zombies

diversity | “Dread Nation” by Justina Ireland | Dread Nation 1

2Author: Justina Ireland
Title: Dread Nation
Series: Dread Nation 1
Genre: Alternative History, Zombies
Pages: 455
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Character-wise this book was like a gust of fresh air. For instance, our main hero is a young black woman warrior with attitude befitting someone with her skill and their underestimation. Yet, story-wise, the book was very mediocre.

About: The war between states of America has come to a halt when dead started rising on the battlefields, and killing the living. Like a plague they run over the whole nation, and possibly beyond that. Some say it is because slavery has been made illegal. Others care not for this nonsense, and still treat the colored folk as secondary. Which led to schools of combat made especially for them, where people of color were taught to fight and defend.

In some places in America there are walled off safe havens. But safety is relative in places where dead don’t stay dead. Jane McKeen could almost smell her graduation from Miss Preston’s School of Combat as her life got flipped, and the core of it might just lie in one of those places. It all started mildly. Like a lord turning into a shambler mid-ball. Then one of the best families in Baltimore disappeared, leaving everything behind. Next thing you know, she has been packed off to defend one of these undefendable forts people called havens. She was put in lines of poorly trained brothers and sisters of color. She was given weapons which wouldn’t cut grass, let alone zombies. And she was told not to kill, unless necessary… But once hordes come in, of creatures seemingly smarter than the stuff she killed before, she makes her mind up. To survive, and to get some damn answers.

Mine:¬†Somewhere in the background there’s zombies, hordes of them, crawling through forests and planes. Those who died recently are fast, agile. Those who died before are slower, but gather in greater numbers. They are seemingly evolving too… And yet all we get to read about are intrigues, crushes, lies, politics, brutes, and Jane’s want to get away from every place she lands in. She complains about how her weapons are trash for long, long chapters, and yet kills things easy enough. In fact, everyone kills with little to no taste of horror in the air, even when lines are broken, and things start roaming in the streets. It seems all we get is this one narrow bubble with, well, no feeling to it. The only reason it wasn’t boring was Jane herself. I said time and again, a good character can save your lack of plot any day. Jane’s the only reason I’ll continue with the further books, with hopes they’ll improve story-wise. How do you make a zombie book so very… Not?

I don’t know, I didn’t like the way the story was told much. I’ll give it a wobbly 4 out of 5, only because the characters were interesting.

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Categories: 4-5, Books: Everything, LGBTQ+ Books, zombies | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

horror | “Plague of the Dead” by Z.A. Recht | Morningstar Strain 1

1Author: Z.A. Recht
Title: Plague of the Dead
Series: Morningstar Strain 1
Genre: Horror Literature, Zombies
Pages: 292
Rate: 2/5 | Goodreads

Such an ominous title. I truly expected hellish creatures, a zombie apocalypse, terror left and right. Instead I got long discussions, plain characters who always make the right decisions, and linear plot from one zombie infested point to another.

About: A virus outbreak tends to be similar every time. Isolated incident. Then isolated cluster. Leading to a few such before it starts spreading all over like wildfire. Even your common flu is scary when it spreads this way. And this? This is a zombie apocalypse, a virus to wipe humanity out.

Virus can take both living and the dead as host. The living are called “runners“, for they’re agile, fast. They’ll chase you down, often in hordes, and you better pray you’re faster than a creature with no sense of what is tired, and doesn’t need to breathe the way you do. But you can kill these the regular way. It’s those who are infected dead, or those who died infected, that are bothersome. They’re quiet, dormant until there’s anything of interest, and will slowly crawl across the desert itself to reach your yet uninfected flesh.

And then we have the backwards effect. From isolated incident to isolated clusters. To plague. To isolated clusters of survivors, to isolated, single survivors.

Mine: A group of soldiers sent to evacuate survivors hops from point to point. Each one either already infested by zombies, or is somehow not deemed worthy of them. While now and again we see them run, because ammo is long gone, most of the time we see them stand there, chatting, deciding what to do. Everyone does the right thing, everyone succeeds or becomes hero for trying. This was the bluntest story, and not in the good way, I’ve read in a long time, with very one-dimensional characters that did not help me progress at all.

Zombies are great. It’s a hard topic to mess up. You’ve a virus, you’ve horror, fear to live, fear to die. The hopelessness of easy infection and very, very difficult destruction of the infected. The book sort of had these traits, but they got buried under politics, who should do what, and why is the place they’re at – bad. 2 out of 5 from me.

Categories: 2-5, Apocaliptic Books, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“White Trash Zombie Unchained” by Diana Rowland | White Trash Zombie 6

2Author: Diana Rowland
Title: White Trash Zombie Unchained
Series: White Trash Zombie 6
Genre: Zombies, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 354
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Ah, and so here I am, done with the very last book in the White Trash Zombie series. They were alright, had its good moments, and those very good moments, along with mediocre, bad, and way too common ones. So here’s the last of it.

About: Just another crime scene, it seemed. Up until the corpse got right up and attacked her, all while being mangled and half-eaten by the crocodiles. Angel has seen this before, so she quickly took care of the immediate problem. But what about the crocodiles? They, in the meantime, are successfully spreading an epidemic of shambling zombies, brainless, movie-kind of creatures, and Angel seems to be the source of it all. But there’s just no time for self-pity when people are literally killing each other for brains from mere mosquito bites. It got out of hand, and it reached a level where Angel’s tribe has no choice but to join their forces with their worst enemy, evil corp, Saberton. For better or worse remains to be seen…

Mine: What I truly enjoyed here was sense people had. They: hey, you’re in danger, we have safe spot, come over, or we send someone to pick you up. People: gotcha, will be right there, and will ask all the questions I am absolutely having in safety. This fantastic adult logic is so rare I was starting to think it didn’t exist outside KJC books. Other than that, there’s plenty of action for two books in this one, so other than Angel’s and other characters too, pointing fingers to themselves in explanation that they did what they did, because they’re this particular label – it was a good book. Still it’s extremely bothersome when author feels the need for their character to break a window and tell you “I did this because I’m a redneck, this is how we do it“. Can I maybe just gather that from the story, please? No? Okay.

All in all, I can give both the series and the book 4 out of 5. If you’re tired of werewolves and vampires, but still like those stories we have by the shovel now, this is one for you. While they’re not my favorite, I don’t feel like I wasted time, so that’s definitely a something.

Categories: 4-5, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

White Trash Zombie Gone Wild by Diana Rowland | White Trash Zombie 5

2Author: Diana Rowland
Title: White Trash Zombie Gone Wild
Series: White Trash Zombie 5
Genre: Zombies, Paranormal
Pages: 325
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Not gonna lie, I’m a bit in a reading slum. Even such an easy and simple book as was the fifth book in White Trash Zombie was a tad tough. But at least it was fun, for the main plot line was pretty good.

About: Angel’s life is trying to fall apart just as she got it all together. After becoming a zombie she got a chance to ween off all the drugs she been doing due to them not working on her kind. But now there’s new pharma, just for zombies, and oh boy does it work nice. As long as she’s willing to stoop so low as to steal it from her sick Zombie Baby, the man she turned into zombie and who has been suffering side effects ever since, thus needing the treatment. On top of that, the zombie serial killer has returned, with extra footprints, no less, that lead straight to her ex, who she never thought to be this stupid, or this cold-blooded as to be a killer. And then the zombie movie showing real life footage of real live zombies doing their thing, killing, eating brains, with people Angel recognizes. All that added together threaten her and her kind into having to take drastic measures: Exodus

Mine: There’s something missing to make Angel’s personality pop, and I can’t figure what it is. She’s nice and all, but she could be real nice, you know? To add to that, I kinda hate how her redneckishness is only there via her pointing a finger and literally saying “I did this, because I’m a redneck / white trash“. Her father is becoming a father of the year too, but I’m a hopeful person, so I won’t be mad at that, and believe that it is possible. But my favorite part was Nick the Prick story line. Now that’s one curious sight to behold. Though it all gets spoiled if you think how many story lines were dropped for the sake of this one, and how everyone from the previous book just got their lives and moved on, or decided they hate Angel, and moved on.

It was okay. Above average as books like this go, but a bit far from being good just yet. I can still gladly give it a 4 out of 5, and will also gladly read the final book. It’s a good simple read, really.

Categories: 4-5, Books: Everything, Books: Horror, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How the White Trash Zombie got her Groove Back by Diana Rowland | White Trash Zombie 4

3Author: Diana Rowland
Title: How the White Trash Zombie got her Groove Back
Series: White Trash Zombie
Genre: Horror, Paranormal
Pages: 328
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

I’m having a love-hate relationship with White Trash Zombie series. On one hand, Angel is pretty damn nice character, and the plot at times gets real good. On the other hand, there’s just no click, no hook, I could quit any time and not think twice. And this is fourth book!

About: Saberton corp, the one that tried to make zoldiers, by turning zombies using synthetic brains, just doesn’t know when to quit. But seeing how they figured they lack the brain power (I regret nothing), they kidnapped a scientist from Angel’s zombie tribe. The same one who was trying to help Philip, her zombie baby, the one she had to turn, the one Saberton fed fake brains upon creation. And since his treatment wasn’t concluded upon kidnapping, they’re in a lot of trouble. Gathering up the zombie gang they all make their way to New York, with Philip having ever more intense episodes, and both of their rot not going away. On top of that, their friends got secrets and troubles to solve in New York too, not to mention some scores that need settling with Saberton…¬† so off to New YooooOOooorrrk! (if you’ve not heard the tune, I’m very disappointed)

Mine: I like Angel, yes. She’s smart in her own way, and is trying her best to improve against all odds. To a point where one too many decisions Marcus makes for both of them, without consulting her, leaves him single. She adjust on the spot, and I like that kind of thinking. And if that’s not enough praise, this petite zombie babe smacked a… a mean lady in the teeth and didn’t even spill her beer! Mind you, mean lady had it coming, and was ready to inflict far more pain and damage than Angel did. I like the new Philip too, he seems interesting, and his episodes are hilarious. I know they probably shouldn’t be, but they are, and it was very funny, and I laughed a lot.

I like it just enough to continue. Plot is fairly fresh, and I do like Angel, but I do hope that ending wasn’t a mad omen. For now, 4 out of 5. Like like like.

Categories: 4-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything, Paranormal, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

White Trash Zombie Apocalypse by Diana Rowland | White Trash Zombie 3

1Author: Diana Rowland
Title: White Trash Zombie Apocalypse
Series: White Trash Zombie 3
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Zombies
Pages: 320
Rate: 3/5 | Goodreads

I have a bad feeling that I gotten myself into another chore of “let’s just get through this” book series. Third book in Diana Rowland‘s series White Trash Zombie, the “White Trash Zombie Apocalypse” is below mediocre.

About: There’s a zombie movie getting filmed in Angel’s neighborhood, and she joked a time or two with those aware of her condition, that it’d be fun to see if she could mix in among the fake ones after a couple days of starving. But someone beat her to it, and it wasn’t even funny! You see, the project Zoldier (like Soldier but Zombie) is still on, someone still experiments with the undead, with zombies. One of them lost his mind during a performance, and jumped to find himself a new one. Like Angel didn’t have enough on her plate, what with the flooding that threatens to destroy her home where she lives with her father, and the arguments she has with her boyfriend, and her ever re-appearing baby-zombie, the man she turned into one. Not to mention the creepy lady who keeps snapping pictures of her for some reason.

Mine: There’s so many moments of “who are you working for?!” that even Batman would be proud (points if you know what I’m referring to). Everyone’s a double agent too, it only seems they work for who they seem to be working for, what. I still think that Zoldiers was a dumb idea to start with, even if they, say, had basis to think there’s means to make fake brains, and keep off hunger, you still have soldiers who need buckets of food just to do the standard soldier stuff. I mean, there’s a great reason we have pig farms, not zebra, for instance. The parasite that makes zombie a zombie doesn’t give a damn about your goals, it just cares to keep you fixed and steady. The best part of the book was flooding. And that should tell you everything.

Angel really is the only thing that keeps me going with these series. I cannot give this book more than 3 out of 5 right now.

Categories: 3-5, Books of Supernaturals, Books: Everything, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues by Diana Rowland | White Trash Zombie 2

1Author: Diana Rowland
Title: Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues
Series: White Trash Zombie 2
Genre: Zombies, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 312
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

Alright, rested from series, so back to series. So far all things go by the TBR plan for October. I picked up second book in Diana Rowland series White Trash Zombie, the “Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues“, and… Well. I still think that it would not have been such a phenomena if we had a vampire instead of a zombie, for that is the only distinction between these books and many others out there, other than this one solid fact.

About: Where do I even start. Angel is bettering herself, and fixing her life up. Her boyfriend, in the meantime, is doing his best to entangle her into his family, and friend circle. This is how Angel gets to know his best friend and former classmate, if I remember right, who is doing her very best, and her very hardest to find a way to make brain substitute for zombies to feed on. And this is where the fun and weird, and less fun but still weird things begin. On her way to morgue with a body Angel gets stopped by a masked man who takes the body at gunpoint, and escapes with it. Later on it also turns out the damn body belonged to a formerly dead zombie. A man died twice, somehow regenerated his whole damn body, died again and got kidnapped! Angel got two questions about this though. One: if the guy was really that zombie, that same one, and really regrew his whole body, how the hell did he age while still being a zombie, which he definitely was judging by the lack of brain smell? And two: who and why the hell is doing this shit?!

Mine: Angel is the biggest reason I’m still keen on giving these books no less than four stars. She’s simple, she has a mouth on her, she knows when there’s no reason to take offence even if she could, but she has an opinion, a character, a backbone, and good understanding of what good people are. I really do like her now. This book gets props for detective line too. With every piece of the puzzle revealed and put to place – the game changed for the players. Enemies became friends, and friends became enemies. Yet, at the same time, not all Angel’s theories turned out to be true, so author very successfully kept pushing me off the road.

So, all in all, these are not bad books. I’ve simply read plenty like these. But that doesn’t seem like a reason to take points away, so for the time being I’m willing to give it a 4 out of 5 again. If you want an interesting but simple read, these might really work for you. It got the strong female lead, understanding of what’s a healthy and what’s a toxic relationship, and some fine adventures too.

Categories: 4-5, Books: Everything, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Diana Rowland “My Life as a White Trash Zombie” | White Trash Zombie 1

2Author: Diana Rowland
Title: My Life as a White Trash Zombie
Series: White Trash Zombie 1
Genre: Horror, Zombie
Pages: 320
Rate: 4/5 | Goodreads

I heard so many good things about “White Trash Zombie” series by Diana Rowland, that, seeing how it’s October and it takes certain kinds of books to deal with the spooky cravings, I picked up the first book: “My Life as a White Trash Zombie“. Better late than never, I thought. And yet for the life of me I can’t figure out what’s the hype all about.

About: Angel Crawford wakes up in a hospital after a terrible car crash. Except that, there’s not a scratch on her, and the angry nurse nearby tells her she’s here because she overdosed on drugs. But just because Angel looks fine and healthy on the outside, doesn’t mean she’s alright on the inside. In fact, that don’t even mean she’s alive on the inside. Anonymous who has left her clothing, has also gotten her a job in the morgue. And here Angel notices there’s something fundamentally different about her, when her belly growls with protests of hunger at the smell of human brains in a freshly open skull. But then, even if she wasn’t salivating at the smell and sight every time, she would’ve noticed something’s strange happening here anyway. Like, how on Earth so many bodies get in with their heads missing, or their heads mutilated, with brains no longer suitable for her likes? It’s almost like someone’s sabotaging her kind, the Zombie kind, on purpose…

Mine: Angel is a very dull character. And the detective line was very mediocre too. It was good, it just wasn’t that good. The only thing very special about this book is that we have high-functioning zombies, instead of vampires. And there’s a whole myth about them, aka whole explanation of how it works, why it works, how the feeding happens, and why it needs to happen. So that part’s interesting. But, well, that’s that.

It’s a first book, so while it was mighty slow, I won’t hold it against it. I’ll give it a 4 out of 5 for now, and see how next book fares in compare, before making a judgement. After all, I got through Chicagoland Vampires, and White Trash Zombie is definitely better.

Categories: 4-5, Books of Supernaturals, urban fantasy, zombies | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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