Published: April 26/2011
Format: Trade Paperback
R is a young man with an existential crisis–he is a zombie. He shuffles through an America destroyed by war, social collapse, and the mindless hunger of his undead comrades, but he craves something more than blood and brains. He can speak just a few grunted syllables, but his inner life is deep, full of wonder and longing. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse. Just dreams. After experiencing a teenage boy’s memories while consuming his brain, R makes an unexpected choice that begins a tense, awkward, and strangely sweet relationship with the victim’s human girlfriend. Julie is a burst of vibrant color in the otherwise dreary and gray landscape that R lives in. His decision to protect her will transform not only R, but his fellow Dead, and perhaps their whole lifeless world. Scary, funny, and surprisingly poignant, Warm Bodies is about being alive, being dead and the blurry line in between.
Zombie novels are always about how the world has been overtaken by a deathly plague that raises the dead and has the main characters fighting for their lives while demolishing hordes of zombies like a badass. Never have we had such a wonderful story through the eyes of the zombie itself. Warm Bodies had the reader thinking and contemplating life on every page.
The protagonist, “R” is one of the deepest characters I have ever had the pleasure of reading. His inner narrative is so intelligent and thought provoking and kept the pace of the novel moving smoothly along. While the book wasn’t full of dialogue, the pace of the book wasn’t affected, nor was it boring. Marion’s descriptive prose was beautiful. Painting a picture so perfectly in the reader’s mind that it is impossible not to feel and imagine every detail. Despite the romance in the book, it is still a zombie novel and Marion did a fantastic job of keeping up the brutality and gore while giving the reader a rare glimpse inside of the fully conscious zombie who is doing the killing.
Julie is a great love interest for R. As he navigates the undead world in quiet contemplation, Julie blazes through the living world, struggling to find hope in a desolate situation but never giving up on it. The love story grows and develops slowly but surely, leading to a conclusion that the reader couldn’t be happier with.
I saw the movie before I read the book, and both are equally amazing. The movie followed the book flawlessly and because R narrated in the movie as well, the beautiful prose was not lost in the transition from book to movie.
A great story of love and hope in a time when the world so desperately needs it. Full of laughter, romance and action, Isaac Marion’s Warm Bodies is a must read for any lover of zombie books, comedy, or romance. As well as anyone looking to take on a new perspective of a zombie book.
I give Warm Bodies 5/5 Stars