Dawn of the Dead is a novel based on the George A. Romero's 1978 film
In 1978, on the heels of The Night of the Living Dead, George Romero returned with an eye-popping sequel, Dawn of the Dead, which tore its way onto movie screens across the country and terrified an entire generation. Shortly thereafter, Romero, along with author Susanna Sparrow, released a novel/script based on the movie, which extended the undeads’ reach even further.
Novel Plot SummaryEdit
The United States is devastated by an unknown phenomenon which reanimates recently deceased human beings as flesh-eating zombies. Despite the best efforts by the U.S. government and local authorities to control the situation, society is beginning to collapse and the remaining survivors are given to chaos. Some rural communities and the military have been effective in fighting the zombies in open country, but cities are helpless and largely overrun. Confusion reigns at the WGON television studio in Philadelphia by the plague's third week, where staff member Stephen Andrews and Francine Parker are planning to steal the station's traffic helicopter to escape the zombies. Meanwhile, police SWAT officer Roger DiMarco and his team raid an apartment building where the residents are defying the martial law of delivering their dead to National Guardsmen. Some residents fight back with handguns and rifles, and are slaughtered by both the overzealous SWAT team and their own reanimated dead. During the raid, Roger meets Peter Washington, part of another SWAT team, and they become friends. Roger tells Peter that his friend Stephen intends to take his network's helicopter, and suggests that Peter come with them. The matter is decided when they are informed of a group of zombies sheltered in the basement, which they execute with grim determination. That night, Roger and Peter escape Philadelphia with Francine and Stephen in the helicopter. Following some close calls while stopping for fuel, the group comes across a shopping mall, which becomes their sanctuary. To make the mall safe for habitation, they block the entrances with trucks to keep the undead masses outside from building up enough cumulative force to break through; they also craft a wooden "false wall" to hide the access to their living space. During the cleanup operation, Roger becomes reckless and is bitten, dooming himself to the infection. After clearing the mall of zombies, the four enjoy a hedonistic lifestyle with all the resources available to them. As time goes by, however, they come to perceive themselves as imprisoned by the zombies, especially since Francine is four months pregnant. Peter offers to abort the child, but this is rejected. The men begin to consider leaving; Stephen, now seeing the mall as a kind of kingdom, opposes the plan, but teaches Francine how to operate the helicopter in case of emergency. Roger eventually succumbs to his wounds, reanimates, and is shot by Peter. All emergency broadcast transmissions eventually cease, suggesting that civilization as they know it has completely collapsed. Their ironic salvation occurs when a gang of motorcyclists, having seen the helicopter during one of Francine's flying lessons, break into and start looting the mall, which allows hundreds of zombies inside. Stephen forces a gun battle with the bikers and is shot in the arm; he tries to escape through an elevator shaft, but is cornered by the undead and bitten several times. As some of the bikers, shot by Peter, were consumed by the zombies, the rest retreat with their stolen goods. A reanimated Stephen (apparently knowing enough to remember the false wall) breaks through it and leads the undead to Francine and Peter. As Stephen enters their hideout, Peter kills him while Francine escapes to the roof. Peter then locks himself in a room and contemplates suicide. When zombies burst into the room, he has a change of heart and fights his way up to the roof, where he joins Francine. The two then fly away in the partially fueled helicopter to an uncertain future.