When I first heard about Warm Bodies shortly after it was released people kept telling me that it was Twilight with Zombies. Add on that the idea it was mutilating my beloved zombie genre into a romance. It was not a good combination and all my appeal seasons were screaming to stay far far away from this book.
The tide began to change when I saw the movie Warm Bodies, drawn in by the temptation of Nicholas Holt. I loved it. If I was able to like the movie so much, then logically I would like the book too. Special features indicated that it wasn’t too far from the book. So I decided it was time to check it out.
I picked up Warm Bodies hoping to be charmed by R, the enigmatic zombie who was the start of the change. You see even before R decided to eat the brain of one of his victims, he was different. He was the prime candidate to be the one to cause the change among the zombies.
The book follows R’s journey. As far as characters go, he’s mostly a blank slate. He’s a zombie, so he doesn’t come with the baggage of a past. He has a few quirks that he’s picked up since he became a zombie, but he is ultimately an open canvas. This made for a character that was rather straight forward. You never had to wonder exactly what he would do next. After meeting Julie, all he could think of protecting her and growing. Letting whatever happened to him continue to take hold and transform him from the standard zombie.
What I didn’t expect from the story was how successful it was at drawing in. From the moment I picked up the book I didn’t want to put it down. There was something about the joy and wonder that constantly plagued R that was so engaging.
If you are looking for a plot driven book, this isn’t it. It is more a character study. Considering that R’s only goal is to protect Julie, it makes sense. Throughout the story we get to learn about R, Perry, Julie, and Nora. Each of them having their own past and their own future desires. Each of them is along for this journey as R changes and everyone slowly comes to accept that the zombies they face may not be quite as straight forward as they thought. We get to see how very different people handle this prospect and the various angles they come from.
The only fault I have in regard to the story is how the end of the book felt rushed. There was a slow build to what may be a confrontation. When it finally happened, the threat ultimately slunk away without much bang. I never felt like R or Julie or any of the characters were actually in danger. Compound that with how brief the final conflict is and the book ends with a fuse sputtering out rather than with the intended fireworks.
No worries, this is the only book review you’ll see on the blog if you don’t like them. I just enjoyed Warm bodies so much that I had to share my thoughts on this one.