Undead Rising: Decide Your Destiny - M.E. Kinkade
Of course I read some Choose Your Own Adventure stories when I was younger. And I was awful at them. I never followed the rules. Not once. It was too much fun to follow each and every tangent to see what choices would ultimately lead to what end.
So when Undead Rising was submitted to me to read, I was more than a little excited to see what M.E. Kinkade had in store for her readers.
Did I explore EVERY SINGLE TANGENT in this book? Yes. Yes I did. And I loved every moment of it.
I think what I loved most about it was the tongue in cheek style of writing. Yes, zombies are truly terrifying (unless you're one of those who is confident that surviving the apocalypse will be a veritable cake walk), but Kinkade's style of writing made me laugh, snicker, and grimace all at the same time as page after page I met my inevitable end, either as a human victim or a zombie victim.
Oddly enough, I found it realistic as well, in the same sense that Stephen King employed in The Stand. During an apocalypse, will some people die for really really stupid reasons? Yep. Absolutely. They'll slip and fall off of a roof or accidentally lock themselves in a freezer, or some other ridiculous turn of events.
I really cannot recommend this book enough. Highly entertaining and lots of fun!
Some Bio Information
M.E. Kinkade wanted to be an architect when she was in third grade, but that didn’t work out, so now she builds (and destroys) imaginary worlds instead. Her work has appeared in The Dallas Morning News, CURE Magazine, and several online venues. She loves science fiction and dystopian books, movies, and TV shows. She watches too many crime dramas and is insufferable about trying to guess the killer. She knows the lyrics to just about every major song in a Disney movie.
She lives in Dallas, Texas, and would absolutely be toast in the event of a real zombie outbreak.
1) What inspired you to write this book?
I know a lot of people who seem very confident that they can totally handle the end of the world--particularly a zombie apocalypse!--without breaking a sweat. This book was meant to be a fun challenge for those folks--oh yeah? Well prove it! In this case, the odds really aren't in your favor!
2) Can you tell us a little bit about your writing process?
I'm a pantser, but for a gamebook-style book with so many interwoven stories, I had to take really good notes. Every time a choice presents itself, I'd write myself a note about what I intended to fill in there (ex. What if a zombie adopted a human toddler?) and then plow ahead with the current tangent. When next I sat at my desk, I'd pick a tangent and see where it led!
3) What types of readers would most enjoy your work?
My book is most definitely for nerdy folks who like to argue with their friends about the problems with The Walking Dead (and how they could totally do it better). And those with a slightly twisted sense of humor, of course!
4) What do you hope that readers take away from your work?
Gamebooks are inherently fun--so there is no reason only kids should get to have them!
5) Who is your favorite fictional character?
Oh gosh, just one? For pure fun and badassery, I'd have to go with Joanne Baldwin in the Weather Wardens series by Rachel Caine.
6) How would you describe your writing style?
Sly. I hope readers can feel the wink and the nudge as they try to survive an imaginary apocalypse!
7) What’s your ultimate writing goal?
For people to passionately love reading, and for my work to be a part of that passion.