Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Chris Pauls and Matt Solomon
Genre: Horror, Adventure
Description: It is 1912 and a scientist in Germany has discovered a new plague that while deadly, might hold the cure to curing a number of other deadly diseases. When he discovers that the German military doesn’t want to use it for good but instead want to use the formula as a biological warfare weapon, the scientist decides to escape to America via the maiden voyage of the new ship, the Titanic. Unfortunately, the Germans send an assassin after him to steal the virus. In an attempt to test it to make sure the virus is the real virus, the assassin unwittingly unleashes a zombie plague aboard the Titanic. A small group of brave people, including the scientist, a young girl, and Captain Smith, band together to kill the undead before they infect everyone. Of course, there is still that pesky problem of that iceberg . . .
Opinion: One would think that a spoof book on zombies aboard the Titanic would just be a fluff read but in reality this book was really, really good and well-written. Real historical characters and a zombiefied alternative history that could have possibly really happened (for a zombie outbreak plot) all tie well together with a narrative that is suspenseful, funny, violent and gory, and touching at the same time. The misguided German scientist, the young tomboy he ends up caring for, the courageous doctor who sacrifices his own life to save others, and the Captain who swears to go down with his ship are all realistic and individually drawn characters that the reader comes to care about. The true identity of the assassin is kept a good secret for the whole novel until the shocking climax. My only real complaint was how long it took the men to realize what it was that was spreading the zombie plague throughout the ship at an alarmingly fast rate—it should have been obvious. A zombie alternative history that is highly recommended, especially to teens who are obsessed with the Titanic.
Note: I thank Lea Yancey at Chronicle for sending me a free copy of the book to review, along with some other zombie goodies. : )