Sunday 6 December 2009

I AM SCROOGE: A Zombie Story For Christmas

Marley was dead. Again. The legendary Ebenezeer Scrooge sits in his house counting money. The boards that he has nailed up over the doors and the windows shudder and shake under the blows from the endless zombie hordes that crowd the streets hungering for his flesh and his miserly braaaaiiiiiinns!

Just how did the happiest day of the year slip into a welter of blood, innards and shambling, ravenous undead on the snowy streets of old London town?

Will the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future be able to stop the world from drowning under a top-hatted and crinolined zombie horde? Was Tiny Tim's illness something infinitely more sinister than mere rickets and consumption? Can Scrooge be persuaded to go back to his evil ways, travel back to Christmas past and destroy the brain stem of the tiny, irritatingly cheery Patient Zero?

Firstly, I have to admit that I've never read A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. I know, it's shameful to admit, but for some reason I've skipped a lot of the classics. :( Still, that didn't stop me from being very interested in this book when I first heard about it. For one, it's about zombies. And I've said it before, nothing says 'Merry Christmas' like zombies tearing the world apart.

I also know enough about the tale of Scrooge to recognise the many similarities in this fun story.

Ebenezeer Scrooge isn't a very happy man. Actually, he's being an introvert since childhood, after he was attacked by a disfigured man in a graveyard. He deals with money and has plenty of it but doesn't like to share. He also doesn't treat others very nicely. To be honest, he doesn't care much for other humans -- even the ones that work with/for him. So when he heads home on Christmas Eve and someone stops him to call out a warning, he walks on and gets home.

That's when all hell breaks loose. Starting with Marley tearing into his apartment. Except, Marley's dead and he seems to have become a... zombie. Of course, Scrooge doesn't know anything about that yet. Not until the Spirit of Christmas Present pays him a visit and shows him what's happening all over London.

This sends him on a time-travelling adventure involving two more spirits. The experience shows him a devastated world suffering from a zombie apocalypse that only he can stop. It changes who he is and how he looks at both his life and Christmas. Not to mention that a lot of his life suddenly makes sense.

I am Scrooge: A Zombie Story for Christmas is a fun story that also happens to be very funny. It's actually quite clever too. I enjoyed the cameo by Dickens and Wells. I have to admit that it got silly in a few bits, but that only adds to the charm of this lighthearted tale. Of course, because zombies are about, there was plenty of violence and interesting ways of taking them out. LOL.

This book made me laugh. A lot. Oh, and the illustrations were a great addition, too. I really enjoyed this book, and who would've guessed the true meaning of Christmas actually involved zombies? Did someone say Zomb-mass? ;)

I am Scrooge: A Zombie Story for Christmas, December 2009, ISBN 0575091541, Gollancz Hardback

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