I've now read the book, and (in this case) listened to the ABRIDGED audiobook. And, starting tomorrow (when it's released [14May13]), I will also listen to the UNabridged audiobook version (probably just the different parts!). In the two cases so far - I am constantly in awe of Max Brooks' ability to seamlessly stitch the plot together...giving you just enough information so you understand a snippet of the story - but not too much! - then fusing that vague element into the next "interview" story, where it gains greater clarity. I hate to use the word "masterful"...but it's pretty damn well-done!!! Anyway - I love how this book is about Zombies (Z's, Zeds, G's, The Undead, Zacks)...Duh!...but really NOT about them. Insert the plague, or catastrophe, or paradigm-altering event of your choice, and this same sort of mental and physical exercise would play out pretty much as Max has outlined! Well done! Now, I need to read "The Zombie Survival Guide" so I know exactly how to us the "Lobo" tool to it's greatest effect!
ADDENDUM: I have now finished the LESS-Abridged (newest/movie tie-in) version [It still has a little of the original text missing, so can not honestly be called UNabridged!] The parts that were added back from the original Abridged version were (mostly) AMAZING! How cool is it to have Frank Darabont (Exec.Producer for Pilot and Season 1 of "The Walking Dead") narrate the part of a film producer that makes a zombie war propaganda piece!!!???!!! PFCool!!! With the exception of the Ric Young part (the actor's voice is too slow and over-ennunciated) the new parts were phenominal! It really added back the missing impact that the original book had, and with some great voice talent! Great book! And, if you opt for the audiobook - go for the "Movie Tie-in" version released in 2013 (vs. the 2006 Abridged version).
Excellent book, excellent reading. Unfortunately, abridged. Would still recommend for people to read. Buy it!
i havent had the chance to read the actual phisical copy of the book yet and i hear this is an abridged version. i dont k ow what or how much is missing.
having said that... this is a very rare kind of book where i am sure the audiobook is better than the original printed version because of the format it has.
its a reporter interviewing people wmthat survived the war.
that makes it ideal for audio and god damn do the actors deliver... i specialy loved the todd (mark hamil) parts. he makes me be right there in the action. in the middle of it all.
every one else was spot on as well though.
this has quicly become one of my favorite books period...
it realy is word listening.
It's really a shame that the movie of the same name may lead some people to ignore the book or Audible book, because this is a TREMENDOUS audiobook that you can get truly lost in.
Very well narrated, enjoyable but still poop-your-pants-intense. Maybe don't listen to it at work though like I did. A few times I was so engrossed in a story that someone touched my shoulder to get my attention and I nearly screamed.
This is a unique way to write a story, and I've seen it done very rarely but I do enjoy it when it happens........it's a collection of vignettes that focus on a single place and person, but when wound together in your mind they together make up an interesting picture of what's going on (or, in this case, what has gone on in the past). There is no real linear progression and no specific plot; instead the reader or listener gets to learn about the event from different perspectives in the experiences of different people in different situations all over the world who together share one characteristic: they survived the global war against the zombies.
This is a zombie story, but it's not really about the zombies - it's really about the global reaction and action to a deadly contagion that had not ever been imagined, let alone prepared for. Because it's done as a series of interviews, it's perfectly set for an audio production, and the narration (by over three dozen actors) is terrific - in fact, they do a great job of imparting a feeling for a character even though they may speak for no more than 10 or 15 minutes and everything takes place in the past. Actually, I think it's the fact that these are memories and not real-life events that make their stories that much more poignant. Sometimes a book that is a recollection of past events can be stale and uninteresting, but because these are experiences of a war rather than simply telling a past tale, they maintain their emotion and energy.
This turned out to be one of my top audiobook experiences so far.
While this complete version contains the material left out of the original abridged recording (World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War), I didn't find that it added anything particularly compelling.
Don't get me wrong, this is a great book with some great performances (Mark Hamill did an INCREDIBLE job, and I didn't even know it was him until the credits at the end), but -- unlike nearly every other audio book -- I found the abridged version was better by keeping it concise and missing some of the weaker performances.
Had I not listened to the original abridged recording first I may have felt differently, though.
This has the feel of the War of the Worlds radio-cast because of the way it is presented as a documentary.
I normally skip over abridged books, but I"m glad I listened to the reviews and gave this a chance.Because it is presented as a number of NPR-like interviews with survivors, they can cut out some sections without making the story hard to follow. It is a number of different viewpoints of the events surrounding the Z war.I am really surprised how much I like it. The narrator/interviewer has a familiar sounding voice -- I wonder if he may actually be an NPR reporter. And having a different reader for each character interviewed helps to sustain the feeling of real interviews.I have never read the book - only seen the movie, but I can say that it does not feel disjointed at all. I have no qualms about recommending this book -- even to the movie haters!
Most definitely! It may have started out a little slow, but before long I found myself organizing my schedule so I could continue listening.
The author is so knowledgeable about so many things. Not just weapons and war strategy, but human emotion, both good and bad. Unlike so many zombie books that focus on one area, one city, Mr. Brooks takes on the whole world! Canada, Russia, India, Germany, China, South Africa, ect. He made it believable how the zombie war would play out in other areas. Then lets throw in the air shuttles and underwater missions. I wanted more!
Each character in the book has their own reader, which made you had to get used to each of them. The beginning ones may have been a little hard to understand, but once I listened to the book again, I had no problem understanding.
There were so many, I could probably pick one from each story, but I can't stop thinking of the young girl sounding like the sirens and moaning zombies.
Because this was abridged, I got the book from the library. Since I have a young child, reading an actual book is a luxury. I got half way through and didn't notice much difference. A conversation here and a paragraph there. Nothing that stood out. I absolutely loved this book and was thinking that I missed some of the characters stories or whole characters were removed. Nope. I guess I was just hoping for another book of short stories.
Also the movie, be it a good zombie movie, only shares the title and the Israeli quarantine. Nothing else stands out.
The only thing I do more than read is drive, so maybe I should start listening to audiobooks?
I loved the voice actors. This is my first audiobook in awhile and now I don't even know what to listen to now because it was so good and nothing will ever be the same now. All the characters were so alive! This was especially important because of the nature of the book. World War Z: an Oral History of the Zombie War is the full title, so naturally, the best way to read this book is via the audiobook. I have neither read the book or seen the movie, so unfortunately I don't know how it compares.
You know when you're in the car and you're trying to listen to the news but they're doing a special on the most boring thing you've ever heard of? This is the opposite of that. It's pretend journalism. So it's always interesting! And you may find yourself driving past your exit or running an extra mile (or two. extra fast. zombies are coming!) because you're so invested in the story.
Yes, but then I made myself stop and it made the world of the story a little harder to dive back into. I'm not sure if the book was actually this unbalanced, but I've always had a hard time with short stories because I like to follow one characters journey instead of stories of people who tell a bigger story...which is what this does. I think a one sitting listen might be a better way to listen to it.