Sunday, December 7, 2014

Book Review: "The Girl With All the Gifts" by M.R. Carey

"The Girl With All the Gifts" by M.R. Carey
First published in 2014
407 pages
My rating: 4 out of 5
(image from Goodreads)

This post-apocalyptic novel features flesh-eating undead, the race to find a cure, and savage bad guys -- kind of like your typical zombie book or show. But a few things set it apart.

Melanie, our main character, is a "hungry" but she is completely ignorant of this fact. Instead, she believes herself to be a regular 10-year-old girl. All she knows of life is her daily existence; she wakes up in her windowless cell, is strapped down in her wheelchair by armed men, taken to a windowless classroom with the other children for school, then returned to her cell for the night. On weekends the children have shower time (a dousing of chemicals) and meal time (a bowl of live grubs a piece). As far as Melanie is concerned, this may be how all children live now that the world has fallen to pieces.

Melanie is really in a government research facility, at the mercy of scientists studying the pathogen that creates the hungries. They've captured a select group of high-functioning zombies -- hungries who could pass as regular children, sentient beings still in full possession of their minds. Melanie is one of these special hungries -- and in fact has a genius-level IQ. Because of Melanie's apparent partial immunity and extraordinary intelligence, head scientist Caroline Caldwell believes Melanie's brain will be the key to finding a cure and saving humanity.

But just as Caldwell is about to saw open Melanie's skull -- without anesthesia, of course -- and remove her brain for study, all hell breaks loose. And what happens next will alter the fate of mankind.

If you're into the zombie thing, I'd definitely recommend checking out "The Girl With All the Gifts." From the immensely likable child-zombie main character to the fungus that's ruthlessly turning the world's population into hungries, Carey has written a slightly new take on the tried and true undead tale. This was a page-turner that kept me hooked until the end!

1 comment:

  1. I saw the trailer for the film adaptation of this book a couple of week ago and thought that it looked freaky but really really good. Your review makes me want to read & watch it even more!


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