Z for Zachariah – November’s Book and Movie Get-Together

Z for Zachariah

z for zachariah covers

Novel (1974): Written by Robert C. O’Brien

Movie (2015): Screenplay by Nissar Modi directed by Craig Zobel

The set up:

Our group (women ages 22-48) pick a book that has been made into a movie. We read the book and then get together for thematic food, to discuss the book, and then to watch the movie.

On the menu:

Each of us are to bring either a drink, dessert and/or appetizer and it is fun to use the story for inspiration. Below is what we ended up with this month.

Z for Zacharia food pic

Appetizers: mini chicken and waffles, hummus with pita chips, deviled eggs (2 people brought these)

Drinks: Red Rose wine, Pinot Noir, and Flip Flop wine

Dessert: Birthday Cake

Quick Book/Movie Summary:

Book (From Amazon): Ann Burden is sixteen years old and completely alone. The world as she once knew it is gone, ravaged by a nuclear war that has taken everyone from her.  Ann soon realizes there may be worse things than being the last person on Earth.

Movie (From IMDB): In the wake of a disaster that wipes out most of civilization, two men and a young woman find themselves in an emotionally charged love triangle as the last known survivors.

Thoughts about the Book:

A couple of us thought the story had a good build up to suspenseful scenes.

We all agreed that it was slow at times with the mundane work of the fields and milking cows and gathering eggs and cooking and working on a tractor and gas pumps …  but somehow it still ended up being a quick read.

We all felt that there were way too many conveniences – like the fully stocked store, the cane, her taking a class in school that taught her how to care for a person when they were sick.

I was not happy with the dog situation. I did like the overall idea and plot of the book.

I felt deceived as far as Edward’s sudden attitude. But others in the group pointed out places that did support the change. There was also talk of unreliable narrator because it was all from the girl’s point of view (her diary) and perhaps she was the crazy one …

The ending was pretty bad and so we came up with 4 alternate endings (If you haven’t read the book you might want to skip this part.)

She shoots him and is alone again in the valley as it was, reclaiming her house. The last line – There are worse things than being the last person on earth.

He kills her. The last line – After reading this journal, I guess you can call me Z for Zachariah. (Bringing that around full circle.)

Gone Girl Ending – She stays with him and they try to make it work.

The Truman Show Ending – She’s actually on a reality show. She wins because she escapes.

Thoughts about the Movie:

We all agreed it was really really Boring. This was a completely different story than the book. And that would have been fine if it had been a good story. The book was YA – the movie was not.  There was really no plot. There was no mention as to why the title was Z for Zachariah.

I did like how the setting from the book came to life. I really wish I could have watched the movie according to the book.

Interesting Discoveries:

Using his notes, Robert C. O’Brien’s wife and daughter actually wrote the book after his death.

The Girly Discussions:

The movie would have only received one wine glass but we all agreed to give it half a glass more because of Chris Pine’s blue eyes. Cheers!

We thought the casting of Margot Robbie was a little off. Since we read the book first and knew the main character Ann was 16 we thought Robbie was too old. I was shocked that she was the same actress from The Wolf of Wall Street and Focus. There were some thoughts about how they really had to change her look so she could fit the part.


The Group’s Average ratings:

3 wine glasses z

Book: 3.5 wine glasses out of 5

Movie: 1.5 wine glasses out of 5

Movie: 1.5 wine glasses out of 5

The bottom line:

These are two different stories. So much so I really can’t compare them. But individually, I liked the story from the book a lot more than the story from the movie. But they did have one thing in common – they both had disappointing endings.

Read the book, skip the move.

Next month’s Book and Movie:

Drug Store Cowboy

Love and Laughter,


1 Comment


    1. The Martian – February’s Book and Movie Review | dorlanavann

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