Friday, 7 November 2014

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

After watching this movie a long time ago I bought the book. It's sat on my shelf unread. I'm so happy I finally read it. A lot of people describe this book as being "like Twilight only with zombies." This is a mostly accurate description.

Here's the book description: 
R is a young man with an existential crisis--he is a zombie. He shuffles through an America destroyed by war, social collapse, and the mindless hunger of his undead comrades, but he craves something more than blood and brains. He can speak just a few grunted syllables, but his inner life is deep, full of wonder and longing. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse, but he has dreams. 

After experiencing a teenage boy's memories while consuming his brain, R makes an unexpected choice that begins a tense, awkward, and strangely sweet relationship with the victim's human girlfriend. Julie is a blast of color in the otherwise dreary and gray landscape that surrounds R. His decision to protect her will transform not only R, but his fellow Dead, and perhaps their whole lifeless world. 

 Scary, funny, and surprisingly poignant, Warm Bodies is about being alive, being dead, and the blurry line in between.

In general, romance novels describe the power of love as being life changing and making one feel alive. In this story, it literally happens. As someone who loves zombie stories this one is refreshingly different.

R is different than other zombies. He's smarter. He's philosophical. He has a sense of humor. And he has a small grasp on the English language still. He also has met and fallen in love with a human. To say they are star crossed lovers is an understatement. Their love won't just save each other, it might just save all the zombies.

The story implies that what has happened to the world is some sort of punishment. This is best shown by the presence of the Bonies. These are supernatural monsters that are like demons, if demons all shared a mind like a group of skeletal robots. They are determined to preserve a certain order among the zombies that gets disrupted by R falling in love with Julie.

My absolute favorite quote from this book (and now my favorite quote ever from any book) goes as following:

What a massive responsibility, being a moral creature.

This sums up R's internal struggle. He has to fight his zombie nature and figure out how to be a human again. My rating is a solid Photobucket

The Movie
The movie isn't as good as the book. The plot with the Bonies is confusing and the story feels rushed. The movie lacks the philosophical elements of the book but does keep the humor. It also lacks the more supernatural elememts that are in the book and is a more straightforward mmonster movie. Then ending isn't as dramatic as the book.

The Prequel
I had no idea that there was a prequel to Warm Bodies until I was at today. The prequel is called The New Hunger.

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