Coping and laughing at zombies


Hi Armand, thanks for hosting me as part of my Book Launch Blog Tour for Girl Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie, which just released!

* Be sure to comment to win assorted prizes. Leave an email or website to contact you.


Synopsis for GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie:

Sixteen-year-old Rebecca Herrera Hayes’ life changes forever when her cousin Spence comes back to their small Wisconsin town carrying a deadly secret—he’s becoming a zombie, a fate he shares with her through an accidental scratch.

The Z infection, however, has mutated, affecting younger persons like her, or those treated early enough, differently. Now she must cope with weird physical changes and habits no girl wants to be noticed for.

But time is running out… Becca needs the help of her friends and other cousin to fight off hungry zombies and find their missing mothers.

Most of all, she needs to find something, anything, to stop this deadly transformation before it is forever too late


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Although GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie centers on one girl’s life after she turns into a part-zombie, she’s no shrinking wallflower. After all, it isn’t every day that you turn part-Z and have to fight all the awful urges that come with it. I mean, eating, ugh, brains or gag, flesh?

No. Uh-huh. She has a “different” diet, with lots of liquid protein and other “stuff.” (I’ll leave it to readers to find out what “that” is.) The idea is that she’s still human, but let’s say, um, challenged.

I confess: I’m a latecomer to the whole zombie book arena, though I’ve long been a zombie, monster and horror fan. Yup, loved Romero, King and Koontz. Then I saw The Walking Dead and got hooked on that, too.

I’ve written a few “light” horror short stories with a touch of humor and a little gore, so when I got an idea for my zombie book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie, it was natural that those elements came into play. Yes, there are icky zombies, and fighting, and zombie attacks in the book, but… I couldn’t help myself. I had to put in some funny spots. (Humor being subjective, of course. Oh, that’s a warning to look out for some “bad” zombie puns in the book here and there.)

Why “zombie” humor, if you will, and why-oh-why zombies?

I guess life is serious enough, right?

Okay, let’s face it. Zombies really are disgusting, icky creatures. They stink. They can be pretty revolting. Some people freak out in dire situations. Some get ultra-serious. In such a situation I’d probably pass out or throw up, maybe even make a bad joke or two as I run, and (try to) fight, for my life. And I’ll bet I’m not alone. (Be honest now.)

And what if you’re 16 and turn part-zombie with a “twirly” eye, a female version of the Wolfman walk at times, and ash-gray skin with spots? That’s only a portion of what Rebecca Herrera Hayes, the main character in GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie, has to cope with.

Then there’s dealing with a possible love interest from a part-Z guy who looks almost normal (so how can he ever be interested in her, Becca wonders), plus seeing what people are really like when she and her cousin go out to search for their missing mothers. Add in distrustful adults in and outside their high school, vigilante groups, and problems with another part Z girl, and you have to wonder how Becca ever survives.

But she does. She adapts.

Life at any age has its good, bad, and simply awful moments. As a teen, life can be full of drama and angst, so humor can be a way to cope, and lighten the mood. After all, even when zombies attack, or you’re facing the world’s worst case of Z acne, there has to be something to laugh and joke about, right? Please?


Here’s an excerpt with a little chuckle:

My foot stomped on the brake at the stop sign, making both of us jerk forward and then back when I skidded into a right turn. “Good’s a matter of opinion. I’m good enough. Oh, hell. Get the piece of paper out of my back pocket, would you? I forgot the street names.”

Lifting my butt off the seat, I waited for Carm to dig in my jeans pocket and pull out the paper before I sat down again.

“Okay, got it.” She unfolded the paper and giggled. “How can you read this anyway? Looks like a zombie wrote it.”

“Funny, cuz, real funny. Zombies can’t write.”

“Yeah, my point.”


Here’s another little “taste” —


Hungry! I had to eat! Food!

I flung open the door, grasped at the rail, and heaved in and out, my gasps making me sound like some freaking steam engine. I’d thought of going downstairs and getting the food myself, but there was no guarantee I’d make it back upstairs.

The changes were coming—fast.

The images in my mind took a nasty turn. Flashes of those things filled my thoughts. Their faces were vivid, red, biting . . . chewing. . . I grabbed my head and squeezed my temples. Dios, por favor, make it stop!

It repulsed me, yet . . .

My mouth watered.

I yelled, not caring what kind of monster I resembled, or how my aunt and cousin would feel being jolted awake in the middle of the night by some rabid, howling creature.

I couldn’t think of them.


Bio: Christine Verstraete is a big Halloween fan who enjoys a good scare or two. Her short fiction has appeared online and in anthologies including Timeshares and Steampunk’d from DAW Books. Her new YA book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie released August 1. Stop by her website at or blogs, and


*** Don’t forget to follow along the rest of the tour! ***

GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie Book Launch Blog Tour – August 5-17

Monday, 8/5 – Marian Allen,-

Tuesday, 8/6 – Armand Rosamilia,

Wednesday, 8/7 – GirlZombieAuthors,

Thursday, 8/8 – StraightFromHel, Helen Ginger,

Friday, 8/9 – Dana Wright, ZombieGirlShambling,

Saturday, 8/10 – GirlZombieAuthors,

Monday, 8/12 – AR Von, Dreamz of Dragons,

Tuesday, 8/13 – B. Swangin Webster, Books, Shoes, Writing,

Wednesday, 8/14 – DB Corey,

Thursday, 8/15 – Wrap-up – GirlZombieAuthors,

Friday, 8/16 – Austin Camacho, Another Writer’s Life,

Saturday, 8/17 – Winners announced after 12 noon Central – GirlZombieAuthors,