loulamac’s #CBRV review #37: ZOM-B by Darren Shan


ZOM-B is the first book in a series of twelve charting the zombie apocalypse. Because I love all zombie-related stuff, I will be reading all twelve, even though the book isn’t that great. It’s silly, but I liked it.

The main character is B, a teenager who living with an abusive dad and doormat mum. Like any teenager, B is dealing with the usual pressures of growing up and finding a place in the world – school, the dynamics of friendship groups, and clashes with parents. What B isn’t prepared for is a zombie attack. When reports from Ireland start to surface of the dead coming back to life and eating the brains of the living, B’s community, including parents, friends and teachers, writes it off as a hoax. It’s not, and before long B is battling zombies in the corridors at school.

It reads like The Walking Dead meets Grange Hill. Every bit as gruesome and gory as you’d expect from a zombie story, but the setting of the world of teenagers, with their angst, bravado and issues with their parents is incongruous. This incongruity is charming, because of course kids would be affected by a zombie attack every bit as much as the adults these stories usually focus on. So that makes it refreshing. It’s not very well written, but that doesn’t really matter. It’s disposable, short and fun.  My only gripe is that when humans become zombies they grow long sharp bone protuberances from their fingertips, all the better to crack skulls and scoop out brains. What can I say? I’m a zombie purist.

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