So this week I’m reading The Girl with All the Gifts, by M.R. Carey, a post-apocalyptic
zombie “hungries” novel in which society has been laid waste by a mutated (possibly weaponized) form of Ophiocordyceps. Perhaps it takes place on the same devastated earth as “The Last of Us” …
Now, The Girl with All the Gifts has been on my TBR list pretty much forever, but I recently found out that a film version is in the works, so after finishing my last read (which happened to be another post-apocalyptic novel about children locked in a facility and subject to experiments), I forwent my usual “pick a random book” approach, spent a little bit of our Apple e-book settlement money on TGwAtG, and started reading. Was this book worth $9.99 of
Apple’s Amazon’s hard-earned cash? Oh, you betcha.
She wears an expression of furious intensity, and doesn’t answer when spoken to. You could almost believe she’s sulking, but in Justineau’s opinion, what they’re seeing is raw thought. The doctor is in.
You may see TGwAtG classified as “Young Adult”. The titular “Girl” is, in fact, a girl (depending on your point of view), and a reader of the dystopian YA fiction that’s popular these days would certainly enjoy this book; but still, I would place it firmly in the adult fiction section. I said this same thing not long ago about another book. Some day I’ll have to sit down and figure out where and why I draw that line. It seems to lie somewhere between Holly Black’s excellent The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, which I do consider YA, and The Girl with All the Gifts. I couldn’t find that line on a map, but I seem to always spot it once it’s in the rear-view mirror, sort of like that cross street I wanted to turn onto.
In any case, TGwAtG has got a lot on its fungus-infested mind about what it means to be “alive”, what it means to be “human”, and how far you can go to stay the one before you cease to be the other. It’s also by far the best
zombie “hungries” fiction I’ve encountered since Zone One and the aforementioned “The Last of Us”, which, as I understand it, is also getting the movie treatment, if it ever gets out of development hell. Double feature, anyone?
Meanwhile, editing continues on Television Man, although it’s going to be interrupted for a week or so by a trip to the mythical land of New York. But that’s okay. In the world of Television Man, time only means what you want it to mean. Or something like that.
This was too much. She simply couldn’t keep going. As Kyle moved forward and then scurried back and forth along the edge of the cliff like an ant whose scent trail had been interrupted by a stream of bug spray, Gwen went to a nearby large rock and sat down, staring at the carpet of trees below. There was the road, or at least, a road, running alongside the river, or at least, a river. Gwen didn’t even know where she was anymore. It wasn’t the Adirondacks. It was some bizarro-world of haunted cabins and trails that didn’t go anywhere and landscapes that rearranged themselves when you weren’t looking.