Friday, February 1, 2013

Bookshelf: Isaac Marion's Warm Bodies

Warm Bodies was released in theaters today, but this isn't a review over the movie, but instead the book it spawned from of the same name. If you haven't read the book already before you go to theaters this weekend to watch it, then put that on your list to do because it is worth a read to check this one out from Isaac Marion as he proves he can craft an intricate story combining a very not too intelligent life form, zombies, and make it into an experience of what it is to be human.

R is a zombie. He has no memory of his human life, and can barely communicate words, but he does have one thing and that is the ability to still think, and process what he is thinking. When the zombies attack a group of humans R ends up meeting Julie after killing her boyfriend, Perry. Instead of eating her he rescues her and stores her in the airplane he resides in away from the other zombies. The longer Julie is around R the more she realizes something about him is different, and the longer R is around Julie he experiences a change that makes him more human as he regains certain abilities he believed he had lost.

Warm Bodies is a book that you have to completely finish to really let it sink in. If you approach it with the idea it will be a romance you might be a tad letdown. This isn't supposed to be the next great "Twilight" has some have mistakenly labeled it. It is basically poses the question can zombies be cured, and if they can be cured what cures them? These questions are put in motion when R's thoughts are finally put into reality when he meets a girl and finds he can't eat her.

This is probably one of the few books that could have went on longer than it does. It is very short at 237 pages.The fact that everything is from R's perspective, and he can't remember his past causes us to not have a lot of back story. The connections we have with R are built instead from memories that he has eaten from Perry's brain. Julie we get a little bit more back story from, and a kick butt female lead. The fact that a guy wrote this though makes it sort of obvious as to why she is the way she is though. She is the feminine, but tough male idea of a woman. This works, but reads sort of obvious.

R is the one who takes the interesting growth in the story from being a monster to what we hope is becoming human again. In this journey you explore what makes someone human versus what he has become. We find that their is a lot of weight put on memories, consciousness, hope, and love. There is also a little bit of everything for someone in this book, which is probably why it is so well liked. It covers a broad enough range of things to appeal to someone's taste. You have a little horror, action, suspense, and romance to mix it up.

Overall, Warm Bodies will leave you pleased to have spent the time you did reading it. It's a short read that is one of the few books you can look back on and think it could have been even longer. The character development was good, but had their been more room to write it could have expanded past what it had already reached. Now that the book has found a little success, and it has a movie coming out they are backing up this book with another in what appears to be a continuing series. Marion shows he has enough skill to keep you reading more though.

Rating 4 of 5.


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