The only thing more annoying than listening to your stomach growl is listening to it growl while being chased by ravenous zombies. Thankfully, Lauren Wilson, author of The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse: A Cookbook and Culinary Survival Guide has a detailed plan to help the “busy zpoc survivor” avoid such a fate.
Whether you’re counting down until the zombies get here or are convinced it’s all a hilarious joke and you’ll never end up as an “un-dead hors d’oeurvre,” you can’t go wrong with this important guide. Newbies and seasoned zpoc’ers alike learn the art of preparation, including “how to meet the basic requirements for food and water,” and how to choose a great apocalyptic tool kit to take on the run. They also learn how to build a fire, scavenge for food, and track edibles while evading the rotten clutches of the undead.
Ms. Wilson thinks of everything in this complex guide. For example, depending upon whether you decide to bug in (hunker down and fortify your home) or bug out (flee to a remote location or safe house), she instructs on how to sharpen blades, barter items, collect and purify rainwater, and pack an efficient BOB (bugout bag) or a GOOD (“get out of dodge” bag) that holds everything you need to “flee with flavor” and stay alive until the apocalypse is over.
In addition to the exquisitely-detailed survival tactics and techniques, hungry zpoc’ers learn to cook far-out dishes like Overnight of the Living Dead French Toast, No-Knead to Panic Bread, It’s Not Easy Growing Greens Salad, and Don’t Shoot Roasted Roots.
This spectacular book contains a staggering amount of information. It is chock full of survival rituals, eat-on-the-run goodness, and ghoulish humor. The text is crisp, clear and deadpan to the point of leaving the reader snorting with laughter. Kristian Bauthus’ illustrations are zombie-ishly creepy and include everything from filtration teepee’s to poisonous and edible plants to a zombie taking a huge bite out of a fleeing zpoc’er’s neck. There are also sections on foraging for wild plants, building a root cellar, and identifying fish during wild game hunting.
In short, this book contains everything you need to bug out (live in the wilderness) or bug in (hide at home) while the undead roam the earth. Only one small negative: the book’s design. Although the soft colors are quite calming (and you need calm when you’re talking about the undead!), the cover and inside pages are slick and somewhat difficult to manipulate. Also, the pages have a glossy finish that makes even the slightest amount of light seem like a glare. This makes it a challenge to read the small type inside.
These issues aside, this book is a jewel. In addition to providing hours of belly laughs, it should do well in any young adult or new adult classroom. Sportsmen and hikers can use it for its precision and practicality, and writers can use it to fuel their imaginations.
But most important of all, if the day of the undead really does ever come, this book is the fleeing human’s perfect companion. Because in the immortal words of Ms. Wilson, “Just because the undead’s taste buds are atrophying, it doesn’t mean yours need to.”
This review also appears on The New York Journal of Books — http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/book-review/art-eating-through-zombie-apocalypse