Customer Reviews for

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

118 out of 132 people found this review helpful.

The Dark Years...

I know what your thinking, zombies , seriously zombies???

Max Brooks did an outstanding job on this book!

I picked this book up at the bookstore because of the title "World War Z", once I realized that meant World War Zombie, I threw it down. Next trip to the book...
I know what your thinking, zombies , seriously zombies???

Max Brooks did an outstanding job on this book!

I picked this book up at the bookstore because of the title "World War Z", once I realized that meant World War Zombie, I threw it down. Next trip to the bookstore, this time I read the back of the book, read all the rave reviews there and inside. Still not fullly convinced, I flipped through it, I liked the format Mr. Brooks used and decided to give it a try.

This book is a fun read! It's a WHAT IF ? book, what if zombies were attacking the world and killing everyone or it could be a massive worldwide plague that is making people sick enough to kill?? Any worldwide event, something big enough to affect everyone, what would you do, how would we all survive??

The book is an oral history of World War Z, A narrator goes back and interviews people about their roles in the war. What they saw as it happened, what they thought when they first heard about it, how they survived. The interviews are conducted worldwide.

The book is very, very creative. It took me awhile to read, but it was worth it.

Max Brooks is a good story teller and will definitely keep your attention in this book!

posted by SavageBS on February 28, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

41 out of 95 people found this review helpful.

Where is the suspense

First of all I really wanted to like this book, unfortuantely Brooks uses a writing gimmick of stringing together numerous unrelated vignettes of 3-6 pages that utterly fails to allow the creation of characters we will ever have a chance to care about. Brooks does a fin...
First of all I really wanted to like this book, unfortuantely Brooks uses a writing gimmick of stringing together numerous unrelated vignettes of 3-6 pages that utterly fails to allow the creation of characters we will ever have a chance to care about. Brooks does a fine job in the opening 'chapters.' The discovery of patient zero is horriffing and compelling. However, does he really need to jump to the International Space Station and then to the frozen landscape of Antarctica and then over to a K9 training unit all in the matter of about 15 pages. I would not have minded this as much if Brooks had chosen to revist these scenes but Brooks I believe takes the easy way out by writing simple short short short stories tied together in the same theme. There is no chance for suspense to build. The closest he comes is a fine piece about a Japanese internet shut in trapped on the 19th floor of a high rise. That works. The rest comes close at times but just falls flat.

posted by Anonymous on March 18, 2007

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  • Posted November 10, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    This isn't real?!

    My husband and I listened to this in the car on a trip and there were times where you almost forgot it wasn't a real account. Extremely well written and presented, and just look at the cast of actors who participated! I highly recommend this for any long trips!

    41 out of 50 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 5, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Brooks Nailed It

    A great book with a good balance of grotesque and intellect. It's realistic & unbelievably well-thought-out. Brooks not only indulges our present intrigue of zombies, but brings to life the possibilities & disasters that would come from an actual virus outbreak. These pages involve multiple spooky stories that almost kept me up at night. The one drawback is that there is little to no climax or suspense, but here are surely a few twists & turns.

    This book also shows that Brooks has a great grasp on many global cultures, predicting in intensely realistic detail every country's reaction to an outbreak. This book is as much about the world's economic breakdown as it is blood & guts. It reminds us the importance of surpassing petty differences & coming together as one. Whether you're a zombie freak or not, this book gives you something to think about.

    22 out of 28 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    This is probably the best book I have ever read, the only other book that compares is also written by Max Brooks, the Zombie Survival Guide.

    This book so fun to read, I was upset when I ran out of pages. I finished the book too fast it seems. I loved everything about the book, the way Max Brooks explains his zombies, and how every character in the book was completely believable and real. The book seemed so real and just scared the heck out of me. Best zombie book ever, besides maybe the zombie survival guide also written by him. I can't wait for the recorded attacks to come out from him. Max is a fantastic writer, and his zombies will have you cautious about going outside at night.

    17 out of 23 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Great zombie book! I can't wait for the movie.

    Great zombie book! I can't wait for the movie.

    16 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 20, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The only zombie book worth reading.

    World War Z is more than just a zombie book; it is heavily morale and political assessment of what people would, more than likely, do in such a catastrophe. Each story told made some point to be realistic, and I really do believe in what our governments would do in such a situation. I love the description giving explaining why zombies would be such a difficult enemy to defeat; because they are unlike any enemy we as a race have ever faced. World War Z is a powerful and lasting story about global disaster and the resolve we humans have to outlast such a time. A trully amazing read, that left me thinking for weeks after I finished. I recoment this both to sci-fi fans and those looking for a great clash of morale and polotics. a+.

    16 out of 19 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 22, 2013

    This is a zombie book that isn't about zombies. Consider the zom

    This is a zombie book that isn't about zombies. Consider the zombie a foil; it is there as a stand-in, a symbol. This is a book about our culture, our world, our reaction (and lack thereof), our humanity (and lack thereof), and our unending will to survive against seemingly insurmountable odds. This book will make you question; it will make you cry; it will make you angry and sad and amazed.

    This isn't a book about zombies. This is a book about what happens to humankind after the battle. If you are looking for "28 Days Later" in book form you will undoubtedly be disappointed. This is not that book. If you are looking for something that begins to answer the question of 'How will we survive, and rebuild, and live with the decisions we made that ensured our survival', then this book is for you.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2012

    T

    Great book. All the negative reviews saying "no character development" really didnt get the overall effect

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 26, 2012

    Just as detailed and good as the survival manual

    Some of these are so realistic, you almost go looking for historical data to see if some of it actually happened. LOL! Amazing book by an amazing author. This has put me on the path of the Zombie genre and I am looking forward to whatever else is in the future with Mr Brooks.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 6, 2012

    Couldn't put the book down. Some interviews seemed almost real.

    Couldn't put the book down. Some interviews seemed almost real. Loved how this book is written -- hard to picture it as a movie though. AWESOME!!

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2013

    Amazing

    I have just finished this book and i am speechless. I am im 6th grade but a very advanced reader. As a girl reading sci- novels from my school library i was surprised to see this book. I feel in love with this book it was fantasic. It panits a picure in your mind that is crisp and clear. This book took my breath away and the style of writting in a interview format was very unique.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2012

    Amazing!!!

    This has to be my favorite book of all time! This has to be Max Brook's best book. It even out does the zombie survival guide if that is possible. I reccomend this book to any zombie fan.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2011

    Great book

    Max Brooks is without dought the best zombie writer since Romero.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 19, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Highly Reccomended, or "How You Learned To Save Your Braiiiiinnssss"

    This was a book that only furthered my love for the emerging zombie genre.

    The oral history take on the zombie apocalypse, directly building off the critically acclaimed Complete Protection From The Living Dead, was a smash hit - one I'm extremely glad will be turned into a movie. Whether the film does it justice has yet to be seen, but with such a stunning narrative I find it hard to believe they can miss.

    The world Brooks paints is extremely realistic - attacking the idea of the end of the world brought on by the deadly reanimating Solanum virus from every angle, seemingly leaving no aspect untouched upon. I found the individual stories to be feverishly interesting, leaving me reading long into the night to see what happened next.

    If I have any criticism, it would have to regard the short narrative interview style of the book. While the tales are indeed riveting, they are also very short, often causing this book to read more like a collection of short stories by a single author rather than a work unto itself.

    As well, as has been reiterated by other reviewers, I found every character to share the same voice. Max has a big one, and it rings through in every interview. This isn't necessarily a downfall, but a touch of variety could have made this an epic rather than just a damn good book.

    All in all, the mere downfalls of the narrative barely touch the incrediblle nature of this book, and I would highly reccomend it to anyone who loves the zombie genre. Don't we all?!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2013

    A thinker

    Good story and writing. Really makes you think.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2013

    World War Z:                           What if the world everyon

    World War Z:                        
     
    What if the world everyone knew suddenly turned into a Zombie Apocalypse? What would you do? How would you handle it? How much would everything and everybody change around you?
    Max Brooks has done it again, he has written an amazing fictional portrayal of a zombie apocalypse book, showing this time many peoples point of view and retelling their stories. 
    Brooks has a very vivid imagination, he has so many stories to tell, not one of them true but when the reader is reading it doesn't seem like it, he make you put down the book and tell yourself it’s not real. Brooks makes for a great storyteller. He can easily make anything up in each story making all of them full of plot twists and very clever. Brooks makes the reader want to read it all in one day.
    Brooks makes up phenomenal characters in the story, some actually seem realistic and he makes them unlike any other characters he describes. They are each unique and definitely have their own story. One character Brooks made up was a woman named Colonel Christina Eliopolis, she was in the air force and her story is like a real and seems like it would really happen if it wasn't for the Zombies following her around in an well-known area, she escapes with her life intact and she only knows that the woman that helped her never existed. Another character that stuck with me throughout the book is that of a girl named Jesika Hendricks, who went north with her family to get away from all the nonsense, and to be safe. Her family was close and happy, but after a little while of being with others in their same position they turn on each other, but when she grows up and is talking about her past she seems distant and cold, Brooks shows how well he can write by making it so believable. There are many characters in the book that all have special stories and unique responsibilities.
    The book is formatted so there isn’t an awful lot of dialogue but it is used when needed. It does have, however, a lot of descriptive writing, the way he wrote the book is fascinating and only something he could pull off. When I was reading parts of the book before having to stop I would get sucked in with all the imagery and descriptive language he uses so beautifully. I literally had a small movie playing in my head with what was happening in the interview. 
    Overall the book was five star worthy. It was enticing and extravagant; I would recommend it to anyone who loves a great book and anyone who has a love for a good zombie book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 11, 2013

    This book is so thoughtful; it¿s hard to believe it came out of

    This book is so thoughtful; it’s hard to believe it came out of the mind of one man! I recommend everyone, form horror mongers to thrillerphobs check out this book. (Or at least listen to it on audio/cd book format)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2013

    HAHA

    Lol I got this in paperback for Christmas, along with Max Brook's survival guide. Very good! For 14, a little hard to understand, but good! Can't wait for movie! Even though it will probably be 100% different by the look of the trailer xD ZOMBIES ARE MY LOVE <3 *Zombie Girl*

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 14, 2013

    One of the Best Zombie Books This book is based on the zombie ap

    One of the Best Zombie Books
    This book is based on the zombie apocalypse, which, at first, sounds the many failed attempts to make a suspense novel on zombies, however, Max Brooks nailed it! This novel is so disturbingly realistic; it’s hard to stop reading. There really is no main character in this book; it’s more of a collection of interviews done with survivors of the zombie apocalypse and their views of what happened and what’s awaiting them in the future. The first chapter of World War Z starts off great. There is no anticipating the suspense; it’s already on the first page. Although, when you first begin reading it’s a little hard to grasp what is going on but it’ll be less confusing once you read a few more interviews you’ll be just fine. The message to this is probably, “Don’t do anything ridiculous when a zombie apocalypse breaks out!” Over all this was a awesome book, worth the read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2013

    Much better than you would think! My wife got this for my birthd

    Much better than you would think! My wife got this for my birthday and I tried not to roll my eyes. But once I started this I was completely engrossed. It reads like a documentary, something like Band of Brothers. You forget you're reading fiction. The premise is pretty generic, typical zombies attack stuff like all the Romero films (Night of the Living Dead, etc.), but the approach is novel. There are scientific explanations for everything, the personal accounts are riveting, and the entire story unravels in a way I couldn't predict. This is definitely an example of not judging a book by its cover.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2013

    Great book!

    I have read one other war book like this and I like the format. I thought at first it would just be another zombie book (exactly why I bought it) but it is so much more!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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