Land of the Meat Munchers is by Nicholas Yong aka Incoherent Boy! It’s his first novel and it’s pretty fun! Think of it as young adult adventure book?
Basically it’s a zombie story SET IN SINGAPORE.
If you didn’t know in Singapore, we don’t have guns or ballistic weaponry easily but Nick managed to get it all believable even if we didn’t have them in this post zombie apocalyptic world!
Our main lead is Jim and this story starts in Tiong Bahru, I interviewed Nick some questions and here’s a little background on this book.
Why did you choose Tiong Bahru?
I basically conceptualised the story based on one question: what would people do in an actual zombie apocalypse? I started the story in Ghim Moh because I live there, and the nearest refuge – an underground MRT station – is in Tiong Bahru.
I could have had the characters take refuge in the Buona Vista Circle Line station, but that wouldn’t be very interesting at all, given that it’s literally five minutes away.
Also, I find Tiong Bahru fascinating: the architecture, the old-school flats, the hipster joints. So I thought it would be a great place to set the second half of the story. I walked the ground in GM and TB many, many times to get the details right.
How did you communicate with your artists? The art is really cool and fitting to your story.
The art was all done by Shafi Adams, one of Marshall Cavendish’s in-house artists. I actually only communicated with him through my editor.
But I was essentially like a director, storyboarding each scene and sending him precise instructions. e.g. Jim should look terrified in this scene, looking behind him with an expression of panic as he rides frantically.
Do you think you would have survived this zombie attack or twitter/instagram about it until the end. Or what will your weapon/method be?
I like to fancy myself as a Rick Grimes/Daryl Dixon type. But in reality, I’d probably be more like an Otis: kena eaten by the horde.
My weapon of choice would be either a baseball bat or a parang. But I’ll tweet till the end!
What do you want people to ask about your book but haven’t yet?
“Why you never talk about the zombies in the east leh? West so special ah?”
So yes. This book is set in the west. The region I do not know much about since I’m from the east side. Also, the characters are apparently based on people Nick knows. How did I find the book?
In my mail box, sent by Marshall Cavendish, his publisher.
Exciting! You can actually finish the book in one day since it’s not that long.
It has a good beginning and you get into the feel of the setting for it. For those who have been in Singapore for a long time, you might catch the references and in jokes in it too.
For me, as I started out in the first few pages, I went “HAH!” for it already started with the transport system we have currently and making fun of it.
Unintentionally too, the little footnotes for those who can’t understand Singlish or dialect amused me. They do provide a good translation of what was said though, so huzzah for that. Just ignore the footnotes if you’re well versed in Singlish and you can read the story continuously like that.
I went all “Will he survive, will he not survive? ARRGHHH? Oh ok more friends, yay!”.
Just so you know, Nick said there MIGHT be a sequel but see how. The book had one of those endings that makes you scream or at least, I did. Since the story is set in Tiong Bahru, you get references to hipster things. Also lots of references to the local newsmakers, bloggers, Hello Kitty and heck, it makes you really feel like you are in Singapore.
Just with zombies.
Double plus, for me. THERE IS NO STUPID LOVE TRIANGLE. It’s all about survival and naturally angst because duh, your family got eaten and whatever but you DO have a strong female character too so YES.
Anyway, just go get it cause it’s a fun and entertaining read. The book’s available at Books Actually, Kinokuniya and other major online stores!