Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse?

September 11, 2017 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, , )

surviveCan You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse? by Max Brallier

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You’re in your mid-forties, with fond memories of the Choose Your Own Adventure books. You especially liked the horror titles (you have fond memories of The Mystery of Chimney Rock), so when you discovered that someone had written and published an adult CYOA book, written around a zombie apocalypse, of course you had to buy it. You figure the author and publisher were counting on it.

The thing is, you still want to read a good story. That’s what you liked about the CYOA books to begin with. It wasn’t just the conceit of being the star in the story that appealed to you; it was also that they drew you in and made you want to find out what happened next. The more you read Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse?, the more disappointed you get. You find that the choices to make aren’t meaningful, and neither is the character you’re supposed to be. You remember the original CYOA books having your choices drive the character growth, but here you find that the character is already established: male, mid-twenties, obsessed with sex even in the midst of a collapsing society, and pretty pathetic.

What happens if the reader isn’t any of those things? you think. Why can’t there be stories like this that feature different characters the reader can choose to better reflect who they are in the real world? Fiction is fantasy, sure, but when you’re supposed to be the star of the book, the story should reflect as much of that person as possible.

You find the book to be too juvenile for adults. You think the book was written for males suffering from arrested development. More often that not, the stories play out where the main character isn’t much of a hero, since he relies on other people to save him more than he does anything himself.

You do have to give credit for the book working well as an e-book. Gone are the days of shuffling pages back and forth looking for the next section to read; instead, you have the luxury of clicking on a link and going straight to your choice. It’s just a shame you couldn’t read a good story, too.

You remember that Kim Newman wrote an adult CYOA book, too, called Life’s Lottery. Maybe that will be the adult CYOA book you were hoping Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse? would be.

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