Thursday, October 15, 2009

Zombies, Zombies, Everywhere!

The current zombie craze imo started with Max Brooks' Zombie Survival Guide, published in 2003, along with Walking Dead #1 also published in 2003. Which really started the trend? For comics, it was obviously Walking Dead, but for the rest of the world, it was The Zombie Survival Guide. Comics folks sometimes forget that the rest of the world doesn't necessarily notice which comics are "hot." The Zombie Survival Guide was on the New York Times Bestseller list for a long ass time, and it's on its 25th printing. Yep, you read that right, 25th printing. Walking Dead Vol. 1 is on it's 7th printing. As respectable as 7 printings of a trade is, I think the Zombie Survival Guide's 25 printings blows that away.
The three books pictured here are some of the zombie offerings for this Halloween season.

The much-anticipated, graphic novel by Max Brooks, entitled The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks just came in this week. This book has been in the works for quite some time, I'm so glad to see that it finally has been released. Published by Three Rivers Press, with spooky black and white art by Ibraim Roberson, $17.00. "Scripted by the world's leading zombie authority, Max Brooks, Recorded Attacks reveals how other eras and cultures have dealt with - and survived - the ancient viral plague. By immersing ourselves in past horror we may yet prevail over the coming outbreak in our time. The New York Time bestselling author of The Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z, Max Brooks has been called 'the Studs Terkel of zombie journalism.' " If you want this book, pick it up sooner rather than later, I'm guessing the first print is going to be sold out very soon.

I didn't even realize that the newest Star Wars novel release was zombie-related until it was pointed out to me yesterday. It's called Star Wars: Death Troopers by Joe Schreiber, published in hardcover for $24.00. If you think about it, it was only a matter of time before zombies found their way into Star Wars fiction. I can't believe it took this long. From the front flap: "When the Imperial prison barge Purge - temporary home to five hundred of the galaxy's most ruthless killers, rebels, scoundrels, and thieves -breaks down in a distant, uninhabited part of space, its only hope appears to lie with a Star Destroyer found drifting, derelict, and seemingly abandoned. But when a boarding party from the Purge is sent to scavenge for parts, only half of them come back -bringing with them a horrific disease so lethal that within hours nearly all aboard the Purge die in ways too hideous to imagine. And death is only the beginning. The Purge's half-dozen survivors - two teenage brothers, a sadistic captain of the guards, a couple of rogue smugglers, and the chief medical officer, the lone woman on board -will do whatever it takes to stay alive. But nothing can prepare them for what lies waiting aboard the Star Destroyer amid its vast creaking emptiness that isn't really empty at all. For the dead are rising: soulless, unstoppable, and unspeakable hungry." I stopped reading Star Wars novels year ago, after the first Zahn trilogy, but I'll be damned, this one sounds good! I do so enjoy the overuse of the words "scoundrel," "rebel," "only hope," and I can't forget "rogue." I think it's a prerequisite for all Star Wars licensed comics and novels, they have to use these four words at least 20 times. If they used all four of these words in just the description of the novel, it makes you wonder how many times they are peppered throughout the novel. This book sounds appealing anyway, so I might just give it a go. Star Wars: Death Troopers has to be the most intriguing of this newest batch of zombie themed works to come out this Halloween season.
I can't wait until next con season, you know there will be at least a half a dozen zombie-troopers, maybe they will be called Legion 666 or something.

Zombies: a Record of the Year of Infection field notes by Dr. Robert Twombly was also just released. It's a nice oversize paperback, full color, for $19.95. "This illustrated journal was discovered in the aftermath of the worldwide necrotic infection that began on or around January 7, 2012 and lasted for approximately one year, killing more than 5 billion people. The journal is a unique record of the time of infection in that its author sought to understand the undead by living among them. It is also the record of the author's day-to-day experiences at a time when such records were not commonly kept. The manuscript was found inside an empty cottage at the edge of Hudson bay in northern Canada. The fate and the whereabouts of the author remain unknown. The contents of the journal are reproduced uncensored and in their entirety. " Damn clever idea. Highly recommended for all zombie fans! It reminds me of Lady Cottington's Pressed Fairy Journal by Terry Jones and Brian Froud from several years back.

Well that should be enough zombie fun to keep even the most feverish zombie fan happy, or at least satisfied until they are able to eat more brains.

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