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Zombies: The Recent Dead (English Edition) [Kindle Edition]

Max Brooks , Brian Keene , Neil Gaiman , Joe R. Lansdale , Michael Marshall Smith , David Schow , Paula Guran

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You can't kill the dead! Like any good monster, the zombie has proven to be ever-evolving, monumentally mutable, and open to seemingly endless imaginative interpretations: the thralls of voodoo sorcerers, George Romero's living dead, societal symbols, dancing thrillers, viral victims, reanimated ramblers, video gaming targets, post-apocalyptic permutations, shuffling sidekicks, literary mash-ups, the comedic, and, yes, even the romantic. Evidently, we have an enduring hunger for this infinite onslaught of the ever-hungry dead. Hoards of readers are now devouring zombie fiction faster than armies of the undead could chow down their brains. It's a sick job, but somebody had to do it: explore the innumerable necrotic nightmares of the latest, greatest, most fervent devotion in the history of humankind and ferret out the best of new millenial zombie stories: Zombies: The Recent Dead.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 837 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 352 Seiten
  • Gleichzeitige Verwendung von Geräten: Keine Einschränkung
  • Verlag: Prime Books (18. Oktober 2010)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B0047O2RF6
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Nicht aktiviert
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #321.573 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.4 von 5 Sternen  9 Rezensionen
10 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Entries From Al over the Plotted Map 19. November 2010
Von TorridlyBoredShopper - Veröffentlicht auf
Sometimes originality can be a blight If you don't expect it. That seems to be the case here, where many people expeected shambling walkers and got a mixed buffet of zombies doing all sorts of interesting stuff. I have to say that I like the original stories, too, and cannot dismiss something when it is changed. Still, a change that is interesting is good news and traditional zombie tales can be found everywhere. So, if you want something a tad bit different, read on. If you don't, I can understand that and say you will be disappoint with almost all of the tales. Honestly, keep an open mind about the book.

In the Max Brooks story, he sticks to something from the Zombie Wars. He also does this in the collection The New Dead, where he explores this topic. Here he looks at the Great Wall and what it meant to the Chinese and the world overall, and it hints to other things that transpired. good stuff BUT hinged on a bigger book. In Brain Keene's Slected Scenes From the end of the World, there was a nice flavor of zombiedom with a lovely taste of fastforward going on. Basically, you see snippets of horror and taste some nicely plotted demise. In the Naming of Parts, tim Lebbon is Tim Lebbon and makes a story well worth mentioning. Other stories also stand out and do it in both the traditional and the new ways.
The book is as follows:
Twisted, Kevin Veale - The Things he Said, Micheal Marshal Smith - Naming th eParts, Tim Lebbon - Dating Secrets of the Dead, David Prill - Lie Still, Sleep Becalmed, Steve Duffy - The Great Wall: A story from the Zombie War, Max Brooks - First Kisses From Beyond the Grave, Nik Houser - Zora and the Zombie, any duncan - Obsequy, David J. Schow - Deadman's Road - Joe R. Lansdale, Bitter Grounds, Neil Gaimman - Beatiful White Bodies, Alice Sola Kim - Glorietta, Gary a Braunbeck - Farewll, My Zombie, Francesca Lia block - Trinkets, Tobias S. Buckell - Dead Man's Land, David Wellington - Disarmed and Dangerous, Tim Waggoner, The Zombie Prince, Kit Reed - Selected Scenes From the end of the World, Brain Keene - The Hortlak, Kelly Link - Dead to the world, Gar McMahon - The Last Supper, Scott Edelman

I liked and recommend this collection because it is different. It keeps you reading and makes you wonder what will happen next. a lot of times this does not happen and zombies, most of all, seem underutilized as vessels of terror.
I want my terror's back.
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen A creative and varied collection 28. Mai 2011
Von Kevin Veale - Veröffentlicht auf
The fast and dirty version is that I was entirely impressed with the anthology, and found it a thoroughly enjoyable read with some new and interesting spins on the broader zombie mythos.

Given that these are short-stories and I want to avoid spoiling anything, these are going to involve a short precis of what makes the story distinctive, before covering what I thought.

With that said, on to the details! In order of appearance, we have:

"Introductory Sections"

There is an introduction-in-three parts, comprising a "Preshamble" by Paula Guran that provides some crisply-written, useful context to how and where the points of tension and intersection between the modern zombie and the classical vodoun creature are. David J. Schow unpacks the concept further in his introduction, "The Meat of the Matter," which considers both a historical/literary history of zombies and modern popular culture, together with a life lived alongside the films and texts in question. A final "Deaditorial Note," also from Paula Guran, delves into the changes in the zombi-cultural landscape from 2003-2010, a period coming after the period considered in detail within Schow's piece.

I found these sections to be a very interesting start to the anthology, filling in all kinds of contextual details and references that I'd either missed or forgotten in my own encounters with the zombie mythos.

They are also clearly noted on the Table of Contents, so if you just want to skip to the stories they're hardly going to get underfoot. Personally, I found them well worth the time.

"Twisted," by Kevin Veale.

This story is mine, and the fact I'm discussing it personally is a little weird. In terms of style/content, it's a 'gonzo' zombie story inspired as much by Hunter S. Thompson as by Romero or voudou. All I can say is that I really enjoyed writing it, I was delighted to be included in this anthology, and that I hope you enjoy reading it.

"The Things He Said," by Michael Marshall Smith.

A powerful story with a very tight focus about the daily routine of a survivor. This is one of the pieces I found very memorable when I was reading the anthology, and it does a very good job of presenting an experience of rising dread.

I've liked Michael Marshall Smith's worth since I first encountered Only Forward, and this story is a little haunting.

"The Naming of Parts," by Tim Lebbon.

A tale of a twelve-year-old boy witnessing domestic apocalypses swept away by external ones. I liked this story for the protagonist's voice, and the gnawing horror that even colour seems to be dying out of the world.

"Dating Secrets of the Dead," by David Prill.

An unusually dreamlike story about two dead people dating - which is a mostly redundant statement from the title, but I can't think of a better way to put it. I was intrigued by this story because it's an ambitious approach that could easily go wrong, but I thought it paid off. It didn't grab me as much as some of the other stories, but I'm not sure that's anything about the story itself.

"Lie Still, Sleep Becalmed," by Steve Duffy.

This was another one of the stories which stood out for me: a group of friends with their own internal frictions (another tasty zombie staple) go out for a night-trip off the Welsh coast. The characters are well rendered, and you can anticipate the ways in which external stresses are going to run right into the points of internal conflict at the worst possible time. It's also got a great tenor or rising dread, with events that are internally consistent, but have a nightmarishly inexplicable feel.

"The Great Wall: A Story From the Zombie War," by Max Brooks.

I loved World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, and thought this tale continues the dry tone which includes jibes at the failures of historical archivists for allowing the original treatise to be colloquially known as "World War Z." The story itself follows the creation and defence of the Great Wall of China from the perspective of a woman who is recording her memories for posterity.

It is a chillingly remorseless tale of exhaustion and desperation, yet also of cooperation and survival. Thoroughly recommended for any fans of WWZ. My only disappointment was that the story wasn't longer - not because it felt unfinished, but because I wanted to spend more time with it.

"First Kisses from Beyond the Grave," by Nik Houser.

I really liked this story. It has a real energy to it, and an appropriately black comic tone for a story about a boy sent to a school for the dead due to a bureaucratic screw-up.

I also which to note that Roland the gangsta fetus is genius, as are the traditional highschool football games where the school of the dead is ridiculously outclassed at every turn...

"Zora and the Zombie," by Andy Duncan.

This is another one of the stories which did not grab me as much as some of the others, but where I can't quite pin down why. It's about Zora Thurston, a woman writing about the histories and myths of Haiti who finds herself drawn to exploring them herself. There's no reason for the story not to have grabbed me - the concept is interesting, and the writing crisp with dark humour.

"Obsequy," by David J. Schow.

An excellent story with a vicious, slowly rising burn about what happens when the dead start coming back... and haven't forgotten a thing.

"Deadman's Road," by Joe R. Lansdale.

Another story that made a lasting impression, "Deadman's Road" features an implacable, gun-toting, wild-west preacher of a vengeful Old Testament God who is driven to test his faith against the supernatural darkness of the world. It's imaginative, well-characterised and sharply written.

I was left wanting more of this story, and I think I can safely recommend it for any fans of the Deadlands role-playing game. Fortunately, Joe R. Lansdale has written other stories featuring the same protagonist, and they're being reprinted by Subterranean Press as Deadman's Road.

"Bitter Grounds," by Neil Gaiman. (Also available in Fragile Things)

A melancholy, dreamlike and delicate story about someone left emotionally dead who finds himself pulled absently into occupying someone elses' life. The details are excellent, from the detached narrative voice through to touches of life at an academic conference that can be all too accurate. As an additional bonus within a gently-written story, the understanding of what it might be to be a zombie is one of the creepiest I've encountered.

"Beautiful White Bodies," by Alice Sola Kim.

A standout story within an anthology that's full of them: beauty seems to become infectious at a small-town school, and girls start to become so pretty that they hardly seem human anymore...

There is barbed humour here together with the genuine horror, a spiky self-awareness about the state of the media image machine, and some quotes that are perfect (and vicious) but which I'll let people find on their own.

"Glorietta," by Gary A. Braunbeck

An imaginative story that comes as a real punch to the gut. I'm not sure I can summarise it in a way that will do the tale justice, but it's about zombies at christmas.

"Farewell, My Zombie," by Francesca Lia Block

A detective story featuring a woman working as a PI who is approached by someone convinced of a zombie-kidnapping - a problem only she can help with. A well-written story with onion-layer depths to it.

"Trinkets," by Tobias S. Bucknell.

A historical story with a very neat concept, "Trinkets" is another story that isn't quite what it seems. Unfortunately, it's also another one that I can't quite think how to describe in a way that isn't going to ruin the fun. What I can say is that I think it's well done, and I enjoyed it.

"Dead Man's Land," by David Wellington.

A true post-apocalypse story, "Dead Man's Land" is set in a fallen America where the gigantic malls see themselves as the last islands of civilisation in an unclean land, and where the protagonist is hired to squire a princess from one fiefdom to another. It's chilling for a wide number of reasons, and the different viewpoints on society it presents is one of them.

"Disarmed and Dangerous," by Tim Waggoner.

An entertainingly noir tale about a zombie PI-of-sorts trapped in a parallel city of monsters. The concept is rich, the narrative voice fits both the protagonist and the overall vibe of the story, and I enjoyed the ending.

"The Zombie Prince," by Kit Reed.

This considers the zombie mythos from an entirely different lens, producing a supernatural encounter that feels very original. It also reminds me of the film Shadow of the Vampire in terms of how it raises questions regarding who, and what, the real monsters are.

"Selected Scenes from the End of the World: Three Stories from the Universe of `The Rising,'" by Brian Keene.

This is a trifecta of shorter pieces that imply a larger whole rather than standing alone. They're certainly evocative, and contain some of the more directly threatening zombies I've run into. However, I'm not sure how effective they are in this context at making readers interested in the wider narrative that they're part of. I did like the final fragment, `The Viking Plays Patty Cake' the most, because it's the most human.

"The Hortlak," by Kelly Link.

A genuinely fantastic story that is imaginative and poetic. It's never entirely clear what's happened to the world, only that the protagonists work at an all-night retail store on a highway, and that they try to serve the confused and incoherent dead who wander in. It is touching, funny, sad and feels like trying to explain a dream to someone else when you're close enough to it that it all makes perfect sense.

"Dead to the World," by Garry McMahon.

A particularly bleak tale about characters eroded by years of fleeing a zombie-infested world, worn-down to survival instincts and little else. The quality of the writing and the glimpses readers can see of who the characters used to be make the ending particularly striking.

"The Last Supper," by Scott Edelman.

Another tale from a zombie's point of view, and it is a coldly desperate look at how a hungry undead thing might understand - or fail to understand - time.

So there we have it! I don't think there's a badly written story in the piece, just variations to what extent a particularly story is my sort of fun. There's enough variety here in terms of style and content that I think anyone remotely interested in zombie stories will definitely find something they'll like here.
10 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen Zombies: The Recently frustating 25. Mai 2011
Von Zombie_Gunslinger - Veröffentlicht auf
When an anthology announces it has short stories by famous authors, it's easy to get suckered into purchasing it, especially when said authors are some of the true kings of zombie horror. And that is why I picked up "Zombies: The Recent Dead." Not strictly because it is zombies (although that was enticing) nor because it was yet another anthology to add to my already burgeoning collection, but mostly due to the fact that (as the cover states) this collection included stories from some of my favorites: Max Brooks and Brian Keene.

You would think that a book that contains these guys (as well as 20 others) would be a perfect horror anthology...(insert annoying buzzer sound here) but you would be sadly, and frustratingly disappointed with this one.

I suppose I should have guessed from the very get go that "The Recent Dead" was trying much, much to hard to be like the very successful (yet also disappointing) "The Living Dead" anthology by John Joseph Adams. First, before even getting to the real stories, you have to slog your way through three(!!!!!!) different introductions. Of course, that wouldn't be so bad if the intros were any good, or even thought provoking. Believe me when I say that in this one, they aren't. Look Paula Guran, I don't need a 10 page preface explaining to me what zombies are. We all know. Much like every introduction I've read in every anthology I own, Guran just repeats the oft said descriptions of the various kinds of zombies (and yes, I get it, Romero's "...of the dead" zombies aren't even traditional). I also don't need a rambling (and not very funny) essay by David Schow, blabbing on and on about how he became infatuated with the living dead. That would be great in an autobiography or magazine piece, but here, it doesn't do any good. Not to mention that it isn't even an original piece for this anthology, but rather a recycled intro/outro from previously published Dead Jam.

So after dragging through 29 pages of mindless babble, you finally get to the first story: "Twisted" by Kevin Veale. If you were annoyed with Paula Guran and Schow's annoying prefaces, get ready to be downright angry. Honestly, it's like coming out of a desert straight into a brick wall. I don't know why Guran decided on "Twisted" as a lead in story because it is horrible! Maybe to Guran (who, we learn as we read her footnotes, thinks she is hilarious and insightful) crazy, stoned out, doofuses are great characters for a zombie story. Well, they aren't. "Twisted" was so horrible, it was a true challenge to get through...and that was only the FIRST Story!

From there the collection moves into "The Things He Said" (Michael Marshall Smith) and "The Naming of the Parts" (Tim Lebbon). Neither of these are truly "awful" stories, but neither have much going for them, although "Parts" could have been a decent read if not for the heavy 60+ page length.

It is not until the 5th story in here that we see any kind of life from this anthology. "Lie Still, Sleep Becalmed" by Steve Duffy being the first truly good read. Immediately following is Max Brooks's "The Great Wall", which is far too short at only 5 pages, yet like most of his work, great.

However, the bizarre, badly written, and all around just plain bad stories continue. You have "Beautiful White Bodies" by Alice Sola Kim (in where the zombie causing disease is replaced by something else that makes ugly girls beautiful and then kills them), "First Kisses from Beyond the Grave" by Nik Hauser (where a young kid is somehow transferred to a school for all manner of ghouls and goblins (and makes absolutely no sense in between)), and of course probably the worst one in this whole collection: "The Hortlak" by Kelly Link. This one was so bad I almost couldn't even finish it. Zombies that puke out pajama bottoms, a girl who drives dogs around before they are to be put down, an ex-CIA turkish guy that runs a convenience store somewhere between the land of the living and zombies...Can someone please tell me where this makes even a small thread of anything resembling interpretation?
I suppose I could go on describing the rest of the stories that left a bad taste in my mouth, but it would be futile and I think you kind of get the idea.

Of the 22 short stories collected here, I counted only 8 that got my vote of approval. If I were to do the math that equals out to a minuscule 36 percent. The back of the book states "You can't kill the dead" but I think Paula Guran almost single-handedly did just that.
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen A challenge to finish 18. Mai 2012
Von Daniel O. Buchholz - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition
I like Zombies. I like Short Stories. Zombie short stories? Sure, why not? Yeah, I picked this book up because I love zombie/post apocalyptic novels and feel that sometimes all you need is a short concise story. I wanted to like it, but......

This book lurked in my list for a long time. I would read a story (I really only found one I tolerated) and then put it off to the side, coming back every so often to bite a small chunk off, get bored and then put it aside again. So I would say I slogged through this book. And this is short story compilation, it shouldn't be like this, where every bite was just not satisfying, but it was. But I rarely give up (from determination or hope, but I rarely quit anything once I started it, be it real life or reading) so I finally finished it (3 months later!).

I will say that the last story was one of the best, so it didn't finish on a truly sour note. But the best thing about this book? That I don't feel compelled to read it any more.
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Better anthologies to read first 17. Mai 2011
Von Utterly Undead Reads (and sometimes more) - Veröffentlicht auf
I love anthologies, they give you a glimpse into the work of authors previously unknown to you. That being said, this book was only so-so. There are some great bits from well known horror authors, like Brian Keen and Max Brooks, as well as some authors I had not heard of before, but there are a few wastes of time in this one too. One story was sooo bad I didn't even finish it- that almost never happens! Really a mosh up of some really great stories including different takes on zombies or post apocalyptic survival, but it almost felt like some stories were thrown in as 'fillers' without thought to quality. Very few stories were just 'ok' they were either great or a waste of print. You get your traditional flesh eaters to your romantic figure soul sucking zombies and voodoo zombies, good mix of takes on the character. If you have read a lot in the genre, worth a skim to pick through the good ones, but if you're just diving in to zombie fiction, there are much better anthologies out there to start with. Too much of a mixed bag for me to give it anything above 3 stars.
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