Fans of Max Brooks’ books — World War Z, The Zombie Survival Guide, and The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks — might be surprised to learn that, since his boyhood in Southern California, the 41-year-old author and screenwriter has been fascinated by a little-known tale of American courage, and American shame: namely, the story of the Harlem Hellfighters.
The Hellfighters, a highly decorated black infantry regiment in the U.S. Army, were the first Allied troops to reach the Rhine at the end of World War I. Back home, after the war was ended, they faced racism, discrimination and outright violence. Here, Brooks shares his thoughts on a stirring photo of American heroes returning to a land that, in many ways, had no place for them.
Max Brooks is the bestselling author of World War Z, The Zombie Survival Guide, and The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks.
(Photo: Jacqui Howell)