I am Scrooge: A Zombie Story for Christmas – Adam Roberts

Marley was dead, to begin with...

The legendary Ebenezeer Scrooge sits in his house, his riches forgotten. Downstairs, his front door shudders and shakes under the blows from the zombies that crowd around it hungering for his flesh and his miserly braaaaiiiiinns!

Just how did the happiest day of the year slip into a welter of blood, innards and shambling, ravenous undead on the snowy streets of London town?

Will the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future be able to stop the world from drowning under a top-hatted and crinolined zombie horde?
Does mankind's survival lie in the hands of one of literature's scrawniest and meanest heroes? And is H.G. Wells in the wrong book altogether?

It's the Dickensian Zombie Apocalypse – God Bless Us, Every One!

Genre: Fiction, Satire and Parody, Zombies
Year: 2009
Publisher: Gollancz
Rating: 3/5

I bought, I am Scrooge for my fiance for Christmas. He loves Dickens, he likes a good zombie story and he enjoys silliness. This book combines all three. I was a bit apprehensive about giving it to him at first, because he really only reads science fiction, but he loved it! He loved it so much, he gave it to me to read.

Although I didn't love it as much as he did, I enjoyed this book. It was a fun read. Great for those times when you want a book that doesn't make you think too hard.

At first, I struggled a little with Roberts style of writing. It is overly conversational, almost as if the narrator is thinking out loud. For example:

As the night began to freeze, and he was a right wheezer, and he went by the name of Ebenezeer Scrooge. What sort of person was he? Ah, as the phrase goes, hereby hangs a tale! Not hangs in the public execution sense; that wouldn't be appropriate at all, in this context. I mean, hangs in the – well, now. To be honest, I'm not entirely sure in what sense a tale can be said to hang. What I mean is that there was a reason behind Scrooge's poor public reputation.
As you can see, the prose is a little convoluted, but that is done on purpose. The subject matter of this book is silly, the way it is written is silly and in no way does it take itself seriously. It just one big book full of silliness. Great if you're in the mood for that kind of a read.

The story in this book loosely follows that of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. It is a retelling of how the story could have gone if zombies were involved. Dickens himself makes an appearance, as does H.G.Wells and we learn all about the true meaning of Christmas, how it really originated.... and what's with Tiny Tim?

If you are offended by alternative versions of Christmas or rewrites of literary classics then don't bother with this book. But if you love a good laugh, and like books that are very silly, then this is the book for you.

I've read a few mashups now.. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln,Vampire Hunter. Although fun every now and again, I really can't see this genre lasting. I am not sure I'll actively seek out anymore mashups, but that isn't to say I'll never read another one. Never say never!

Have you read this novel? Have you read any other literary mashups? What do you think of this genre?
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