Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Book Review: Case File 13 - Zombie Kid by J. Scott Savage

It's been awhile since I've reviewed a middle-grade book, so I was excited when an ARC of Case File 13 Zombie Kid by J. Scott Savage arrived in the mail.

The awesome cover stared at me for days, tempting me to ignore the writers conference. You'll be happy to know I didn't succumb to the temptation, but it was hard.

The summer is over and there's a chill in the morning air. Halloween is just around the corner. It's a perfect time to read a monster book, so when I sat down to read I had high expectations.

I enjoyed Zombie Kid. And I'm not just saying that because I have mashed potatoes on my head.

The book is full of hair raising situations, sandwich loving ghosts, talking cats, arch-enemy girls, evil curses, alligators, voodoo queens, zombies . . . and fart jokes. Yep, it has it all.

The story starts off with three monster-obsessed boys who quickly find themselves in the middle of a voodoo war, and one of them is turned into a zombie. Cool, huh? It's not all fun and games though as they struggle to reverse the curse.

I especially like how Jeff brings zombies back to their roots. These aren't some mamby-pamby-virus-zombies or glowing-radiation-zombies or high-tech-genetically-modified zombies. These are true voodoo zombies controlled by an evil Bokor. Oh, yeah!

Case File 13 Zombie Kid is creepy, quirky, and cool. It's scary enough to keep your attention, but not so much to give you nightmares. Oh, and try not to get too grossed out.

I've known Jeff for many years. He's written so many different things from a fantasy series and a mystery series to technological thriller and more and more, so I was especially curious what made this book so special to him. Here's what he said:
This is probably the closest story I’ve ever written to what I was like as a kid. I never turned into a zombie (although I might have seemed like it in my early teen years), but I loved monsters, explored all kinds of creepy places, and Halloween really was my favorite holiday. I attended Pleasant Hill Elementary and played on Dinosaur Hill. So writing Zombie Kid was a lot like recapturing my youth.
I never thought anyone would want to publish the Case File 13 series. It was too much my own twisted sense of humor, my own loves, my own story. Even when I sent it to my agent, I did so with lots of disclaimers. When he told me how much he loved it, I was still apologizing for even sending it to him. And then, when Harper snatched it up in a three book deal, I was floored. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who experienced those kinds of things as a kid, and still enjoys these types of stories.
Don't worry Jeff. If it turns out that you're crazy, then I'm right there with you. Bring on more monster books.

Case File 13 Zombie Kid comes out in December 2012, so you don't have long to wait to get yourself a copy.

1 comment:

Danyelle Ferguson said...

LOVED Zombie Kid! Chapter 18 was especially awesome. =)

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