Kingdom of Z (Volume 1) – Bow Down to the Queen of the Dead

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Cover

Satou Masaru has been surviving in an old school building since the zombies first appeared, but he’s losing hope. That was until Miki and Karin found him… Now, he’s not sure who to be afraid of!

Kingdom of Z (Volume 1) – Bow Down to the Queen of the Dead

What happened?

It’s been five days since the zombies first appeared, forcing Masaru to take shelter in an old school building. However, he’s running out of food and with no way of protecting himself other than a single baseball, his days seem numbered. Then, a group of zombies found him and he knew the end was coming.

Luckily for Masaru, two girls burst into the room and quickly killed all the zombies. At first, he was in awe of them, but soon he started to wonder who the real monsters were. He came out of his hiding place and was welcomed into their group. Miki Sekigahara was obviously the leader and seemed to know who he was. Karin Nagiri was the baseball bat-wielding maniac that seemed to be really enjoying herself.

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Miki Sekigahara and Karin Nagiri

Miki revealed to Masaru just how bad the situation is and it wasn’t just in Japan. She also told him that she was planning on taking over using zombies as a tool. Masaru thought she was crazy until she showed him a room full of tied-up zombies. Then, he knew that she was. Her plan was to use them for all sorts of things, including power generation.

Masaru would therefore be blessed as citizen number one in their new empire where Miki ruled with an iron fist and an army of zombies while Karin did whatever she wanted. Talk about jumping out of the pan and into the fire. However, Masaru had no real choice and when they told him that they would probably need him to help repopulate the world, he was fully in on the plan… well, most of it… All right, just that one bit!

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Room full of captured zombies

Bit by bit, they reclaimed the school including the gym because it had a shower and it had been a long time since anyone had washed. Karin was not impressed with the situation. Eventually, they lured the remaining zombies in the schoolyard into the old school building where Masaru had been hiding and set it on fire. It would serve as a signal for other survivors… or a warning!

With that victory, it was time to take to the road and expand the empire. The first destination on their travels would be the department store. Masaru wasn’t so sure about this one.

Meanwhile, another group of survivors had formed nearby. The leader was a scheming dick who was using the women as his toys and forcing the weak to search for supplies nearby. When one of these helpless nerds overheard his plans, he ran out for help. I wonder who he’ll find?

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Running over zombies with Karin Nagiri and Masaru Satou

What did you think?

This was an excellent start to the series, introducing us to Masaru, Miki, and Karin. All are such different characters that they make a brilliantly bizarre group. Miki and Karin are terrifying and also incredibly hot. I’m not sure if they’re just hot or whether it’s directly related to how terrifying they are. Either way, Masaru is in for one hell of a ride.

As far as zombie stories, this is a pretty standard opening so far. The most notable difference with this series is the fact that Miki has revealed her plan and it looks like she’s the villain. Well, she would be in any other story, but here, she’s our villain and I’m ready to follow this story all the way to the end. Long live, the Queen!

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Miki Sekigahara and Karin Nagiri killing zombies

What have you learnt?

There is a reason that a lot of zombie stories follow a fairly tried and tested set-up, and that’s because it works. I can’t speak for everyone, but I love the initial stages of the zombie outbreak when everything is going wrong. It’s the chaos and the fight for survival that really grabs my attention. So, in this series, the fact that Miki has not just fought to survive in these early days, but she’s seen it as a chance to enact her life goal.

She was studying to become the future prime minister of Japan, but given the circumstances now, she’s going to be the Queen. I love that we have some fairly ambiguous characters so far. Miki and Karin are clearly pretty typical antiheroes in that their motives are selfish, but that doesn’t mean they won’t save someone… at least if there’s something in it for them. I like that they’re a little crazy. I think you have to be somewhere on that spectrum to survive in a situation like this.

Kingdom of Z Volume 1 Miki Sekigahara Karin Nagiri and Masaru Satou

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  1. “I can’t speak for everyone, but I love the initial stages of the zombie outbreak when everything is going wrong.”

    That’s often my favorite part. I say “often” because most of the time, a series fumbles after that — though some series don’t even get that right!

    High School of the Dead nailed it, as far as I’m concerned. So did the early Walking Dead (TV show and graphic novel).

    I’ll have to check this out!

    • I’ve seen/read a lot of zombies stories and High School of the Dead is one of the best in my mind. I loved the early stages of the Walking Dead too. I was reading the comic books long before it became a TV show. It lost its edge when they started trying to rebuild.

      This was a good start. I also have another zombie book coming up soon, which was hilarious and eye-opening.

What did you think?