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Publisher's Summary

The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of 30 million souls, to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet.

He recorded 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. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.

Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the 12-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.

Note: Some of the numerical and factual material contained in this edition was previously published under the auspices of the United Nations Postwar Commission.

©2006 Max Brooks (P)2006 Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

  • Winner of Audio Publishers Association 2007 Audie Award, Multi-Voiced Performance
  • Audie Award Finalist, Audiobook of the Year, 2007

"Hard to put down." (Publishers Weekly)
"A literate, ironic, strangely tasty treat." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Horror fans won't be disappointed: like George Romero's Dead trilogy, World War Z is another milestone in the zombie mythos." (Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    4,643
  • 4 Stars
    2,155
  • 3 Stars
    870
  • 2 Stars
    229
  • 1 Stars
    163

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    4,277
  • 4 Stars
    1,213
  • 3 Stars
    395
  • 2 Stars
    101
  • 1 Stars
    74

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3,484
  • 4 Stars
    1,606
  • 3 Stars
    672
  • 2 Stars
    194
  • 1 Stars
    116
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great First Audio Book!!

This was my first audio book experience and I really enjoyed it!! It is quite different from the movie, but I loved all the different voice actors. It made it all feel so real.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

FANTASTIC!

I truly loved the whole book. I listen to A LOT of books every month and often get bored. I was hesitant to "waste" a credit on a short book but it was worth every penny. Would highly recommend.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Incomplete

Skips a ton of pages randomly and most voice acting is annoying. I'm listening to this for school and I can't use this because it misses practically half the book. Don't get this if you want to hear the actual story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kimmy A
  • Paradise Valley, AZ United States
  • 06-10-15

Wanting More!

I initially thought this book was related to the movie with the same title. However, I was delighted that though there are some tie-ins, it stands alone. The cast of narrators is fantastic. I wish this book was four times as long with many more shorts within. Give me more!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • brenty
  • United States
  • 04-21-14

All you need!

While the Complete Edition contains the material left out of this original abridged recording, I didn't find that it added anything particularly compelling.

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 this abridged version was better by keeping it concise and having only the strongest performances.

Had I not listened to this original abridged recording first I may have felt differently, though.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

The movie was better

I heard a lot of reviews of this book and was pretty excited to read it before I saw the movie. It was an interesting concept, documenting the aftermath of a zombie apocolypse, but the endless stream of unrelated journalistic stories ended abruptly, just as it was getting a little tiresome. I was disappointed.

Not sure why they named the movie World War Z, as the story line did not follow any of the accounts in this collection of post apocalyptic news, but for once, I enjoyed the movie better than the book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • Toney, AL United States
  • 06-21-13

Sci Fi with a twist

I saw the Movie Commercial and it peaked my interest. The audio book was enjoyable, but slightly dated, I would assume the book must have been written in the mid 90s. The twist to this was that the entire book consists of a series of retrospective interviews of war participants from around the globe. The performance was outstanding, the only issue I had was it was anticlimactic since from the beginning the story is of about the results of a war that happened in the past. I was kind of hoping for a suspense element, still all things considered it was an enjoyable listen. I see that Audible has added another version of this very book that has 5-6 more hours and has some kind of tie in to the movie - might be a better choice.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • ray
  • SAN DIEGO, CA, United States
  • 06-17-13

I wish it was longer.

Would you listen to World War Z again? Why?

I got this so I could listen before the movie, but I wish it was un abridged. Still a great listen.

What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

All star cast. Fantastic.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • AM
  • CA
  • 06-15-13

Should be unabridged

This is a great book even for non zombie-lit enthusiasts. It takes a single word and dissects it into social, political, military, and biological elements--each of which is interesting on its own and fascinating when considered as a part of the greater whole. The performance is great in concept. The oral history format of the book lends itself to the performance format of the audiobook, with each section narrated by the character who experienced it. My only objection was that some of the accents are heavy and fake sounding enough that it distracts from the material. Still, this is a great book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Book, Great recording, Great Actors!

If you could sum up World War Z in three words, what would they be?

A zombie book with a different twist.

What did you like best about this story?

The way the story focused on different parts of the world and how they used different actors for each part instead of just one narrator.

Which scene was your favorite?

The blind Japanese sensei and the South Africans.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

A zombie story told by survivors of a zombie war with different perspectives on how it affected them and their part of the world.

Any additional comments?

The only reason I gave this a 4 star rating instead of a 5 star rating is it cut too much out of the book. I am looking forward the unabridged version being developed by Max Brooks. It is still well worth the listen though.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful