The New Hunger is a full-length, 176-page novella that details the events leading up to those in Warm Bodies. I still haven't read Warm Bodies, but that made no difference to me reading this prequel; if anything, I'll now have a greater understanding of the story. I've seen the film too, so I knew who the main characters were. Fans of The Walking Dead will love these books, I'm sure - they're grisly and full of zombies... what more could you want?!
The New Hunger tells three stories that eventually collide. There's Julie and her parents travelling across country trying to find a new home, Nora and her brother Addis all alone and fighting to stay alive, and then there's a tall dead man who wakes up and has no idea who, or what, he is. Each of these stories is about survival and trying to stay alive through any means necessary. Nora and her brother are literally living one minute to the next, never knowing what is waiting for them on the streets of a crumbling Seattle. It makes for tense reading, especially because I found myself so invested I'm each character, even the tall man with a penchant for human flesh.
I was pleasantly surprised by this book, in particular the writing. I've been putting off reading Warm Bodies because I didn't really like the film, but I'm going to remedy that because this prequel, and Isaac Marion's intelligent writing, has impressed me. I was hooked throughout this book and read it in one sitting, knowing that it was building to a somewhat shocking conclusion. I'm now looking forward to reading Warm Bodies and am glad I read this prequel first - I now have more background information and a better understanding of characters I'm sure I'll come to love.