Teens! Planning on attending our “Zombie Survival” program Saturday, October 20 at 3:00 p.m.? Well then, consider these books recommended reading if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse. These authors have all added their own twists to zombie lore and while most zombie stories are still firmly entrenched in the horror genre, they can also be heroic, historic, and dare we say, even romantic.
Two series that explore the darker side of post-apocalyptic life are The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan and Jonathan Maberry’s Rot and Ruin. Both books contain complex characters with strained sibling relationships and vivid settings. For the occupants in the Forest of Hands and Teeth, their isolated village life is all anyone has ever known for generations, unlike the adults of Rot and Ruin whose first-hand recounting of their survival in the early days, as well as the semblance of modern life that the town tries to maintain, keeps this series firmly entrenched in the present. Another dark, action-oriented series set in present-day London is Charlie Higson’s The Enemy. In a cruel twist of fate, the virus has infected only the adults and now children must band together and battle them in order to stay alive.
Hungering for zombies in a historic setting? Dead Reckoning by Mercedes Lackey and Rosemary Edghill is a western/horror mash-up with some steampunk elements that takes place in post-Civil War Texas. Jett, a girl masquerading as a flashy gunslinger, is searching for her twin brother when she comes up against an army of undead that are wiping out small towns across Texas. Helping Jett puzzle out the whys and hows are Army scout White Fox and clever girl inventor, Honoria Gibbons.
How about a heroic zombie teen in a love triangle? What’s a girl to do when she’s attracted to a soulful teen zombie who’s becoming a leader and activist for his undead friends while the (living) boy next door pines for her? In Dan Waters’ series, Generation Dead, the question isn’t how to destroy the dead teenagers who inexplicably come back, but rather how to integrate these “living challenged” teens into high school and everyday life. Amy Plum’s Die for Me also features a mortal girl in love with a zombie hero-type, although in Plum’s book , they’re called revenants and they’re French. Looking for more zombie romance? Try Dearly, Departed by Lia Habel, although the chance of a romantic zombie in Saturday’s program is pretty slim!