“The Girl With All the Gifts” by M. R. Carey examines how life and humanity adapt against the odds while exploring what it means to be human.

“The Girl With All the Gifts” by M. R. Carey examines how life and humanity adapt against the odds while exploring what it means to be human.

This post-apocalyptic thriller follows the story of Melanie, a little girl who loves learning about spelling and math and especially classical mythology.
The only life she remembers is her cell, the classroom, and the corridor between the two. When the secure base that contains her whole world is breached by a band of renegade survivalists, Melanie finds herself experiencing the world first-hand as she seeks safety along with her favorite teacher, the research director, and two of the soldiers from the base.
Although this book is most easily categorized as a “zombie story,” it is worth noting that the post-apocalyptic genre is often a powerful tool for building meaning that must be read between the lines.

Beyond scenes of fighting the cannibalistic undead, the careful reader will find an examination of what makes each of us human, with both our flaws and our graces.

Characters with their own marked differences learn to see each other as fellow people and find redemption in accepting those differences to work toward their common survival.

The Girl With All the Gifts goes a step further to illustrate how each generation must cede to the next, however painful it may seem, to allow for the continued growth and improvement of humanity.
Similar reads: The Boy on the Bridge by M. R. Carey, Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, I am Legend by Richard Matheson