Feed by Mira Grant

Posted by Cobalt | Posted in | Posted on 6:39 AM


Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.

First, a disclaimer.

I do not like zombies.

I don't enjoy zombie movies, I do not read zombie books, and I generally fail to see the appeal of the shambling dead.

But Grant's book has zombies and bloggers, and that combination was enough to hook me. Her prose, her universe, and most especially her characters' relationships kept me hooked, even though I knew -- I knew! -- according to the Rules of Zombieworld, that This Would Not End Well.

So Georgia Mason and her brother Shaun live in a world that has defeated the common cold, cured cancer...and accidentally unleashed an epidemic of the living dead.

Oops.

Georgia and Shaun grew up with this world, so the constant terror isn't actually new -- and it's fascinating to see how American society has adapted to the constant threat of having one's face chewed off by deceased friends and relatives. Usually this involves hiding indoors and testing your blood a lot.

Georgia and Shaun are constantly outside, instead, because of their jobs -- they are among the elite bloggers in the news/entertainment industry, and their entire lives revolve around drawing the ratings. After the Rising, the main media lost the peoples' trust and respect, largely because of their denialism and reports of Zombies, Pshaw! -- meanwhile, ordinary citizens were blogging about How to Kill That Thing Moaning in Your Yard.

So Georgia and Shaun go gallivanting about, bringing the latest news and thrills to the general populace hiding in their secure compounds, and garnering minor celebrity status in the process. So much status, in fact, that their blogging team is selected to cover the presidential campaign - by accompanying Senator Ryman, candidate for the GOP, on the trail to the convention.

I was fascinated by Grant's take on the media, politics, and everyday life in an atmosphere of constant fear -- even more so because it seemed utterly plausible and strikingly similar to today. But mostly I loved the relationship between Georgia and Shaun. They win the award for Best Sibling Relationship I've read so far -- bickering, bantering, covering each others' backs, and being unabashedly honest about their love and trust in each other.

If I wanted to be really analytical, I could talk about the parallels of zombie virology (Grant has crafted a fascinating model of infection) and the 'viral' spread of information among people with the blogging universe, crowdsourcing and communications advancements...but mostly?

Georgia + Shaun = Love.

This is the first in a series, so be prepared to be left wanting more (alas! for the Rise of the Series has sorely tested my Waiting Skills).

So go out and read Feed. Even if you've never read a zombie book; even if you have an allergy to the ambulatory departed....read this. You won't regret it.

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