18 comments on “Review: World War Z

    • Yeah, I’m bummed too. But I’ve never been really into short story collections either, and that’s kind of what this felt like.

  1. I loved this book, but I can see your point. The whole idea of a unifying character might have been nice… It’s a tricky territory though. Part of what I liked about this book was that I got to see the apocalypse from so many angles. I haven’t seen the movie yet, and it’s because 1. I know it’s completely different and 2. I don’t trust Hollywood not to have turned it into a cheese-fest with Brad Pitt saving the world… Oh yeah, and 3. the movie zombies are FAST and I would have nightmares probably.

    • Yeah, it’s a tricky balance. I agree that this book gave a much more complete picture of the war than a “traditional” novel ever could. It was just hard for me to get invested.

  2. You know, if anybody had told me before I started World War Z that it was going to be more like interconnecting vignettes than a proper storyline, I would never have picked it up. I’m not a fan of zombies anyway, so the interconnecting vignettes thing would have been a second strike against it. But I actually thought this was great — maybe because my expectations were so low (because zombies), I was delighted with the weird realism of the zombie apocalypse. I guess I would say that while it wasn’t incredible as piece of narrative writing, it was incredible as a piece of imaginative writing.

  3. I personally really liked this book. It’s been a while since I’ve read it so I can’t remember everything about it. I actually liked that it went from group to group. I liked feeling confused like everyone else. I was very intrigued about what happened in Korea??? What happened to them when they shut off all communication. I even liked the movie.. though I wish it could’ve had an R rating and not a PG13 rating.

    • I’m curious about the movie, just in terms of it being such a loose adaptation… but as much as zombies aren’t my thing in books, they’re REALLY not my thing in movies. So I probably won’t see it.

  4. I’ve been putting off reading this…checked it out from the library and took it back unread. I just haven’t been in the right mood for it, I suppose. It sounds like I would like it though, as an imaginative narrative. Plus, I do like short story collections in general, so maybe the disjointedness wouldn’t bother me.

    I also liked the movie, even though I know it’s nothing like the book.

    • Oh, I know that feeling of having to take books back to the library unread. Sometimes there are books that I really want to read, but I’m just never in the mood for it when I have it. (Of course, the day I have to take it back, suddenly I want nothing more than to keep it… even though it’s been sitting ignored for six weeks.)

  5. Yes! Your reaction captures my feelings exactly. It was cool how realistic it was and it dealt with a lot of logistical issues that hadn’t occurred to me for. Unfortunately, it wasn’t very engaging. The little snippets just weren’t enough for me to get emotionally involved with the characters. I also noticed that there weren’t very many women and felt like this was an awfully short collection of stories. It was a great idea, but I think it could have been executed better :)

    • Engaging is a great word. It was interesting. It was imaginative. But it wasn’t engaging. I really wanted to like this one more, but… not every book is for everyone. Thanks for stopping by!

  6. I’m not into zombies at all (I just think they’re a boring concept), but I’ve been really interested in reading this book. Someone told me about how it gets into like Israel/Palestine relationships in reaction to the zombies. I guess that kind of realistic political stuff about zombie business is what lead me to want to read it. I had not heard that it was several different stories, though, so that’s kind of surprising. I’ll try not to go in with such high expectations when I finally get around to reading it!

    • There is a lot of politics. One of the strongest things about the book is how realistic a look it is at how it might actually go down… not just in dealing with the threat, but in dealing with each other and learning to exist in this new impossible world.

  7. I read this one this year and I enjoyed it a bit more, I think it was a solid 4. But I did kind of want more of a connection and more fleshed out characters, some of it felt so spaced out and I wanted to really care more. I did enjoy it though, even with the slight distance, and I liked that the zombies froze and thawed and I really liked that dogs could sniff infected people out. Sorry you had some problems with it, but I understand where you’re coming from!

    • It had some great aspects but on the whole just wasn’t what I was looking for. And I love how we can both look at a book, and see the same things in it, but just come away with different reactions. It’s so funny to read, say, a 4-star and 2-star review that pretty much agree on everything except the rating.

      • Yeah, I mean I wanted more personality and closeness, but I did like the big picture scope, too. I really enjoyed seeing like, institutionalized reactions and responses, and like France going underground and the countries that tried to set up colonies inside and exclude infected, and countries that tried to ignore the problem and the super violent and crazy responses. I really enjoyed a lot of that, and kind of reflecting on what might happen? And I enjoyed the Space Station stuff. I wanted more people to attach to, but I did enjoy a lot of the information that was there, too. But I definitely agree, that’s it’s funny how people can see the same things and feel differently! That makes reading and looking at other opinions of what you read fun. =)

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