Review by Pasquale
Isaac Marion is an American writer, best known for writing the best-selling novel Warm Bodies, published in October 2010. The prequel,The New Hunger was published as an e-book in January 2013. In October 2012, Isaac Marion announced on his blog that he was working on a sequel, however, no time of publication had been told. Of course, Warm Bodies was adapted into a movie, released in February 2013. It was very accurate for the most part, though there were a few notable changes from the book. However, these changes did not hinder the project at all.
Nicholas Hoult plays the protagonist, R. One of his first roles was Tony Stonem in Skins UK. He is best known for starring as Hank McCoy in X-Men: First Class and Days of the Future Past, and as Jack in Jack the Giant Slayer. He also featured in Clash of the Titans as Eusebios, and A Single Man as Kenny Potter. He played Nux in Mad Max: Fury Road, which is currently in post-production.
Teresa Palmer plays Julie Grigio. She’s best known for playing Becky Barnes in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, and Steph McKinney in Wish You Were Here. This year, she shall be filming Parts per Billion as Anna.
‘R’ is a zombie. Not having any proper memories, a name, or even a pulse, is what defines him. And yet, he has dreams and aspirations. Still in the early stages of decay, he lives with his fellow Dead in the abandoned airport near the city. They live in what is a mere, twisted shadow of a normal society in a post-apocalyptic world. Showing more empathy and intuition than others, R simply — and literally — plodded through his life until, by mere chance, he meets Julie, a breathing, human, Living.
I really liked R. I have no words to describe why. I think I have a fetish for characters who tend to overthink everything. R is no exception. I found his rather unusual lifestyle fascinating. As was his slow transformation. I adored how Isaac Marion nearly made you feel the monotonous life of a zombie, riding up and down the escalator just for something to do. I also looked how R and Julie could be taken as Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare; a Capulet and a Montague, but with an expected twist; a Dead and a Living. Two unlikely couples that break through in the end.
The only part that I wasn’t a major fan of was the gorier, bloodier bits. I usually find zombies and the like quite unappealing, mainly because they are depicted to eat human flesh. Of course, R was no exception, and there were various areas in the book that were a bit too descriptive for my stomach. However, these sections were few, and they only added to the authenticity of the story.
My favourite quote is: “There is a chasm between me and the world around me,” — R. Even among humans, people can sometimes feel isolated, even while they are surrounded by a crowd. So imagine standing between a horde of illiterate, empty-shell zombies.
Warm Bodies is, essentially, a good book to read when you want to learn about humanity and what it means to be human . . . from a zombie’s point of view. A fantasy story with plenty of sarcasm and tragedy, it’s a heartwarming read. Definitely one to add to your bookshelves.
I would rate it 7.5/10.
Note from Jace Vishus:
My favorite quotes from this book are “I want to change my punctuation. I long for exclamation marks, but I’m drowning in ellipses” and “What wonderful thing didn’t start out scary?”
Also, I feel like R can also be seen as a representation of Autism.
In my mind I am eloquent; I can climb intricate scaffolds of words to reach the highest cathedral ceilings and paint my thoughts. But when I open my mouth, everything collapses.
This particular quote perfectly illustrates how autism was explained to me. They’re often mistaken as deficient somehow, but many people with autism and similar disabilities are highly intelligent and unable to express it. To me, this is a lesson in not judging people by their diagnosis. Treating someone who appears to be different from you as if they’re not is an excellent display of compassion. We’re all different, but we’re all still people.