I have been searching for The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey since I heard about it from Lala over at BooksandLala.
“Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his men strap her into the wheel chair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite. They don’t laugh.”
I read it last night in one sitting. This book is by far my favorite of all the books I’ve read this year.
“She was as big a four-fifths of five-eighths of fuck all, but she took no bullshit from anyone.”
Books 65 of 36: The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey
1- Don’t Read
2- It’s Good
4- Highly Recommend
5- Must Read
I finished this one and then flipped it over and started reading again. I made it to chapter 7 before I went to bed.
I don’t like zombie stories on principle. At this point every game, movie, show, comic, book, etc. is playing with zombies in one for or another and it’s all starting to look like one big masturbatory attempt to have a unique start to your apocalypse and a clever solution to save humanity. I’m over it.
But these stories are going to keep coming because of their very nature. They are, I’m sure we’ve all heard by now, analogies of human society and behavior. Whether it’s greed, ignorance, or a dependence on technology we are shown time and time again how easily society can break down into anarchy and terror. In the end a small band of merry misfits must come together to find the cure, or build a safe haven, or contact outside help and it’s with that that the story usually ends. Humanity is either saved or the saga continues.
The zombies, you see, can’t win. Because if they win then it means we have nothing to hope for. The circle jerk stops.
But that’s why I love The Girl With All The gifts so much. It does the same thing, throws a random bacterial infection at the world and watches it crumble, then we assemble our band of misfits and the jerking begins. Then, I noticed that this wasn’t at all the same as other zombie stories I’d read. The way it was told was what got me.
We begin this story in the head of a ten year old genius who doesn’t yet know she’s a Hungry (zombie) we end with her building a new world. Along the way the science is real, the action is contained and terrifying, and dear lord this is not one of those “They all make it out okay in the end” kind of books because no they don’t. No one is okay at the end of this. I like that too.
The zombies win not because of mans ignorance, or because man couldn’t stop the tide of lifeless brain suckers but because nature must take it’s course. It’s out of our hands. Dust it off and we must accept it. This wasn’t a war so we couldn’t win. This is a story of man fighting against nature and one little girl who realizes that in the end nature must win because if not, then everyone dies.