Read Remark Book Review - The Girl with All the Gifts

Book Review: The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

One-sentence summary:

Melanie goes to a strange school and has questions no one can seem to answer to her satisfaction, such as, why are the children strapped to their chairs and served live grubs at mealtime?


The Girl with All the Gifts is a great story, to the point that I became sad when nearing the end of the book.

It both fulfills and defies genre stereotypes. It’s horror without being horrifying. It shows horrible abuses without being overly emotional. It’s a coming of age for a person who’s somewhat ageless.

I love seeing the different ways modern storytellers talk about zombies without using the word “zombies.”

Did I mention there are zombies? There are zombies! Tally up another star just for that.

The Walking Dead calls them “walkers.” Some movies call them “the undead.” The Girl with All the Gifts calls them “hungries.” At first, I thought the hungries were a scare tactic meant to keep children in line and discourage wandering off the property lines, but no. They’re very real in this world.

Caldwell the scientist might be my favorite character. Not at all because I like her (let’s be clear; I don’t), but because she’s so well drawn. She’s one of those evil characters who doesn’t realize she’s evil, and that, I think , is the best kind of bad guy.

THAT’S the fascinating, messy, not quite answerable question of this book for me. And it’s wonderful.