Zombies are certainly becoming the rage in popular culture, as evidenced in film and television. Some of these are based on novels and there are others that have the potential to be made into film and TV shows. Here are five of the best zombie-themed books for 2019.

World War Z by Max Brooks

Being the son of actor Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft, Max Brooks is out to make a name for himself and this book made sure of that. It tells the story of a war that broke out over the outbreak of zombies infecting most of the world’s population. Nations not only fought zombies, but each other as they battle to secure themselves and preserve their way of life by preventing refugees fearing they could infect them. As a result, national boundaries have changed and new nations have emerged. The way Brooks crafted the story, it is so believable that it could likely happen in real life. This was made into a film in 2006 and the story completely differs from the novel, much to Brooks’ chagrin.

Monster Island by David Wellington

The novel is set in Manhattan, New York City a month after it has been overrun by zombies. It centers on the protagonist named Dekalb who goes here to retrieve AIDS medication for a Somali warlord holding his daughter hostage so he can carry out this mission. He gets help from one zombie who has retained a high level of consciousness that sets him apart from the other zombies. Monster Island’s story is very energetic and the pace is frantic. It has the potential to be made a movie.

The Rising by Brian Keene

Considered one of the best-selling zombie books of all time, The Rising is about Jim Thurmond who is on the verge of suicide, feeling guilty having to kill zombies who were once his neighbors, and even his second wife. He was given a ray of hope when he got a call from his son Danny which motivates Jim to go find him. What provides a challenge is these zombies are smarter than you think. Along the way, he is joined by other people and they continue fighting their way but at this point, Keene leaves readers hanging as more would be revealed in the sequel City of the Dead.

Slow Burn: Zero Day by Bobby Adair

A new strain of virus has been spreading across the world, causing fear and panic among the population. The central character here is Zed Zane who is a slacker until he discovers something is wrong. His mother whom he is overly dependent, is dead and his stepdad, Dan suddenly attacks him, biting him in the arm until Zed kills him. Despite the infection coursing through his blood, Zed is arrested but is free as the zombie apocalypse sets in. Now he has to contend with zombies wanting to kill him and people who fear him because he is infected.

The Reapers are the Angels by Alden Bell

The story centers on a 15-year old girl named Temple who lives in a lighthouse in Florida. Her life changes when she encounters a zombie, prompting her to head north. Along the way, she encounters several individuals, some of whom are shady while at the same time escaping and fighting off zombies. This novel promises not to be your everyday zombie novel and has unique plot twists that will keep readers interested.