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The Living Dead 2 has more of what zombie fans hunger for: more scares, more action, more... brains! Experience the indispensable series that defines the very best in zombie literature with a shambling, ravenous herd of original stories. The Living Dead 2 also features a slavering horde of reprint zombie stories. All this adds up to a landmark volume that helps define what The Living Dead 2 has more of what zombie fans hunger for: more scares, more action, more... brains! Experience the indispensable series that defines the very best in zombie literature with a shambling, ravenous herd of original stories. The Living Dead 2 also features a slavering horde of reprint zombie stories. All this adds up to a landmark volume that helps define what zombie godfather John Skipp calls "The New Zombie Literature." Additional contributing authors: Joe McKinney Carrie Ryan Kim Paffenroth R.J. Sevin Julia Sevin Catherine MacLeod Mark McLaughlin Kyra Schon Steven Gould Catherynne M. Valente Jonathon Maberry Genevieve Valentine John Skipp Cody Goodfellow Sarah Langan “Last Stand” by Kelley Armstrong. © 2010 Kelley Armstrong. “Danger Word” by Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due. © 2004 Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due. Originally published in Dark Dreams. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Pirates vs. Zombies” by Amelia Beamer. © 2010 Amelia Beamer. “We Now Pause for Station Identification” by Gary A. Braunbeck. © 2005 Gary Braunbeck. Originally published as a limited edition chapbook by Endeavor Press. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Steve and Fred” by Max Brooks. © 2010 Max Brooks. “Living with the Dead” by Molly Brown. © 2007 Molly Brown. Originally published in Celebration: 50 Years of the British Science Fiction Association. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Zombie Gigolo” by S. G. Browne. © 2010 S. G. Browne. “The Anteroom” by Adam-Troy Castro. © 2010 Adam-Troy Castro. “The Human Race” by Scott Edelman. © 2009 Scott Edelman. Originally published in Space and Time. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Summer Place” by Bob Fingerman. © 2010 Bob Fingerman. “The Rapeworm” by Charles Coleman Finlay. © 2008 Charles Coleman Finlay. Originally published in Noctem Aeternus. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Tameshigiri” by Steven Gould. © 2010 Steven Gould. “Everglades” by Mira Grant. © 2010 Seanan McGuire. “The Mexican Bus” by Walter Greatshell. © 2010 Walter Greatshell. “He Said, Laughing” by Simon R. Green. © 2010 Simon R. Green. “Rural Dead” by Bret Hammond. © 2008 Bret Hammond. Originally published in Tales of the Zombie War. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Therapeutic Intervention” by Rory Harper. © 2008 Rory Harper. Originally published on eatourbrains.com. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Lost Canyon of the Dead” by Brian Keene. © 2010 Brian Keene. “Alone, Together” by Robert Kirkman. © 2010 Robert Kirkman. “The Skull-Faced City” by David Barr Kirtley. © 2010 David Barr Kirtley. “The Other Side” by Jamie Lackey. © 2010 Jamie Lackey. “Are You Trying to Tell Me This Is Heaven?” by Sarah Langan. © 2010 Sarah Langan. “Twenty-Three Snapshots of San Francisco” by Seth Lindberg. © 2001 Seth Lindberg. Originally published in Twilight Showcase. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Wrong Grave” by Kelly Link. © 2007 Kelly Link. Originally published in The Restless Dead. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Mouja” by Matt London. © 2010 Matt London. “Zero Tolerance” by Jonathan Maberry. © 2010 Jonathan Maberry. “Zombie Season” by Catherine MacLeod. © 2008 Catherine MacLeod. Originally published in Bits of the Dead. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Thought War” by Paul McAuley. © 2008 Paul McAuley. Originally published in Postscripts. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Dating in Dead World” by Joe McKinney. © 2010 Joe McKinney. “Arlene Schabowski of the Undead” by Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M. Schon. © 2007 Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M. Schon. Originally published in Midnight Premiere. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Who We Used to Be” by David Moody. © 2010 David Moody. “Thin Them Out” by Kim Paffenroth, R. J. Sevin, and Julia Sevin. © 2008 Kim Paffenroth, R. J. Sevin, and Julia Sevin. Originally published as a limited edition chapbook by Creeping Hemlock Press. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Category Five” by Marc Paoletti. © 2008 Marc Paoletti. Originally published in Sin. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Crocodiles” by Steven Popkes. © 2010 Steven Popkes. Originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Reluctance” by Cherie Priest. © 2010 Cherie Priest. “Flotsam & Jetsam” by Carrie Ryan. © 2010 Carrie Ryan. “Where the Heart Was” by David J. Schow. © 1993 David J. Schow. Originally published in Hottest Blood. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Price of a Slice” by John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow. © 2010 John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow. “Zombieville” by Paula R. Stiles © 2009 Paula R. Stiles. Originally published in Something Wicked. Reprinted by permission of the author. “When the Zombies Win” by Karina Sumner-Smith. © 2010 Karina Sumner-Smith. “The Days of Flaming Motorcycles” by Catherynne M. Valente. © 2010 Catherynne M. Valente. Originally published in Dark Faith. Reprinted by permission of the author. “And the Next, and the Next ” by Genevieve Valentine. © 2010 Genevieve Valentine. “Good People” by David Wellington. © 2010 David Wellington. “Obedience” by Brenna Yovanoff © 2009 Brenna Yovanoff. Originally published in Strange Horizons. Reprinted by permission of the author.


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The Living Dead 2 has more of what zombie fans hunger for: more scares, more action, more... brains! Experience the indispensable series that defines the very best in zombie literature with a shambling, ravenous herd of original stories. The Living Dead 2 also features a slavering horde of reprint zombie stories. All this adds up to a landmark volume that helps define what The Living Dead 2 has more of what zombie fans hunger for: more scares, more action, more... brains! Experience the indispensable series that defines the very best in zombie literature with a shambling, ravenous herd of original stories. The Living Dead 2 also features a slavering horde of reprint zombie stories. All this adds up to a landmark volume that helps define what zombie godfather John Skipp calls "The New Zombie Literature." Additional contributing authors: Joe McKinney Carrie Ryan Kim Paffenroth R.J. Sevin Julia Sevin Catherine MacLeod Mark McLaughlin Kyra Schon Steven Gould Catherynne M. Valente Jonathon Maberry Genevieve Valentine John Skipp Cody Goodfellow Sarah Langan “Last Stand” by Kelley Armstrong. © 2010 Kelley Armstrong. “Danger Word” by Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due. © 2004 Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due. Originally published in Dark Dreams. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Pirates vs. Zombies” by Amelia Beamer. © 2010 Amelia Beamer. “We Now Pause for Station Identification” by Gary A. Braunbeck. © 2005 Gary Braunbeck. Originally published as a limited edition chapbook by Endeavor Press. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Steve and Fred” by Max Brooks. © 2010 Max Brooks. “Living with the Dead” by Molly Brown. © 2007 Molly Brown. Originally published in Celebration: 50 Years of the British Science Fiction Association. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Zombie Gigolo” by S. G. Browne. © 2010 S. G. Browne. “The Anteroom” by Adam-Troy Castro. © 2010 Adam-Troy Castro. “The Human Race” by Scott Edelman. © 2009 Scott Edelman. Originally published in Space and Time. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Summer Place” by Bob Fingerman. © 2010 Bob Fingerman. “The Rapeworm” by Charles Coleman Finlay. © 2008 Charles Coleman Finlay. Originally published in Noctem Aeternus. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Tameshigiri” by Steven Gould. © 2010 Steven Gould. “Everglades” by Mira Grant. © 2010 Seanan McGuire. “The Mexican Bus” by Walter Greatshell. © 2010 Walter Greatshell. “He Said, Laughing” by Simon R. Green. © 2010 Simon R. Green. “Rural Dead” by Bret Hammond. © 2008 Bret Hammond. Originally published in Tales of the Zombie War. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Therapeutic Intervention” by Rory Harper. © 2008 Rory Harper. Originally published on eatourbrains.com. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Lost Canyon of the Dead” by Brian Keene. © 2010 Brian Keene. “Alone, Together” by Robert Kirkman. © 2010 Robert Kirkman. “The Skull-Faced City” by David Barr Kirtley. © 2010 David Barr Kirtley. “The Other Side” by Jamie Lackey. © 2010 Jamie Lackey. “Are You Trying to Tell Me This Is Heaven?” by Sarah Langan. © 2010 Sarah Langan. “Twenty-Three Snapshots of San Francisco” by Seth Lindberg. © 2001 Seth Lindberg. Originally published in Twilight Showcase. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Wrong Grave” by Kelly Link. © 2007 Kelly Link. Originally published in The Restless Dead. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Mouja” by Matt London. © 2010 Matt London. “Zero Tolerance” by Jonathan Maberry. © 2010 Jonathan Maberry. “Zombie Season” by Catherine MacLeod. © 2008 Catherine MacLeod. Originally published in Bits of the Dead. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Thought War” by Paul McAuley. © 2008 Paul McAuley. Originally published in Postscripts. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Dating in Dead World” by Joe McKinney. © 2010 Joe McKinney. “Arlene Schabowski of the Undead” by Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M. Schon. © 2007 Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M. Schon. Originally published in Midnight Premiere. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Who We Used to Be” by David Moody. © 2010 David Moody. “Thin Them Out” by Kim Paffenroth, R. J. Sevin, and Julia Sevin. © 2008 Kim Paffenroth, R. J. Sevin, and Julia Sevin. Originally published as a limited edition chapbook by Creeping Hemlock Press. Reprinted by permission of the authors. “Category Five” by Marc Paoletti. © 2008 Marc Paoletti. Originally published in Sin. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Crocodiles” by Steven Popkes. © 2010 Steven Popkes. Originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Reprinted by permission of the author. “Reluctance” by Cherie Priest. © 2010 Cherie Priest. “Flotsam & Jetsam” by Carrie Ryan. © 2010 Carrie Ryan. “Where the Heart Was” by David J. Schow. © 1993 David J. Schow. Originally published in Hottest Blood. Reprinted by permission of the author. “The Price of a Slice” by John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow. © 2010 John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow. “Zombieville” by Paula R. Stiles © 2009 Paula R. Stiles. Originally published in Something Wicked. Reprinted by permission of the author. “When the Zombies Win” by Karina Sumner-Smith. © 2010 Karina Sumner-Smith. “The Days of Flaming Motorcycles” by Catherynne M. Valente. © 2010 Catherynne M. Valente. Originally published in Dark Faith. Reprinted by permission of the author. “And the Next, and the Next ” by Genevieve Valentine. © 2010 Genevieve Valentine. “Good People” by David Wellington. © 2010 David Wellington. “Obedience” by Brenna Yovanoff © 2009 Brenna Yovanoff. Originally published in Strange Horizons. Reprinted by permission of the author.

30 review for The Living Dead 2

  1. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Lyons

    While reading this one I was forced to acknowledge a sad truth about anthologies today: They just don't make em like they used to. While there were some really great stories in this antho (largely by proven authors like Gary A Braunbeck, David J Schow, Brian Keene, Sarah Langan and Jonathan Maberry) most of them just weren't all that stellar and came off more as tales you could easily forget shortly after finishing the book. Maybe I'm a bit spoiled having gotten hooked on horror in the 90s when While reading this one I was forced to acknowledge a sad truth about anthologies today: They just don't make em like they used to. While there were some really great stories in this antho (largely by proven authors like Gary A Braunbeck, David J Schow, Brian Keene, Sarah Langan and Jonathan Maberry) most of them just weren't all that stellar and came off more as tales you could easily forget shortly after finishing the book. Maybe I'm a bit spoiled having gotten hooked on horror in the 90s when there was a virtual glut of great authors and anthos in the genre but I really think this thing could have been a lot better. I remember feeling that the first Living Dead antho had led to several skipped stories and just about as much disappointment so this time I made a point of not only reading every one of the stories in the book but also rating them individually as I went along. Here's a list of how I rated them in order of how they were placed in the book: Five Stars ***** Living With the Dead by Molly Brown: I liked this story because it offered a truly original take on the undead without coming off as forced or declaring itself original in capital letters. Here we find a nice subtle tale about a world in which the undead are unnerving but otherwise harmless and while peaceful also worthy of our pity. Where the Heart Was by David J Schow: This story is a classic from the 90s that many of us zombie and splatterpunk fans are sure to have read at least once or twice before. It’s got a nice tight pace and is a tale of the bizarre return of one dead boyfriend who’s determined to stop things from getting too steamy between his girlfriend and the new guy, real determined. Lost Canyon of the Dead by Brian Keene: Keene has more than proven he can write a great zombie story. Here he adds something new to the mix by setting the zombie plague in a strange and unexpected place where dinosaurs still walk and are just as susceptible to the plague. Obedience by Brenna Yavanoff: This story is told through the eyes of a focused and determined military officer’s eyes as she and her group struggle through the undead. The Rapeworm by Charles Coleman Findlay: Here the walking dead are a bit more than a shambling horde and it is the contagion itself which affects the two families struggling to live away from the cities where it is most virulent. Subtle and haunting. Everglades by Mira Grant: Rather than focusing on the dead themselves this tale focuses on one college students memories of a life in the bayou as a child and the parallels she draws between them and the world she lives in after the dead have come to affect it. We Now Pause for Station Identification by Gary A Braunbeck: This one beautifully captures the desperation of being the last person left as a talk show radio personality keeps on broadcasting after it seems there is no one left to hear him. I actually found myself rereading this one and even reading it out loud to my fiancé, it’s just that good! Rural Dead by Bret Hammond: Hammond addresses a new sort of survivor and the surprising way that the Old Order Amish in his tale deal with this new intrusion from the modern world. Very original! Therapeutic Intervention by Rory Harper: Here the author uses his own experience with addicts to address how the undead might be treated for their problems. Flotsam and Jestsam by Carrie Ryan: Two young men are stranded in a life raft after the cruise ship on which they were travelling with friends was overtaken by the undead. This could have been a tale about paranoia and fear but instead it becomes a story about the depths of despair and loneliness making it a very touching story. Zero Tolerance by Jonathan Maberry: Maberry takes us to Afghanistan and shows the depths to which humanity can sink during war. This one’s a very nice action story with some seriously thoughtful bits about the horrors of torture and the desperation that can lead people to destroy each other. Are You Trying to Sell Me This Heaven? By Sarah Langan: This one was one of my very favorites focusing on the relationship between a father and his estranged and troubled daughter who he’s set out to rescue in the midst of the undead apocalypse. Four Stars **** Danger Word by Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due: This story is a traumatized boy and his loving grandfather who are surviving the dead quietly but will soon have to face the problem in more personal ways. Category Five by Marc Paoletti: Here the undead are floating in the flood waters unleashed on New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina but the story is about a man and his dying wife and his desperate desire to reclaim their lives. Good People by David Wellington: A nicely put together story with a few interesting bits and an end which points out a simple fact about “good people” in a zombie apocalypse. Zombie Gigolo by S G Browne: Browne carries over the humor of his novel Breathers in this tale of a suffering undead male prostitute. Definitely not for the squeamish. Dating in a Dead World by Joe McKinney: This one imagines what it might be like to have to prove yourself to a particularly protective dad post zombie apocalypse. Very fun and adventurous. Thin Them Out by Kim Paffenroth, RJ Sevin and Julia Sevin: A nicely put together story about survival both as a zombie and as a survivor facing infighting and depleating supplies. Tameshigiri by Steven Gould: A very nice story about a group of ninja learning to wield their weapons and face the dead with bravery even when the face is that of those we once knew. The Days of Flaming Motorcycles by Catherynne M Valenta : Another story about an unusual form of living dead which isn’t really death at all but some new way of living. Three Stars *** Mouja by Matt London: A tale of samurai facing the undead during the meiji era in Japan. I liked it but it wasn’t as strong as I wanted it to be for as original an idea as it was. Twenty-three Snapshots of San Francisco by Seth Lindberg: This one does something original by having the narrator tell his tale through the snapshots he has left afterwards. Unfortunately it also remains very emotionless and therefore doesn’t offer the impact it really should. The Mexican Bus by Walter Greatshell: While the storytelling is nice the reader doesn’t really get any ideas on why only women are turned into zombies much less why they would be blue. It felt like walking in on a movie that was already half over. The Other Side by Jamie Lackey: Two friends deal with the consequences of peer pressure and a paranoid new world. The main character make a mistake that costs his friend far more than him and inevitably you can’t respect him much afterwards. I also wanted to know more about the girl in the story. The Skull Faced City by David Barr Kirtley: This is a companion story to the piece Kirtley published in the first Living Dead which featured rival college boys and their lady love. In this story one of the talking dead is looking for his sister and finds her in the Skull Faced City. It was interesting to go back to the same world but it fell a little flat trying to be both serious and amusing. Steve and Fred by Max Brooks: A humorous overblown hero and a desperately trapped weakling are paired up in this story about survival after the dead come back. It’s all too clear that we’re supposed to see their mistakes over their stories in this piece and I just didn’t like it as much as Brooks’ novel and survival guide. Reluctance by Cherie Priest: I admit it I’m just not all that big on steampunk and really this story isn’t long enough to really fit into a zombie antho even if it does have the dead they’re a bit secondary to the hero here. Arlene Schabowski of the Undead by Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M Schon: Don’t get me wrong I think it was neat to read a story in which the girl from the original Night of the Living Dead reimagines her life if it had been affected by her undead movie counterpart but it just doesn’t go together as well as it should have. The Wrong Grave by Kelley Link: I liked this story but it’s too cute for a zombie antho it’s really more a fun fantasy story about two lovers and interrupts the flow of the other stories which are all horror with a few humor tales. The beginning also takes far too long to get going. Who We Used to be by David Moody: This was an interesting idea, unfortunately it was also as much a torture for the reader as it was for the family in the story. He Said, Laughing by Simon R Greene: I liked the opening part of this Vietnam era soldier’s tale ( think Dolph Lundgren) unfortunately it all fell apart when he met the Major he was sent to take out and the undead army he’d been using. There’s nothing sadder than a hardcase who goes limp at the sight of real danger. Last Stand by Kelley Armstrong: This story has interesting twist but it doesn’t quite make you like it’s protagonists before it springs it on you. The Thought War by Paul McCauley: This one presents an interesting take on inter dimensional beings and their slow assimilation of the world but there’s just not enough there to really sell the piece. And the Next, And the Next by Genevieve Valentine: One man tries to escape the dead by hiding among them but it’s far too late to escape. Unfortunately the story didn’t really pack the punch ut should have. The Price of Slice by John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow: I’m surprised at how flat this one was coming from these two. It moves around a lot and so you don’t quite get to really get into the heads of each of its protagonists. Two Stars ** The Crocodiles by Steven Popkes: Natzis and zombies are overdone. While the writing was written well enough it didn’t offer enough life to a tale which had been done already. The Human Race by Scott Edelman: The overbearing suicidal mindset of the protagonist here made me want her dead. It drove me nuts trying to get past her whining and to the story beyond it. Zombie Season by Catherine MacLeod: Fun cute little thing that it is this story doesn’t really have any substance and so doesn’t really stay in mind. One Star * With most of these being at the front of the book I almost gave up reading it. Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman: I love The Walking Dead it’s one of my very favorite graphic novel series and so this tale pales very much in comparison. I’ve read many other stories just like it and so I was let down by this one. Zombieville by Paula R Stiles : This one just came off as very bland. The Anteroom by Adam-Troy Castro: A special purgatory just for those who’d been the undead? This story tries too hard to be original and is clearly inhabited by a ridiculously judgmental god. When the Zombies Win by Karina Sumner-Smith: Does it take much to imagine a world in which there’s nothing for the zombies to devour? Really? Pirates Vs Zombies: Tries to be funny but just comes off as silly and inane. The Summer Place by Bob Fingerman: Probably the story I liked least in this book . The protagonist claims to miss his dead wife and yet lusts after/loves? An undead girl he randomly sees because he’s lonely? I don’t really care if this jerk lives and so the story is largely moot.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Joe

    Speaking from the perspective of a long-time zombie fan who has been carrying the torch for George Romero since the early 70s (when i got a glimpse of Night of The Living Dead at far too young an age for it), I am starting to run toward zombie overload. I love this stuff, but the way it has been coming out recently? We are getting almost as bad as Stephanie Meyer fans and her teenage lust-struck vampires. Thank goodness zombie apocalypse tales tend to be a bit more literate and a bit more varied Speaking from the perspective of a long-time zombie fan who has been carrying the torch for George Romero since the early 70s (when i got a glimpse of Night of The Living Dead at far too young an age for it), I am starting to run toward zombie overload. I love this stuff, but the way it has been coming out recently? We are getting almost as bad as Stephanie Meyer fans and her teenage lust-struck vampires. Thank goodness zombie apocalypse tales tend to be a bit more literate and a bit more varied than that. Actually, that is one of the things I emjoy about zombie stories. Zombies seem to be a horror icon that invites the the attention any number of would-be writers. Actually, horror in general seems to be a genre that invites a lot of amateur participation which is often quite good, especially on the scale of short stories. In my experience the zombie sub-genre invites the very best participation, producing all sorts of nicely literate commentary on society, personal relationships, environmental issues or politcs. Perhaps that is why the sub-genre is running on overdrive right now. Wh this is I don't know. My personal pet theory is that it's because stories of the zombie apocalypse reverse a long-standing horror tradition. In most horror tales a monster is monstrous becuase it stands apart from society. Society defines what is human, while the monster is either a unique individual, or a member of shunned or underground subculture. In a zombie apocalypse tale it is the greater society that has become monstrous, while the humans take the roles of the individuals, or belong to an endangered subculture. It's a perspective that gives zombie story writers a unique view of society. In any case, this is another fine collection of zombie tales, many of which will give you much to ponder. It's every bit as good as the first collection in this series.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Eva Marie

    The reviews of the stories that could not fit into this review are in the comment section starting at comment #10. Sorry but GR only allows reviews of less than 20,000 characters. :( Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman (3 stars) - I would read a full length book if this story was/is expanded on. It's not the best one I've read so far, IMO, but it's definitely good. I'm not so into the whole 'love story in the middle of zombie territory' but some people can pull it off. Danger Word by Steven Barnes & The reviews of the stories that could not fit into this review are in the comment section starting at comment #10. Sorry but GR only allows reviews of less than 20,000 characters. :( Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman (3 stars) - I would read a full length book if this story was/is expanded on. It's not the best one I've read so far, IMO, but it's definitely good. I'm not so into the whole 'love story in the middle of zombie territory' but some people can pull it off. Danger Word by Steven Barnes & Tananarive Due (5 stars) - Whoa. Just whoa. I so would read if this was/is expanded upon. I hope it is expanded upon. From the editor's note on these authors I can already tell these will be two I'll look up for other books. The little boy's part in the story really did it for me - that and his Grandfather was an awesome character. Zombieville by Paula R. Stiles (3.5/4 stars) - This one was good but I couldn't get over the main character, the narrator. Apparently it was a man but it sounded like a female to me, from the beginning to end. Even after I learned it was a man I couldn't get it out of my head. That tells me something was off, IMO. I'd have a problem with that if it were an entire book for sure. I'm curious to know if anyone else felt like this. The foreign words bugged me a little - too many of them for my taste and one or two couldn't be easily detected with context clues. The Anteroom by Adam-Troy Castro (4/4.5 stars) - This was a new premise to me. I haven't read any zombie stories about what happens to zombies once they're put down. The parental aspect of this story is what made it even more horror-filled for me. Definitely a real good one. When the Zombies Win by Karina Sumner-Smith (3 stars) This was far too short for me to even get a feel for. I have a feeling, had even five more pages been given, that I'd feel quite different but with a 3 page story I just can't say. Mouja by Matt London (5 stars) - The best I've read so far. This drew my attention like no other yet. (This was only the 6th though.) I'd definitely, definitely, definitely read a longer version of this and I'll definitely, definitely, definitely look to see about his other books, if there are any. Category Five by Marc Paoletti (4.5/5 stars) - Old people and kids. Something horrible happening to old people and/or kids will do it every time. I think that's the worst of the worst for me personally, that's what will scare me the worst every single time. Kids would be first in that line but old people right on their heels. This story is about an elderly couple and the decision the poor husband has to make after facing what's happening to the world. It's as sad as it is scary. I don't know how it would be if it were longer, say a whole book, because it's pretty cut and dry, but Paoletti is talented and even in this short story that's obvious. I'll look at his page and see if he has others I can read sometime. Living with the Dead by Molly Brown (4 stars) - I can't say as much as I'd like here. Obviously if the story was longer I'd have a better grasp of it and I feel like I didn't read enough to go into detail like I would like. The story is strange and very unique. Just from the little I read I can tell I wouldn't mind reading something else, or this in a longer version, by Brown. I didn't care for the ending as much as the rest of the story but then again, with it being so short, it really wasn't explained. The intrigue is there but it kind of leaves you hanging. Obviously, since I gave it 4 stars, it's a good one though. Twenty-three Snapshots of San Francisco by Seth Lindberg (3.5 stars) - First, has anyone ever wondered why people in old-timey photos are never smiling? I had never thought about it too much but I have had fleeting thoughts about that here or there during my lifetime. Knowing next to nothing about photography I learned here, in John Joseph Adams bio about Lindberg, that apparently back in the day the cameras had such long exposure times that people didn't want to hold a smile for so long. Makes sense. Funny the things you learn. Anyway, about the story - this is the most unique I've read so far. Not just in the book but overall. The story starts with a few paragraphs, like normal, but after that the story is told in a series of snapshots. As in, # such-and-such and Lindberg goes on to explain that photo. There is a stream to them but it's not exact and it's not exactly expected either. I wouldn't think I'd like a story written like this if I heard someone tell me how it was but I actually enjoyed it very much. I don't know how one could/would turn something written like this into a full story but if it was/is I'd definitely give it a read. The Mexican Bus by Walter Greatshell (3 stars) - I really like Greatshell's writing but I didn't care much for the story. There is no background at all which, even for a short story like this, goes a long way IMO. Nothing is explained at all. Why do these women turn? Why only the women? Is it indeed only the women? Not even that is very clear. I wouldn't count the author out and I'll probably take a look for other books to see if any capture my interest but the "blue people" part of this made it too sci-fi for my taste. The Other Side by Jamie Lackey (4 stars) - This is very, very short. Like, 3 pages short. That's just not long enough for me to get a good take on a story. I can say that Lackey is a good writer IMO. I can say I think I'd like this story with more to it. The little of the characters I did see what great, well developed and interesting. The setting was probably the best part. Most zombie-lit that I've read ends when either the people still alive die or when the zombies' asses are kicked (for the most part at least) but this is totally different. This is set well after the zombies have been pushed back. It's not known if they're all gone or what but none have been seen for many years here. It's also sort of YA because the two main characters are both female high school students. This would be, out of the stories I've read so far, one of the first three I'd pick to read more of if I had the chance. Where the Heart Was by David J. Schow (5 stars) I really, really liked this one. The gore-level is off the charts but the amazing thing is that it's funny at the same time! I liked the characters which made the whole story that much better. I don't know how a mind can come up with this type of story - it's amazing. I'm really excited to read more! Good People by David Wellington (5 stars) - This was a really good one. One of my favs easily. (There are a lot of 4.5 - 5 star books included here.) I'll definitely read more by Wellington. Lost Canyon of the Dead by Brian Keene (5 stars) - Another really good one. When I read what the editor, John Joseph Adams, wrote before Keene's story I wasn't sure if it'd be for me. Adam's sort of outlines the coming story a bit and I just didn't see how this would capture my attention. It did. It's in the fav group for sure. I'd love to read a longer version sometime. Pirates Vs. Zombies by Amelia Beamer (4 stars) - The story is only four and a half pages long but I could tell the storyline is good. I'm not much for pirates but they did make for a good story here. The only thing was I didn't care for Beamer's writing exactly. I think I'd like it better written in another style. Even with that though it's still very good. The Crocodiles by Steven Popkes (4.5 stars) - This story is one of the longer ones at 18 pages. This one has a Nazi twinge to it and anyone who knows me knows that I'm a big reader of Holocaust material, fiction or otherwise. The fact that this has that element interested me much. Outside of that though I really like Popkes writing. The storyline is good, the characters are all interesting, and I'd really, really, like to read more of this exact story. If I can't ever do that I can settle for Popkes other stories (if there are any.) The Skull-Faced City by David Barr Kirtley (5 stars) - Kirtley has a kind of prequel to this story in The Living Dead which I just have to read. I was already planning on getting it in the near future if only because Adams proved he can pull together some very decent stories and authors. But now that one of my favs from this has another in the first book, I must get it sooner. I didn't care much for the ending in this story but what I read before more than made up for that. This is one of the winner's in this compilation. Obedience by Brenna Yovanoff (3.5 stars) - Should I thank Yovanoff for my now healthy fear of vaccinations? This is a good one, not of the best IMO, but definitely a good one. I like the plot with the vaccinations - that's a new one for me although I'm sure there's a full length book out there somewhere along the same lines. It's scary though when you're a Mom of a young kid who just had some shots the week before. :) Steve and Fred by Max Brooks (3 stars) - This was a little upsetting because when I saw Brooks' name I got excited. I love some of his other works like World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War and The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead. I thought this would be killer, if not the best of the bunch. Instead I found it just mediocre. Honestly, although I hate admitting this, I was a bit confused with the story, with Naomi and all. Maybe it was just me. I'm not exactly a zombie expert yet. The following review has a bit of a spoiler in it beginning with the third sentence on. The Rapeworm by Charles Coleman Finlay (5 stars) - This is another one in the best group. There were a few minor parts that I felt would have been better with a slight change or two. One example would be when Mike and the boy's Dad leave to go get Amanda. Their Dad, seeing and knowing and more importantly, already understanding that his youngest son, Nick, was infected, leaves his older son, Josh, who is uninfected, alone with him. Why not leave Nick alone and take Josh along? Knowing the little nuances of the story, what with the infected being basically catatonic, that would have seemed the better bet. Of course, that would have thrown off the entire ending but at the very least I'd have liked some plausible reason for leaving Nick behind like he did. End spoiler. But as anyone can see, it's still a 5 star book for me. :) Besides my little irk above the story is fantastic - totally scary and borderline not being able to sleep after reading it. It's unique also - I've never come across anything like it yet. Everglades by Mira Grant (3.5 stars) - This was too short for me to get a real grasp on it and while I liked the setting and set-up there really wasn't any details about the alligator aspect. Not enough for me anyway. Maybe that was due to the length of this short story but regardless it left things flat. I'd like to try to read a full length of this and see if that would take me anywhere. We Now Pause for Station Identification by Gary A. Braunbeck (3.5 stars) - I'm one of those people who really get into certain characters. They don't even have to be main characters sometimes - just ones that for whatever reason - or no reason at all maybe - "click". That happened here. (As with some other stories in this collection but I haven't noted it until now for reason you'll soon hear.) So, I really liked the main character but the infestation didn't really hold me. At all. That was because he was in the station the entire time and there were no parts of him having any direct contact I think. So in the end I can't really scream about the story because while the character(s) are important the rest of the story is too and this left me feeling like I kind of only got half the story. Reluctance by Cherie Priest (3 stars) - This story was okay but it didn't move enough for me. Not enough happened for me to really start liking it. Priest isn't a bad author IMO and I can't say her writing isn't to my liking either. This story just didn't do anything for me. Arlene Schabowski of the Undead by Mark McLaughlin & Kyra M. Schon (2 stars) - Again, the writing isn't bad but the story didn't interest me. I guess this is to be expected with a collection of short stories and so many different authors and different kinds of stories. I'm actually very lucky because all in all I think there were only three or four I didn't care for. With this one in particular I could tell from Adams' bio/description that it wasn't for me. Zombie Gigolo by S.G. Browne (4 stars) - Wow. Two whole pages. Am I the only person out here who doesn't consider two pages a 'short story'? Two pages, IMO, is more like 'a few paragraphs'. Obviously I liked this because of the 4 stars but still. I don't understand... So, when I read Adams' bio/description and read the gross warning I was intrigued. I mean, this is a zombie book full of horror. This next story (all of two pages in case you hadn't heard) needed a warning? Is it gross? Yeah. Did it need a warning? No. Did I like it? Obviously. I find myself steering away from any zombie-lit that's supposed to be humorous. Zombies just aren't meant to be funny for me. They're supposed to be scary and mean and all those things. And don't get me wrong, they're all that here too. But this did make me laugh out loud a few times. That was because of the authors humorous way of wording certain things. I get the impression he'd be a hoot to be around in real life. Or apparently dead life also. This is one of the better ones.... even if it IS only TWO pages LONG. :) Rural Dead by Bret Hammond (5 stars) - This wasn't much longer than the last but it does have a few pages on Zombie Gigolo. Those few pages make it a short story IMO. Anyway, I didn't make many notes on this one besides the fact I feel it's 5 stars. After looking through the story just now I know why I didn't make any extra notes. I don't know what to say. It's a really good story and I have no doubt that if Hammon hasn't yet he can come up with a killer story revolving around this here short story. (I slip into hick speak every now and then for the fun of it. I get pleasure from little things.) I'm going to check to see if this was pulled from another, longer book, and if it wasn't I hope this stuck with Hammond enough that he'll decide to continue it. The Amish twinge is just awesome. The Summer Place by Bob Fingerman (5 stars) - Another funny one. I love Fingerman's humor here. This is another one you just have to read. I really can't explain it. Definitely one of the better ones in the book IMO. The Wrong Grave by Kelly Link (3.5 stars) - Link's writing is good and I did like the story here. The premise is pretty scary - digging up the wrong grave and all that. I don't know what I think would have made it better for me. I can't put my finger on it. Maybe this is one of the ones I just need more of to be able to really get into it. I didn't like the very end at all either.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Sheldon

    An outstanding anthology. The stories range from heart-breaking to nerve-wracking, and feature every type of zombie you could imagine and then some. The writing is top-notch. Recommended not just for horror fans, but for lovers of beautifully crafted stories.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Krysten

    I was going to do a story-by-story analysis of the book, but I ended up skipping or skimming so many stories it would be pointless. They all sucked, and the ones that didn't suck sucked harder. There was definitely one about a zombie gigolo that almost made me throw up after a couple paragraphs. Mostly the stories were unremarkable. Especially the one by Robert Kirkman. Is anyone but me willing to acknowledge that while Walking Dead is awesome, Kirkman's writing style is cringe-worthy? I guess m I was going to do a story-by-story analysis of the book, but I ended up skipping or skimming so many stories it would be pointless. They all sucked, and the ones that didn't suck sucked harder. There was definitely one about a zombie gigolo that almost made me throw up after a couple paragraphs. Mostly the stories were unremarkable. Especially the one by Robert Kirkman. Is anyone but me willing to acknowledge that while Walking Dead is awesome, Kirkman's writing style is cringe-worthy? I guess most genre authors tend to write poorly, at least in my opinion, and I just get fed up with that. Give me just one brilliantly conceived line of prose. Even when I'm looking to read something stupid like a bunch of zombie stories I am annoyed by lack of genius. And the fucking introductions to the stories are just atrocious, almost unspeakably so. The editor always tries to be clever and alllllways fails. At one point he said that zombies and dinosaurs (or two equally ludicrous things) were like chocolate and peanut butter and I almost threw the book across the room. Later still, he did the unforgivable: he confused the Arctic and the Antarctic. NOT COOL, GUY. NOT COOL. I think this will be my last of Adams's always-disappointing anthologies.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    I confess that I started reading GR reviews for this anthology only a few stories in. Most of the reviews were describing the stories as terrible, which surprised me. Terrible? Not really. They were mediocre, but not the bottom-of-the-bargain-bin-at-the-second-hand-book-fair terrible like some of the books I've sampled. These people, I mused, were clearly soft. But they're not. There are some stories in here that are truly terrible. They need to be removed from reality. Potentially even the auth I confess that I started reading GR reviews for this anthology only a few stories in. Most of the reviews were describing the stories as terrible, which surprised me. Terrible? Not really. They were mediocre, but not the bottom-of-the-bargain-bin-at-the-second-hand-book-fair terrible like some of the books I've sampled. These people, I mused, were clearly soft. But they're not. There are some stories in here that are truly terrible. They need to be removed from reality. Potentially even the author too. Just... bad. The majority of the stories are cliched and generally dull. But some are just awful. Humans running away from zombies. Yawn. A man wandering around weeping outside the gates of heaven, because he was a zombie and heaven won't let him in? Ergh. A zombie gigolo? Yeech. "semi-tumescent wang"? No. No. Bad book, bad. No dinner for you.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Christine Paiva Stewart

    Amazing collection of short stories about Zombies! A few of my faves were"The Other Side","When the Zombies Win", "Category 5", "Skull faced City", "He said, laughing, "Zombie Gigolo" and "the Rapeworm". "The Rapeworm" was so disturbing it will stay with me in the wee smalls for the rest of my life! NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART! Amazing, 5 stars, a keeper. Amazing collection of short stories about Zombies! A few of my faves were"The Other Side","When the Zombies Win", "Category 5", "Skull faced City", "He said, laughing, "Zombie Gigolo" and "the Rapeworm". "The Rapeworm" was so disturbing it will stay with me in the wee smalls for the rest of my life! NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART! Amazing, 5 stars, a keeper.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Overall, i enjoyed this book very much. It had grossery (is that a word?) horror, humor, sadness, and some downright terrible stories that i couldn't make it through. I'm an avid fan of a good zombie story and i couldn't help picking this book up at the library. So here is an individual analysis of each story: 5 Stars***** Obviously, my favorites The Anteroom by Adam-Troy Castro This was some good 2nd person prose. It was different, and i liked the twist on the afterlife and the possibility that zom Overall, i enjoyed this book very much. It had grossery (is that a word?) horror, humor, sadness, and some downright terrible stories that i couldn't make it through. I'm an avid fan of a good zombie story and i couldn't help picking this book up at the library. So here is an individual analysis of each story: 5 Stars***** Obviously, my favorites The Anteroom by Adam-Troy Castro This was some good 2nd person prose. It was different, and i liked the twist on the afterlife and the possibility that zombies have an afterlife. The "you" was a man. castro shouldn't have declared this. He should've left it open. When the Zombies Win by Karina Sumner-Smith Good work. Very accurate and eery. Category 5 by Marc Paoletti This was, well, a triller. The mixture of a hurricane and the dead rising from the waves was creative and gave it a hopeless edge. The old man was determined to get his sick wife out of there rickety house; that was sad. 23 Snapshots of San Francisco by Seth Lindberg I LOVED this. The story of how the zombie apocalypse affected a group of friends unfolds through pictures. I got attached to the characters just by reading about the snapshots of them. It was sad, funny, awkward, all of it. Good People by David Wellington Very, very, sad. But very, very realistic. Pirates vs. Zombies by Amelia Beamer Justin Chase. What a funny guy. These teens steal a boat and call themselves pirates. One ends up turning and they throw him overboard, but later use him as a slave (with the whip) My favorite part was when the protagonist sang "In Da Club" by 50 Cent at the top of his lungs. The Rapeworm by Charles Coleman Finlay So aliens caused the virus. I enjoyed this. A father tries to keep his kids safe in the forest and runs into another father and his daughter. Their kids get into trouble and two of them get infected. So much for keeping his kids safe. We Now Pause for Station Identification by gary A. Braunbeck This was different but good. The protagonist was/is a radio talk show host and the whole story his him broadcasting to no one. Nonstop commentary by a guy whos stuck in the broadcasting booth. He talks about everything. I made me feel lonely. Arlene Schabowski of the Undead by Mark McLaughlin and Kyra M. Schon So this lady played a zombie kid in a movie and ended up having the character stuck in her mind. She got used to it. Then she visits an attic and her world starts turning into Arlene's (the dead girl), all black and white and farmtown-ish, while Arlene's world turns to color and modernicity. They eventually meet in the attic. Fun read. Rural Dead by Bret Hammond I can't imagine the Amish actually using the dead like that but you never know. The Wrong Grave by Kelly Link So Miles wrote some poetry for his girlfriend and buried it with her when she died. Less than a year later, he dug her up to get the poetry back. Except it was the wrong grave: there's this creepy tall girl in there instead. He tried to escape her but she kept coming back. Then she let him go. Turns out, she really was his girlfriend and she just changed her looks to play a joke on him. Serves him right. Therapeutic Intervention by Rory Harper It was funny and a relief from the few stories before it. A therapist talks to a zombie who's trying to go vegetarian by eating cow brain instead of a humans. He said, Laughing by Simon R. Green I'm not usually a big fan of stories that mix history with zombies but this one was written well, had a solid, tortured protagonist and a plotline that was well thought out (vietnam war era) and paced. Last Stand by Kelley Armstrong 10 years after a flu epidemic, there's two species: others (the living) and the infected. Monica leads an army of the infected against the others. This w really enjoyed, and there's a twist that suprised and confused me. The Thought War by Paul McAuley I enjoyed this. Dating in a Dead World by Joe McKinney Okay. I thought this was going to be really stupid but oh how i was wrong. Andrew Hudson is a badass that's been on his own since he was six in the poorest part of a "sanctuary". He takes a girl, the daughter of the most powerful guy in the place, on a date, which turns into an action packed battle for their lives when a rival powerful man attacks the place. Did i mention Andrew has two glocks and a machete and does most of his badassery on a motorcycle? Flotsam and Jetsam by Carrie Ryan Takes place around the time of the Return. I loved Ryan's Forest of Hands and Teeth trilogy and this is a great prequel/companion story. 2 guys get stuck in a life raft for days after the virus breaks out on their cruise ship- and one of them is bitten. And the Next, and the Next by Genivieve Valentine Another 2nd person story, its a little eery as the protagonist (you) hides among the zombies and makes their way across miles and miles of land to find someone. You do, but she comes to an unhappy end. So do you. 4 Stars**** Good stories that i liked Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman I can't say it's my favorite, but it's a keeper. The protagonist is a douche though. Danger Word by Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due This story was actually kind of sad. I felt really bad for the kid, Kendrick. Most zombie stories don't pay attention to how it all affects children- especially one that lost both his parents at a very young age, and in front of his very own eyes too. So does Grandpa Joe get Kendrick? The Other Side by Jamie Lackey I liked this. it's set in this fenced off village years after the apocalypse. The protagonist was best friends with this nerdy girl but he wanted to be popular. His popular dfriends threw the girl over the fence to see if the zombies would get her. She was there for 3 days. The people wouldn't let her back in. I'll let you imagine what happend. Lost Canyon of the Dead by Brian Keene Cowboys, dinosaurs, zombies. This was a fun, funky read. Written well. Random mix of survivors make their way across a desert with a horde of dead animals and people hot on their heels. Then dead birds (zombie birds! that is some scary stuff!) come and they flee- only to end up in an unmapped forests where dinosairs thrive. The Skull-Faced City by David Barr Kirtley Strong plot, strong protagonist. The whole skull-faced and superiority over humans is creepy. Reminded me of a demon. The human army is called the "Sons of Perdition" and they're at war with the intelligent zombies. Park lets himself be chnaged and lies his way to become lieutenant with the zombies just to save his sister from their captivity. Everglades by Mira Grant This was pretty good. Small groups of survivors hold up in different departments of a college campus. The world outside has been overtaken by nature and the protagonist lets herself get taken by it after realizing she doesn't want to fake her presence on earth any longer, or whatever. Reluctance by Cherie Priest I kept waiting for something to happen, but it didn't come. The escape on the airship was pretty cool though. Poor pilot. Coming to a town expecting shelter and food and finding a horde of the dead. The Summer Place by Bob Fingerman A guy takes refuge on a deserted island and loses his mind. He lusts for his dead wife and goes all googly-eyed over a dead girl, fucks her, then gets bitten by a zombie deer. Poor, lonely guy. Who We Used to Be by David Moody Dull and gross. Everyone just dies one day and then comes back and slowly decays. The protagonist Simons talks about the decline of his life. His wife tries to keep up normalcy even long after her body ripens and falls apart. The son doesn't care. He just wants to play. Then the whole of the dead neighbors surround the house. What's with that? Peer pressure to join the undead. This story tortures the reader as much as the family. The Days of Flaming Motorcycles by Catherynne M. Valente This was bizarre. I liked it but it's far from my favorite list. It was written well and the plot was interesting and folded out nice. 3 Stars*** eh, borderline likeness Living with the Dead by Molly Brown This was hilarious. I almost died laughing, and came back to laugh some more at these "zombies" who just sat in a park and stared off into space. People would comb their hair and give them food like they were some new kind of pet. I mean, seriously? Steve and Fred by Max Brooks Steve and Fred have two different stories. Steve is an arrogant guy who thinks of himself as a badass marine and his story ended with no real end. It felt like a snippet from a novel: no beginning, no end. Then Fred is a coward janitor who locked himself in the toilet room of a hotel. Not the whole bathroom, just the toilet room. That had no end either. The Human Race by Scott Edelman This was quite boring. All of it was this whiny girl planning her suicide around the time of the apocalypse. She spends half the story in the morgue beside the corpse of her father, whining that he won't come back the the rest of the dead population. Thin Them Out by Kim Paffenroth, R.J. Sevin. and Julia Sevin The only part i particularly liked was the prose written in the zombies POV. The rest was uninteresting and unrealistic to me. Zombie Season by Catherine Mcleod Too short. I didn't get the point. Grave-digger turned zombie killer. Okay? Zero Tolerance by Jonathan Maberry I skimmed over this story because I couldn't get into it. It started out okay but it got too dull. Are You Trying to Tell me This is Heaven? by sarah Langan Interesting plot and characters but when it got to the part of the girl sucking the blood, t was turned away. Obedience by Brenna Yovanoff I didn't get the point. I mean, there's this group of military people who are on their way to a researcg lab to find a cure. All of them get turned except for 2. And BUGSPRAY repelling zombies? Really? 2 Stars** Good enough for 2 stars but forget anything higher Zombieville by Paula R. Stiles At first, i was interested cause it takes place in a different country, but it fell flat. the unamed protagonist was uninteresting. Unpronouncable words popping up every line, and zombie animals? Really? I find that forced and cheesy. The only "big" and "exciting" thing that happend was when Cyndi stormed out of the closet with a spear. Mouja by Matt London Another one set in another country. Some may like it but it wasn't my cup of tea. Where the Heart Was by... So this story was basically about sex and zombies. and sex. Two people are "messing around" when her dead ex barges in. It's written poorly and it's repetitive. heres a line that displays repetitive: "The bulb end of the bat smashed Victor's dead left ear deep into the dead left hemisphere of his dead brain." We get it! He's dead! The protagonist, Renny, is a dick. Plus, what's with the words? I like big words but damn! What does "mesomorphic? mean? or "glib"? Also they held a funeral for the dead guy (after Renny killed him) and Renny and the girl did it afterwards. I did like this line though: "If the thing making the noise was a mouse, it was dragging off a dog for a bit of fun." Tamshigiri by Steven Gould Uh, What? *mouth hangs open* That is all. 1 Star* These just didn't make the cut. The Mexican Bus by Walter Greatshell. Why are only women zombies? And why the hell are they blue? That is all. The Crocodiles by Steven Popkes I read the first page. It was enough. That counts, right? Zombie Gigolo by S.G. Browne This was disgusting. I'm ashamed to say i even read it. I can't even believe i read it. It gets 1 star because it was written for a worlds gorssest story contest. The Price of a Slice by John Skipp and Cody Goodfellow I didn't read it after the boring first page. These guys can write better. So there's my thoughts on each and every story and i think its a book every avid zombie fan needs to read.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Maddalena

    The zombie theme has never been more actual as it is these days, with literature and both screens – the big and the small one – often employing it for stories, although it’s difficult to find tales that try to look beyond the far-too-easy shock of blood and gore, focusing rather on the psychology of characters and their reaction to the apocalypse they are desperately trying to survive. Recently I discovered a sampler of this book through the Baen Free Library showcasing some of the stories conta The zombie theme has never been more actual as it is these days, with literature and both screens – the big and the small one – often employing it for stories, although it’s difficult to find tales that try to look beyond the far-too-easy shock of blood and gore, focusing rather on the psychology of characters and their reaction to the apocalypse they are desperately trying to survive. Recently I discovered a sampler of this book through the Baen Free Library showcasing some of the stories contained in one of two larger anthologies dedicated to the living dead, and decided to take a look: some of the offerings were quite weird – like the one that sees events from the point of view of an Amish community (“Rural Dead” by Bret Hammond), or the one whose premise is that all of humanity dies and wakes up as zombies, and follows the plight of a family as they try to get on with their non-lives as much as they can (“Who We Used to Be” by David Moody) – but a few truly left their mark on my imagination, my favorites being the two I’ve chosen to showcase [...] Full review at SPACE and SORCERY Blog

  10. 4 out of 5

    Steven Lee

    As I've previously written writing a review for an anthology is always a struggle. What I will say is that the anthology does a great job in putting new perspectives and ideas into the classic zombie format. Many different kinds of zombie fiction are represented. From my recollection there was little in this book that I found disturbing or made me feel uneasy. I don't like gross-out horror, which is not in evidence here. I don't need vivid descriptions of teeth biting into rotten flesh, thanks. As I've previously written writing a review for an anthology is always a struggle. What I will say is that the anthology does a great job in putting new perspectives and ideas into the classic zombie format. Many different kinds of zombie fiction are represented. From my recollection there was little in this book that I found disturbing or made me feel uneasy. I don't like gross-out horror, which is not in evidence here. I don't need vivid descriptions of teeth biting into rotten flesh, thanks. I wish to call out a few stories that I felt stood out in the collection. Twenty-three Snapshots of San Francisco by Seth Lindberg, The Skull-Faced City by David Barr Kirtley, The Rapeworm by Charles Coleman Finlay, We Now Pause for Station Identification by Gary A. Braunbeck, and Dating in Dead World by Joe McKinney. Each of these stories offered something that stood out to me. Running down the index they can be clearly remembered and offered a fascinating tale within the collection. If anything I would say this may be superior than the first volume in this series. That one, if memory serves, was dominated by reprints while this one had many original stories by prominent authors who work in the genre. If you like zombie fiction I would say this is definitely worth a read.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Donald

    "Is it necrophilia if you're both dead?" Reading this now, during the COVID-19 pandemic, makes me think how it could be worse! 😀 Reading some of these on the day that celebrates Jesus rising from the dead makes me think that it could be better too! The undead on these pages are not so forgiving! Lots of short stories in here! Some hits, some misses, but all zombies! You have stories from "The Walking Dead"'s Robert Kirkman and "World War Z"'s Max Brooks, among many others. My favorite in this coll "Is it necrophilia if you're both dead?" Reading this now, during the COVID-19 pandemic, makes me think how it could be worse! 😀 Reading some of these on the day that celebrates Jesus rising from the dead makes me think that it could be better too! The undead on these pages are not so forgiving! Lots of short stories in here! Some hits, some misses, but all zombies! You have stories from "The Walking Dead"'s Robert Kirkman and "World War Z"'s Max Brooks, among many others. My favorite in this collection was "Twenty-Three Snapshots of San Francisco" by Seth Lindberg. I also enjoyed "The Rapeworm" by Charles Coleman Finlay quite a bit! And for a complete and total gross out, please enjoy "Zombie Gigolo" by S.G. Browne! ex. - "If you've never had maggots crawling around inside your rectal cavity and feasting on your subcutaneous fat, you probably wouldn't understand." No Mr. Browne. No I wouldn't.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sara Gilliland

    The things I love about anthologies, is that it is filled with unique insights into a theme, rather then just following the same hero till the end, you get to see different hero’s, some you will love like the Amish story for me, some you will hate, some will totally gross you out like one story did, some will really make you laugh, especially if your like me and some heroes die by doing something silly that you know you just should not do in a zombie outbreak, ha ha, some make you cheer for the The things I love about anthologies, is that it is filled with unique insights into a theme, rather then just following the same hero till the end, you get to see different hero’s, some you will love like the Amish story for me, some you will hate, some will totally gross you out like one story did, some will really make you laugh, especially if your like me and some heroes die by doing something silly that you know you just should not do in a zombie outbreak, ha ha, some make you cheer for the zombies, while others make you wish that the story was longer it was just that amazing, I would definitely recommend this book! I would also recommend that you read the first Anthology of Zombies as some of these stories are in the same worlds!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    Anthologies can be a really hit or miss affair but The Living Dead 2 was a fantastic collection. Each story had a different take on the zombie apocalypse. They ranged from the personal ("Are You Trying To Tell Me This Is Heaven", "The Anteroom") to the action packed ("Zero Tolerance", "Lost Canyon of the Dead") to the simply gross ("Zombie Gigolo") There is literally something for every one in this collection. I look forward to reading more of John Joseph Adam's collections. Anthologies can be a really hit or miss affair but The Living Dead 2 was a fantastic collection. Each story had a different take on the zombie apocalypse. They ranged from the personal ("Are You Trying To Tell Me This Is Heaven", "The Anteroom") to the action packed ("Zero Tolerance", "Lost Canyon of the Dead") to the simply gross ("Zombie Gigolo") There is literally something for every one in this collection. I look forward to reading more of John Joseph Adam's collections.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    If you like short stories and zombies you'll like this book I enjoyed all the stories except the last two. Really great read before bed. Not all the stories are your typical zombie stories so I enjoyed that. If you like short stories and zombies you'll like this book I enjoyed all the stories except the last two. Really great read before bed. Not all the stories are your typical zombie stories so I enjoyed that.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Boo

    Another book filled with zombies. Count me in. An amazing collection of zombie books.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kai Charles(Fiction State Of Mind)

    Anthologies are always a mixed bag, this one unfortuately wasnt stellar. THE GOOD I bought this Anthology for one reason only: Robert Kirkman. I'm a huge fan of his comic The Walking Dead so I was excited to see his very first published prose story: Alone,Together This story is about a couple trying to stay alive after a zombie apocalypse. The narraton focuses on the reminiscence of Timothy about his former love and his current relationship. I really enjoyed this story,what it lacks in zombie viole Anthologies are always a mixed bag, this one unfortuately wasnt stellar. THE GOOD I bought this Anthology for one reason only: Robert Kirkman. I'm a huge fan of his comic The Walking Dead so I was excited to see his very first published prose story: Alone,Together This story is about a couple trying to stay alive after a zombie apocalypse. The narraton focuses on the reminiscence of Timothy about his former love and his current relationship. I really enjoyed this story,what it lacks in zombie violence it makes up for it in character developement, a theme that is prevelant in the comic book series. DANGER WORD I really liked this story! Young Kendric is living with his grandfather. He rarely speakes, still dealing with the trauma of the zombie attack on the closest city. Granpa Joe was always thought a little paranoid by his daughter and husband. He routinely wanted to teach Kendrick to shoot guns and was always talking safety protocols with his parents. One of those was the institition of a Danger Wod, one even Kendrick's parents didnt know, this saves Kendrick's life as for two days he is able to resist opening the door to a safe room his mother has put him into. Thats right, in Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due's universe the zombies are able to talk and be coherent for brief periods of time, this story kept me guessing til the end . GOOD PEOPLE David Wellington's story Good People is one of the gems of this anthology. It has all the halmarks of a good story. You come to care about the characters quite abit in the early pages, a band of people drawn together trying to stay alive. It also focuses on the hard choices that people need to make at the end of the world , especially Good People. Lost Canyon of the Dead Brian Keen is the shock jock of Zombie fiction, he stretches the zombie genre and never fails to entertain. I can sum this story up in two words: Zombie Dinosaurs!!! Must read Reluctance This short story is set in the same Zombie Steampunk universe as her book Boneshaker. This is a great story that hopefully will get Priest a lot of new readers. A member of the Dirigible Express Post Office stops in the small town of reluctance and finds a city overrun with zombies! Lots of thrills and a satisfying conclusion. Zombie Gigolo Those two words? They give you all you need to know about S.G. Browne's story about a zombie who "services" fellow female zombies. UGH!! Cringe worthy read. Last Stand Kelly Armstrong gives us a fascinating short story about a last bastion of survivors trying to survive from the Others, but who is the true Monster in this scenario. Good Read. Those are the stars of this collection, A worthy purchase for Zombie fans but with the number of stories in the Anthology I expected to enjoy more of the stories.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Benjamin

    Following a blogpost by Chuck Wending suggesting that people mix-and-match various classics, I've been thinking about zombies, both as monster and as symbol/trope; and since I happened to have a Selection of stories from this anthology and no other zombie fiction, this is what I read. (Also, is it true that there's no zombie fiction that occurs with the people stuck in a bank?) Here are the stories I read: Matt London, "Mouja": Zombies invade The Seven Samurai. Doesn't quite get beyond the premis Following a blogpost by Chuck Wending suggesting that people mix-and-match various classics, I've been thinking about zombies, both as monster and as symbol/trope; and since I happened to have a Selection of stories from this anthology and no other zombie fiction, this is what I read. (Also, is it true that there's no zombie fiction that occurs with the people stuck in a bank?) Here are the stories I read: Matt London, "Mouja": Zombies invade The Seven Samurai. Doesn't quite get beyond the premise. David Barr Kirtley, "The Skull-Faced City": A sequel to Kirtley's "Skull-Faced Boy," which is available on his website. "Skull-Faced Boy" involves two smart zombies, one of whom organizes an army of the dead, the other who sides with the living. This sequel involves a zombie who is searching for his still-living sister, worming his way into the zombie empire (which is, also, crumbling in the face of a human militia). Fine, but not brilliant; and it annoys me very much when zombies talk without lungs. Brenna Yovanoff, "Obedience": A military group enters a research building and, of course, the zombie subject gets out of hand. Nicely different zombies--these grin and laugh. Bret Hammond, "Rural Dead": Amish elder tells the story of how his village kept zombies in the barn as livestock; and how some mean scavengers got themselves killed by trying to steal the livestock. A fun incident, but not much of a story. David Moody, "Who We Used to Be": Everyone dies and people have to decide how they want to live their final days as their bodies decompose. Mom and dad dissolve over months at home, while kid goes out to explore the world and dies quickly. Could've been shorter. Carrie Ryan, "Flotsam & Jetsam": Two boys escape a cruise ship, one of them is bitten. A very nicely done bit of first-person voice from a borderline annoying character. Catherynne M. Valente, "The Days of Flaming Motorcycles": The last person in Augusta lives with zombies and it's not all that different from previously economically-depressed Augusta. I have a soft spot for fiction that deals with real-world issues. Genevieve Valentine, "And the Next, and the Next": Second-person POV instructions on getting out of zombie-dominated New York by acting calm. A little long and there are some parentheticals that I think could've been done without parentheses.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Valentin

    From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. You don't have to be a zombie-lover to enjoy this outstanding follow-up to 2008's The Living Dead. Anthologist extraordinaire Adams has assembled 43 stories that showcase strong writing and imagination. Unexpected settings include a lost world with surviving dinosaurs (Brian Keene's "Lost Canyon of the Dead") and a pirate ship (Amelia Beamer's "Pirates vs. Zombies"). Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due's "Danger Word" and David Wellington's "Good People" cont From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. You don't have to be a zombie-lover to enjoy this outstanding follow-up to 2008's The Living Dead. Anthologist extraordinaire Adams has assembled 43 stories that showcase strong writing and imagination. Unexpected settings include a lost world with surviving dinosaurs (Brian Keene's "Lost Canyon of the Dead") and a pirate ship (Amelia Beamer's "Pirates vs. Zombies"). Steven Barnes and Tananarive Due's "Danger Word" and David Wellington's "Good People" contain powerful depictions of humans facing extinction at the hands of the undead. Cherie Priest revisits the walled, zombie-infested Seattle of her Clockwork Century books in "Reluctance" and Mira Grant adds to her Newsflesh trilogy with "Everglades." For the most part, the authors convey horror through suggestion rather than graphic gore. Readers will hope for many further additions to the series even after the zombie craze passes. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Product Description Two years ago, readers eagerly devoured The Living Dead. Publishers Weekly named it one of the Best Books of the Year, and Barnes & Noble.com called it "The best zombie fiction collection ever." Now acclaimed editor John Joseph Adams is back for another bite at the apple -- the Adam's apple, that is -- with 43 more of the best, most chilling, most thrilling zombie stories anywhere, including virtuoso performances by zombie fiction legends Max Brooks (World War Z, The Zombie Survival Guide), Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead), and David Wellington (Monster Island). From Left 4 Dead to Zombieland to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, ghoulishness has never been more exciting and relevant. Within these pages samurai warriors face off against the legions of hell, necrotic dinosaurs haunt a mysterious lost world, and eerily clever zombies organize their mindless brethren into a terrifying army. You'll even witness nightmare scenarios in which humanity is utterly wiped away beneath a relentless tide of fetid flesh. The Living Dead 2 has more of what zombie fans hunger for -- more scares, more action, more... brains. Experience the indispensable series that defines the very best in zombie literature.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alex Telander

    After the runaway success of The Living Dead, editor John Joseph Adams is back with a follow up collection featuring a whole host of new authors writing about the walking dead. So grab a big cup of coffee, a warm blanket, and sequester yourself in a dark, quiet room, with one window looking out onto you don’t know what, and take a trip into a series of meetings with beings who want nothing more than to eat you alive, while you scream. The collection begins with a short introduction by Adams going After the runaway success of The Living Dead, editor John Joseph Adams is back with a follow up collection featuring a whole host of new authors writing about the walking dead. So grab a big cup of coffee, a warm blanket, and sequester yourself in a dark, quiet room, with one window looking out onto you don’t know what, and take a trip into a series of meetings with beings who want nothing more than to eat you alive, while you scream. The collection begins with a short introduction by Adams going over the success of The Living Dead, and why it is that the world now seems obsessed with these dead things who were once living people . . . as well as bringing up a number of successful projects that have come about in all mediums on the subject of zombies. Then the journey begins, around the world, and into other ones, into the past and the future, even some dinosaur zombies, all featuring those unforgettable walking dead. A number of zombie authors are featured, like Robert Kirkman, Jonathan Maberry, and David Wellington, as well as other authors you might not think of writing about zombies, such as Kelly Link, Steven Barnes, David Moody, Catherynne M. Valente, Sarah Langan, and Simon R. Green. Then there are a number of authors previously interviewed on BookBanter making the cut in The Living Dead 2, including S. G. Browne, Mira Grant, and Cherie Priest. The beauty of any anthology is you can start that story and just not be that impressed with it; so you skip on to the next one, and find yourself totally blown away but the incredible plot and characters. You discover new writers to love and read, and others to avoid. Regardless of your interests for a specific type of story involving the walking dead, you will find many entertaining and terrifying tales in The Living Dead 2 that will make you keep looking up at that dark window, wondering if you just heard something scratching that could be a branch . . . or perhaps the decaying fingers of a zombie. Originally written on December 21, 2010 ©Alex C. Telander. For over 500 book reviews, and over 40 exclusive author interviews (both audio and written), visit BookBanter.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Hailey Cheek

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. So far in The Living Dead 2, by John Joseph Adams I have read the first five fictional short stories. The short story from The Living Dead 2 I love reading the most so far is Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman. Brief summary of this short story, there is this guy named Timothy who lost the love of his life to the outbreak of zombies and he and this other girl are trying to survive the apocalypse together. Little did she know that Tim let her boyfriend get killed by the zombies. I would describe t So far in The Living Dead 2, by John Joseph Adams I have read the first five fictional short stories. The short story from The Living Dead 2 I love reading the most so far is Alone, Together by Robert Kirkman. Brief summary of this short story, there is this guy named Timothy who lost the love of his life to the outbreak of zombies and he and this other girl are trying to survive the apocalypse together. Little did she know that Tim let her boyfriend get killed by the zombies. I would describe this short story as a must read to people who like this sort of drama. At first, I thought I felt bad for Timothy because he has lost everything in the zombie outbreak and just when he gets close to a girl after his girlfriend dies he tells her that he purposely let the girl's boyfriend die. Now I think in the end, he deserved her leaving him because if he really did like her then he should have told her that he may have let her boyfriend die at the beginning. The most important message here is you should always be up front and honest with a person at the beginning, especially when its the only person left. You are potentially spending the rest of your life at this point with this person, you should tell them everything they need to know. In this case, everything INCLUDES telling them you let their boyfriend die. We can all benefit from that message because face it, we lie. Humans are made to lie, but in drastic situations we should feel compelled to tell the truth no matter how devastating it is. A golden line from this book for me is "Whether she's meant to or not, she has killed me. I won't last more than five days alone. Truth be told-without her, I didn't want to." I love that line because we can finally feel remorse from Timothy! He feels terrible about letting that feeling of jealousy take over him to the point where he would kill for human companionship. Despite me saying earlier I felt bad for him at the beginning and he deserved it at the end, at this point in the story I felt sincerely bad for him. This short story is a must read and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lexie

    (I read and reviewed only those stories which I am interested in. As such this is an on-going review as I read the stories) "Everglades" by Mira Grant (part of the Newsflesh universe) Debbie thinks about the lessons her Grandpa used to tell her about and how some things just aren't worth surviving. This is set just after the breakout of the epidemic (about two or so decades before Feed) and concerns a small group of survivors waiting for rescue on a college campus. I think that the story has a wei (I read and reviewed only those stories which I am interested in. As such this is an on-going review as I read the stories) "Everglades" by Mira Grant (part of the Newsflesh universe) Debbie thinks about the lessons her Grandpa used to tell her about and how some things just aren't worth surviving. This is set just after the breakout of the epidemic (about two or so decades before Feed) and concerns a small group of survivors waiting for rescue on a college campus. I think that the story has a weight to it, a definite sense of foreboding, but resigning yourself to a fate is better than waiting for it to surprise you. There was also a natural progression from one moment to the next. Debbie's memories of spending time in Florida with her grandfather watching alligators flow into her bottled up grief over her family and friends and lastly her knowledge that in the end people are temporary, but Death is eternal. "Flotsam and Jetsam" by Carrie Ryan (part of her Forest of Hands and Teeth universe) Two guys, one lifeboat and hey the zombie apocalypse came a-knocking...I'm more than certain this is set before Ryan's short story "Bougainvillea" (from Zombies vs. Unicorns), which in and of itself is set a decade or so after the mudo rose up. The intro claims that its set several hundred years before The Forest of Hands and Teeth (which helps my theory that there are many generations between when the mudo first came to be and when we first meet Mary). If nothing else, the characters are still in shock about the dead rising and call them zombies. This is a worrisome little story about one guy who isn't bitten, one guy who is and what complete despair and desperation does to a person. Its bleak (like all of Ryan's works) and offers no comfort unless you are lucky enough to be one of the dead-dead.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Peter

    Another collection of zombie tales, from a variety of authors. I think I liked this one a little more than its immediate predecessor, The Living Dead, but it's a bit tricky to judge... because while I can't think of a standout story from this collection, I also didn't find any that were just a slog and I hated reading, except perhaps the last couple, but to be fair I think that was more about me coming down with a case of STAF (Single Theme Anthology Fatigue) rather than the stories themselves. I Another collection of zombie tales, from a variety of authors. I think I liked this one a little more than its immediate predecessor, The Living Dead, but it's a bit tricky to judge... because while I can't think of a standout story from this collection, I also didn't find any that were just a slog and I hated reading, except perhaps the last couple, but to be fair I think that was more about me coming down with a case of STAF (Single Theme Anthology Fatigue) rather than the stories themselves. In the previous volume, I experienced both extremes (although the ones I didn't care for at all outweighed the other one. The thing I liked more about volume 2 is that virtually all of the stories were about the traditional zombie apocalypse model. There were variations on the theme, of course... some caused by an infection, some caused by supernatural, some where the zombies had intelligence or retained their personality, some historical, some that were based on a specific genre book with its own rules, but the basics of the zombie apocalypse genre: a spreading plague where if you get bitten, you become one, was pretty much constant (there are exceptions, but they're extremely rare). In the previous volume there were too many stories were the zombies were one-offs, a vengeful spirit seeking revenge or animated by a magic curse (or technology) but not spreading the illness. They were tales of the Living Dead, but not "zombie apocalypse" stories (which I distinguish from just plain zombie stories). Those other types of stories are all fine, but they're really not what I, personally, look for when I want to scratch this particular itch. So, on the whole, this volume satisfied me more, and similarly might satisfy those who are fans more of The Walking Dead and 28 Days Later than horror fans in general.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kathy (Kindle-aholic)

    I will admit to skimming and skipping over a couple of the stories here. Overall I liked a lot of them (I'd originally gotten it just to read Reluctance from Cherie Priest). The first 2 stories were wholly depressing (and in zombie anthologies, that is usually the case). There were a couple of stories, though, that were lighter. And one I really wished I had skipped (Zombie Gigolo - I know, I'm a tad embarrassed to admit I read it. I'm horrifically grossed out. I can take descriptions of ghoulish I will admit to skimming and skipping over a couple of the stories here. Overall I liked a lot of them (I'd originally gotten it just to read Reluctance from Cherie Priest). The first 2 stories were wholly depressing (and in zombie anthologies, that is usually the case). There were a couple of stories, though, that were lighter. And one I really wished I had skipped (Zombie Gigolo - I know, I'm a tad embarrassed to admit I read it. I'm horrifically grossed out. I can take descriptions of ghoulish behavior, but not zombie love.) These aren't all of the stories (just a few that I liked): Obedience by Brenna Yovanoff Steve and Fred by Max Brooks - this one seemed so very real and was sad, but also very good Everglades by Mira Grant - set when the outbreak first happened; a bit of survival of the fittest, but who is "the fittest" (hint - it's not a happy story) Arlene Schabowski of the Undead by Mark McLaughlin & Kyra M. Schon - when fan love an dbelief blur the lines between cinema and reality Rural Dead by Bret Hammond - How one Amish community dealt with the zombie hordes Reluctance by Cherie Priest - a short from the Clockwork Century series, occuring sometime before Dreadnought. A solitary mail carrier needs to refuel in Reluctance, but where did everybody go? I hope we see this MC again Last Stand by Kelley Armstrong - I liked this one, it took a little while to figure out what was going on, but I liked it Flotsam & Jetsom by Carrie Ryan - there's 2 people adrift on a raft, and one has been bitten... Dating in Dead World by Joe McKinney - how do you date after the zombie apolcalypse? Especially when your date is the daughter of a very dangerous man, who has very dangerous enemies.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Unapologetic_Bookaholic

    Book Specs Title/Author The Living Dead Anthology 2 Series/Book # N/A Length totally insane (300 pgs or more) Price $1.99 (on sale) Genre Horror Review may contain spoilers, read with caution; Read tags for other content Since there were MANY stories in this anthology I will pick a few to highlight and review then give an overall rating: *Alone, Together by Robert Kirkland Reminded me TWD (for obvious reasons) in the sense that it was focused of the affects of surviving a ZA. Would they have reached the Book Specs Title/Author The Living Dead Anthology 2 Series/Book # N/A Length totally insane (300 pgs or more) Price $1.99 (on sale) Genre Horror Review may contain spoilers, read with caution; Read tags for other content Since there were MANY stories in this anthology I will pick a few to highlight and review then give an overall rating: *Alone, Together by Robert Kirkland Reminded me TWD (for obvious reasons) in the sense that it was focused of the affects of surviving a ZA. Would they have reached the same conclusions under different circumstances? Probably not. 3.5 *Danger world by Steven Barnes & Tananarive Due From beginning to middle to end. This story had me. I definitely want to read more from these authors 4.5 *Catagorey Five by Marc Paoletti What if hurricane Katrina had zombies...? 3.5 *Good People by David Wellington Read twice, excellent!! Looking forward to reading a full length novel 5.0 *Lost Canyon of the Dead by Brian Keene #1 Favorite writer of zombie fiction of all time. Hamilin's Revenge makes an appearance in this short story. If you're familiar with Keene's universe you'll recognize this from the "Dead" series. Read it twice. 4.5 Scare Tactics 4/5 (Spawn of "Evil Dead") Overall Rating 4.5/5 (Really liked, highly recommend to any fan of horror, zombie horror)

  25. 4 out of 5

    Brendan

    I used this anthology in my Zombies in Popular Media class* this semester, to great acclaim. The story collection has 44 original zombie stories from a variety of notable writers. It's pretty great. Like the last collection, there's a mix of different kinds of zombie stories here, from the military action of Joe McKinney to the existential torment of Adam-Troy Castro. A few highlights, for me: * "Zero Tolerance" by Jonathan Mayberry continues the saga started in Patient Zero, but mixes in the qu I used this anthology in my Zombies in Popular Media class* this semester, to great acclaim. The story collection has 44 original zombie stories from a variety of notable writers. It's pretty great. Like the last collection, there's a mix of different kinds of zombie stories here, from the military action of Joe McKinney to the existential torment of Adam-Troy Castro. A few highlights, for me: * "Zero Tolerance" by Jonathan Mayberry continues the saga started in Patient Zero, but mixes in the question of torture and interrogation in the age of zombies. Good stuff. * "Rural Dead" by Bret Hammond was one of the more clever stories, for me. It ponders how the ever-pragmatic Amish might handle a zombie outbreak. * "Pirates vs. Zombies" by Amanda Beamer hits just the right mix of humor, disgust, pathos, and ethics for me. A winner. * "The Anteroom" by Adam-Troy Castro and "Who We Used to Be" by David Moody both capture the darker side of the zombie apocalypse well. The latter, particularly, grabs suburban America by the lapels and shakes us. * Finally, I think "Good People" by David Wellington strikes the perfect chord for people thinking of how they might survive the zombie apocalypse. A solid collection of good stories. A worthy follow up to The Living Dead and well worth the read. *Full disclosure: I was planning to use this anthology anyway, because I liked the first one, but the publisher sent me a review copy sometime in October 2010.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Matt

    3.5 rounded up Half of these are must reads. the other half were a mixture of creative stuff that I just couldn't jive with or total garbage. I do believe however that there is something in here for everyone. I think most people who like horror, survival, history, humor, death, sex, and sci-fi are going to be served by this collection in some capacity. there is just such a spectrum of quality and depth here that people are never going to agree on what's bad and what's good. it's all subjective to 3.5 rounded up Half of these are must reads. the other half were a mixture of creative stuff that I just couldn't jive with or total garbage. I do believe however that there is something in here for everyone. I think most people who like horror, survival, history, humor, death, sex, and sci-fi are going to be served by this collection in some capacity. there is just such a spectrum of quality and depth here that people are never going to agree on what's bad and what's good. it's all subjective to what you've read or not read before you tackled this beast. I say, give it a whirl. the first 22 stories had a better batting average for me than the last 22 stories. Maybe because the publisher knew to keep collections like these front-loaded and heavy with the good stuff because some people read these type of book chronologically. I did skim or skip 10 of these. not gonna lie. I'd recommend this monsterous book over all the following zombie fiction which I consider poop or just above poop: David Moody's "Autumn" John Maberry's "Patient Zero" David Wellington's "Monster Island" Brian Keene's "The Rising" If someone put a gun to your head... saying "pick one"... eh, read "Autumn." Unless you like Jack Bauer, read "Patient Zero".... unless you like sloppy storytelling and giving yourself stomach ulcers, then read "Monster Island"... unless you like possession stories with corpses of fish and people coming back and talking, then look in a mirror, call yourself an idiot, and read "The Rising." 4/5 MH

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kezermezer

    The Living Dead 2 is a mammoth collection of short zombie stories compiled by John Joseph Adams and featuring a host of zombie-famous writers such as Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead), Carrie Ryan (The Forest of Hands and Teeth), Max Brooks (World War Z) and Mira Grant (the Deadline trilogy). Like most anthologies, it's a mixed bag. A few are so-so, a few are amazing (don't miss Steven Barnes' and Tananarive Due's Danger Word), and most are somewhere in between, but they're all entertaining enou The Living Dead 2 is a mammoth collection of short zombie stories compiled by John Joseph Adams and featuring a host of zombie-famous writers such as Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead), Carrie Ryan (The Forest of Hands and Teeth), Max Brooks (World War Z) and Mira Grant (the Deadline trilogy). Like most anthologies, it's a mixed bag. A few are so-so, a few are amazing (don't miss Steven Barnes' and Tananarive Due's Danger Word), and most are somewhere in between, but they're all entertaining enough to make this a worthwhile read. With over forty stories included, themes run the gamut from aliens to teenagers to the military to viruses to cowboys and more. I sometimes found it a little jarring to move from story to story - they are in such a specific genre but at the same time vary so much from each other. A major brain reboot was required at the beginning of each new story. But some people may not have that problem, and after all, this is a collection of shorts so it's easy to take them one at a time and give yourself a break in between.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Chris Bauer

    Absolutely a MUST HAVE for any fan of the genre. I typically judge an anthology based on the number of "duds" I find between the covers. Every collection of stories has 'em. Given the sheer number of shorts packed into this work, I was incredibly surprised to find only a handful (4-5). They run the gambit from your typical "zom-pocalypse" settings, to much more innovative, dare I say, thought-provoking, fiction. Some were suspenseful, other terrifying, and more than a few were hilarious (one sto Absolutely a MUST HAVE for any fan of the genre. I typically judge an anthology based on the number of "duds" I find between the covers. Every collection of stories has 'em. Given the sheer number of shorts packed into this work, I was incredibly surprised to find only a handful (4-5). They run the gambit from your typical "zom-pocalypse" settings, to much more innovative, dare I say, thought-provoking, fiction. Some were suspenseful, other terrifying, and more than a few were hilarious (one story was uproariously disgusting by design). John Joseph Adams really did a great job of collecting the best of the best for this newest volume. I guess my only nit-picky observation was that a few of the short stories appeared to be selected based on the pedigree of their authors -- screenwriters or "guests" from other genres. Still good stories, but not quite up to par for the bulk of the collection. But overall an incredible value for the price of the book.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    I'm an unapologetic fan of zombie stories. This volume, masterfully compiled and annotated by John Joseph Adams, continues to plumb the depths of the genre. All of these writers are playing in Romero's sandbox, but are constructing castles of their own. The best tales here are those that pick up on the tantalizing lead offered by Romero in Day of the Dead (Bud!), and there's an overall emphasis on the human side of the zombie apocalypse: the physical and emotional impacts, the re-ordering of soc I'm an unapologetic fan of zombie stories. This volume, masterfully compiled and annotated by John Joseph Adams, continues to plumb the depths of the genre. All of these writers are playing in Romero's sandbox, but are constructing castles of their own. The best tales here are those that pick up on the tantalizing lead offered by Romero in Day of the Dead (Bud!), and there's an overall emphasis on the human side of the zombie apocalypse: the physical and emotional impacts, the re-ordering of society, etc. This large volume will help one bide the time until the next issue- or next season- of The Walking Dead arrives. Adams' introductory notes are erudite and demonstrate a deep understanding of the possibilities of the genre. These stories are not just about flesh-eating zombies: as Rick Grimes put it, "We are the walking dead!"

  30. 4 out of 5

    Bookmole

    I said zombies, I meant zombies. No space ships, though... The trouble with reading on an eReader is it is hard to skip through to find the stand-out stories that you really, really liked (and don't be down on me if you have a Kindle, which does allow for ease of bookmarking - I know, and I don't have a Kindle!) or disliked. Complete story list here - http://nightshadebooks.com/cart.php?m... Good People was definitely one of the best - a "put the book down and think about it" story. If you want to I said zombies, I meant zombies. No space ships, though... The trouble with reading on an eReader is it is hard to skip through to find the stand-out stories that you really, really liked (and don't be down on me if you have a Kindle, which does allow for ease of bookmarking - I know, and I don't have a Kindle!) or disliked. Complete story list here - http://nightshadebooks.com/cart.php?m... Good People was definitely one of the best - a "put the book down and think about it" story. If you want to read it, follow this link - free from David Wellington on the Tor site. http://www.tor.com/stories/2010/09/go... All in all, unless all you want is pure zombie gore, this book had way more hits than misses. In a book of 40+ stories, there are going to be some you hate. But overall, good, entertaining zombiehood awaits you.

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