Feed Me, Seymour! (Feed by Mira Grant)

October 18, 2013 Friendship, Zombies 43

Hidey Ho, Bookworms!

feedI’ve been having an absolute blast reading all these scary books lately. I kept hearing great things about the Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant- I simply couldn’t stop myself from picking up a copy of Feed.  The Zombie Apocalypse? Been there, done that. This book takes place 30 years post outbreak. Apparently the virus that causes people to rise from the dead was caused by an interaction between two genetically engineered viruses: one that cured cancer, and one that cured the common cold. Everybody has the virus in their system, but it only goes into amplification (read: zombification) when you’re bitten by a zombie… Or die of something else.

Georgia and her brother Shaun run a news blogging site. They spend their days chasing stories, exposing the truth, and poking dead things with sticks. Georgia and Shaun, along with their tech guru Buffy, manage to land a spot on the presidential campaign of a popular Wisconsin senator and are thus rocketed into the big leagues of media. Politics and conspiracies and ZOMBIES, oh my! There was SO MUCH I loved about this book that I’m going to have to get my list on…

1. The Pop Culture References: George is the new Jennifer. I was positively tickled when it was revealed that an entire generation of children were named in honor of George Romero, undisputed king of the zombie film. Apparently Night of the Living Dead became an incredibly useful field guide. I can only assume the spelling of “Shaun” was in reference to Simon Pegg’s hilarious zombie masterpiece, Shaun of the DeadAnd Buffy? She downright OWNS that her nickname is after the iconic and only Vampire Slayer. Also, the thrill seeking dangerous reporter types are referred to as “Irwins.” I can only assume this is a nod at the late great Crocodile Hunter.

Halloween Katoo

What? Le Kattoo likes Halloween as much as the next penguin.

2. Science: I loved the explanation of how the zombie virus came into being, The cures for two of humanity’s main nemeses combine to create the great its great downfall? Ah hubris. I don’t know just how accurate the virology stuff in the book was, but it sounded pretty plausible to this uneducated plebeian. The way it could lie dormant in the bloodstream, the desire to spread, the infection of other mammals… (As I was watching The Walking Dead on Sunday night, I thought for sure the ailing pig was turning zombie. My current theory on that is good old swine flu, but I digress.)

3. Realism: I happen to think that any mass contagion (influenza, smallpox, zombie-virus) would certainly pose a big problem to humanity. HOWEVER. I find it harder to believe that in an age of kevlar, body armor, and advanced weaponry, that the entire world’s infrastructure would crumble. I think the isolation, extensive blood testing, and attempts to prevent the spread of contagion are a more likely scenario… Though perhaps that’s just wishful thinking. In this world I could just stay in my house, order in groceries and mood stabilizers, and avoid anything that might eat me.

I’ve already started the second book in this series- I cannot get enough. I highly recommend this book, and I want to give a shout out to everyone who recommended this to me (including, but not limited to, Charleen from Cheap Thrills. She also wrote a companion post on The Passage for The Fellowship of the Worms this month, and you should go read it.)

Let’s talk about GERMS! Anybody out there gotten their flu shot yet? Anybody already been sick this season? Anybody want to give out their recipe for the world’s best hot toddie so we can all be prepared when the inevitable sniffles hit this winter? Talk to me, Worms!

43 Responses to “Feed Me, Seymour! (Feed by Mira Grant)”

  1. Heather

    [whispers] I’ve never had the flu. [knocks on wood]

    I have a hard time with books about germs, viruses, contagious diseases. I’m a bit of a germaphobe (understatement of the year). Everybody in my house has had a cold already–I’ve stayed sick-free. o/

      • Heather

        I do take Vitamin C every day, and I wash my hands when I should (after bathroom trips, before preparing and/or eating food).

        I honestly think I have the immune system of a superhero, though. Or maybe it’s mind over matter. I don’t know.

      • Yamika

        I know what you mean, I had gone 10 years without malaria (if you are malaria free for 10 years you can donate blood in the US) needless to say, after opening my stupid mouth to say I was able to donate blood, I came down with malaria.

        • Words for Worms

          They actually were discussing malaria in book 2! They were using it as an example to explain how diseases work. Living in the Midwestern US doesn’t lend itself to malaria outbreaks, though I make liberal use of gin and tonics, which were originally designed as a malaria treatment…

  2. Charleen

    Aww, thanks for the shout out! (And yes, I thought the same thing about Shaun’s name. That one is never explicitly stated, but it stands to reason.)

    I seem to rarely get the flu, but I get colds ALL THE TIME. I pretty much spend four or five months out of the year in various stages of recovering from or coming down with something that really isn’t terrible just kind of makes me all blech. But the last time I really got the flu flu was two or three years ago. I have a vague memory of my husband asking if he should stay home, and I said no, but he did anyway, and it turned out to be a good thing… I’m used to at least being able to pour myself some juice or heat up some soup, and this time I could barely stumble from the bed to the bathroom on my own. (But I COULD. Barely, but could. Just making that clear.)

    • Words for Worms

      Oh man that sucks! Jim caught the swine flu when it was the big thing. His fever went so high I had to take him to urgent care. At least you still managed the stumbling. That’s an achievement in itself.

  3. Ashley Z

    I’ve been eyeing this series. I want to Read! I wish I had some remedies because I wouldn’t be on my way to bring Emelia to the doctor!

  4. Megan M.

    I have so much to say! I took a class called Killer Germs in college. It made me even LESS scared of germs than I was before, because, DUDE, germs are inescapable. But I learned that one of the worst things people do is use too much antibacterial soap and create more “superbugs.” So I haven’t bought antibacterial hand soap in, hmm, six years.

    I’m waiting to see just exactly what the illness is on TWD. I keep thinking that all of those people (except for baby Judith) would have been vaccinated before the zombie outbreak, so what disease could it be and how did it happen? I can’t wait to see the next episode!

    I don’t get flu shots. I’ve had a couple minor colds, but I have two kids in elementary school, so it’s bound to happen. Cold medicine really does nothing helpful and I hate wasting money on it. When I get sick, I load up on Vitamin C and B-vitamins, and I use my Neti pot. My colds generally go away before they really get started.

    I looked up these books but the mention of political campaigns turned me off. I HATE talking about politics.

    • Words for Worms

      I really hate politics too, but these didn’t bother me. I’m okay with antibacterial soap, but what I’m vigilant about is NOT taking antibiotics when I don’t really need them. I fear the superbugs. FEAR!

  5. Jennine G.

    I have been wondering about this book, but had no clue it was about zombies. It’s on my classroom shelf actually…I inherited it from the gifted students’ reading competition last year.

    No one in my family ever gets the flu shot. Overall, none of us have health problems that would merit it and none of us hardly ever get the flu. So I figure why bother? When I was pregnant during the winter I did just because of having a newborn. But other years I tried it are the years I got the flu. Medical people tell me the shot can’t be the cause, but that’s how it seemed to happen. Lol

      • Words for Worms

        Yep! I think it was a realistic portrayal, though I was freaked out by bats before their flu and pig flu mixed into super flu… Now I’m just extra paranoid.

    • Words for Worms

      Last year was the first time I ever got the flu shot, and I was the only person in my office not to get sick. I can’t say for sure it was the flu that they all had, but I like to think it was so I didn’t get a sore arm for no reason.

  6. tinykitchenstories

    Okay, since you mentioned it, do you EVER get to know what caused the zombies in WWZ? I’m dying to know. I personally think all this GMO food and mad cow disease is going to do it in our real world—call me paranoid, but don’t F with my food, mmmkay? And one of the things I am enjoying about WWZ is the inability of all the world’s governments to deal with the problem effectively, and the weaponry is all wrong. So creative and imaginitive! I wonder if zombie book writers creep themselves out?

    I’m scared of the superbugs too, like other commenters. Let’s stop messing around with feeding everybody, including animals, antibiotics! Geez!

  7. Turn the Page Reviews

    Just back from Disney and my son and I were lucky enough to bring a friend home-Super Stomach Bug!! Ugh
    I am not usually a fan of horror, but I did just pick up a copy of The Shining- will probably only be able to read it in the daylight hours…

  8. Monika

    We’re pretty careful during flu season, since kiddo was a preemie. Kind of got into some good habits when she was younger and haven’t left those behind – lots of handwashing, keeping hands away from the face, etc. And we don’t hang out with friends who are sick. They know to just let us know so we can reschedule. 🙂

    BUT, minor colds and stuff… they’re inevitable. Especially since I teach music lessons here at the house! (Though my students are great about washing their hands and cancelling when they’re sick). One of my high school students told me to mash up garlic and put it in a drink or applesauce and swallow it down when I feel sniffles coming on. She swears by it!

    • Words for Worms

      Garlic? It’s funny you say that. One year my mom ate the world’s stinkiest garlickiest sandwich at a Greek restaurant the same day the rest of the family came down with strep throat. She swears by the miracle of stinky sandwiches.

  9. Jenny @ Reading the End (formerly Jenny's Books)

    Ah germs. I got the flu shot hastily this week because everyone in my office is sick but me, and I wanted to get the shot in before I got sick too and couldn’t have it until I got better. I got the flu once, when I was eight — awful. I was so miserable I didn’t even read.

    Weird question from a CDC fan: Is the CDC in this book? Are they nice? I love the CDC.

  10. Sarah Says Read

    OH MY GOD YOU READ IT! I’m so excited. Okay let me go actually read your post now… *scrolls back up*

    Okay I’m back. I basically agree with everything you said! And I’m so psyched you’re already reading the second book, I was the same way. I loved that it’s a different take on the zombie apocalypse – seeing the effects of it years later was really cool and it was nice to have a few perspective. I want to re-read this really bad right now. OH and I think swine flu is a good explanation for TWD, I can’t wait to see how that goes…

    As for flu shots – never had one. I’m suspicious of them, seeing as how the flu just sucks but as long as you’re healthy and not super old or an infant, it’s unlikely to kill you. Why bother getting vaccinated just to keep from MAYBE getting sick? It seems silly. And so many places offer it for free or really low-cost, which makes me wonder too (most drugs are expensive, why offer something so cheap when it’s not even vaccinating against a lethal thing?). I swear I’m not a crazy conspiracy theorist, but the flu shot thing just always seemed weird and unnecessary to me.

  11. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader

    George is the new Jennifer! Well, I’m glad there is a new one because this name is BORING. There were FIVE of us in elementary class of 22 kids. How lame is that? I nearly named my kids Apple and North just so that they didn’t suffer from BORING NAME SYNDROME 😉

Talk to me, Bookworms!

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