four-stars
Bookmarks Issue: 
47-July-Aug-2010
By: 
Mira Grant
user_rating: 
0

A-Feed.epsMira Grant is a pseudonym of fantasy author and singer-songwriter Seanan McGuire. Feed is the first novel in the projected Newsflesh trilogy.

The Story: Bloggers are often stereotyped as geeks in their pajamas tapping away in their basements. But that's a relatively safe place to be when the zombie apocalypse happens. Twenty years after airborne vaccines against cancer and the common cold mutate into a virus that raises the dead, bloggers are considered the only reliable source of information (perhaps because the mainstream media, in cahoots with the government, attributed the apocalypse to punk teenagers in bad makeup). Feed follows the story of three blogger friends who just got their big break--a chance to shadow an American presidential candidate who hopes to win over the people's hearts and minds, while also persuading them he is the man who can prevent the zombies from eating them.
Orbit. 608 pages. $9.99. ISBN: 978-0316081054

Io9.com 4 of 5 Stars
This fast-paced undead thriller will be great for people who enjoy their zombie slaughtering with a hearty slice of social commentary. ... The first in the proposed Newsflesh trilogy, Feed is a thought-provoking and entertaining read that makes me eager to see what Grant will serve in her next novel, Blackout." Hank Hu

Onion AV Club 4 of 5 Stars
"From examining the political consequences of a world constantly under siege to detailing how blogging and Internet news feeds would develop in the face of the threat, Grant's creativity and thoroughness give her narrative an unshakeable credibility. Her cast is predictable, but her commitment to them, and to their environment, makes for an exciting read." Zack Handlen

Seattle Post-Intelligencer 4 of 5 Stars
"This is not your average zombie story and easily in the top three books I've read so far in 2010. ... What caught me off guard was how emotionally charged this novel becomes as you sink deeper and deeper into George and Shaun's lives on the campaign trail."

Thebooksmugglers.com 4 of 5 Stars
"Instead of copious amounts of gore, flesh-eating, decapitation, etc., the dominant theme in Feed is that of uncovering truth, at any cost. ... Like the most memorable works in the zombie canon, Feed uses its zombies ... [to] examine humanity."

Critical Summary

While the past few years have seen no shortage of new takes on the zombie genre, critics thought that Feed broke away from the shuffling horde. They appreciated the care Grant took in building a detailed world, noting how she infused originality into genre elements like the vaccine gone bad. Some reviewers criticized this extensive exposition, and while none of them were ever bored by the world Grant describes, they questioned whether it was realistic for her characters to have such excellent recall of the apocalypse. Nevertheless, critics recommended Feed as a title that should entertain even those who are not normally fans of the SF or horror genre. Stay tuned for the second in the Newsflesh series, Blackout.