In celebration of Halloween, my favorite holiday, I decided to dedicate the month of October to reviewing horror books and books with a spooky bent. That said, I realized one month just isn’t long enough. So I’ve extended my reviews into the month of September, too. So get ready for nine weeks of horror reviews!
Food for Crows by Aurelio Rico Lopez III
I sat down intending to read a few pages of this zombie novella while waiting for someone, and I ended up reading the whole thing in one sitting. Needless to say, it’s a compelling read. But as is the case with most zombie stories, you have to be a fan of gore, violence, and profanity. The story follows a protagonist named Paul who finds himself one of the only survivors of an unexplained zombie apocalypse. He meets a boy named Rey who insists they save his sister, Camille, who was last seen being chased by a hoard of zombies.
What I enjoyed most was the narrator’s personality. From the start, he was a sympathetic character, even with his rough edges. His tone, though angry at times, was laced with humor and wit. We learn about his past—he is/was a fan of music and instruments, and he even begins teaching Rey how to play the guitar before venturing to save his sister. These details, coupled with the impossible conditions he faces and disturbing nightmares, made me root for him the whole time.
The shortcoming of the novella is that… it’s a novella. It’s a quick read, and fans might be itching for more.
There’s just something interesting about zombie stories. Of course they’re terrifying—with the prospect of being torn apart every time we leave our homes and waking up a zombie. But there’s something thrilling about vicariously experiencing a complete breakdown of society. Watching Paul roam the deserted streets for canned food at a Seven Eleven. Viewing the wreckage of cars and stores. It’s fascinating to experience something so different from our organized and regulated world. And there’s nothing like a good zombie story to make you appreciate every little convenience in your own life.
The bottom line: for fans of zombie horror, this is a quick, engaging read that you will enjoy.