Audie Award Winner, Multi-Voiced Performance, 2014
World War Z: The Complete Edition (Movie Tie-in Edition): An Oral History of the Zombie War is a new version of Max Brooks' episodic zombie novel. The abridged versions of the original stories are now joined with new, unabridged recordings of the episodes that were not included in the original (abridged) version of the audiobook. These additional episodes feature a star-studded cast of narrators to coincide with the upcoming release of the film.
New narrators include Academy Award-winning director Martin Scorsese, Spiderman star Alfred Molina, The Walking Dead creator Frank Darabont, rapper Common, Firefly star Nathan Fillion, Shaun of the Dead's Simon Pegg, and members of the casts of Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Heroes and more! Max Brooks will be reprising his role as The Interviewer.
The original abridged edition, released in 2006, won an Audie Award for Best Multi-Voiced Performance. Original cast members include Alan Alda, Mark Hamill, Carl & Rob Reiner, and John Turturro.
In this new classic of apocalyptic fiction that feels all too real, the Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. The documentary-style oral history records the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time.
Featuring five more hours of previously unrecorded content, this full-cast recording is read by F. Murray Abraham, Alan Alda, René Auberjonois, Becky Ann Baker, Dennis Boutsikaris, Bruce Boxleitner, Max Brooks, Nicki Clyne, Common, Denise Crosby, Frank Darabont, Dean Edwards, Mark Hamill, Nathan Fillion, Maz Jobrani, Frank Kamai, Michelle Kholos, John McElroy, Ade M’Cormack, Alfred Molina, Parminder Nagra, Ajay Naidu, Masi Oka, Steve Park, Kal Penn, Simon Pegg, Jürgen Prochnow, Carl Reiner, Rob Reiner, Henry Rollins, Jeri Ryan, Jay O. Sanders, Martin Scorsese, Paul Sorvino, David Ogden Stiers, Brian Tee, John Turturro, Eamonn Walker, Ric Young, and Waleed Zuaiter.
©2006 Max Brooks (P)2012 Random House
I want to feel good when I complete a story & am a little harsh on depressing ones. There are a few sad ones that I love but not many.
Let me start with the fact that I really am not interested in most zombie stories, I think that they are usually nothing more than mindless gore. This, on the other hand, was done well. The story is put together in a way to make it very interesting and (somewhat) believable. The cast of narrators did a great job and I have to say that I truly enjoyed the book.
I'll keep this brief. Look at my previous review of the initial issue of this audiobook. This addition is what we should have heard from day one. Why this didn't happen is beyond me, but it's similar to looking at a director's cut of a movie you already love. You get further insight and pleasure out of the experience.
If you have been on the fence, and don't own the original version, get this NOW. Again, read my first review, and you'll see why.
Sorry, any more that I'll write on this is wasted. It's that good.
This has been, hands down, my worst audible experience and my first time having reviews removed from any site
The story was good, but not the one advertised during preorder.
I can now enjoy the book in the car ride to work
It is a new way of telling a zombie story
Yes it was
There seems to be a few tracks missing. Most notable the first story with the Chinese doctor between the doctors arrival at the village and him first seeming the young boy.
Avid listener on my daily commute!
On one hand, this book deserves five stars across the board for sheer ingenuity and chutzpah, not to mention the colossal achievement of a single cohesive work of fiction in which so many countries, races, ethnicities and cultures are represented. And all performed by the most incredibly talented and diverse multicast in Audible history! This stunning diversity gives it the ring of truth, so much so that if you change "zombies" to "zika (or other) virus" in your head, this reads/sounds like an almost realistic post-pandemic, planetary interview series.
And therein lies the first of Z's two flaws worthy of mention: It's too true-sounding and too humorless (even with Carl Reiner, Alan Alda, Rob Reiner, and Martin Scorcese all doing their damnedest to inject a little funny during their sections) to work as a page-turner. After awhile I just got burned out on hour after hour of the horror of the traumatized survivors and their unrelenting PTSD and sadness, even with the frequent changes in country, scene and amazing speaker, and had to pause the book frequently and intersperse my Z-chapters with chapters of another book containing at least a modicum of humor. The book is just that realistic.
Except when it isn't. And unfortunately, those times consist 100% of Max Brooks, the author (who clumsily and completely unconvincingly plays the Interviewer), every time he interrupts one of these amazing monologues with an unrealistic-sounding and unnecessary question. He should have just let this work stand as an artful series of monologues (which is what they 99% are, even in this occasionally-interrupted format), with no interviewer, and maybe just a realistic-sounding journalist or documentary-style commentator (think Edward Hermann, Morgan Freeman, or David McCullough*) to introduce transitions between speakers/locations. That would have made it nearly a five-star listen.
*No female narrators need apply; this book, amazing as it is, is nevertheless a dude fest that fails the Bechdel test pretty miserably.
I'm That Guy
I know I'll take some heat for this, but I am looking forward to the movie. From what I see from the movie trailers, it is absolutely nothing like the book, but more what I like about zombie stories.
By no means is it a bad story, hence the 3 rating. It just isn't what I look for in a zombie story, hence the 3 rating.
I much prefer heart pounding, intense, heat of the moment, no-way-out, oh s#!* all is lost stories. Always better if I do not know if the characters are going to survive. Obviously in this "zombie documentary" they do because their the ones telling the stories post apocalypse.
If you enjoy docudrama's, or are a die hard Zombie Fanatic it's a really nicely done book. But if you just want heart pounding action, chose something like the Day by Day Armageddon books. I enjoyed those immensely.
Here are the facts:
1. Audible made a mistake and put "unabridged" next to the book's title. They admitted their mistake and offered me a refund (via email), which I declined. I'm sure they'll honor a refund to you as well.
2. This edition is A) the first release (which did have some "in-chapter" edits) and B) a bunch of new stuff. That's why chapter 3, for example, is missing some passages: because they were missing in the first edition.
3. Your complaints or requests for an unabridged version should go to Random House, for they are the producers of the audio book.
4. Despite the (yes, very annoying) omissions, this new edition is simply excellent.
5. #4 is an opinion. Not a fact.
Each story is not about the zombies, but rather about the people trying to live in a zombie infested world. You would be foolish not to listen to this book.
Well-performed, except for a few that sound like they're reciting the words right off the page for only the second or third time (though even those were of relatively high quality) and one or two accents (especially the first Chinese one).
Definitely counts as "alternate future-history" because a couple currently dead world leaders make non-zombified appearances, but hey, the book was written over ten years ago now.
A full cast with fantastic voice acting and effects, I can't think of anything wrong with this book. This is a great example of how amazing audiobooks can be and how much it can elevate experience from just reading a book.
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