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Texas Bill

Zombie Fiction or Something to Chew On

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Funny thing, I read the Walking Dead series as it is released in graphic novel form but I have not followed the TV series after the first season. By the way, I always feel funny going into my local comic book store- I am one of the only guys I ever see in there over thirty and without piercings and tattoos. Some of the folks there look at me like I might be lost. Makes me feel old.

 

Has anybody here read the R33PR Virus by Nathan Barnes? I have it on my wish list but I can't decide even after I read the sample.

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Sorry, can't offer advice on R33PR, but if I ever read it, I'll review it here!

 

Just FYI, another of the Infected series by PS Power came out - Cast Iron. It's pretty good, if not quite as gripping as the first two simply because Quartz/Marcia/Cast Iron is so overwhelmingly competent that you expect her to be able to handle absolutely anything. It's fun to have a woman's perspective on the group, though, and to see the various characters from previous books continue to grow and evolve. The overarching series storyline is also compelling as always.

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Marcia is a heck of a woman, alright. I really enjoyed finding out more about her past. There are some extremely interesting characters here but again Proxy went overboard with the cop thing. The more it happens the more I am convinced he has had his own mind scrambled the opposition.

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Guys, check out Dead Hunger by Eric Shelman. I picked it up free from Amazon on my Kindle and it is a pretty good little zombie tale. One of the high points in this book that often gets overlooked is how people deal with infected family members- not just putting them down, but actually mourning the loss. The writer shows more emotional depth than I first suspected but he does not spare us the gross zombie kills or the multitude of head shots. Here is another writer who realizes baseball bats and golf clubs just don't get the job done, but just in my opinion his characters rely a little two much on the "magic" of automatice weapons. On the plus side, he does think high capacity magazines are great, so credit him for that. This is the first in a series and book two is already on sale and it reads nicely as well. Be warned, book one leaves you with a cliffhanger of sorts to get you to buy book two but I did not regret it.

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R33PER wasn't too bad the ending was great ALOT of hand to hand combat with a kukri i wouldn't buy the book for 16.00 i'd pay the kindle price of 4.00+ the book keeps you in suspense on how its going to go for the guy in it. needless to say the book leaves you with the feeling that your not quite prepared for bad events.

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Thanks, Wally. I'll give it a try. I just set down my Kindle after finishing the second book in the Dead Hunger series by Eric Shelman. This story is told from the perspective of one of the other survivors in the little group, Gemma, and I usually hate this format but I thought it really worked here. This series has a little different take on the origins of the zombie apocalypse and it doesn't have quite as much action as the first but features more character development and is quite satisfying. Also, this is a bit more hopeful than most of the grim as heck zombie stories out there. The living still face terrible odds but they are working to figure out not only how to survive but also how to fight the "infection". I recommend it to our zombie fans. Warning: there is some sex (I didn't find it offensive but it is there) and some of the graphic descriptions of the zombies did turn my stomach a bit.

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Apocalypse Z by G.E. Swanson was a diverting look at the zombieland and shows how a group of teens and young adults manage to survive and build a little safe zone for themselves. A little over the top (where the heck did these kids' parents get grenades?, one wonders). I also read the sequel to the King of Clayfield, entitled All That I See by Shane Gregory. This book has plenty of action against both the zombies and the scumbag raiders hinted at in the first book, but ends with a downer that hopefully the next book will address. Come on Shane, don't leave us hanging that way.

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I'd also volunteer to be a beta reader! I'm a stickler for formatting and punctuation, too. LOL

 

So glad you found our board, Mr. Knight. I agree with Texas Bill: I want something good to happen for Gartrell. You made him so real and so compelling that I actually had tears in my eyes when I read about his family. Character development sometimes winds up on the sidelines with such action-packed plot lines, but you really did your craft credit with the lives you created in The Gathering Dead and The Rising Horde. Thank you for what you've already written. I can't wait to read whatever you come up with next!

 

Thanks to both of you! I can always use more beta readers, though reading my early stuff has been known to invoke uncontrollable retching. I understand Homeland is considering using it was a non-lethal weapon, though I wouldn't be surprised to discover that some fatalities might actually arise from its employment.

 

Other zombie stuff... did it bother anyone that The Remaining series wasn't edited, or even proofed? I'm amazed at the business those books do, given the rather desultory quality of the versions on sale (from a grammar and mechanics perspective).

 

Also Area 187... I've been struggling with that book for over a month. Have you guys read it, and what did you think?

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I read a preview for Area 187 and decided it was not for me. As for the Remaining series, the first book did not bug me as much as the second (Aftermath), and honestly I have not been able to finish it. The edits were nonexistent, as noted, and something just seemed off about the whole thing. Honestly, I am more forgiving on the edit and grammar for the 99 cent or free books that are out there, published basically as fan fiction, but my English major sometimes comes back to nag at me. Come on, how hard is it to keep they're, there, and their straight?

 

I did just finish All That I See by Shane Gregory (sequel to The King of Clayfield) and I was not as pleased with the second book, mainly due to some plotting issues. I am fine with cliffhanger endings, but this one kind of ended with a whimper, not a bang. I have hopes for the third book, and if you are an action junkie, there is plenty of shoot 'em up here.

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I have to admit, one of the things that drives me crazy about the PS Power books is that the author apparently doesn't know the difference between to/too, and uses "too" as the default spelling regardless of what is actually called for in the sentence. I'd almost prefer he chose "to" if he had to pick only one.

 

There are a few books that I haven't been able to make myself read because the font is horrible. It looks like the output from my old dot matrix computer printer, circa 1985. The most recent example I have is Day of the Dogs (The Aftermath Series), which sounds like a decent book. I'll just hope that at some point the author reformats the work and sends an update to buyers, otherwise I'll probably never read it. It's the visual equivalent of fingernails on a chalkboard to me.

Edited by oregonchick
added a word I forgot ("printer")

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Funny, I did read Day of the Dogs and thought the same thing. Hard format to follow on that one but I though the concept was interesting. As for P.S. Power, this author has finally started responding to discussions on Amazon and apparently, the author does nothing but write constantly. You can tell the books need more polish and edit work to (too, that is a joke), but the storylines keep me interested.

 

Completely unrelated but I really got steamed when I read a review of Sample 28 by Culex Pipiens where some a$$hat going by the handle Johnny C trashed my review. Actually, I don't care that he wrote what he thought, that is his right, it was the accusation that I had some connection to the author and I was writing a fake review. Funny thing, Susan Gregerson, who goes by gypsysue, reviewed the book as well and also had good things to say, so he accused her of being the author's aunt. This was a typical zombie story, nothing too out there, but it has some pretty good prepper tips included in the story.

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John O'Brien's new book in the A New World series Awakening just came out this week. Mr. O'Brien, like Mr. Knight here, is another author who makes the effort to keep his fans updated on his new projects so we can run out and buy the next installment NOW. I am only getting started on this one so far he seems to have nailed it again. If you haven't read his work, get the first one and go to town. His military and aviation background gives these books a real sense of authenticity, and the nightrunners in this series are way scary.

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has anyone read the autumn series? it was a free ebook quite awhile back the zombies are very unique in how they develop. i've only read the first book and sort of lost contact with the series i reccomend it its a good read.

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I finished Awakening by John O'Brien and I have to report it is as good as the previous ones in the series. The author admits he was makign a more concerted effort to bring out more of the personalities of the other characters and we learn a little more about our hero's past. I just picked up the new What Zombies Fear: Fracture by Kirk Allmon and so far this one seems more focused on the survivors than the zombies, which I think is a good thing in this series. Check them both out if you have not already.

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i just finished the gathering dead it was quite exciting full of non-stop action and had a neat twist to the zombie thing. i look forward to reading the sequel the rising horde vol I and vol II i really like the main character mcdaniels and look forward to reading more about him. the cliffhanger ending was good too.

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Completely agree with your assessment, wally. Great series!

 

I'm posting this here because I was introduced to PS Powers via his zombie books featuring A Very Good Man, which then lead to his fantastic books about superheros (The Infected series) and others. I just found the start to another great superhero series that I wanted to recommend - it's called Blackjack Villain by Ben Bequer. It's told from the perspective of a very smart man with a very big chip on his shoulder, who happens to have a few superpowers. The world has done him wrong, so he figures he's owed a little compensation... Small-time villainy leads to being caught up in a struggle between superheroes and supervillains, until he's left wondering if he can find a way to not only save the world and save the girl, but save himself in the process.

 

Even if this book wasn't original, well plotted, and well written - which it is - it would be worthwhile for the humor alone. The descriptions of the superheroes from the perspective of the evildoers struck me as particularly funny - can you imagine how pompous, overblown, and arrogant Superman or Batman or Captain America sounds to the villains they foil? Now imagine that they are superheroes who are as flawed as any regular men and women, prone to leap to conclusions, to strike first and ask questions later, and create a lot of collateral damage that they later blame on the villains. It's amusing and a fresh perspective on what it might be like if a few dozen humans were imbued with superpowers.

Edited by oregonchick
formatting

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Oregonchick, thanks for the review. I will have to check that one out. One thing about Amazon is the difficulty one has browsing the selections. Either too many or too few. I guess this is the result of too many choices. Not a bad thing. If you you like the superhero genre done well, with zombies this time, check out the Ex-Heroes book by an author with the last name of Cline. First name escapes me. Cool series with two books out and a third one on the way.

 

On zombies, I just finished an amazing read entitled Ragnarok Rising by D.A. Roberts. The action is non-stop and our hero spends as much time scavenging as he does shooting zombies, and he shoots a lot of them. From some comments the author throws in, you can tell he is probably a member of our community. The action is pretty much non-stop, with Wylie (the protagonist) constantly going out to rescue civilians and other law enforcement types in some hair raising adventures. This book has a good supporting cast and there is even some emotional content to the story which is often absent from zombie books.

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Oregonchick has a great thread started next door dealing with instances where the authors get it wrong. I just wanted to point out that unlike in a bunch of zombie books, the characters in Ragnarok Rising start wearing motorcycle leathers in an attempt to protect themselves from fatal bites and scratches. Ever get frustrated with zombie books where the survivors rush out into the horde wearing tank tops and capri pants? At least here they try to do something right for once.

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Adored Ragnarok Rising. Likable (heck, LOVABLE) characters, an absolute page-turner, and I especially liked the tension created by Wylie's twin desires to fulfill his obligation to the community/survivors and also ensure the safety of his family. And yes, the fact that they actually suited up to try to protect themselves - Tyvek vests, leather clothes, etc. - was a big step in the right direction. They also actually thought through their rescue missions and zombie clearing efforts, making plans and coordinating movements so that people weren't more at risk than they absolutely had to be. I also was impressed by the fact that Wylie was genuinely tempted by Spec-4, and perhaps skirted the boundary but never crossed the line to cheating on his wife. It's easy to remain faithful when there is no temptation, and it would be convenient for the plot if, for example, his wife died and so he was technically a free man. I really appreciated that there were moral struggles alongside the simple struggle for survival.

 

I just read the Dead Hunger trilogy (starting with The Flex Sheridan Chronicle) by Eric A. Shelman, and wholeheartedly recommend it. It's really funny, with very likable characters and some truly unusual ideas about the origins of the zombies and how to potentially defeat them. And the fact that there wasn't a lot of fighting along the lines of "we have to defeat the enslaving, raping, pillaging horde of former convicts and gang members" that show up in so many post-apocalyptic novels was a refreshing break. The main characters experience angst and heartache over the loss, but also are very pragmatic about having to move forward. They make smart decisions about rescuing people who need help, have to work hard to keep their spirits from flagging, and truly form a little warrior family at the core of it all. Plus the main characters' names are so funny, it makes me think they should have been starring in a comic book or graphic novel (Flex, Gem, Charlie, and Hemp!?).

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just got done with the rising horde I sequel to the gathering dead it was quite exciting and quite depressing at the same time i've even had some nightmares after reading it! i like the way it bounces around to other locations

in the story it keeps it from getting too boring of just one story line like most zombie novels are. i look forward to reading part II. the zombies are very unique in this story also, i like that its a definite

change from the normal zombie. however mcdaniels getting little or no sleep is a bit unrealistic.

Edited by wally

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There is a series written by John Mabrey called Rot and Ruin (I think) that deals with the longer term zombie apocalypse (15-20 years after). Cool solutions to zombie issues, like armor made from old carpets that prove to be bite proof and a cadaver juice that masks the scent of the living are just a couple of the smarter innovations.

 

Wally, I think the scariest thing in the Gathering Dead was the retained skills of the OMEN team. Fast zombies are bad, but fast zombies chucking grenades at you is a whole level worse on the badness scale. I'm sure Mr. Knight has managed to give himself nightmares a time or two as well.

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