Feed is the first book in the Newsflesh series by Mira Grant, aka Seanan McGuire.
Finished on: 14.1.2023
George and her brother Shaun run one of the many blogs that have become the major news source for most people since the Kellis-Amberlee virus changed the world forever. George deals with politics, Shaun with action, happiest when he is poking a zombie with a stick. Their friend Buffy takes care of fiction. The three of them have applied to shadow the campaign of Senator Peter Ryman as he prepares to run for president, hoping to get unprecedented access for a blog. When they actually get the gig, they know that they have hit the jackpot. But then things start to go wrong on the campaign trail and George is sure that there is something bigger going on.
If you ever thought, “West Wing would be so awesome, if only it had zombies”, I have excellent news for you. Feed gives you just that: a zombie story set up to explore politics in a really interesting, and very gripping way. Also, it made me cry.
Feed is very technical in its world-building, explaining in a rather plausible and very detailed way how the zombie virus works, making it clear that McGuire has given it a lot of thought. The politics she describes and the many aspects of the blogging world she details are just as well-considered and thought through. She touches on so many things, thinking about the many ways such a virus would change society, and gives us a version of the world that feels very realistic.
The story takes a bit of a back-seat to the world-building. Some things are very obvious, although they were meant to be surprising (I think), but the novel is well-written and paced enough that it doesn’t really matter. And one twist, the biggest, did suprise me – and hit me very hard. Tears were shed.
I loved George and Shaun. They were such a good team, taking on the world together, trusting each other with any- and everything while still well aware of the other’s fault. And they were funny. I also thought it was pretty great that George is disabled and, possibly, very likely, queer (although the book never spells it out, I read her as ace-aro). I am very curious to see how things continue in the next installment, after everything that happened in this one.
Summarizing: a real page-turner.