Monday, March 11, 2013

The Office of Student Affairs of Fairmont State University and Pierpont Community & Techni­cal College welcomes best-selling author Max Brooks on Tuesday, April 2.

Max Brooks, the son of Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft, will discuss his experience writing in the horror genre. Brooks is considered by many to be one of the world’s foremost zombie preparedness experts.

Brooks will speak and sign copies of his books from 5 to 7 p.m. at Colebank Hall Gym on the shared main campus of FSU and Pierpont. Tickets are not required for this event, which is open to the public. Both of Brooks’ most popular books can be purchased at the Bound for Success Book­store, located on the second floor of the Falcon Center. For more information, call the Office of Student Affairs at (304) 367-4215.

Brooks’ latest release, “The Zombie Survival Guide: Re­corded Attacks” (2009), is the graphic novel that fans demanded: major zombie attacks from the dawn of humanity. “Re­corded Attacks” reveals how other eras and cultures have dealt with—and survived—the ancient viral plague. “The Zombie Survival Guide,” his first release, is the key to success against the hordes of the undead that may be stalking us right now.

A New York Times best-seller, “World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War” (2007), soon to be made into a major motion picture starring Brad Pitt, tells the story of the world’s desperate battle against the zombie threat with a series of first-person accounts “as told to the author” by various characters around the world. Publishers Weekly called the novel “surprisingly hard to put down.”

The choice of Brooks’ appearance on campus was prompted by the selection of the classic “Frankenstein” by Mary Shelley as the Common Reader for 2012-2013 by the Common Reader Committee. Although “Frankenstein” was first published in 1818 when Shelley was 21, the novel’s content remains relevant to audiences today.

“Frankenstein” is a “tale of the scientist who succeeds in his ambition to create life, but then fails to nurture and educate his creature, thus creating a monster who wreaks havoc on all that he loves,” explained Dr. Deborah Nestor, FSU Professor of English. “More than anything it is a novel about personal and social responsibility, how a child’s life experiences and education help create the individual he or she will become,” she said.

Brooks plans to focus during his lecture on the process/experience of writing in the horror genre. This is the strategic way in which Brooks can tie himself together best with Mary Shelley. If Frankenstein’s monster may have been inspiration at some level for the modern-day zombie, then the two writers have touched on similar beings within their works.

An Evening With Max Brooks