.  An entity called the Deathbringer comes into the small town of Dandridge and proceeds to kill a number of the townsfolk, bring them back, and set them loose on the town to kill.  Meanwhile, Melinda, a psychotic teen who had gone on a murdering rampage must deal with her victims coming back with the intent to seek revenge on her.  She joins forces with the husband of one of her victims, his ex-girlfriend, and his best friend to try to ward off the teeming dead. Finally, a stranger comes into town seeking to halt the Deathbringer's trail of terror.   It struck me that there are some  similarities between this book and Edward Lee's Messenger, but Smith makes this story his own and the character that steals the story is the off balance Melinda who seem to cause more problems than the zombies themselves.    Contains: gore, violence, murder.


Xombies by Walter Greatshell

Berkley, August, 2004
ISBN: 0425197441

Available: Used

    In Xombies, a release of the chemical Agent X turns people into crazed killers. The Agent X infection spreads throughout the county as only a few people are unaffected.  Teen Lulu and her father seek to flee the world teaming maniacs  find themselves on a submarine heading for a base in the Arctic only to find a different type of horror awaits them when they arrive.   Greatshell's book is just as much science fiction as it is horror and he creatively blends to two genres together.  Greatshell does a great job of developing Lulu as a character and his strong writing makes this an enjoyable apocalyptic tale.   This book would make a good addition to a zombie collection.  Contains: violence 


Wetworks by Philip Nutman

Jove Books, June, 1993

ISBN: 0515111155

Available: Used only

A slightly different take on the typical zombie book.  After the earth passes through the tail of a comet, the dead rise and attack the living. Many of these zombies have some of their former personality with a bit of an evil twist. One of the main characters is a CIA operative who comes back from the dead with much of his personality intact tracking down who did him in.   There are some moments of fun tight writing and some of the zombie/living interactions are a hoot.  The military/CIA aspect of the book gives it an interesting twist.    Recommended as an addition to a zombie collection. Tie in movie: “Night of the Comet”  Contains violence, passages of sexuality.


The Breeze Horror by Candace Caponegro

Onyx Books, January, 1988

ISBN: 0451400755

Available: Used only

The Breeze Horror tells of the aftermath when a space shuttle carrying waste explodes in the atmosphere causing toxic rain to fall. Those exposed to the rain either die or become a pseudo-zombie creature that becomes impossible to kill.  These creatures retain their memories and intellect, but are angry and malevolent.  The story concentrates on the events on Breeze Island that has become isolated, where the residents who found shelter form the rain must contend with the mutated creatures.    The Breeze Horror is another fine entry in the apocalyptic/zombie genre, the plot moves along at a good pace and has enough twists that will keep the reader entertained. Recommended as an addition to a zombie book collection.  Contains violence, torture, a rape scene, language.



Project Phoenix: Dead Rising by Darrin Patterson

Writers Club Press, July, 2000)

ISBN: 0595100082

Available: New and used.

Project Phoenix is a zombie book along the older vein of the non-talking hungry dead.  It is about a military experiment that goes wrong that causes the dead to rise and attack the living.  The dead return in a small Midwestern town and unleash much mayhem.   There is a lot of reading here, and it almost seems that the book could have been split into two tighter books.  This story doesn't cover new ground in the zombie genre and wouldn't be considered a core zombie book it is  more for those who have read most of the others and need another zombie story for the fix. For libraries there are better titles to spend your colelction development money on in the zombie subgenre.   Movie tie in: Return of the Living Dead.  Contains violence and gore.


The Rising by Brian Keene

Leisure Books, January 1, 2004

ISBN: 0843952016

Available: New and used.

Oh those crazy scientists, once again having fun experimenting where they naught ought to.  This time they let loose a phenomena that raises the dead, not just human corpses but also animals. These aren’t the normal slow-shuffling dead, rather they are intelligent, fast, cunning zombies that hunt the living.  The story follows the plight of Jim Thurmond, who receives a call from his son in New Jersey who has escaped the initial onslaught of the dead.  It is now up to Thurmond ,with the help of others he meets along the way, to rescue his son.   Followed by City of the Dead  Consider this part of a core zombie collection. Contains violence and gore.


City of the Dead by Brian Keene

Leisure Books, May 31, 2005
ISBN: 0843954159

Available: New and used.

       Sequel to The Rising, follows the continued story of Jim Thurmon, his son, Martin, Frankie as they try to continue to survive in a world over run by the reanimated dead controlled by demons from another dimension.  As the zombies continue their task of destroying all of the living.  Jim and crew find themselves in a luxury tower that has been fortified to hold off the dead and provide a sanctuary for the few living left.  The tower is run by a controlling billionaire who financed it and runs it as his own personal kingdom.  Readily available for new and used purchase. Add this to a core zombie collection.  Movie tie in: Land of the Dead Contains: Violence




Twilight of the Dead by Travis Adkins

Authorhouse, May 30, 2005

ISBN: 1420853244

Available: New

   This story follows Courtney Colvins, a teenager who has to deal with a new world overrun by the living dead.  The story runs from the very beginning of the zombie plague to the point where there are only small pockets of humanity left.    We follow Courtney as she has to quickly grow up and learn new skills to survive.  A different look at the zombie genre that focuses on how it would be for a teenage girl to grow up in a zombie infested world.  Adkins starts the reader from the intial outbreak of the zombies to the point where they have taken over most of the world.  He does a great job of showing how Courtney grows and and adapts to survive in a new and hostle world.  A recommended addition to a zombie collection.  Contains violence and a few sexual situations.     The books was intially published through authorhouse but is now being printed in a special edition by Permuted Press.



The Deadlands by Scott A. Johnson
Harbor House, September 30, 2005
ISBN: 1891799304

Available: New and Used
    The Deadlands is set in a post apocalyptic world where the mindless dead wander the surface and humans live in small underground communities. All seems normal for Christian and Cadence a brother and sister who live in an underground town called Down-Town. When communication is lost with a neighboring town Christian and Cadence find that the town had been destroyed by the zombies working in a more coordinated way than ever before.   Johnson gives a strong story in a post apocolypic zombie world that is different enough to distinguish it from other zombie books and readers of the genre will enjoy. A recommended addition to a zombie collection. Contains Violence and a rape scene.



Cell: A Novel by Stephen King
Scribner, January 24, 2006
ISBN: 0743292332

Available: New and used.
    Cell while technically not a zombie novel fits in to the category just the same. The story is about Clay Riddell who is trying find his wife and child after an event called the Pulse turns everyone talking on a cell phone into a crazed killer. Clay runs into other normal people in his quest as he tries to flee a disintegrating Boston. What makes this different than the typical zombie book is that there is an evolution or development in the impacted "phoners" that is interesting to watch through out the story. A solid story and fun read. Another book that is for a core zombie collection. Contains: violence


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Zombie Fiction List

Below is a list of books with zombies. The books are from mass market publishers, independent/small press, and self publications. Most of these books have not been reviewed by me nor should be considered recommendations just options if you wanted to find another zombie book to read. Titles are arraigned alphabetically by title, author's last name, and author's first name. There are some horror/adventure books that involve zombies that haven't been included. If a book strikes you for better or worse and you want to write a review or if there is a book that needs to be added to the list e-mail me.


Zombie books sorted alphabetically by title:

Aftermath of the Dead by Gregory Smith
Apocalypse End: Reign of the Dead by Len Barhardt
Autum by David Moody
Autumn: The City by David Moody
Autumn: The Human Condition by David Moody
Autumn: The Purification by David Moody
Book of All Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Book of Final Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Book of More Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Book of the Dead by John Skipp and Craig Spector
Book of the Dead 2: Still Dead by John Skipp and Craig Spector
Cell: A Novel by Stephen King
City of the Dead by Brian Keene
Cobble by Eric S, Brown and Susan Brydenbaugh
Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne
Dead City by Joe McKinney
Dead Earth: The Green Dawn by Mark Justice and David Wilbanks
Deathbringer by Bryan Smith
Down the Road: A Zombie Horror Story by Bowie Ibarra
Every Sigh, The End: A Novel. About Zombies by Jason S. Hornsby
Long Horn, Big Shaggy by Steve Vernon
Mondo Zombie by John Skipp(ed)
Monster Island by David Wellington
Monster Nation by David Wellington
Red Agent by Philip Hansen
Reign of the Dead by Len Barhardt
Resurrection Dreams by Richard Laymon
Risen by J, Knight
Still Dead by Eric S, Brown
The Breeze Horror by Candace Caponegro
The Dead by Mark E. Rogers
The Dead Shall Inherit the Earth by Vince Churchill
The Deadlands by Scott A. Johnson
The Mammoth Book of Zombies by Stephen Jones
The Queen by Eric S, Brown
The Rising by Brian Keene
The Sinister Mr. Corpse by Jeff Strand
The Ultimate Zombie by Byron Preiss
The Undead by D.L. Snell and Elija Hall
The Undead: Zombie Anthology by Brian Keene
The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks
Twilight of the Dead by Travis Adkins
Wetworks by Philip Nutman
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks
Xombies by Walter Greatshell
Zombie Jam by David J. Schow
Zombies in My Hometown by Gary Wedlund
Zombies!: Feast by Shane McCarthy
Zombies: The War Stories by Eric S, Brown


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Zombie books sorted alphabetically by author's last name:

Twilight of the Dead by Adkins , Travis
Apocalypse End: Reign of the Dead by Barhardt , Len
Reign of the Dead by Barhardt , Len
Day by Day Armageddon by Bourne , J.L.
The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Brooks , Max
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Brooks , Max
Cobble by Brown , Eric S, and Susan Brydenbaugh
Still Dead by Brown , Eric S,
The Queen by Brown , Eric S,
Zombies: The War Stories by Brown , Eric S,
The Breeze Horror by Caponegro , Candace
The Dead Shall Inherit the Earth by Churchill , Vince
Xombies by Greatshell , Walter
Red Agent by Hansen , Philip
Every Sigh, The End: A Novel. About Zombies by Hornsby , Jason S.
Down the Road: A Zombie Horror Story by Ibarra , Bowie
The Deadlands by Johnson , Scott A.
The Mammoth Book of Zombies by Jones , Stephen
Dead Earth: The Green Dawn by Justice , Mark and David Wilbanks
City of the Dead by Keene , Brian
The Rising by Keene , Brian
The Undead: Zombie Anthology by Keene , Brian
Cell: A Novel by King , Stephen
Risen by Knight , J,
Resurrection Dreams by Laymon , Richard
Book of All Flesh by Lowder(ed) , James
Book of Final Flesh by Lowder(ed) , James
Book of More Flesh by Lowder(ed) , James
Zombies!: Feast by McCarthy , Shane
Dead City by McKinney , Joe
Autum by Moody , David
Autumn: The City by Moody , David
Autumn: The Human Condition by Moody , David
Autumn: The Purification by Moody , David
Wetworks by Nutman , Philip
The Ultimate Zombie by Preiss , Byron
The Dead by Rogers , Mark E.
Zombie Jam by Schow , David J.
Book of the Dead 2: Still Dead by Skipp , John and Craig Spector
Book of the Dead by Skipp , John and Craig Spector
Mondo Zombie by Skipp(ed) , John
Aftermath of the Dead by Smith , Gregory
Deathbringer by Smith , Bryan
The Undead by Snell , D.L. and Elija Hall
The Sinister Mr. Corpse by Strand , Jeff
Long Horn, Big Shaggy by Vernon , Steve
Zombies in My Hometown by Wedlund , Gary
Monster Island by Wellington , David
Monster Nation by Wellington , David



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Zombie books sorted alphabetically by author's first name:

Down the Road: A Zombie Horror Story by Bowie Ibarra
City of the Dead by Brian Keene
The Rising by Brian Keene
The Undead: Zombie Anthology by Brian Keene
Deathbringer by Bryan Smith
The Ultimate Zombie by Byron Preiss
The Breeze Horror by Candace Caponegro
The Undead by D.L. Snell and Elija Hall
Autumn: The Human Condition by David Moody
Autumn: The Purification by David Moody
Monster Island by David Wellington
Monster Nation by David Wellington
Autum by David Moody
Autumn: The City by David Moody
Zombie Jam by David J. Schow
Cobble by Eric S, Brown and Susan Brydenbaugh
Still Dead by Eric S, Brown
The Queen by Eric S, Brown
Zombies: The War Stories by Eric S, Brown
Zombies in My Hometown by Gary Wedlund
Aftermath of the Dead by Gregory Smith
Risen by J, Knight
Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne
Book of All Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Book of Final Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Book of More Flesh by James Lowder(ed)
Every Sigh, The End: A Novel. About Zombies by Jason S. Hornsby
The Sinister Mr. Corpse by Jeff Strand
Dead City by Joe McKinney
Book of the Dead by John Skipp and Craig Spector
Book of the Dead 2: Still Dead by John Skipp and Craig Spector
Mondo Zombie by John Skipp(ed)
Apocalypse End: Reign of the Dead by Len Barhardt
Reign of the Dead by Len Barhardt
Dead Earth: The Green Dawn by Mark Justice and David Wilbanks
The Dead by Mark E. Rogers
The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks
Red Agent by Philip Hansen
Wetworks by Philip Nutman
Resurrection Dreams by Richard Laymon
The Deadlands by Scott A. Johnson
Zombies!: Feast by Shane McCarthy
Cell: A Novel by Stephen King
The Mammoth Book of Zombies by Stephen Jones
Long Horn, Big Shaggy by Steve Vernon
Twilight of the Dead by Travis Adkins
The Dead Shall Inherit the Earth by Vince Churchill
Xombies by Walter Greatshell


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Zombified Graphic Novels

 The Walking Dead series by Robert Kirkman *core title

Remains by Steve Niles and Kieron Dwyer

Zombies!: Feast by Shane McCarthy

 Marvel Zombies by Robert Kirkman

Marvel Zombies vs. Army of Darkness by John Layman

Zombies!: Eclipse Of The Undead (Zombies!) by El Torres

Zombee by Miles Gunter

Deadworld: Dead Killer by Gary Reed  , Ron McCain (Illustrator)

Deadworld: Requiem For The World by Gary Reed, Vince Locke, and Dalibor Talajic

Deadworld: Bits and Pieces by Gary Reed, Stuart Kerr, Vince Locke, and Mark Bloodworth

Escape Of The Living Dead Volume 1 by John Russo  , Dheeraj Verma (Author

Zombieworld: Champion Of The Worms (Zombieworld) by Mike Mignola  , Pat McEown  

Zombie World: Winter's Dregs And Other Stories (Zombie World)

by Bob Fingerman  , Kelley Jones  , Pat Mills  , Gordon Rennie  , Tommy Lee Edwards  , J. Deadstock  , Gary Erskine  

Warren Ellis Blackgas Limited Edition by Warren Ellis  , Max Fiumara