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 V.16 No.33 | August 16 - 22, 2007 

Book Review

Want to Live? Read This.

The Zombie Survival Guide

Max Brooks
Random House

If you happened to pose with any zombies for a picture during the Alibi’s scavenger hunt, you were in grave danger and probably already crossed over into the world of the undead, victim of the dreaded Solanum virus. The undead live among us. They are a plague that could wipe out human civilization if the proper precautions aren’t taken, and people just aren’t prepared to act in an educated, decisive manner.

If you haven't yet acquired a copy of The Zombie Survival Guide by undead expert Max Brooks, you’re lucky to still be alive. In 272 pages, Mr. Brooks gives you the mental tools needed to survive a zombie outbreak (which, by the way, could happen at any moment).

Outbreaks range from Class 1 to Class 4, as outlined in the section “Outbreaks: Class 1, Class 2, Class 3, Class 4” on page 23 of your Survival Guide.

Class 1: “This is a low-level outbreak, usually in a Third World Country or a First World rural area. Number of zombies ranges between one and 20. Human casualties (including those infected) range from one to 50. This is the most common type of outbreak and is also the easiest to go unnoticed.”

Class 4: “(See 'Living in an Undead World,' pages 154-181.)”

Since I’m more concerned with you and your family’s personal safety than I am with you supporting Mr. Brooks by buying this Survival Guide, here are a few raw suggestions that you'll need to know how to survive an outbreak of the undead. These are, however, no substitute for keeping a copy of the authentic Survival Guide in a drawer by your bed.

1) Stay in top physical condition. If you want to have any chance of surviving an outbreak, you must be able to flee on foot and be prepared for one-on-one combat. This is essential and could be the deciding factor in your remaining a member of the living or crossing over to the undead.

2) Bare arms, machetes and a collection of crowbars. Your defense mechanisms are your second most important asset, after your physical body. The only way to re-incapacitate a zombie is by either cutting off its head, or puncturing some sort of hole through its brain. For a complete listing of the best weapons, consult your guidebook.

3) Odds are at some point you’ll be required to defend your own home from the undead. Use this to your advantage. It is imperative that your house be stocked with enough food and water for your survival. Review “On the Defense: The Private Residence (Defending Your Home),” starting on page 64 in your Survival Guide, to ensure your safety, which is never guaranteed unless you take full responsibility for it.

4) Be prepared to flee, and have the proper equipment to survive your indefinitely long journey. Consider weight: The undead are slow, awkward creatures and the living can easily outrun them. You will want to be nimble, whether you choose to escape via car or boat, or on foot. See “On the Run,” beginning on page 94 in your Survival Guide, for more details.

Friends of humankind: Unite as a cohesive team of anti-undead marauders. Should they arise in force against us, we must be completely prepared to take immediate and collective action. Education is essential. If we, the living, are to survive a Class 3 or Class 4 outbreak of the undead, w ehave to be well-read in the techniques of warding off the undead. Read the Zombie Survival Guide and encourage your loved ones to do the same. If we fail in this, the consequences could be too terrifying to fathom.


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