Written by: Matthew J. Barbour
Someone forgot to tell zombies that their fifteen minutes of fame were over. Love them or hate them, the walking dead are still everywhere. If Horror Novel Reviews did not satisfy your brain craving soul with its first list, here are five more zombie novels that don’t bite.
Zombies and Shit
By Carlton Mellick III
Set in a post-apocalyptic world where the dead walk the earth, Zombies and Shit follows twenty contestants chosen to star in the next season of humanity’s favorite television show: Zombie Survivor. The current batch of contestants includes a mix of evil geniuses, street punks, neo-Nazis, mercenaries, genetically modified killers, prostitutes, and a cybernetic-enhanced television icon from the 1980s. They will form alliances and backstab one another while competing for the big prize: living to see another day. One part Survivor, one part Mad Max, one part Battle Royale, and one part Return of the Living Dead, Carlton Mellick III combines all the things we love and hate about reality TV with the zombie apocalypse.
Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead
Compiled and Edited by John Skipp
While technically not a novel, Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead is certainly worth a spot on this list. It is the quintessential collection of the most well-known and respected short stories/novellas featuring the walking dead. Lovingly compiled and edited by John Skipp, the book includes such classics as Robert Bloch’s “A Case of the Stubborns” and Joe R. Lansdale’s “On the Far Side of the Cadillac Desert with Dead Folks.” Adam Troy-Castro’s “Dead like Me” is arguably the best zombie story ever written. Zombies is a must read for any fan.
Slowly We Rot
By Bryan Smith
Slowly We Rot follows the trials and tribulations of Noah several years after the outbreak of a zombie plague which wiped out nearly of all of the world’s inhabitants. His life was falling apart long before the zombie menace came. Noah has spent the apocalypse isolated in a remote cabin doing his best to avoid the monsters that roam this world and the mental demons which terrorize his mind. However, one can hide for only so long. Bryan Smith delivers a nuanced psychological horror story that challenges the reader to think.
Dead Drunk: Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse One Beer at a Time
By Richard Johnson
In Dead Drunk: Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse One Beer at a Time, a motley group of survivors, made up of perverts and racists, manage to hold up in an off-the-grid apartment complex. They smoke pot, drink booze, and eat dog food on the roof top while watching the zombie apocalypse consume the city below. Eventually, the Chinese arrive to conquer what is left of North America. Can these buffoons stop them? No, but if they are lucky maybe some of them will come out of this ordeal alive. Richard Johnson’s take on the zombie apocalypse is both offensive and hilarious.
By Jonathan Maberry
Jonathan Maberry has written a number of zombie novels directed at both mature audiences and young adults. However, his first in the Joe Ledger Series, Patient Zero is often acknowledged as his finest contribution to the subgenre. Ledger, a Baltimore detective turned US Military counterterrorism agent, is tasked with stopping a group of radicals from releasing a bioweapon that will turn people into the walking dead. What makes the book stand out is that –while fictional- much of the science and government operations are grounded in reality giving the novel a “Michael Crichton-esque” sort of feel. Obviously, if you are being compared to Jurassic Park’s Michael Crichton, you are doing something right.
Didn’t see your favorite zombie novel? Check out the original list. Still think we are missing something? Offer some feedback below and let us know about some of your favorite walking dead fiction.