Warm Bodies – Isaac Marion.
I know, I know, it says it’s recommended by Stephanie Meyer, don’t let that put you off, she also recommended The Mortal Instruments books and they’re well good. Also, where can you go wrong if Simon Pegg likes something? I mean, if anyone knows their stuff when it comes to a Rom-Zom it’s Simon Pegg (that’s Romantic Zombie in case you were wondering which is exactly what this is…, A romance with zombies.)
I’ll be honest, I’d never heard of this until I stumbled across the film trailer when looking for TMI trailer a couple of weeks ago. Yes, Hollywood is adapting yet another book for the big screen.
If the film is half as good as the trailer and in turn, half as good as the book then I’ll forgive them.
Anyway, the finding of the trailer led me to seeking out the book, firing up my kindle and giving it a read.
Here’s the general story: after some kind of zombie apocalypse there are a few humans still living, hiding away in old sports stadiums whilst the zombie’s roam around the planet looking for rogue humans to eat. One such zombie is R, he and some of his friends go on a hunting trip and come across a group of living people which they then chow down on. R ends up eating one poor chap called Perry, on eating his brain gets assaulted by all of Perry’s memories, emotions and goals this leads him to find Julie, Perry’s girlfriend who is hiding in the room, R saves her and takes her back to the zombie hideout where he decides he’s going to keep her safe. From there onwards, thanks to Perry’s thoughts and feelings that are seeping into R’s consciousness, he starts changing and becoming more human, along the way growing more and more attached to Julie.
Aside from The Walking Dead compendiums I’ve not read any zombie related fiction, so I really had no idea what to expect with this, I was a little worried that it would be kind of Twilighty but I was pleasantly surprised, I actually really enjoyed this. The story is narrated by R who is rather eloquent for a zombie, while he can’t physically string more than three words together and can only shuffle as a means of travel, in his mind he is still articulate and as the story goes on starts to question his existence and the plight of the world now that half it’s inhabitants are dead, especially post meeting Julie. There are even moments when he tries to sing and everything.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, the idea of a human/ zombie romance sounds every shade of wrong, but it doesn’t come across that way at all, their friendship develops in a sweet and gradual way and Isaac Marion’s writing style is beautiful and flows beautifully.
My favourite line had to be this one:
“I long for exclamation marks, but I’m drowning in ellipses.”
In a world where paranormal romances are ten a penny, it was a nice change to find something original and worth reading.
I’m told that there is a sequel on the horizon which I’m interested in hearing more about after the ending of this one, I’m very much looking forward to checking that out when it’s available. In the meantime, though, definitely read this if you haven’t already and we can all go see the film when it hits cinemas early next year and we can judge it together.