Title: Love & Zombies
Author: Eric Shapiro
Rating: 3.5 / 5
Release Date: 25 June 2013
The zombie apocalypse has already ended. The government nipped the problem in the bud before it got out of hand. But now Henry, an aspiring filmmaker in Los Angeles, is getting a request from his old friend Sam Kranson. Sam Kranson says they need to go run an errand in Las Vegas. There’s a hefty payday for the job. And it involves capturing a real live zombie.
But that can’t be true, can it? Are there zombies out there in the Nevada desert? Or has Sam Kranson finally lost his mind? And more importantly: Will Henry’s loving girlfriend Teresa strangle him if he goes on this adventure with Sam?
Part horror, part comedy, all madness and suspense, Love & Zombies is a lunatic burn through three days in the life of Henry—days in which he battles to stay alive, and get back to his love without becoming (un)dead. (goodreads.com)
**WARNING: This book contains lots of adult material, and is definitely not suited for younger readers and those who don’t like reading about adult things like sex and drugs.**
So… I don’t really know where to start with this one. It’s a novella, only 75 quick pages on my Nook, but there are parts that just couldn’t, no matter how hard I tried, hold my attention. And oh, man, did I try.
So this appears to be one of those books that you’ll either love or hate. The narrator talks to the reader quite often, there’s a lot of adult material (and when I say a lot, it’s A LOT). There’s discussion of sex, drugs, and all the usual things that go with “adult material”. There’s plenty of bad language. I don’t think I went one page without reading the eff-word. But did that bother me? Not so much.
The idea that the zompocalypse had already passed, and that the government had already “taken care” of the problem is a slightly new spin on the idea. Most zombie novels are either about the outbreak, or take place after, when zombies are already all over and it’s a lost cause. So points to Shapiro for taking a new route with the idea.
This is not to say that there weren’t parts that irritated me. There are parts that feel more like male wish fulfillment than anything else. Lots of sex, violence, general mayhem, the works. At times, it felt a little over-done, but nothing completely unbearable.
But the bit that really got my goat? At one point, Sam, Henry the Narrator’s partner-in-crime, lets loose a series of rounds from a (sub)machine gun. In a car. And there’s no mention of anyone’s ears hurting, eardrums blowing out (which is actually very, VERY likely to happen). I realize it’s a bit nit-picky, but truthfully, pretty much any firearm is probably going to make your ears go “ouch”, especially in a car with the windows up.
And really, one last touch that I actually really liked? The very first page describes the general stages a person goes through once they’re bitten. At first they feel fine, then they’re ill, then dead, then un-dead. It’s a really nice touch and actually leaves no room to be confused about the stages of the change, which is really nice.
Overall, I really liked the novella. It’s a fast-paced, (mostly) zombie-filled romp in the Vegas Valley desert. The only part that’s zombie-less is the beginning, and it’s a quick buildup to the undead.
I received a copy of this novella from the publisher via Netgalley. All opinions are mine and were not influenced by the publisher or author in any way.