Gallery Books, $16.00, 386 pages
Remember those Choose Your Own Adventure books from your childhood? If you do, please turn to page 84, if you do not, please turn to page 38. Can You Survive The Zombie Apocalypse is Choose Your Own Adventure, writ large, with slavering hordes of flesh-eating zombies, and a seemingly never ending series of decisions to make about how to keep from being one of them. The CYOA books were generally short, 100-page affairs with a couple of branching storylines, and a few pat endings. This book features more than 100 choices, and 50 endings, not all of them happy.
Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse is terrifically amusing, and a quick read. If you’ve ever watched a zombie flick, and wondered why the hero decided to go with the machine gun, over the katana, or bragged to your friends that a Facebook quiz told you that you would survive 3 minutes longer than they would, if confronted by the shambling dead, then this is the book for you.
There are no deep philosophical ruminations on the end of the world here, and nary a well-coifeed, sparkly bloodsucker to be found. It’s not for the little kids, if you prefer that your 8 year old remain allergic to the F-bomb, you should probably keep this book out of their grubby little mitts. On the other hand, your teenager is probably going to pass this book around to their friends like The Catcher in the Rye. It’s not art, but it’s just as much fun trying to see how bad decisions can be made worse, as it is to come out on top.
Reviewed by Brad Wright