Thursday, September 4, 2014

Eat Brains Love

At the beginning of the day, Jake and Amanda could not have been further apart. At the same high school, they are part of vastly different groups: Jake with the burnout stoner crowd and Amanda with the popular crowd. Then the playing field is leveled when they are both attacked by and turn into zombies. After eating a bunch of their friends and classmates, they escape the carnage together and try to survive. The media says they shot up the school, but are in custody, so they have no idea what's going on. On the other side of things, Cass is a telepath working for the government in the Necrotic Control Division to contain zombie outbreaks. This isn't her first rodeo and, despite her young age, she is one of the most powerful telepaths they have.  Her interaction with Jake and Amanda have her suddenly wondering if maybe zombies don't deserve to be hunted down and killed. Unfortunately, the leader of her organization has other plans.

I liked the slightly different lore than usual in Eat Brains Love. This zombie virus is a sexually transmitted disease, so a bite, no matter how bad, will just hurt.These zombies are not brainless all the time. When well fed, they are perfectly normal people with working systems and beating hearts. When extremely hungry, they turn into the zombies we are used to: shambling, brain hungry monsters. They have no control over their actions until they return to their well fed state. These changes added a lot to the story, especially because one of the narrators was capable of thought and speech. There is quite a bit of zombie carnage, but it doesn't generally disrupt the light tone of the novel.

I enjoyed Jake's narrative the most because of his budding and sweet relationship with Amanda and the excitement of their journey. I also found him likable and really sweet despite his slacker/stoner attitude. He feels really bad about the people he killed, but he accepts that's just how things are now. He tries to make the best of it with Amanda and their evolving relationship is my favorite part of the story. Cass is an interesting character with telepathy, but I found her narrative less compelling. The telepathy was pushing it for my suspension of disbelief, but it didn't bother me that much in the long run. Her story is less light with a government agency headed by an unscrupulous person who doesn't think twice about using people. She started to realize that full zombies are just like regular people, but then was shocked when they ate people still to stave off hunger. I thought she was a bit naive and annoying, especially when she became infatuated with Jake after seeing into his head so much like a creepy stalker.

Eat Brains Love is a cute, fun zombie novel. The different zombies and the love story sets this apart from other zombie novel. There's nothing revolutionary here, but I would definitely read the next in the series, Undead with Benefits.

My rating: 4/5 fishmuffins

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