This was a fun summer read, one that I read on the (undead) heels of World War Z (and by the same author).
This treats the zombie virus—dubbed Solanum in this book—as a centuries-old plague. It details survival plans in case of a "Level 3" outbreak, and includes lists of supplies and the best weapons and modes of transportation.
I enjoyed how it treats all of this in a serious way, but there is a definite tongue-in-cheek attitude here. I couldn’t help but laugh at a few things. I loved the way it encouraged survivors under siege to stay entertained by staging talent nights that include music, dance, storytelling, and comedy in order to keep up morale. When the end of the world is nigh, let’s put on a talent show, kids!
I also loved the ridicule of the Lone Wolf savior (a Rambo figure, if I had to put a name on it): "...anyone believing this should simply strip naked, holler for the undead, then lay down on a silver platter." A definite sense of humor there, and those passages made me laugh.
My favorite part was the listing of outbreaks throughout the years, some confirmed, many not. It seems that there is a big government cover-up of the zombie virus! I don't want to read more into this than was intended, but I can't help but think of conspiracy theories (especially among the right wing) that encourage survivalist tactics. I could be wrong, but I wonder if Max Brooks was parodying that a bit? The entire book seemed like a bit of a dig at militia and survivalist types.
This was a quick read and is worth it for any zombie or apocalypse scenario aficionado.