Review and Author Interview for ‘Celebrity chef zombie apocalypse’. Jack Strange

Kensington Gore Publishing are proud to announce the release of CELEBRITY CHEF ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE.

The book opens with the introduction to a downtrodden Marlborough smoking employee of an obscure TV channel. I anticipated his tyrannical boss would get eaten. To save his floundering job Robert conspires to bring back to life the celebrity chef from a cooking programme recently brought by his TV Company. HOW?! With the Lazarus engine, a scientific creation of Roberts’s uncle who is rather usefully a professor. It would be a crowd pleaser programme, an instant success with the viewers, think Hell’s Kitchen but Gordon is dead.

Front Cover (1)

Uncle and nephew revive the chef who is impressively loquacious for a zombie. He is also very hungry, and without spoiling the plot things take a downturn from that point.  You quickly empathise with characters that are in my opinion ingeniously named. For example a zombie named Floyd Rampant…The name of my next child. Throw in some dubious unsavoury characters, a police woman who does well not to vomit, a reverend, the P.M. and a plethora of other characters who may or may not survive and you have a book that is easy to fall into and a narrative will make you hoot. The author uses simple but really tantalising descriptive, ‘a lather of excitement’. That kind of thing makes me happy.  If you are offended by the odd swear and biting humour this is not for you. It’s a dark comedic horror so is also not bedtime reading for your five year old and combines cooking and Zombies so needless to say it gets rather squelchy and gory.

Don’t read whilst eating.

You will all want to read the book  ‘How to Kill a Zombie Dead Quick’ especially if you live in Huddersfield. Bon Appétit.

About the author….IMG_1351

 

The reclusive author Jack Strange is an unusual fellow. His exact age is unknown.

Those who’ve dared to ask him have never survived long enough to divulge the answer.

Luckily I managed to swipe an interview so read if you dare…

 

Why did you choose to do a comedic horror novel, why not plunge in to full on horror?

This is quite a profound question. The answer surprises even me. I began my writing career fully intending to write serious horror novels, but time and time again I found that someone was sabotaging my best efforts to be serious in my writing. That person was me. I’d be in the middle of a really grim passage describing a gruesome death and I’d get a funny thought in my head and have to write it down, and suddenly the gruesome scene would take on a comedic tone. At first I tried to resist it, but later I learnt that the best thing to do was to just go with it. I didn’t find out the reason why I did this, until a couple of weeks ago, when a friend of mine told me he’d taken a personality test and he’d been amazed by how accurate the results were. I was intrigued, so I took the same test myself. The result I got was that I’m an ENFP. Want to know what that is? Here’s a link to the explanation: http://www.humanmetrics.com/personality/enfp Note the paragraph about the ‘silly switch’ that ENFP’s have which turns them into ‘Captain Wildchild’.  I guess I must have that switch!

Who, if anyone is your target audience for the book?

Anyone with a sense of humour, which means just about everybody. Although it’s a zombie novel, it reaches out to people whether or not they like horror. Do you like social and political satire? Then this is the book for you. It’s like Gulliver’s Travels meets Animal Farm and Wilt. But you have to be an adult to read it, because the novel includes some sex (not that explicit, actually) and the occasional F-bomb.

Have you ever attempted to dress up as a zombie to get in character for the book, and what if anything would be your preferred Zombie sound effect or are you more a silent, wide eyed snarl type of guy?

I dress up as a zombie almost every Halloween, so I didn’t feel I had to do it to get into character for the book. I just had to call to mind some of my happy memories. My preferred zombie sound effect has to be  the squelchy chewing noise my teeth make as they bite into your fle- sorry, getting into character a bit too much there.

What if any horror films/books or cooking shows inspired the creation of this book?

I’m certain that every cooking show I’ve ever seen has played a part in inspiring the book. There are so many of them these days, it seems that you can’t turn on your TV without getting a cooking show on air. I feel at times I can’t get away from them…as if they were coming to get me. That thought must have lodged in my subconscious somewhere.

Are you frightened of Zombies, or cooking for that matter?

Of course I’m frightened of Zombies! Who in his or her right mind wouldn’t be? But cooking is worse of course, especially when you combine it with Zombies, which is what I’ve done in ‘Celebrity Chef Zombie Apocalypse.’ You see, my Zombies like to eat people, the same as Zombies always have done, but mine cook you before they eat you, and they do it in creative ways, and then serve you up in a rich wine sauce, or a spicy curry.

When did you decide you would write a Zombie book?

Provide a brief descriptive narrative please…hopefully beginning with, ‘one gloomy evening’…OK, when you put it that way, how can I refuse?

One gloomy evening I was thinking that zombies always behave in a really stupid way. They eat anyone they can get their hands on, or turn them into zombies by biting them. Logically, that should mean that if the zombies succeeded in taking over the planet, then sooner or later there would be no people around, only zombies, and the zombies wouldn’t have anything to eat. They’d have guaranteed their own extinction. Then I thought: what if you had intelligent zombies? What would they do? They wouldn’t want to eat everyone, or turn the population of the entire world into zombies, because they’d know that if they did, there’d be nothing left for them to eat except each other. They’d probably work out that their best course of action would be to enslave people and farm them for the table. Then, after I’d come up with that idea, it occurred to me that the ideal cross-section of people to have as zombies would be a group that were involved in the food industry. I settled on chefs because I could see how I could have a lot of fun with that idea – I could describe how they enjoyed cooking people in elaborate ways before eating them. I don’t think that’s been done in zombie literature before. Finally, I decided that my chef zombies would have to be celebrity chefs because the whole celebrity chef thing has gone overboard now. They all have their little gimmicks to make them stand out from the rest, which makes them a great target to aim it if you’re a satirist.

How did you decide on the title?

I began with ‘Chef Zombies’, which didn’t sound too good. Later I got the idea that they should be ‘Celebrity Chef Zombies’, which was an improvement, but it still didn’t sound right. After that, I remembered that most zombie stories involve an apocalypse somewhere along the line.  When I added the word ‘apocalypse’ to my tile, it was perfect: ‘Celebrity Chef Zombie Apocalypse’. See how it just rolls off the tongue?

If you could describe the book in one word beginning with G, what would it be?

If you insist on limiting me to one word, it would have to be gastronomic. Or great. Or galvanising. Or greatest. Perhaps garlicky, too.

What would be the best response a reader could have to your book? “I [expletive deleted] love it.”

Finally, If this was turned into a film, who would you get to act it…actors can of course be alive or dead.

My chosen actors would all be dead, at least the ones playing the zombies would be.  That way they wouldn’t need to use too much make-up. I’ve always been a big fan of Vincent Price. I reckon he’d make a great Floyd Rampant (the leader of the zombies in my novel)!

 

If you are interested in reading this book you can buy it here: https://goo.gl/tPd3lO

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