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Rot & Ruin

Rot & Ruin

(Book #1 of Rot & Ruin)
For Ages: 12 and up
  • reading group guide
  • 11awards
In the zombie-infested, post-apocalyptic America where Benny Imura lives, every teenager must find a job by the time they turn fifteen or get their rations cut in half. Benny doesn't want to apprentice as a zombie hunter with his boring older brother Tom, but he has no choice. He expects a tedious job whacking zoms for cash, but what he gets is a vocation that will teach him what it means to be human.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | 
  • 464 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442402348 | 
  • September 2010 | 
  • Grades 7 and up
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List Price $9.99
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The zombie world's gone to ROT & RUIN....

A teenager grows up in a post-apocalypic, zombie-infested America in Jonathan Maberry's ROT & RUIN, now in paperback.

Read an Excerpt

Rot & Ruin 1
BENNY IMURA COULDN’T HOLD A JOB, SO HE TOOK TO KILLING.

It was the family business. He barely liked his family—and by family he meant his older brother, Tom—and he definitely didn’t like the idea of “business.” Or work. The only part of the deal that sounded like it might be fun was the actual killing.

He’d never done it before. Sure, he’d gone through a hundred simulations in gym class and in the Scouts, but they never let kids do any real killing.... see more

Reading Group Guide

A Reading Group Guide for

Rot & Ruin
By Jonathan Maberry


Discussion Questions

1. Consider what Tom says: “There’s the town and then there’s the Rot and Ruin. Most of the time they aren’t in the same world, you know?” Are there any divides you notice in your daily life where two things exist in “different worlds”?

2. On Benny’s first venture out into the Rot and Ruin, they encounter the “Children.” Tom later says, “I think a lot of the Children are people who didn’t survive the Fall. Oh, sure, their bodies did, but I think some fundamental part of them was broken by what happened. I was there, I can relate.” In what ways are they broken? Why do you think they choose to live as they do?

3. In what ways does the absence of electricity impact life in the new world? Are these changes all practical, or are some of the changes emotional, as well?

4. Secrecy, mystery and ignorance all play important roles in this story. In what ways do these themes impact the choices of the characters and also affect their emotions throughout the book? Are there differences between the three words? When in the book does each come into play?

5. What are the differences in the attitudes and outlooks of the characters who survived and remember First Night, and those who did not live in the old world and are see more

About the Author

Jonathan Maberry
Photograph by Jonathan Maberry

Jonathan Maberry

Jonathan Maberry is a New York Times bestselling author, multiple Bram Stoker Award winner, and Marvel Comics writer. He’s the author of many novels, including Assassin’s Code, Dead of Night, Patient Zero, and Rot & Ruin. His nonfiction books cover topics ranging from martial arts to zombie pop-culture. Jonathan continues to teach the celebrated Experimental Writing for Teens class, which he created. He founded the Writers Coffeehouse and cofounded The Liars Club, and he is a frequent speaker at schools and libraries, as well as a keynote speaker and guest of honor at major writers’ and genre conferences. Jonathan lives in Del Mar, California, with his wife, Sara, and their son, Sam. Visit him at JonathanMaberry.com and on Twitter (@JonathanMaberry) and Facebook.

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