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Are we past peak zombie? - Input Junkie
March 23rd, 2016
12:52 am


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Are we past peak zombie?
I'm reading Elizabeth Bear's Karen Memery, a steampunk novel set in the old west and enjoying it, and suddenly I realize that there are no zombies. Actually, there are no fantastic elements so far (I'm about a third of the way through). There are no werewolves. Unless I missed something there are no robots, though there are robot bodies controlled by humans.

And then I realized I don't think I've seen a new story about zombies for a year or two.

It's not that I hate zombies, and there have been a few zombie stories that I've liked very much, it's just that they don't delight me.

Favorite zombie stories: "Iphigenia In Aulis" by M.R. Carey-- his The Girl with All the Gifts is loosely related to it and quite good, but the short story is the finest thing about love and courage I've read in sf. Carey's Felix Castor novels also had a zombie character I'm fond of. He was determined to hold off entropy as long as possible-- lived in a refrigerated warehouse and sold old movies.

Working Stiff by Rachel Caine: zombie-ism used in a metaphor for employer-supplied health insurance. It works very well. The book is the first of a trilogy, but I think that Caine becoming easier on the main character made the books less interesting. Avoid them if you can't tolerate nanotech which can do just about anything.

Sidetrack: I don't think I've seen any sf with literally magic nanotech. That could be fun.

I can't remember author or title, but there was an entertaining book about a zombie uprising and fans trapped in a hotel. The romance was about whether a Star Trek fan and a Star Wars fan can get together.

Have you been seeing zombies in fiction lately? Any new elements that might become fads?

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(7 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:March 22nd, 2016 05:45 pm (UTC)
Seanan McGuire has a new Mira Grant zombie novel, Feedback, coming out later this year.
[User Picture]
Date:March 22nd, 2016 06:14 pm (UTC)
Haven't been looking much. . . never was fond of them. . . though I would like to see a fantasy with actual out of Haiti zombies, where the horror is not that they are dangerous to you, but that you might become one of them, a slave even after death.
[User Picture]
Date:March 22nd, 2016 06:43 pm (UTC)
Dare I mention my own book, THE LAST WEEKEND, which is about an alcoholic during the zombie apocalypse?
[User Picture]
Date:March 22nd, 2016 08:46 pm (UTC)
Is there a fantasy novel about people who beat their heads against the wall? Because reading that you were startled to realize that there were no zombies in this novel makes me want to join them.
[User Picture]
Date:March 23rd, 2016 02:55 pm (UTC)
Bear and Karen Monette have written a couple of really good stories that mix hard sci-fi with Lovecraft the first is "Boojum".

But yeah, zombies are SO 2010
[User Picture]
Date:March 23rd, 2016 07:22 pm (UTC)
Sarah Monette, ITYM.
[User Picture]
Date:March 23rd, 2016 07:39 pm (UTC)
Indeed...stupid typo
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