The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Rating: **** (4 out of 5)

Background: You may be wondering why anyone would spend money on a book that teaches you how to survive a zombie outbreak. Maybe, on the contrary, this makes all the sense in the world to you, and if so, feel free to skip my little paragraph on background. To the former, I assure you I am not crazy. Do read on.

I have spent many nights in my life suffering from insomnia. I’ve tried everything from medication to self-relaxation techniques, but when it hits you hard, there’s little you can do but wait until sleep arrives. As I’m usually too tired to read or watch videos, I resort to leaving my mind free to wander to whatever it feels like at the moment. As it turns out, zombies are often the subject of my late night musings. I’ve spent countless hours wondering what I would do in the case of a zombie outbreak: where I would go to, how I would get there, what kind of supplies I would need to survive, etc. I’m not even sure why – I don’t particularly care for zombie fiction or even actually believe in them – but there you have it. Finally, I did what I always do with my obsessions: find books written on the subject. And that’s how I came across this one.

Review: This is a small, but comprehensive guide against the living dead, that covers everything from symptoms (and how to recognize an outbreak), to weapons, to types of terrain, to starting over in the case of a complete zombie domination. It is by no means a detailed guide, since most topics only get a superficial treatment, and I doubt it would be enough in the case of an actual outbreak but it’s a start.

A little piece of advice. If, like me, you’re thinking about getting this book in order to feel a bit more prepared and less obsessed with zombie attacks… Don’t pick it up. Really. I actually had nightmares with zombies while reading this book (talk about being suggestible!) and I couldn’t stop obsessing at how ill-prepared I was for dealing with an undead attack. In the end, my advice would be to live life to the fullest until the zombies come out… Because chances are you won’t be able to survive.

I haven’t decided what to read next. Duty calls for an art book, while my mind craves some nice fiction to get my creative juices flowing… Maybe I should start practicing reading two books at the same time.

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2 thoughts on “The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

  1. André Nóbrega says:

    I must tell you two things. First of all, you didn’t manage to reassure anyone who read this that you aren’t crazy. And second, do practice reading two books at the same time, I do it all the time and I don’t think it hurts the experience or prevents me from fully enjoying or understanding both books. What I usually do is try to read two very different kinds of book, as for example a graphic novel, or fantasy and non-fantasy.
    Enjoy life until the zombies do come and kill us all! Brains…. Braaaaaains….

    • Oh well. At least I’m the harmless type of crazy. Mostly.

      The problem I have with reading two books at the time is that I gravitate towards the faster, most exciting read (usually the fiction one) and leave the other behind, so that when I finally get back to it, it’s been so long that I can no longer remember what was being said. But I might give it a try with graphic novels or something… Since I really need to cut through my to-reading pile (stuck on 50 books for a couple of months!).

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