Book Review: Feed

As a rule, I do not review non-medical books on this blog, unless it forms part of a Top Ten Tuesday. However, since my recent discovery of the myriad of book blogs, Goodreads and the ability to read while maintaining my schedule has led to me rather bravely attempting a bookish challenge, I have decided to blog about those books.

For the category of Science Fiction and Fantasy I read Feed by Mira Grant.

Summary: In 2014, two experimental viruses—a genetically engineered flu strain designed by Dr. Alexander Kellis, intended to act as a cure for the common cold, and a cancer-killing strain of Marburg, known as “Marburg Amberlee”—escaped the lab and combined to form a single airborne pathogen that swept around the world in a matter of days. It cured cancer. It stopped a thousand cold and flu viruses in their tracks.

It raised the dead.

I think I misread the blurb for this book, because I got to the part where there were zombies (around the first page) and regretted it: I have never been a zombie fan. I have never watched half a zombie movie.

But then I couldn’t put the book down.

I think I was intrigued by the pun in the title. “Feed”, which is what zombies do. And “feed”, as in the RSS logo on the cover, such as bloggers have.

Feed is about more than zombies. In fact, it is not a cheap horror. The risen dead is more of a milieu than a storyline. What I love about this novel is that it hones in on the power and value of the truth. It really analysis the worth of a good reporter, and the damage the media can do to society if they act like the government’s lapdog.

Don’t get me wrong: It is not written like an academic paper. The action scenes, while not gory, are excellent. The narrative is great. The little blurbs or the protagonists’ blogs are superb.

My second doubtful moment came when I realized the novel has a surprising amount of conspiracy. I do not have much affection for conspiracy and again I was annoyed.

Grant has a way of getting her characters under your skin though, so I carried on reading because I felt like I was in the field with them.

Her characterization is great, and her grasp of the human mind under stressful conditions is well-considered.

As a science fiction novel, it is most certainly worth it. I anticipated a more medical-orientated sci-fi novel (heaven knows why), but I will most certainly be reading the sequels.

If we didn’t fear the truths we didn’t hear, we’d lose the need to fear the ones we did.

Feed, Mira Grant

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