Review of Zombie by Joyce Carol Oates
Not as good as I’d hoped, but there were some great passages, some amazing parts where it felt so real, like I was reading the memoir of a real psychopath and not a fictionalized work from the prim and proper looking Ms. Oates. At times I found it hard to believe the words and phrases had come from her mind, through her own hand.
Realistic – definitely can see the Dahmer influence, although I heard Joyce Carol Oates say in an interview that her inspiration was not only Jeffrey Dahmer, but also Ted Bundy. I didn’t see any of Bundy in this myself. It’s a chilling story – more chilling because it is not made up. Yes, it is fiction, but this stuff – this attempt at creating human zombies for the purposes of sex slavery and ownership – happened. Are there more like Jeffrey Dahmer walking amongst us? This book gives me cause to wonder. And worry.
A well-constructed, albeit hard to get into at first, look at the private thoughts of one man. I did feel that the first 8 chapters were largely unnecessary and would have enjoyed the book more had it begun with chapter 9 (although the chapters are short enough it was okay, though may have been a DNF if I wasn’t so interested in where she was going to take such a story). Chapter 9 is where the writing and details of the thought processes grabs me.
Read this if you have a morbid curiosity about serial killers, specifically Dahmer; if you want to know what a man like this may have been thinking (was probably thinking), how he justified his actions; how his loneliness and anti social personality contradicted each other; and how his lack of regard for human life took him down a path most of us can’t even begin to imagine.
I wish Dahmer could have read this. I’d love to know what he would have thought of it, whether it rang true to him and to his own mental thought processes.
Ohhh that subject is horrendous. It’s unreal that happened. Terrifying. Glad you enjoyed the book and great review
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Terrifying for sure, but oh so very interesting.