Once Upon a Zombie

Billy Phillips and Jenny Nissenson. The Toon Studio (thetoonstudio.com), $17.95 (368p) ISBN 978-1-935668-34-3
A zombie virus threatens fairy-tale characters—as well as those from the lore of Barrie, Baum, and more—in this fun mashup from Phillips and Nissenson. Between her mother’s disappearance and her own struggles with anxiety, 14-year-old Caitlin Fletcher just wants to fly under the radar at her new British prep school. She doesn’t succeed—Jack, a fellow new student, takes an interest in her, much to the annoyance of the school’s queen bee, Piper. After a prank orchestrated by Piper lands Caitlin and her younger sister, Natalie, in a graveyard on Halloween, the pair comes face to face with a zombified (yet surprisingly coherent) Rapunzel. While this Rapunzel still hungers for brains, she can keep her zombielike instincts in check; she warns that unless the sisters help defeat the Queen of Hearts, the fairy-tale world will fall victim to complete zombification. While the number of coincidences and lucky breaks helping the characters along causes some of the novel’s tension to fizzle, the authors provide a variety of memorable cameos and characters, living or otherwise. Ages 8–up. (BookLife)
Reviewed on: 10/05/2015
Release date: 10/01/2015
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