There's over a million people in the city of Waterloo. Today, most of them have died, and now they're hungry. Corporal Dan Williamson is caught in the middle of the outbreak, desperately trying to reach his wife who is somewhere amid the urban decay. There are other souls out there, other tales of survival among the horror. Dan will soon learn that the living may prove to be an even bigger threat than the dead.
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solid zombie story!
as the story opens, dan is running from a hoard of zombies. he is the last of his national guard regiment. he has been on the run since his regiment got overrun. so far, he has been able to keep ahead of the shambling hoard, but he's getting tired. the zombies may be slow, but they never tire and are relentless in their pursuing their insatiable hunger. dan's lead is down to 10 blocks and shrinking as he gasps for air. he's trying to get home to his pregnant wife, and he hopes to lose his pursuers in this neighborhood.
elsewhere, becca, derek, and stevie are holed up in derek's basement, finishing up a weekend's game of dungeons and dragons. they're all kind of rank, and becca says she needs to shower. as derek and stevie listen to becca shower, they try to convince the other to finally make a move on becca, who's been their friend since childhood. as they continue to encourage the other to make the "move," they hear a loud noise, which they think is a car backfiring. as they go upstairs to investigate, they see becca in a daze. when they ask her what's wrong, all she can do is tell them to look outside. as they do, their worst geek nightmare has come to life! zombies are shambling down the street. as derek peeks out the window, he inadvertently jostles the shade, and it snaps up. the noise draws the zombies' attention. so starts their horrifying journey into madness! and that's no understatement!
this is a really good classic zombie story! what do i mean by classic? i mean romero-style shambling zombies. there are no gimmicks here, just a solid, complete story. yes, there is a satisfying ending, but i was so engrossed in the story and characters that i actually wished there was a sequel.
speaking of characters, there are a lot of characters, but you never get lost in who's who or who's doing what. the book is broken up into 3 parts, and each part has a couple of main characters and some minor characters. dan is the main character who comes into contact with the other main characters in each part. the author does a great job weaving all the story lines together until they finally converge into one story line.
when i sit here and reminisce about the story, i think, "whew! a lot happened!" i can't believe the author fit all that into the story. nothing feels contrived. all of the sequences and plot lines meld together to make on heck of a story. and this story has everything: great characters, humor in the right places, action, great pacing and shocking deaths. it's kind of like the show, the walking dead. you never know who's going to die until you're shocked by it. and like that show, you're like d@mn! why'd you kill him or her off! that's how attached you become to some of the characters.
i guess i have 3 caveats with the story. one, i didn't bond with the main character as much as i did with another character, bruce. no, i won't tell you who he is, but he was my favorite character. two, the accompanying main character in part 1 is kind of a side note in the succeeding parts. yes, their storyline continues and there is resolution, but i kind of bonded with that characters after the catastrophic incident he or she went through, and i wanted to know more. again, no, i'm not going to tell you who that is b/c i don't want to spoil your listening experience. three, there weren't many descriptions of the zombies. yes, there are general descriptions of who they seemingly were and what happened to them, but i tend to really like the gory details, such as what parts are hanging out or dragging and how bad they smell. a few books have done this well. these types of details are a little more general in this story. hey...we chastise those we love, right? lol
the narration was good, but not great. however, it by no means detracts from the story. maybe, i've been spoiled by some really great narration lately. but i've also heard some really bad narration too. this is right in the middle. but i must say i really liked how he narrated my favorite character, bruce. most of the guys sounded the same, but you could tell who's who by the story. the women were voice appropriate for their age. but by far, i liked his voice for carla b/c it was husky.
overall, a very good zombie story, and a good addition to your zombie library!
- Mike Naka