Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Zomboy

HarperCollins 2014. 232 pages
First published: 2014
ISBN: 9781443410687 (paperback)
9781443410700 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Novel
Book genre: Horror

Text Elements:

character, characterization, conflict, dialogue, figurative language, point of view

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

Zombies are people too—that’s what Olive (a.k.a. Evil-O) believes about the new student, Imre. But Bob disagrees. Worse still, Imre is now Bob’s rival for Evil-O’s attention. As Bob struggles with jealousy and hygiene concerns, he finds himself ultimately drawn to Imre’s deadpan stoicism: “‘Another test, another failure. At least I have my good looks.’ And he’d make a creaky sound that was his way of laughing.”

This light-hearted story offers a clever contrast between Bob’s less-than-heroic qualities (“Mom tells me I don’t need all that hand sanitizer”) and Imre’s unglamorous version of strength and fearlessness (“What do you say to a guy you hate but who has just saved your life?”)

Themes of societal intolerance, racism and school segregation are conveyed through a fast-moving plot, complete with protesting parents, a school election, the local football team and military helicopters. Through all the commotion, Bob detects an important mystery lurking in Imre’s home life as an orphan ward of the army.

  •  

    After reading the first chapter, discuss what it is like to have a new student in your class or school. What if you were the new student? Make predictions about Imre: Who is he and what is the “tough time” he experiences?

  •  

    Discuss how we react to people who are different. What emotions might be involved? Consider how various characters react to Imre and try to explain. What would you do in this situation?

  •  

    The author uses the metaphor, “You carry your family around with you.” What do think this means and how does it apply to you? Record your thoughts in your reader-writer’s notebook.

  •  

    In a small group, discuss how you would react if you found out that a non-threatening teen zombie will be in the same class as you. How would society in general deal with it? Is there a right or wrong in this hypothetical scenario? Why?

  •  As you read, pay attention to how Imre affects the relationship between Bob and Evil-O.
  •  You and a partner are the campaign managers for Imre’s attempt at class presidency. Create flyers and a poster selling his merits and deliver a speech urging voters to vote for him.
  • To construct his/her identity
  • To cooperate with others
  • To exercise critical judgment
  • To use information
  • Citizenship and Community Life
  • Social Sciences