There is just something horrifyingly irresistible about zombie fiction — something terrifyingly appealing about this $5 billion dollar genre that that pits the ravenous, mindless throngs of walking dead against humanity.
If you count yourself among the hordes of the zombie-crazed living here in the Hudson Valley, then you are in for a bookish good time with HVZA: Hudson Valley Zombie Apocalypse.
In June, author, Linda Zimmermann of Chester, NY released her new zombie novel, HVZA: Hudson Valley Zombie Apocalypse. In her novel, Zimmermann imagines a world in which Peekskill, NY, is the hot spot at which the zombie apocalypses begins. The epidemic quickly spreads throughout Westchester and Rockland counties.
Zombie fighting protagonist, Dr. Rebecca Truesdale is a Nyack resident who is working at the Nyack hospital when the outbreak hits. Truesdale has two huge advantages in her fight for survival: First, her expertise in tropical parasites is invaluable because—you guessed it—the zombie outbreak was caused by mutating parasites, and second, Dr. Truesdale’s intimate knowledge of the Hudson Valley River and river-towns comes in handy when she realizes the zombies have an aversion to water.
Zimmermann treats us to hair-raising trip across the Tapan Zee Bridge, impossible zombie gridlock up-and-down the New York State Thruway, and West Point’s transformation to an active military base. HVZA is a fun roller coaster-of-a-ride for anyone who has imagined how they would survive an apocalypse in the Hudson Valley.
Here Linda Zimmermann gives up the inside scoop on her novel:
You are a resident of Orange County, NY yet most of your novels focus on Rockland and Westchester Counties. Why?
Linda Zimmermann: I grew up in Pearl River and my parents and grandparents are from Nyack. So I love this particular region of New York.
Is zombie fiction your primary genre?
LZ: No, I’ve written 29 books. Most people know me for my ghost books, but I’ve also written non-fiction. My favorite is a book called Bad Science which is about the history of science.
When did your zombie obsession begin?
LZ: As a kid I saw the original Night of the Living Deadand it scared the heck out of me. I thought there couldn’t be anything more terrifying!
Have you joined the rest of the zombie-crazed American’s who are addicted to watching AMC’s The Walking Dead?
LZ: Actually, I love it! It sort of inspired me to write HVZA because before The Walking Dead, so much of the zombie fiction was ridiculous. The Walking Dead brought back a purity to the genre. I wanted my novel to have the same purity and realism.
How did you make it realistic?
LZ: I did so much research. I researched actual scientific papers, and I traveled up and down the Hudson Valley. I also did a lot of research on the guns my main character Dr. Truesdale uses to fight zombies.
Will there be a sequel to HVZA?
LZ: I don’t think there is any way I can keep myself from writing a sequel!