Every day the main character Jeremiah Reid along with his four-legged friend has to wander around the desolation that was once a heavily populated city. Now, it is full of zombies. His only goal is to find his daughter as soon as possible.
The middle part might seem a bit boring.
This book will be a perfect option for those who love exciting stories about post-apocalypse and zombies. The book features memorable characters, interesting dialogues and a detailed description of a new world that becomes a hard place to survive.
Deadbreak, Jorge Sanchez
Paperback, Kindle, Audiobook
341 pages / 2530 KB / 10 hours and 57 minutes
Independently published (28 Dec. 2018)
Secret agent Carlie Simmons and her special force team have only one night to find a way out from a devastated city that was ruined by zombies. She has to use all her wit and intelligence since the time is running out.
It is available only in Kindle edition.
This best-seller about the wandering packs of flesh-eating walking dead comes in 5 volumes. The series has a lot of unexpected plot twists and masterfully combines the elements of zombie horror and exciting adventure stories.
Until Morning Comes (Volumes 1-5), JT Sawyer
In the world destroyed by zombies, 12 strangers share one and the same goal: they struggle to survive. And they have to do it no matter what it takes.
A huge number of characters can seem confusing.
Hell on Earth is the first book in the Life of the Dead series by Tony Urban. If you love memorable characters and unique humour mixed with bloody descriptions, this post-apocalyptic novel should fit your taste.
Hell on Earth, Tony Urban
Paperback, Kindle, Audiobook
247 pages / 2038 KB / 5 hours and 51 minutes
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (7 Oct. 2016)
Tom Freeman saw the horrific consequences of the zombie invasion. Now, he can only get back home to the USA where it is still safe. But is it really that safe? The smell of the decomposed walking corpses follows Tom wherever he goes.
You can come across a few typos in a paperback version.
There is no time and sense in finding out why millions of people were slaughtered anymore. The main task for all who stayed alive is to collect enough food and supplies, find guns and fight for their life. This brilliant novel won't let you put the book down. And the whole trilogy comes in one volume, which is very convenient.
Last Man Standing, Keith Taylor
702 pages / 4198 KB
Independently published (9 Jan. 2019)
This survival guide for zombie world covers everything you need to know when facing these creatures. You can read about their way of thinking and behaviours as well as effective protection tactics and weapons that work against them. The book also has multiple illustrations.
Some patterns repeat and the ending is a little blurred.
This is an interesting and informative book about what may not (or may?) happen. Either way, you will have enough knowledge to survive in case a zombie outbreak occurs. The last pages of the book are empty for your own notes.
The Zombie Survival Guide, Max Brooks
Paperback, Kindle, Audiobook, Hardcover, Audio CD
272 pages / 1747 KB / 8 hours and 52 minutes
Duckworth (1 April 2019)
Jorge Sanchez Deadbreak:
A Quest to Find A Daughter
Deadbreak is one of the most recently-published books on our list. The novel came out in 2018 and since then, it has become widely popular among the audience. The author Jorge Sanchez refers to a widely used zombie novel plot: the man and his dog wander around a deserted city invaded by zombies. It can be traced in many popular novels (including I am Legend that was made into a movie). Yet, the writer manages to bring a lot of new ideas to make the book unique and interesting to read.
The protagonist of this book is Jeremiah Reid. Each day for him is a survival mission and he doesn’t know if he will be able to see a new dawn. But he hasn’t lived like this for all his life. It all started three years ago when the dead rose from their graves. Those who managed to survive called this day a Deadbreak. It was also the day when he lost his daughter. Now, he tries to find her no matter what it takes.
Each day, Jeremiah and his dog Joe travel around the city that is full of the walking dead. But unfortunately, they are not the only threat. On his way, Jeremiah also runs into bandits who also attempt to kill him. But even though Jeremiah is low on supplies and ammo, he doesn’t intend to stop until he finds his girl. As the story progresses, Jeremiah's desire to live doesn't fade and he faces all the difficulties with his head held high and slightly dark humour, which makes the character more charming and loveable.
Includes Post-Apocalyptic Descriptions and Survival Tips
This book will be greatly appreciated by those who love post-apocalyptic fiction since it has a lot of detailed descriptions of a new world after the catastrophe. The author describes deserted streets of the place that used to be a crowded city. The protagonist has to face such problems as the lack of food and water, which definitely can happen if all the people are gone. It is a great example of the survival horror, in which the author provides handy survival tips. Plus, there are also some gruesome descriptions of zombie attacks, so those who love horror won’t be disappointed.
What also adds a lot of charm and some sort of intimacy to the story is the relationships between the lonely survivor and his dog, who is his only friend that doesn’t allow him to go crazy in that mad world.
In conclusion, Deadbreak by Jorge Sanchez is a worthy zombie-themed read with interesting characters, smart plot twists, and witty dialogues. It combines features of horror and survival and post-apocalyptic novel, which makes it suitable for all fans of the genre.
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JT Sawyer Until Morning Comes
Exciting Series About a Secret Agent
If you are looking for an already completed series about zombie invasion, look no further. The JT Sawyer’s series about Carlie Simmons will be the best fit. The series includes 5 stories about a secret agent Carlie who faces living dead and her journey to survival.
The name of the first book (which is the same as the name of the whole series) is Until Morning Comes and it describes the start of Carlie’s adventure. She is a secret service agent and we find her in the devastated city that was invaded by zombies. There is no one left there except for Carlie and her trusted men who try to rescue the president's daughter from the University of Arizona. And even though the people in Carlie’s team are elite professionals, they appear to be not ready for what was waiting for them there. They arrive in Tucson with a carefully crafted rescue plan but it won’t be easy to turn into life.
The main characters have only one night to get out of the deserted city, and the time is their enemy since it runs out way too quickly. What also makes things worse is that there are packs of flesh-eating zombie mutants who follow in their footsteps and won’t stop before anything in their lust to feed. Now, Carlie faces a hard choice between her moral code and duties of an agent. The readers will be able to really feel her struggles and almost re-live the same experience, thanks to the author’s marvellous writing job. So, if you want to know if Carlie and her team will be able to survive until the next morning comes, start reading this series.
Adventures in a Zombie-world Setting
This best-selling series is a must-read for all the fans of the zombie genre and those who generally love post-apocalyptic theme. It combines the features of horror with adventure story elements and features a smart main character who uses her skills and intelligence to save not only her life but also people she is responsible for.
The other books in the series are In Too Deep, The Way Back, The Gathering Darkness and One Final Mission. All of them are available for purchase in the Kindle format as a set, which may be a bit unfortunate for paperback lovers. On the other hand, buying books in the Kindle format is usually much more money-saving as it entails no shipping costs.
To wrap the whole thing up, Until Morning Comes and all the succeeding books should fit the taste of avid horror fans. The novels boast a loveable main character who will charm you with her wit and persistence, thrilling adventures, and, of course, lots and lots of gruesome horrors.
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Tony Urban Hell on Earth:
Strangers Unite to Survive
Tony Urban is yet another author who has a series of books about the zombie apocalypse. It is called The Life of The Dead (the first book is called Hell on Earth). Each book is available for purchase separately, but we recommend starting with this one since the events in the books are connected and they all have the same main characters.
Wim, Ramey, Mead, Bundy, Jorge, Emory, Juli, Grady, Mitch, Mina, Solomon, and Aben are twelve complete strangers. They all have completely different and at first sight, even incompatible personalities. One of them was a millionaire, the other one a farmer, and the third one a prisoner. But now, nothing matters since the world as we know it has come to an end. After the zombie apocalypse, all these people have to unite in order to survive. None of them has any survival skills and some barely manage to save their own humanity. But when the dead start eating those few stayed alive, they will try to save their lives at any cost.
Even though the author tries to tell the story of each character, he pays special attention to Wim. He is a 30-year-old farmer who has to sacrifice his life on a quiet farm when the zombies strike. The writer describes his internal struggles and his worries with vivid details, which makes him the most relatable character in the story.
Interesting Characters With Good Sense of Humor
The genre of this story is stated to be horror so, of course, the author couldn’t skip the bloody descriptions. Yet, Tony Urban also spices the story up with some dark humour many dialogues abound in. This makes the characters more realistic and interesting as they show their way to cope with the horrible zombie situation through their jokes. Some readers note that due to the abundance of characters, the story is a little hard to follow. However, if you do love the intricate stories built around multiple characters, you will enjoy this read.
As we've mentioned before, The Life of The Dead series includes 5 books: Hell on Earth, Road of the Damned, The Ark, I Kill the Dead, and the last instalment Red Runs the River. If you want to read more about Wim’s adventures to learn how his and other’s stories will end, we suggest you keep reading. And if you don’t prefer reading, the book is available in audio format as well.
All in all, we consider Hell on Earth by Tony Urban a great piece of the genre. The book has a lot of smart and memorable characters and interesting dialogues and boasts a well-thought-out plot that will unravel in other books. If you love long reads, this series may fit you to a T.
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Keith Taylor Last Man Standing:
Complete Trilogy in One Book
Keith Taylor has a massive writing experience as he tried his hand in various genres under a few different pen names. And even though his other books were pretty popular as well, his true calling is a post-apocalyptic fiction. You can see it for yourself while reading his trilogy Last Men Standing. It includes three books: Hunger, Cordyceps, and Vaccine, all of them collected in one volume for your convenience.
The main character of this series is Tom Freeman, an American citizen who faced the consequences of zombie invasion outside his homeland. He decides to run back home in the US, where there is still no infection and where he can return to the normal life, away from all this horror. But the truth may not be as promising as Tom wants since the horrific virus is following in his footsteps and the terrifying smell of the decomposed walking corpses invades his nightmares. As the disease progresses, millions of people are slaughtered, and there is barely a chance for salvation. All Tom can do now is to find enough food, supplies and armour, lock himself inside and stay in.
But unfortunately, this doesn’t help. Along with the whole world, the USA has fallen. What makes things even worse is that there are people who try to use the catastrophe opportunistically rather than unite and protect what is left of humanity. And when it looks like there is no light at the end of the tunnel, a glimpse of hope in the form of the vaccine appears on the horizon. But it is only the end of the third book where the reader will be able to find out if the human race will survive or not.
Long and Intense Read
Since this post-apocalyptic book contains the whole trilogy, the paperback version is a rather long read that contains more than 700 pages. It won’t be an easy read either. The book is full of descriptions of violent murders, zombies feeding on human flesh, and the brutality of people who will do horrible things just to save their own life. Yet, the read is very engaging and has a lot of intense action, so it will be really hard to put it down until you finish it. No parts of the book seem too boring or excessively long, and the author does a great job creating a thrilling horror story with the elements of drama.
Summing up, the Last Man Standing written by Keith Taylor is a great trilogy for zombie fans. The author uses all the popular genre tropes to create a solid piece of horror fiction that should fit the taste of those who are real big on such intense heavy literature.
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Max Brooks The Zombie Survival Guide:
Zombie Survival Guide Book
If you are a hardcore fan of zombie films and fiction, then the name of Max Brooks probably is not new to you. His name blew up in the mid-2000s when his best-seller World War Z came out. The book quickly became a classic of the genre. But before he wrote this horror story about the zombie plague, he has actually published a humorous take on the zombie apocalypse in his book with tips called The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead.
The book is divided into 6 parts. The author provides a detailed look at a fictional virus called Solanum that makes the dead people rise up from their graves. He then describes the virus outbreak, the ways it can spread (through bites, scratches, and so on) and how it affects the human body. The writer also states that there are not so many options when it comes to treating the virus (those include amputation of the infected limb and suicide). The reader also gets a detailed overview of the abilities of the living dead, their behaviour, and instincts. Besides, you'll come across a zombie classification and learn the difference between movie zombies, voodoo zombies, and his own living dead.
However, since it is a zombie survival guide book, Brooks gives the info on how to find a reliable safe refuge, efficient fighting techniques, and weapons. The author provides a fictional take on zombie encounters throughout history. The last few pages of the paperback and hardcover books are left blank for your personal notes.
All the Knowledge Collected In One Book
If you read a big number of zombie books, you probably already have some basic knowledge on what to do if the pandemic occurs. Books and literature usually describe pretty similar algorithms of actions such as getting as much canned food as possible, refraining from approaching zombies, doing your best to not let them bite you, running for your life, and aiming in the head when trying to kill them. But Max Brooks summarised all that knowledge in this pseudoscientific humorous book about the evens that could never happen (or could they?). Anyway, you'll get ready for the zombie invasion.
This book was highly praised for its unique and interesting concept, humour, and amazing writing. To fit the needs of different readers, the book is available in many formats including Kindle and audio format.
Overall, The Zombie Survival Guide is an original piece of zombie literature. It differs from typical zombie-themed books but we think it is still a worthy read.
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What Is a Zombie Book?
Considering how many zombie-related films, TV shows, books, and video games are available today, it might be hard to imagine that this term is actually quite new. Even though there is a whole lot of curses that turn the dead alive again, the first written record of this word dates back to 1819 and it was written as zombi originating from Brazillian history. Later on, its interpretation as a zombie was used by George A. Romero in the later works of his iconic series The Night of the Living Dead.
The zombie-focused plot usually describes some sort of a virus, disease, or a curse that brings those who passed away or were killed back to life. Yet, unlike with the resurrection, zombies don't remember who they were in the previous life. They are driven by two bare instincts: to kill and to feed. That’s why those who face a zombie usually turn out to be in fatal danger.
Zombie novels are usually filled with suspense and elements of a thriller. Such books are not easy or some entertaining read since the descriptions of a flesh-eating zombie’s brutality may not befit everyone.
But if you do like such stories, our selection of the best zombie books will suit you to a tee. And if you're on the lookout for some other thrilling books with intense plots, make sure to check out these horror books by Stephen King and mystery books.
What Features to Compare
Even though zombie literature became popular only in the 1990s, there are a few people who've already managed to make themselves a name in this genre. You can never go wrong with novels written by such classics as John Skip and Max Brooks, two Americal authors who have gained world fame and brought zombie fiction to a new level. However, don’t forget to give a chance to newcomers too. If you are really interested in a plot, read the book and, who knows, maybe you'll find your new favourite.
Speaking of the plot, there can be various plot tropes in zombie fiction. The most popular one so far is a post-apocalyptic story. In such books, the author describes either future or parallel reality where zombies have taken over the planet and those few people who have managed to survive, try to fight back the creatures. If you are not a fan of such stories, there are books that describe events when the magnitude of the disaster is much smaller. In such books, everything starts with only one zombie or they usually invade one town, city, or even one science lab. Such stories can be no less interesting and exciting than those depicting millions of living dead. Even Stephen King himself used this trope in his novel Cell.
Zombie novels are usually described as horror stories (more specifically, a survival horror) and thrillers with a flair of fiction and science fiction. However, it is not always the case: there are multiple subgenres that can be used for a zombie book. If the action takes place in the past, especially against the background of some significant event, this automatically makes the book a historical novel as well.
Believe it or not, a zombie trope can be used even in romantic comedies. In 2010, Isaac Marion published his novel Warm Bodies that became a massive hit and a best-seller and even was adapted for the big screen. There are other light stories, in which the living dead retain their humanity and people have some sort of happy ending.
Like in any other genre, such books can come as a stand-alone novel or be part of the series. The series may vary as well. Some of them depict struggles of the same characters trying to fight zombies while others show different characters and describe their actions in similar settings. So, if you would like to spend more time with one character, consider starting a series.
Number of Pages and Format
Depending on the length of the stories, the books may vary in a number of pages. When it comes to the zombie genre, anthology series with a few short stand-alone novels can be frequently found as well. And of course, these books are often available in various formats. Whether you prefer to have a paperback version, read a novel on your e-book or listen to audiobooks on your smartphone or tablet, you will be able to find something to fit your taste.
The Origin of the Term
The word zombie is actually very closely connected with the magic world of voodoo. The roots of the word go to the west-African word zombi, which (according to the different sources) could mean either “a small god” or “a soul of the dead”. The word spread on to Haiti with the slaves from Africa that were moved there to work on plantations.
The Very First Descriptions
There, on Haiti, the cult of powerful voodoo witches and sorcerers began to grow. The legends said that these people were able to hypnotise a person or even a whole crowd and turn people into will-less creatures that would blindly follow any given orders. The term zombie appeared in Americal literature in 1929. William Seabrook in his book The Magic Island wrote about the life of Haitian slaves, his own experience there, and described some of the voodoo rituals from the perspective of an occultist. The story about zombie slaves was later adapted in one of the very first horror films White Zombie in 1932.
The Beginning of Zombie Films
The success of the film inspired many independent film-makers to take the concept of the will-less, mindless creatures created by evil voodoo sorcerers and use it for their plots. The descriptions of zombies with similar features can also be found in the literature of the 19th and 20th centuries. Even when it comes to classic pieces of writing like Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, you can clearly see that the theme of the living dead was present even there.
Romero's Breakthrough in the Genre
The image of the modern-day zombie (which is a flesh-eating, weirdly-walking corpse) was created by the American film writer and director George A. Romero who made a number of films in his world-known series Night of the Living Dead. Even though he doesn’t use the word zombie directly in the film, people began to use it in the modern-day meaning after these films started to come out.
Night of the Living Dead also gave a boost to a completely new movie and fiction genre, which is a zombie apocalypse. Usually, in such stories, a small group of people try to survive in a word invaded by zombies. Authors take various things that launch a global plague. A virus, parasite, or curse are the most common methods of bringing the dead back to life. But even though the root cause can vary, modern zombies usually have similar features and can be killed in the same way, which is destroying their brain.
Nowadays, the creators also try to experiment with the appearance of their monsters to make them more unique and interesting while still fitting in the cannon. Thus, the creators of the game Resident Evil bring mutants to their stories and the creators of the series The Walking Dead imply that they can evolve. So, there are various ways to pursue this theme and the zombie genre will continue to evolve.