David Lubar's book, Dead Guy Spy, Nathan Abercrombie, Accidental Zombie, was written
for junior high school students.
The book is about a boy, Nathan, who gets splattered with a formula, Corpse Flower, which
turns him into a zombie. His bones are so fragile that they do not just break but actually
come apart from his body.
The characters in the book—Nathan, his friends Mookie and Abigail, and the spy
organization B.U.M.'s (Bureau of Useful Misadventures) employees: Mr. Murphy and Dr.
Cushing—are all likeable. The reader forms a fond impression of them through their
An interesting part of the book is how the author wove historical and scientific facts into
the plot. For example, he talked about how hearing is affected by the amount of blood that
flows through the head.
The things that were not so believable about this book were the relevance of the title to
the story and Nathan's age. Most of the book was spent explaining Nathan's plight, with little
emphasis on him as a spy. In reading the book, the child characters appear to be adolescents,
as evidenced by their sophisticated thought processes. However, at the end of the book the
reader finds out that they are actually in the fifth grade, which makes no sense.
Overall, this a good book for its interesting characters and facts. It would have been a
much better book if the author had developed a more detailed plot.