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tomesofthesoul

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The Bones of Paris: A Novel of Suspense
Laurie R. King

Plagued: The Midamerica Zombie Half-Breed Experiment (Plagued States of America, #1)

Plagued: The Midamerica Zombie Half-Breed Experiment (Plagued States of America, #1) - Evan Ramspott Set years after a zombie outbreak has swept through the USA, Plagued follows Tom Jefferson, a privileged young man who lives in one of the safe districts of the new America. In this new world, de-venomed zombies are used as slaves and sold in large trading posts. Tom and his older brother are sent out to one of these posts to check the slave records in an attempt to find his sister Larissa, who was turned during one of the initial outbreaks. Here he finds a half-bread captive zombie, Penelope, who he thinks might know where his sister is. When zombies swarm the trading post Tom escapes into the wilderness with Penelope and a band of zombie hunters and visitors, and may have just gotten the chance he needs to find Larissa, but can he survive long enough?I was extremely impressed with this first offering from Better Hero Army. Unlike some of the more formulaic offerings that fill the shelves of bookshops under ‘Zombie Fiction’, Plagued takes a very different path, although this is not immediately obvious from the summary. Better Hero Army takes some common plot elements, for example a survivor searching for a loved one and turns it on its head. I can’t say more or I’ll ruin the ending. The novella felt more like a snippet from a much longer novel but at the same time didn’t leave the reader wanting. I would however love both a sequel and a prequel.The book throughout is well crafted, I could not fault the characters or the writing. If anything my complaint is that the book ended so soon! The background to the story is effortlessly woven into the story, which means there are no whole chapters devoted to back story to slow the pace down. The relationships between Penelope and Peske, and Penelope and Tom, are sympathetically written, although simple.Overall an impressive novella, with an intelligent and unique take on the zombie world, which should be ranked up there with the works of Recht and Brooks in the Zombie genre. A must read for Zombiephiles, and a rare example of the genre which should appeal to a much wider audience from thriller fans to romance readers.Plagued is available from Amazon UK for £2.03 and Amazon US for $3.02. [A review copy was provided by the author]