Love Zombies of San Diego by E.Z. Graves is a young adult zombie story that's a bit different. Josh is a zombie but he knows he's different from the grunting, mindless dead things he sees wandering all over the streets of San Diego. Josh doesn't breathe or have a heart that beats, but he does think, and brains are not his food of choice. He walks the streets, killing zombies with his trusty sword called Rockstar. Josh's concern that he might be the only one of his kind is dispelled when he sees Tasha, who's obviously confused and talking to herself. Tasha's a bit doubtful of Josh's theory that they are both Love Zombies, born of zombies and capable of thought and speech. They team up with other teenage Love Zombies and hatch a plan to find the source of the 'Old School' Zombies and eradicate them.
August 12, 2012 (San Diego’s East County)--San Diego resident E.Z. Graves, who teaches college English composition at Grossmont College in East County, has written a horror science fiction novel: The Necromancers: Or Love Zombies of San Diego, using El Cajon and La Jolla as a backdrop. Reading like George Romero's Dawn of the Dead or the movie Blade with Wesley Snipes, The Necromancers: Or Love Zombies of San Diego, will certainly keep those who are horror or science fiction buffs entertained.
Typical of the East County theme of Graves' book is the Prologue; Los Dias de los Muertos, which states: "I was walking down Main Street in the Hispanic section of El Cajon, which means 'the box.' It was November 2, the second day in the celebration of the dead, and I could see all the little poor kids running around wearing their skeleton and ghoul costumes. They were really cute, but I also noted that they were being protected by several adults who were armed with AK-47s. I, too, was wearing a skeleton mask and costume because I didn't want to get shot."
The premise of the author's book centers around a teenager, Josh, and how he and other teenagers become "love zombies." They join forces with other teenagers in the San Diego area who fight out of the La Jolla Caves. Their fight is against zombies that are flesh eaters and have less control of their actions and their emotions than the so-called "love zombies." With the help of world renowned geneticist, Dr. Mike Barkin, Josh and the other "love zombies," along with the "breather" teens that they have joined forces with, set out to rid the world of this zombie plague, of which they are all a mutated form. There are also some comical aspects of this science fiction tale by the author Graves, as befitting the central characters of this novel being teenagers.
The Necromancers actually were ancient magicians who wanted to conjure up the dead and talk with them in order to find out the future, so tells Graves in his book. When Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein, she had the same romantic notion that by raising the dead in the form of a monster she could prove science was wrong, as stated by one of the central characters in this book.
Graves' background as a college English composition teacher certainly comes out in his telling of this story, particularly in the climax of this tale.
When a mysterious zombie virus threatens the world, it’s up to teenage “love zombies” to stop it.
San Diego teenager Josh is a dead “love zombie” who kills bad zombies; he also quotes Jesus, Nietzsche and Jung. In his first-person narrative with hints of pedantry, Josh surmises that the zombie virus spread quickly because the no-taxes government shredded the social safety net, leading to “open class warfare.” “[T]he dead virus was the ultimate catastrophe to hit us in our dens of poverty,” he says. Greedy agribusinesses, pollution, genetic engineering, the Iraq War, Mexican drug cartels, a mad scientist and a love zombie Bill of Rights mix into the tale of the walking dead. When it comes to gross-out, graphic violence, Musgrave supplies enough jugular-ripping, entrails-feasting carnage to satisfy any fan of the genre. There are ample weaponry details, too, from kosher slaughtering knives to a sword “modeled after the ancient falcata used by Iberian mercenaries.” Yet there’s also leavening humor, as well as unexpectedly resonant, emotional moments: When Josh drives a car and feels the steering wheel “smooth in my hands,” he says, “You don’t know what it means for us undead to be able to do something so human. I felt like I was one step closer, as Pinocchio would say, to being a real boy.” In this humorous, at times overdone gorefest for young adults, less could be more: A football game is played with metal batons, truncheons and Tasers; and drone zombies drop their pants in service to an enormous half-human, half-bee, egg-laying zombie queen. The professorial tone can also be an intermittent distraction: Do readers need to be told that Frank Baum was the author of The Wizard of Oz and that he called a La Jolla sea cave “Sunny Jim” after “a cartoon mascot” for a 1920s-era cereal? Still, the love zombies’ satisfying triumph reaches icky levels of bloodletting that fans of the genre will appreciate. A vampire sequel looms on the horizon.
Overstuffed—just how some fans like it.
The finalists of the 2016 international Young Adult Novel Awards were announced. Love Zombies of San Diego was one of them. Efraim Z. Graves (pseudonym for James Musgrave) is the author.
See the complete list at the provided link.
The Young Adult Horror novel, Necoromanceers, or Love Zombies of San Diego, by Efraim Z. Graves (pseudonym for James Musgrave) won Honorable mention in the Horror Category at the 2013 Global eBook Awards.
See the complete list of winners at the provided link below.