Blurb (from Goodreads):
A zombie who yearns for a better life ends up falling in love—with a human—in this astonishingly original debut novel.
R is a zombie. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He doesn’t enjoy killing people; he enjoys riding escalators and listening to Frank Sinatra. He is a little different from his fellow Dead.
Not just another zombie novel, Warm Bodies is funny, scary, and deeply moving.
My rating: 6.8 out of 10 stars
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Random House and Netgalley.)
R is a zombie. He doesn’t remember his real name, or what life was like when he was alive. He’s just busy finding enough human brains to eat so that he doesn’t die totally, because if he doesn’t eat brains, he loses the magic ‘life’ energy that is keeping him animated.
One day while on a hunt, R eats the brains of a boy called Perry, and as he eats them, he sees flashes of the boy’s life, and learns that the boy loves a girl called Julie. Julie is with the same group as Perry, and R makes sure that she is not harmed, rubs zombie blood on her so that the others don’t realise she is human, and takes her home with him.
R isn’t sure what’s going on, but the more of Perry’s brain he eats, and the more time he spends with Julie, he begins to feel different, and begins to develop feelings of his own for Julie.
Can R ever be anything but a zombie though? Can Julie ever see him as anything more than a zombie? And what will Julie say when she finds out that it was R who killed her boyfriend and ate his brains?
Let’s just say that this was one weird-ass zombie novel. Dystopian society – check, zombies – check, a zombie falling in love with a human – check, what?
Most zombie novels obviously focus on those running from the zombies, and zombies are obviously pretty gross. In this book, the story is told from the point of view of the zombie! And yes, these zombies are still gross – rotting, with nasty teeth, grey skin etc, and with the need to eat human brains regularly.
The author tries to get you to relate to the zombie, and even to feel sorry for him, but all the way through, I just could not get over the fact that R is a zombie! As ‘nice’ as R was, he was still a zombie! I mean, the story was enjoyable, and it was a totally different experience to see things from the zombie’s point of view, but I still couldn’t get over the fact that he was a zombie.
Julie does get past the fact that R is a zombie, and she even starts to like him, but the whole ‘eats human brains’ thing was just too much for me!
It was interesting to see the take on zombie’s in this book, although we never really find out what caused the end of the world as we know it, or why people turned into zombies. We learn that the humans refer to a type of plague, but that’s all. The zombies themselves must eat human muscle and brain to remain ‘alive’, and they can ‘die’ if they run out of the ‘life’ energy that they get from their meals. I thought that the idea of the zombie’s experiencing their victims memories as they ate their brains to be quite interesting and unusual, and hadn’t come across anything like that before (although I suppose most zombie books are not told from the point of view of the zombie).
I thought that the storyline was obviously very different, and quite a unique idea. I can’t say that I knew exactly where the book was going, but it was quite obvious that something would happen between R and Julie. Thankfully there wasn’t much physical romance in this book because kissing someone with rotting lips? Not a nice thought. With regards to the ending, I wasn’t really sure what to make of it. I mean, the ending was alright, but it felt a little strange to get a happy ending in a zombie book!
So what do I think overall? This was an enjoyable read, but I found it quite difficult to relate to a zombie, or to a girl who could learn to love a zombie! And the ending was probably a little too positive for a zombie book!
6.8 out of 10.