Only Dead on the Inside is a guide to surviving the zombie apocalypse for parents. It provides helpful tips on fleeing from zombies whilst carrying or shepherding reluctant children, teaching your kids to hide effectively, where best to find supplies and how to use everyday items such as toys and umbrella strollers, as weapons.
Written by professional comedy writer, James Breakwell (@XplodingUnicorn on Twitter), who is also the father of four daughters, this book blends humour with the occasional genuinely good parenting tip. I laughed a lot while reading it, and read parts of it aloud to my husband, though not within hearing of our own little survivors in training. I particularly enjoyed the sections on how children are terrible at hiding, which the author maintains used to be a survival strategy (making them appear adorably incompetent and therefore less likely to get left behind) but which in the zombie apocalypse will be a liability. Some may find the humour in poor taste. I found it oddly comforting in the face of the countless everyday fears parents have for their children even before the addition of shambling undead monsters.
"Outside of feel-good fluff pieces, children don't help anyone, not even themselves. They're worse than useless; they're suicidal. This is by design. Kids purposely disobey everything their parents tell them even though it's meant to keep them safe. No one is ordering these kids to hang out in abandoned mine shafts or shoot heroin. Instead mothers and fathers say crazy things like "Eat your vegetables" and "Don't play in traffic." In return, their sons and daughters do their best to end up as nutritionally derived roadkill. Luckily, they seldom succeed. Children even suck at dying."
Only Dead on the Inside is a short, funny book that celebrates the absurdities and frustrations of ordinary parenting while making jokes about the undead. It would make a good gift for a parent with a slightly twisted sense of humour, especially if they already own a minivan.
Disclaimer: I was given a complimentary copy of this book by BenBella books via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Published: 10 October 2017