The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and the Undead [NOOK Book]


Mark Twain once said “The rumors of my death were greatly exaggerat—BRAINS!!!!!”

Pulled from the grip of Mark Twain’s rotting zombie hands, is Tom Sawyer like you’ve never seen him before, in a swashbuckling, treasure-seeking adventure, spiked with blood, gore, and zombie madness.  

In this expanded and illustrated edition of Mark Twain’s beloved tale of boyhood adventures, Tom’s usual mishaps are filled with the macabre and take ...

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The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and the Undead

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Mark Twain once said “The rumors of my death were greatly exaggerat—BRAINS!!!!!”

Pulled from the grip of Mark Twain’s rotting zombie hands, is Tom Sawyer like you’ve never seen him before, in a swashbuckling, treasure-seeking adventure, spiked with blood, gore, and zombie madness.  

In this expanded and illustrated edition of Mark Twain’s beloved tale of boyhood adventures, Tom’s usual mishaps are filled with the macabre and take place in a world overrun by a zombie virus that turns people into something folks call “Zum.” The United States is infected with a plague of rotting, yet spry, Zum, searching for fresh meat.

In this world, there’s no need to whitewash Aunt Polly’s fence. Instead, Tom cons his friends into sharpening fence posts to lethal points to repel a Zum attack. To escape the boredom of civilized life, Tom and his pal Huckleberry Finn don’t have to fake their deaths, just pretend to be Zum. And instead of playing cowboys and Indians, Tom hones his fighting skills in a bloodthirsty game of “Us and Zum.” He always wins . . . until he bumps into the real thing.

When vicious, self-aware zombies evolve and threaten the town . . . what will Tom and Huck do to protect their loved ones, and will they live to tell the tale?

With all the comedy, romance, and adventure that readers expect from Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer now becomes a new breed of hero for a whole new world—a grade-A zombie hunter.


At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Humorist Borchert (Free for All) presents a novel from an alternate universe, complete with a charming mock-historical forward, in which Twain writes in, and about, an 1870s America plagued by an epidemic of violent, virus-created undead Zum. The book smoothly integrates much of Twain's plot and a modernized version of his actual text, with changed material such as sharpening fence posts replacing the task of whitewashing. A few gratuitous and gory zombie fights round things out. The mash-up is undeniably clever and well-done, but it fails to either significantly change the reader's perspective on the original or provide much in the way of satire, humor, or alternate history world-building, proving once again that a nifty idea isn't enough to make a satisfying read. (Aug.)
VOYA - Tim Capehart
In the tradition of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (Quirk Books, 2009) and Little Women and Werewolves (Del Rey, 2010), comes yet another classic novel with the supernatural inserted by a modern author. In this version of Twain's classic, Tom lives in a world where the dead don't always stay underground and the living are armed against Zum attacks. Since his mother was slain in one such attack, Tom lives with Sid, Mary, and Aunt Polly. He still pursues Becky Thatcher and gets into trouble regularly. Much of Twain's original text survives in this edition with only minor changes. Tom sharpens Aunt Polly's fence posts instead of whitewashing them; if the Zum attack, they'll be impaled climbing the fence. Tom, Huck, and Joe still run off, are thought dead, and attend their own funeral, but of course, they're thought, at first, to be undead upon their return. Perhaps the oddest change is schoolteacher Mr. Dobbins's secret anatomy book from the original; herein, it becomes an S&M confessional novel. Injun Joe turns out to be the first of a dangerous new breed of self-aware Zum and must be stopped before he can raise an army. Fans of this hybrid genre, and forgiving fans of the original, will enjoy this the most as long as they don't pause for thought; in a world where Zum are common enough, the reactions of the characters would be quite different than those carried over from the original. With the first real zombie attack not occurring until nearly two-thirds of the way through the novel, it is, perhaps, too much the classic for horror fans. Reviewer: Tim Capehart
School Library Journal
Gr 6–8—Borchert's adaptation of the classic tale offers very little in the way of new twists and turns. All of the memorable moments and characters of the original story are here—Huckleberry Finn, Aunt Polly, Becky Thatcher, Injun Joe. Readers follow them through the well-known story. That is actually the strength of the book. Unfortunately, credit for great storytelling goes to Twain. Borchert's introduction of zombies, which are called the "Zum," is his major contribution to the novel, and he fails to give sufficient background about them. They are introduced sporadically and with little lasting effect. The concept for the book is an interesting one, but the author fails to stray very far from the trusted script of Twain and take advantage of uncharted waters.—Greg Stone, Oak Mountain Middle School, Birmingham, AL
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429963411
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 8/3/2010
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 1,273,552
  • File size: 432 KB

Meet the Author

Don Borchert, a long-serving assistant librarian in the suburban California public library system, is the author of Free for All (Virgin Books, 2007) and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and the Undead (Tor Books, 2010). Borchert is a popular lecturer on the library circuit  and in 2008 he was keynote speaker for the American Library Association (ALA) national convention as well as for the Missouri Library Association and Nevada Library association.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2011

    Wonderful & Extremely Humerous

    This book is an absolute MUST READ if you are a fan of Mark Twain you will love this book full of surprising twists and hilarious events a perfect 10 out of 10

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  • Posted June 29, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    This is amusing historical fantasy

    The plague turned people into zombies who could only be stopped by beheading them or shooting them in the head. People like young Tom Sawyer and his Aunt Polly adapted to the Zum as southerners called the zombies with some safety adjustments to normal living like sharpening the top of wooden fences. Tom ever the imp causing Polly and the townsfolk despair was punished for a misdeed by being forced to perform zombie antiterrorist fence sharpening, but conned the other lads into doing his work.

    Tom, Huck and their friend play pirate on a nearby island. They stay for days and rumors spread amongst the townsfolk they were dead until they miraculously return home. Another time Tom and Huck get lost in a cave with Becky Thatcher and the Zum serial killer Injun' Joe.

    This is amusing historical fantasy uses the prime cast and story line from the Mark Twain classic, but adds Zum fever to the tale. The cast is solid, but the plot is clearly owned by the mischievous title character and his prime adversary the Undead Injun' Joe serial killing Zum. Readers who enjoyed zombie invasion of the classics like the respective tales by Seth Grahame-Smith and Steve Hockensmith starring Jane Austen or W. Bill Czolgosz's Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim will want to read Tom's undead farce with Injun' Joe.

    Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

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