As an unmarried person with many married friends, I have heard my share of lectures and seen my share of demonstrations about how to have a successful (or repair a broken) marriage. I get why you would have to talk about marriage lessons after you learn them because it really is an accomplishment to realize something about relationships. But I never realized until I read this book that it would be SO MUCH MORE FUN if they told their stories with ZOMBIES!!!! Yaaaaay! Not that I wish they had to fight zombie hordes (well, maybe I do wish some of them would, if we’re being completely honest . . .). But, sometimes I bet half of what they’re saying is made up anyway, whether they know it or not, so add some freaking undead, people!!
So, yes, I’m giving this book a very inflated 4 stars. This is another casualty of the Skye O’Malley tragedy. This is probably more of a 3-star book, but it’s so much better than all of the other RBR reads! I’m suspicious that it is better because it’s not actually a romance, but we’ll choose to turn a blind eye to that for now. The minute I held this book in my loving little hands at Powell’s in Portland, I knew we had a connection, though. This is my kind of self-help. Self-help with BRAAAaaaaAAAINS!!!
My only complaint is that there is a great part with a cult, but the cult was not nuanced enough for my taste. I like to see a cult that has some draw at first and then later chains you up. The cult leader in this book was a little too stranger-danger for me to feel sorry for them when they got locked up. Don’t worry, I won’t tell you what happens then.
I think that complaint goes to how I still think watching zombies is a more pleasing overall experience than reading about zombies. Like, if the cult leader guy had been on the TV, it probably wouldn’t have bothered me that he was too obviously loony tunes. Horror movies are so flash-bang that you don’t have the time to pause and want a little more complexity. And I don’t want to want complexity with my zombies! If I get it, great, if not, then I get omg-we’re-all-gonna-die instead, which is just as good. So, basically, I’m bothered by my being bothered.
There’s not a lot to say about this particular piece of litratuhr, and my fellow rippers have done an excellent job in their analysis already by noting the references to Whedon, Zombieland, and Shaun of the Dead. I was satisfied by those references. Jesse Petersen knows her shit. Also, she knows where her book is going to land in the continuum of zombie stories. That’s a bonus. But, now I am off to explore the complexity of the human spirit in The Egg Said Nothing and This is Not a Flophouse. I’m sure I’ll have more to say about those two because I can already tell they have a beautiful mix of subtlety, nuance, and flash-bang.