Saturday, August 9, 2014

Book Review: The Walking Dead Vol. 20: All Out War Part One by Robert Kirkman et al.

The Walking Dead Volume 20: All Out War Part One written by Robert Kirkman and art by Charlie Adlard

Rick makes the first move in fighting Neegan's forces. Rick's group attacks Neegan's factory headquarters, but they don't invade it--they send the zombies inside to pin Neegan's forces down. Neegan has a handful of outposts outside the factory where small groups of his men are stationed. Without the support of their main force, Rick hopes to knock out a few of the outposts and whittle down Neegan's power base. Since it's the Walking Dead, naturally things don't go according to plan. The tactics used by Rick and Neegan are interesting enough to make this book worth reading.

What makes the book more interesting is the themes of leadership and honesty. Neegan tries to pass himself off as an honest leader of his people who will do what's in the best interest of everybody but he always slips back into being a bloodthirsty maniac who's willing to violate his own principles. Ezekiel, leader of the Kingdom (which is on Rick's side), has been a bit of a actor, playing at the role of a medieval lord. When the chips are down, he is not an effective leader and he knows it, so at least he's more self-aware than Neegan. Rick is at the other end of the spectrum. He's as honest as he can be though he's willing to deceive his own people to get an advantage over Neegan. Rick's people have been pretty forgiving of that. They recognize that he's working for their good as well as his own, so he earns their loyalty. But is loyalty enough to win the day?

This book is only the first part of the story, so naturally a big cliff-hanger is at the end. Hopefully I can get Volume 21 from the library soon.

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