Brains for Lunch, though, is a full story about a zombie in middle school. There's a brilliant sort of dance here as Holt moves from gross-out humor (the zombies seem to be rotting and falling apart, like the dragging corpses in Thriller, which Holt references) while also being sort of sweet. The main character and narrator is Loeb, a zombie (or "Z") with a circle of friends (including a zombie girl named Mags and a thuggish Chupacabra) who can't seem to catch a break and bears a huge crush on the school librarian.
I stammer somethingThe librarian thinks that Loeb is smart enough to enter a haiku contest. This strikes Loeb as possible, too, because of something that I did not know about haiku:
And then she's back at her desk
A gorgeous cliche
Wouldn't be so hardWill Loeb come up with some haiku to read that will win over his classmates and maybe even the heart of a mortal ("lifer") girl? Will his friends support him in the contest, which will be dominated by lifers?
It's how Z's talk anyway
Maybe I should try
"They're all so smartBrains for Lunch is a sweet, short book for 6th to 8th graders. It shows both brains and heart, which is a lot to ask of any book.
with their shiny hair and brains
No way I'm going."