Best History Is Dead: A Zombie AnthologyAuthor Kim Paffenroth –

History Is Dead is a collection of stories about zombies throughout history Similar to the Recorded Attacks section in The Zombie Survival Guide or I supposed the subsequent The Zombie Survival Guide Recorded Attacks which I haven t read , but not told in the same fact like technical manner The stories are unconnected, and the rules story to story are unspecific.If you want to be specific, and I do you wouldn t classify all the creatures in these stories as zombies I m not strictly speaking from a is it a Romero zombie, or a Russo zombie point of view But rather, a specific term for a lot of the creatures in this book would be undead.Regardless, I found the majority of the stories in this collection entertaining Notably, History wouldn t be one I d recommend to gore fans Though it has it s moments, a fair few of the stories feature the undead as secondary characters, or a merely a consequence I can see how this might not sit well with some people But it s alright with me. I didn t enjoy the stories in this anthology much I gave each story two or three pages to catch my interest, and only a few did. Our Team Of Crack Historians Has Uncovered The Truth You Never Learned In School The Living Dead Have Walked Among Us Since The Dawn Of Time In This Collection Of Gruesome Tales From Throughout The Ages, The Ravenous Undead Shamble Through Bloody Battlefields, Plague Ridden Cities, Genteel Country Estates, And Dusty Frontier Towns They Emerge From Foggy Cemeteries, Frozen Barrows, Loamy Bogs, Cursed Mines, And Gore Spattered Operating Rooms To Prey On The Living But These Zombies Don T Just Eat People They Help Painters And Writers Save Their Faltering Careers They Unwittingly Push Humankind On The Quest For Fire They Topple Evil Capitalists And Their Corporate Empires They Fight Crime They Fall In Love Join Us On A Journey Into Our Zombie Filled Past Neither History Nor The Living Dead Have Ever Been This ExcitingIncludes This Reluctant Prometheus By David DunwoodyThe Gingerbread Man By Paula R StilesThe Barrow Maid By Christine MorganHarimoto By Scott A JohnsonThe Moribund Room By Carole LanhamTheatre Is Dead By Raoul WainscotingThe Anatomy Lesson By Jenny AshfordA Touch Of The Diving By Patrick RutiglianoA Cure For All Ills By Linda L DonahueSociety And Sickness By Leila EadieSummer Of By James Roy DaleyThe Hell Soldiers By Juleigh Howard HobsonJunebug By Rebecca BrockStarvation Army By Joe McKinneyPegleg And Paddy Save The World By Johnathan MaberryThe Third Option By Derek GunnThe Loaned Ranger By John PeelAwake In The Abyss By Rick Moore This book is engaging,well edited. Really good Every story had it s own unique twist on the zombie Though some were better than others, Johnathan Mayberrys being my favorite, all were great in their own right. Great alternate history themed zombie anthology that starts with the ice ages and moves forward to the recent past One thing that kept poking at my brain was how similar that some of these stores were or shared the same DNA as the ones in The Zombie Survival Guide Recorded Attacks by Max Brooks, which came along 2 years later I know the zombies are an old trope these days but maybe the infection was spreading from Dr Kim s book to Max s The stories in here range from interesting to unfulfilling I enjoyed most. History Is UNdead Zombies have coexisted with humans since before the birth of h sapiens that is, if we re to believe the team of crack historians behind History Is Dead A Zombie Anthology, edited by Kim Paffenroth 2007 And why not, when believing is such bloody good fun While at least half of the twenty stories found in History Is Dead take place in the past 200 years with America and Europe proving popular settings the rest stretch as far back as the Pleistocene epoch This Reluctant Prometheus, in which members of the homo ergaster species become infected with zombie ism after consuming an infected wooly mammoth, is one of my favorites Zombies are credited for bringing humans the gift of fire, rescuing a Viking kingdom from insurrection, inspiring budding horror author Mary Shelly, and administering vigilante justice to Jack the Ripper They appear on Civil War battlefields and in East End slums They infiltrate the United States government in their quest for gooooold An Indian curse gone weird Don t ask The Great Fire of Chicago Started by zombies, the first of which was created when Biela s Comet rained a mysterious green rock onto and into Pat Paddy O Leary s Aunt Sophie Zombies, it seems, are all around us.As always, anthologies are difficult to review, since you re apt to take a shining to some pieces than others Overall, History Is Dead is a quick, enjoyable, entertaining read perfect for a morbid Saturday afternoon at the beach I polished it off in under a week, which is near record speed for me Though they share a common theme, each story in this collection is unique In some, zombies make a brief, even ancillary cameo while in others they serve as the story s protagonists A bloody, gory, over the top collection of shoot em up zombie tales this is not In fact, it could be argued that zombies aren t even the scariest monsters to be found within the pages of HISTORY IS DEAD Take, for example, Junebug which comes with a major trigger warning in which a preacher at the End Times Church, natch uses the looming zombie apocalypse as a pretense to sexually enslave one of his young parishioners June or Junebug of the story s title After several months of living with him with her parents permission, ostensibly to babysit his children due to his wife s illness she becomes pregnant from the repeated rapes Cast out by the preacher, she finds no solace from her family, as they blame her for seducing her rapist June and her sole defender, brother Ethan, ultimately meet a gory end and yet, even at their worst, the reader has sympathy for the zombie siblings than for their human victims I found a similar pleasure in Awake in the Abyss, which finds Jack the Ripper s canonical five victims Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes, and Mary Jane Kelly along with a sixth woman, narrator Nelly, awakening from the grave in order to avenge their deaths as only zombies can I bet you never thought you d find yourself rooting so enthusiastically for the zombies, eh An excellent collection of short stories about zombies, set at different periods in history Some are funny, some disturbing and some just plain fun I cannot even begin to say how much I liked just about every story in this book The zombies may have been different in each story, and the tone too, but these were almost all solid, entertaining tales.That said, there were three that just kinda didn t work for me Warning, this part may contain spoilers This Relunctant Prometheus had several problems it was a bit unclear in certain parts, the action developed too quickly and the title character did not seem relunctant at all And why didn t the zombie mammoth attack the cavemen Society and Sickness had great promise, written in a certain Victorian style, but was illogical at points Why would the hero a young lady decide to take a rifle when her father went to check on the ill man she was courting There was an explanation, but it was weak And why would she know to shoot for the brain Why would she know to prepare defenses for the family home and how, in god s name, did no one notice her digging ditches and dumping oil around the perimeter of the cottage Seriously, it was all too convenient, which is a shame, because the writing was decent and the story premise had a lot of promise Oh, and when the hero shoots the first zombie in the story, her father is not in the least worried that she will be arrested or imprisoned, bringing shame to the family, but that she won t get married WTF Hell Soldiers suffered from some unclear writing and from switching from a first person story in the first few paragraphs to a third person account Odd Probably a lack of editing, but it really hurt the story.But the rest of the collection was excellent. I typically avoid trying to review Anthologies, simply because I feel that each story deserves to be taken on its own merits I have read most of the zombie anthologies out there and have enjoyed all of themsome have some stories that really knock my socks off while others are just interesting and creative With the theme of history here, what we are served up is a dark menu of treats tied in with some of the major events in history The Black Plague, the real genius behind the creation of Frankenstein, the great Chicago fire, etc All of these events, along with several personalized stories unrelated to figures of major historical prominence give us a tome of Alternative Histories that is quite intriguing It is challenging, to say the least, to be knowledgeable enough of a time period and the details of how people lived to be able to embellish upon the known history effectively with the injection of the living dead That each of these authors boldly ventured forth to do so here certainly shows both an appreciation for history and a willingness to stand it on its head for the purposes of macabre entertainment From the start I have to say I really enjoyed the creative flare I saw with these stories David Dunwoody s flashback to prehistory, Raoul Wainscoting s creative use of Shakespeare, Johnathan Maberry s creative take on a little fire in Chicago and most of the others had me grinning at the enthusiasm everyone had to come up with some really fun ideas I think that a book like this could easily be expanded with future editions, if these authors and others are up to the task of coming up with even tales from other areas of history The source material is endless.