Book Review – World War Z

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2 stars out of 5 on Amazon and Goodreads

***MINOR SPOILAGE FOLLOWS***

The zombie apocalypse is very big in my office. Cubicles are adorned with Official Zombie Hunting Licenses and bumper stickers proclaiming the owner as part of a Zombie Response Team. Most zombie apocalypse fans in my office are guys in their 30’s and are followers of The Walking Dead TV series.  Now, I tried The Walking Dead and soon found myself, more often than not, wondering when the show is going to be over.

I take a backseat to no one when it comes to my horror fan bone fides. But horror to me means light, shade, dread, mystery and creepiness. It means more of what is unseen than is seen. Yes, I’m a big fan of the zombie apocalypse Ur-text Night of The Living Dead and, more recently, well made movies like 28 Days Later. In the main, though, zombie story telling in the 21st century leaves me yawning. More often than not the tale of the zombie apocalypse devolves into one of the avaricious bitchiness of the survivors. Unfortunately, Max Brooks’ World War Z falls into this trap.
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Book Review – Paris

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2 stars out of 5  on Amazon and Goodreads

In four decades or so of voracious reading, I have never once been inspired to
pre-order a book. Until, that is, this previous winter when I found out the
release date for Paris. I sprained a finger mouse-clicking my way to Amazon to
make sure my copy was downloaded the minute midnight of April 23rd arrived.
Given how much I’d enjoyed Rutherfurd’s previous work and the subject he was
tackling in this, his latest novel, I knew I’d be in for hours of…dare I say
it…”delightful” reading.

The respect I have for Edward Rutherfurd and
the enjoyment I’ve experienced reading his work probably accounts for the second
star. I was very deeply disappointed with Rutherfurd’s effort here. Before I
wrote this review, I thought perhaps that it was unfair to judge Paris against,
say London or Sarum. Even if not judged against the quality of Rutherfurd’s
other books, though, in a vacuum Paris would have still received very low
marks.
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