My favorite new zombie book is Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry.“In a post-apocalyptic world where fences and border patrols guard the few people left from the zombies that have overtaken civilization, fifteen-year-old Benny Imura is finally convinced that he must follow in his older brother’s footsteps and become a bounty hunter. (Catalog in Publication Book Summary)
It is definitely a cut above the average zombie novel. The book is so good it is actually hard to describe, Because the story is set a decade after the first zombie attack, civilization has found a way to adapted to the zombies. In this sense, the zombies aren’t really the main protagonist but are part of the setting. Don’t worry, there are plenty of creepy and scary plot twists. The characters are well-developed and interesting. The main character Benny is discovering who he is and what his place in the challenging new world with zombies. In this sense, the story a coming of age story. I can’t wait for the second in the series. Finally, one of the best things about the book is that it totally stands alone and sets the reader up for a future installment at the same time!
Kirkus Reviews liked Rot and Ruin a lot too. They gave it a starred review. This is what they said about the book: “Maberry . . . blends a community structure and terrifying zombie chase scenes reminiscent of Carrie Ryan’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth (2009) with the ethical dilemmas (e.g., the power of fear and the nature of evil) of Patrick Ness’s Chaos Walking series. The result is an action-packed, thought-provoking look at life-and death-as readers determine the true enemy.”
Jonathan Maberry is the author of the adult novel Patient Zero.
I found a great video of author Jonathan Maberry talking about Rot & Ruin. One of the things he explains is that the book didn’t really start out as a YA novel. He also explains that he doesn’t really write about monsters. Instead he writes about the people who fight monsters. That is really true for Rot & Ruin. Check it out!
If you want to find more good books on zombies check out these book list recommendations:
Zombies, Wevewolves and Ghost (Vampires are so 2008) from New York Public Library’s Stuff for the Teenage.
Best Zombie Novels for Young Adults from Suite101.