Zombie (novel)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Zombie (Oates novel - cover art).jpg
First edition cover art
Author Joyce Carol Oates
Cover artist Leonard Telesca
Language English
Genre Fiction, Horror, Thriller
Published 1995 (Dutton)
Pages 181 pp
ISBN 0-525-94045-6
OCLC 32168426
813/.54 20
LC Class PS3565.A8 Z43 1995
Preceded by What I Lived For
Followed by We Were the Mulvaneys

Zombie is a 1995 novel by Joyce Carol Oates which explores the mind of a serial killer. It was based on the life of Jeffrey Dahmer.

Dahmer stated in an interview with Stone Phillips, "The only motive that there ever was to completely control a person, a person I found physically attractive, and keep them with me as long as possible, even if it meant keeping a part of them.".[1]

A short-film adaptation starred Bill Connington, developed from his successful one-man stage adaptation, was directed by Tom Caruso.[2]


The protagonist, Quentin P, seeks to create a "zombie" out of an unsuspecting young man. He intends to find a perfect young male companion and re-wire his brain, thereby turning the victim into a mindless sex slave.[3] His several attempts at creating a zombie all end in failure, however, as the men he abducts, rapes and tortures all die at his hands. By the end of the novel, he has begun to enjoy killing for its own sake, and experiments with cannibalism and necrophilia.

Adding to his frustrations is his increasingly suspicious family, particularly his father.


The book won the Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in a Novel.[4]


  1. ^ Stone, Phillips. "Jeffrey Dahmer Interview - Extended Footage". Interview. Retrieved November 27, 2008. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ Johnson, Greg. Invisible Writer: A Biography of Joyce Carol Oates. New York: Dutton, 1998, p. 201
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on November 10, 2006. Retrieved October 23, 2006.  Boston Book Review's Fisk Fiction Prize