Posted in Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Invasion (THEM #0.5) by M.D. Massey

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*No Spoilers*

Aidan “Scratch” Sullivan is a former Army Ranger and Afghanistan War vet trying to achieve some semblance of normalcy while he deals with the psychological after-effects of two combat tours in the ‘Stan.

But when the bombs fall and the dead walk, Scratch is forced to risk life and limb to rescue his aging parents before zombies overrun their quiet community. And to do it, he’ll need to traverse half the state of Texas while dealing with out-of-control military units, violent redneck looters, and all manner of evil things that go bump in the night…

I enjoy a good military-minded protagonist to guide the reader through the zombie apocalypse. To see someone who is trained to think and respond rationally, faced with the walking dead makes the tension even greater.

It was odd to me, as Aiden was able to travel around the zombie-ravaged wasteland of Texas and how his truck didn’t bring a constant mob of zombies wherever he went. The most common way a zombie can detect the living is by sounds. Since Aidan’s truck wasn’t affected by the EMPs then that would make the engine a very loud broadcaster to the zombies.

One thing I enjoyed about Invasion was the fact that the author wasn’t taking everything seriously. You could tell in the dialog that they were somewhat aware of how ridiculous their world has become. This was executed in a way where even though the author was having fun with the story, I was able to enjoy both the humor and the overall story.

I would highly recommend this novel for lovers of post-apocalyptic fiction, zombies, horror, and novels that don’t take themselves too seriously. The Invasion was thrilling, action-pact, and humorous in a subtle way.

Read Other Zombie Books I’ve Reviewed

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Posted in Audiobooks, Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

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*No Major Spoilers*

In the zombie-infested, post-apocalyptic America where Benny Imura lives, every teenager must find a job by the time they turn fifteen or get their rations cut in half. Benny doesn’t want to apprentice as a zombie hunter with his boring older brother Tom, but he has no choice. He expects a tedious job whacking zoms for cash, but what he gets is a vocation that will teach him what it means to be human.

It has been a bit since I last reviewed a zombie apocalypse novel. I was starting to get burnt out on the genre, but now that’s in the past. I had always been interested in this series, but the Young Adult genre deters me sometimes.

I decided to try it, and I started reading a physical copy but found an audiobook. So I am considering this a hybrid of the two mediums.

This novel really drove home what the differences were between the survivors, monsters (being zombies), and the real monsters (those who prey on the weak and defenseless). Being secluded like Ben had been, I could understand why he believed the only real monsters were the zombies right outside their gated safe haven.

“Often it was the most unlikely people who found within themselves a spark of something greater. It was probably always there, but most people are never tested, and they go through their whole lives without ever knowing that when things are at their worst, they are at their best.” – Jonathan Maberry, Rot & Ruin

Watching Ben grow and learn about the world after “The First Night” was endearing and heartbreaking. I can understand how you believe one thing about how the world works, and when you actually get out in it, things that you thought you knew might be completely different.

Overall, I enjoyed this novel. It had a great cast of characters that grew and changed throughout the novel. And I won’t spoil the ending, but you’ll be reaching for the tissues. I would recommend this for lovers of Young Adult FictionPost Apocalyptic novels, and for those who can’t get enough of zombies. I would also recommend this novel who are looking for a good and fulfilling story.

Posted in Audiobooks, Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Rise Again (Rise Again #1) by Ben Tripp

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*No Spoilers*

Forest Peak, California. Fourth of July. Sheriff Danielle Adelman, a troubled war veteran, thinks she has all the problems she can handle in this all-American town after her kid sister runs away from home. But when a disease-stricken horde of panicked refugees fleeing the fall of Los Angeles swarms her small mountain community, Danny realizes her problems have only just begun – starting with what might very well be the end of the world.

Danny thought she had seen humanity at its worst in war-torn Iraq, but nothing could prepare her for the remorseless struggle to survive in a dying world being overrun by the reanimated dead and men turned monster. Obsessed with finding her missing sister against all odds, Danny’s epic and dangerous journey across the California desert will challenge her spirit . . . and bring her to the precipice of sanity itself. . . .

I thought I’d make a return to the zombie subgenre after a hiatus. This novel definitely satisfied my craving for a good zombie apocalypse. There’s action, suspense, violence, and plenty of blood and gore.

My major complaint with this novel was I felt like there were too many survivors that the author focused on. I found it difficult keeping track of who’s who and what motivates them.

I did like how the author made the protagonist a female veteran. Even with what she’s seen during her service and the injuries she’s suffered from, she was still able to feel fear and confusion throughout the novel. I felt this made her more likable and relatable.

My favorite character was Amy, the local veterinarian. Even though she worked on animals before the apocalypse, she was still able to help fellow survivors and give first aid when needed. She slowly gained the ability to lead the others after Danny goes alone to look for her sister.

When Danny goes rogue from her group to go look for her sister, the finality of the apocalypse sets in really strong during this time. Towns abandoned, littered with corpses and abandoned cars. It also foreshadows the coming conflicts between various groups of survivors. You can feel the tension as Danny is on her selfish mission.

I enjoyed this novel, and I am highly interested in reading the next one in the series. I would also recommend this for lovers of female protagonists, zombie apocalypse, and science fiction.

 

Posted in Book Club Reads, Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson

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*No Major Spoilers*

Mila Flores and her best friend Riley have always been inseparable. There’s not much excitement in their small town of Cross Creek, so Mila and Riley make their own fun, devoting most of their time to Riley’s favorite activity: amateur witchcraft.

So when Riley and two Fairmont Academy mean girls die under suspicious circumstances, Mila refuses to believe everyone’s explanation that her best friend was involved in a suicide pact. Instead, armed with a tube of lip gloss and an ancient grimoire, Mila does the unthinkable to uncover the truth: she brings the girls back to life.

Unfortunately, Riley, June, and Dayton have no recollection of their murders, but they do have unfinished business to attend to. Now, with only seven days until the spell wears off and the girls return to their graves, Mila must wrangle the distracted group of undead teens and work fast to discover their murderer…before the killer strikes again.

In this month’s book club read, I was interested in the premise of this novel. A unique twist on the zombie/paranormal genre. Teen Wiccans or “witches” as society calls the group. Solving a possible murder case with no help from friends or family.

“A scoop of dried rosemary goes into the bag, followed by salt. Sometimes, magic looks a lot like how my mom prepares chicken”- Undead Girl Gang

When I found out that this was a young adult novel, I was hesitant. With my book readings, I find most young adult fiction to be immature and drama that is unnecessary to the plot. This novel does have patches of teen drama, but it’s not too much to break the immersion. I groaned and complained when I felt like the drama was going on for too long. But overall, it sticks with the main story fairly well.

I know a lot of adolescents go through with body image issues, but it still bothered me how the main character kept saying that she was a “fat witch” or paints herself in a negative light.

One of my favorite parts that I found to be clever in the storytelling was how the girls couldn’t be further than 100 paces apart without the undead girls to turn into actual-looking zombies.

The only character I found to be likable was Xander, who is Riley’s older brother. Over the course of the book, Mila and Xander become close as they both mourn the loss of their friends and his sister. He seems to be a likable guy who I can relate to somewhat from real life experience.

This book’s plot twist blew me away in that I didn’t see it coming! I won’t spoil who the killer is, but if it’s someone I didn’t guess then you won’t see it coming either.

The bad guy’s motives I found to be realistic and relatable. I was worried about how the author was going to explain the motive for doing the evil deeds. Sometimes authors try and pull a huge plot twist, and they make a weak motive or don’t explain the motive very well.

“Most magic is just telling the universe that you’re thankful to be here”- Undead Girl Gang

Overall, I found this book to be a good read if you want a fun read that doesn’t take itself too seriously. If you like paranormal, zombies, high school crushes, and a good mystery, this is the book for you!

Posted in Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: The Remaining (The Remaining #1) by D.J. Molles

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*No Major Spoilers*

Captain Lee Harden is tasked with a mission if the government ever was to collapse. To survive, rebuild, and conquer.

Lee is hiding in his high-powered, well-stocked, government bunker. Meanwhile, an illness has erupted worldwide. The bacterium destroying the victims’ brain, all except for animalistic instinct. The need to hunt and to kill.

When Lee leaves the safety of his bunker, fast-paced chaos ensues. This novel will leave you breathless by the end.

In the vein of post-apocalyptic/zombie novel, this one sticks out to me. Not only is Lee a Captain in the Army, he was trained for this kind of apocalyptic future.

The pacing of this novel is really well-done. It starts off slow, and as soon as Lee realizes this epidemic is real, it picks up quick.

One of my favorite non-spoiler parts of this novel is how you realize how society might become if it was ever to collapse. The psychos and the “doomsday preppers” end up surviving whereas others do not.

One of my favorite mini-spoilers is when Lee first leaves the bunker to go on a recon mission to gather intel about the world around him, he comes across one of the “Infected” (The name of the type of zombie in this story) and she attacks him and stabs him in the leg with a small knife. She was hiding under his porch during the early morning hours.

Those were a couple of the more interesting parts about this book overall. Overall my conclusion would be this is an interesting story and really geared towards and recommended for anyone who is a zombie apocalypse lover. The unique twist I also found interesting was the zombies having weapons of their own instead of just using their teeth and hands to bite and claw at the living humans.

Other Zombie Apocalypse Book Reviews Here:

REVIEW: Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne

REVIEW: Resident Evil #1, The Umbrella Conspiracy by S.D. Perry

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne

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*NO MAJOR SPOILERS*

When an epidemic suddenly starts in China and rapidly hits the USA, a former military soldier will have to use all of the training he has to survive in a world overtaken by the living dead.

Along the way, he meets some fellow survivors. Their odds are bettered, however, there are more mouths to feed. They will have to make choices that are life or death. Nothing is easy in the world of an apocalypse.

This story is told in a journal style, which is a very interesting way to write a zombie apocalyptic book. There’s no dull moment in this book, each journal entry is either an update on the situation or recounts of the actions of that day.

With the main character being military-trained, it brought a more interesting viewpoint into the story that allowed for a unique take fighting against zombie hordes.

From being trapped in an airplane control tower, to being attacked by other raiders. There is not a slow moment in this book. This book is quite the thrill ride. Even though there wasn’t any particular character I became attached to, the book held my attention and was exciting from cover to cover.

I can’t wait to get ahold of the next book in this series just because I find it so interesting how it’s written and the story itself is very riveting that I want to know what happens next!

I would recommend this to anyone looking for a different take on the zombie apocalypse genre and to people who love the show “The Walking Dead”.

 

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Novels

REVIEW: Resident Evil #1, The Umbrella Conspiracy by S.D. Perry

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*No Major Spoilers*

In Raccoon City, there’s been a string of gruesome and deadly murders that has the local police baffled. So they call in the S.T.A.R.S. to help solve the mystery. The S.T.A.R.S. are an elite group of people who deal with extravagant and sometimes odd missions that normal police can’t handle.

They send in the Beta team to survey the area around a seemingly abandoned mansion to see if that’s where the murderers might be hiding out. Then the Alphas lose contact with them and go out to see what happened and rescue any survivors.

However, things go awry when a group of “diseased” dogs attack. The remaining members of Team Alpha run for the abandoned mansion to escape the hellish hounds. Now they have to solve the mansions puzzles to not only get out and get help, but to figure out what happened in the mansion.

The remaining Alpha team members includes Albert Wesker, the team leader, Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine, and Barry Burton.

I’m not a fan of horror games, I’m not a fan of horror in general unless it’s in book form. Then I saw one of my favorite YouTubers/Twitch streamers (ProtonJon) play Resident Evil 6 with one of his friends. They were both laughing at it and cracking jokes at the game’s plot. Them making fun of it made a seemingly scary game not so scary.

I have been interested in the Resident Evil games and overall story ever since. Especially since ProtonJon has Albert Wesker as a meme on his channel. Saying that when you subscribe he will “give you an egg”.

Back to the story, I was enthralled with the plot. The twists and turns and puzzles kept me glued to my screen. The characters were fully fleshed out and had their own motives and reasons for wanting to find out the truth of what was going on in the mansion was believable.

Overall I think this was an excellent book that I would recommend to anyone fans of Resident Evil, or just prefer horror in book form. Also zombies, since that fad is still going on.