Sign in to follow this  
Texas Bill

Zombie Fiction or Something to Chew On

Recommended Posts

I have read the Rot and Ruin series and I found them okay but juvenile- written for teens, I think. Which is weird given how gruesome the series is at times and the adult situations which become apparent, but there it is. I would not let my kids read them, anyway, if I had any that age.

 

I did just finish the second Tera Necro book, Project Galileo, which is also sort of a teen book but I thought it to be a better read. If you read the first one, this is the adventures of TJ, who gets separated from the main group from the first book and goes on to have his own mission from the higher powers. This is a slightly different take on zombies as they are supposedly created as a biological weapon by the forces of evil (Satan?) and the good guys have their own advisors (angels, maybe) who visit them in their dreams. Not as weird as it sounds and sometimes really funny. If you read the first one and liked it, you will love this one.

 

Wally, as for poor Dr. Jeffries, well, read the second half of the story and let us know what you think then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

See, Wally, I knew you would like it. Now you know what is scarier than fast zombies. SPOILER ALERT: Zombies with artillery support!

 

BTW, for you zombie fans out there who like a little lighter fare (not quite so dark and gloomy), Check out Julie Rayzor by Richard Howes. This is aimed at a younger crowd and features a little adventure, romance and zombies, as the subtitle suggests. This book is a little more complex than you might think at first glance and even though it is short (barely over 200 pages) the story is pretty good with character development even as the story just rockets along. Basically, this is set about 4-6 months into the zombie apocalypse and the zombies are definitely winning. And evolving.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oregonchick mentioned on her thread about reading Slow Burn and I agree it was pretty good. I am not sure I really followed the logic of drug cartels starting the zombie apocalypse (kind of cuts into their market, unless they start selling BRAINS!!!!!). Anyway, it had some useful information in a fictional form.

 

Also, I am almost through with The Deadcountry Chronicles by Robert Turnbull and while I can't call it great literature, the story is very engaging and the characters extremely likable. The origin of the zombie plague here has not been revealed (I am 3/4 of the way through) but this book at least has a plausible reason why the walking dead managed to make such a mess, with 75% of the population suddenly falling down and turning all at once. Also, some are immune to bites while others turn so makes for some scary roulette to see if you turn or not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Texas Bill, I agree that the weakest part of Slow Burn was its initial premise. The nephew of a Soviet-era biological warfare designer using his uncle's dying declaration as a reason to join up with Mexican drug cartels to infect the US? Too convoluted; it would have made more sense to just have someone who still was fighting the Cold War in his mind decide to bring the US to its knees. Oh well. I did really enjoy the rest of it, and am anxious to find out what happens in the sequel(s). The creepy preacher and his councilman brother are a great foil for the heroes, so it could be fun to see that play out. Plus I'm always enthused by any story where the main characters actually seem to be blessed with common sense and the ability to act in a somewhat logical manner. LOL

 

Just finished the sequel to No Easy Hope, called This Shattered Land (Surviving the Dead) by James Cook. It's about Eric Riordan and his friend, Gabriel, an ex-special forces/mercenary who had experience fighting zombie outbreaks long before the zombie apocalypse happened. In the first book, Gabriel is already holed up in his BOL but gave Eric a bunch of useful information to help him survive on the journey to reach him; Eric wound up falling in with a band of survivors and helping them out, met up with the remnants of the US military, etc., but finally made his way to the mountain cabin where Gabriel was waiting. In the sequel, it's been a couple of years of hard living, and they decide it's time to leave the relative safety of their cabin to start building some kind of future instead of just trying not to die. The only little "hiccup" in their plans is that they are in North Carolina, and their destination is Colorado. It's every bit as good as the first book, and you start to understand Gabriel a little more, which is a bonus. It's not groundbreaking in terms of plot devices or helping you think about possible preps, but it IS a good read and solid thought has gone into the decisions the group makes. Definitely recommend.

 

One thing you'd like, Texas Bill, is that they don't mess around with leaving possible enemies behind to attack them later. As one of the characters states after a showdown with some would-be bandits, "There are only two possible endings to this scenario: one is that you die, the other is that you kill them all."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The new John O'Brien book (A New World:Awakening) is out. Sounds as good as the rest.
here are the books in a series awakening is the last one

 

Book I - A New World: Chaos

Book II - A New World: Return

Book III - A New World: Sanctuary

Book IV - A New World: Taken

Book V - A New World: Awakening

Edited by wally

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, guys. I really enjoyed This Shattered Land more because of the presence of Gabriel. He is an interesting guy and he is a great measuring stick to show how much Eric has matured. I am a big fan of James Cook and John O'Brien both and I can't wait for their next books.

 

On the other hand, Ruination by Wendy Owens was quite possibly the stupidest zombie book (or novella since it was so blessedly short) I have read in a long time. Teenage romance coupled with zombies is not an unheard of plot device, but this one was really bad. The protagonist is a supposedly toughened teenage survivor girl who apparently has no fear of vicious roving gangs and also possesses no weapon AT ALL. The story is told from her prespective and she thinks about having had a gun once but that is it, and she is wandering around on foot without even a Swiss Army knife to her name. She then hooks up with her dreamboat boy Zack, also supposedly a hardened survivor, and between them they have the combined IQ of a gerbil. They somehow make it through the entire book without having to resort to violence except for the one zombie Zack beats to death with his bare hands after it infected his sister! I'll bet he wished he'd picked up a stick or bat or something to protect his precious sister at that point.

 

The sad thing is the writer has some skill to her writing but no clue how to write something other than a junior Harlequin romance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just finished Arisen- Fortress Britain by Michael Fuchs and Glynn James, which I found to be very interesting but far too short. I know it is the first entry in a series, but this was really novella sized. Point to the authors for cool idea in having a combined SAS/Delta/SEAL team deployed to scavenge bio-labs on the European continent in a search for a cure or vaccine for the zombie virus. I am waiting for the second book to see what happens next.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OC, just wanted to let you know the new P.S. Powers book is out in the "Young Ancients" series. The book is entitled Slave Line and it explains a lot about Tor and his world. Not a zombie book, but I read the last book in the "Dead End" series from that same author is coming out next month, which is zombies and more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
See, Wally, I knew you would like it. Now you know what is scarier than fast zombies. SPOILER ALERT: Zombies with artillery support!

 

Ha! You know, I've had people dogging me since last year about some of the members of OMEN Team retaining essential tactical skills in The Gathering Dead. But in The Rising Horde books, NO ONE calls boo about the arty bombardment! I guess I wore 'em down.

 

Sorry I haven't been checking in, I'm writing another book and querying review sites to take some swings at my zombie books. I've also been very puzzled by why my sales are lackluster, when I see similar products rocket right out of the wrapper to the top of the various lists. Confusing!

 

For some offbeat zombie action, check out Blackmore's Mountain Man and Safari. Hugh Howey has his new release, I, Zombie, which is extremely well-written, but very, very static. I'm not sure what to make of it--it was very good, but for folks who demand strict adherence to the zombie canon, this one won't float your boat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

after reading a few zombie novels now i was wondering who here thinks they could put down a family

member of family friend once their infected. i don't think i could do it i would just run.maybe if i was cornerd...

Edited by wally

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good point, Wally, and that is one of the devices zombie story writers use to spread the plague. Most folks can't/won't do it and they get eaten and continue spreading the plague to others. I remember in John O'Briens most recent book that when some of the soldiers went to find their families, friends took care of the problem for each other so no one had to put down family.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
after reading a few zombie novels now i was wondering who here thinks they could put down a family member of family friend once their infected. i don't think i could do it i would just run.maybe if i was cornerd...

 

I'm honestly not sure that I would have it in me, unless I were absolutely certain that there was NO way they could somehow be saved at a later date and was convinced that it was somehow a mercy to them to be killed... and I don't know that I would ever reach that mental and emotional state.

 

As Texas Bill points out, that's one of the reasons why zombies are so dangerous in the early stages in particular: You see them as loved ones and try to help, when there is no help for them, and then it's too late for you too. Another book that deals with this in an interesting way is the Flex Sheridan Chronicle (book one of the Dead Hunger series), where Flex finds his sister as a zombie, rescues his niece, and then basically bubble-wraps his sister and ties her down in a small cargo trailer in the hope that he can find a way to reverse the infection.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ha! You know, I've had people dogging me since last year about some of the members of OMEN Team retaining essential tactical skills in The Gathering Dead. But in The Rising Horde books, NO ONE calls boo about the arty bombardment! I guess I wore 'em down.

 

I thought that was genius! Why wouldn't zombies retain some tactical capacity? It seems like we do a lot of things in our lives more because our bodies already have learned how to do them than because we're consciously thinking about them (look at how people DRIVE for goodness' sake!). And when you think of how many repetitions of each motion trained military fighters go through, why WOULDN'T they automatically hold a firearm in the ready position or be able to go through the motions of firing an RPG, even when their brains are no longer fully engaged? Plus this is incredibly horrifying because it makes you wonder if they actually do retain any sense of themselves as humans, or the people they pursue as anything other than meat.

 

Sorry I haven't been checking in, I'm writing another book and querying review sites to take some swings at my zombie books. I've also been very puzzled by why my sales are lackluster, when I see similar products rocket right out of the wrapper to the top of the various lists. Confusing!

 

I sometimes find my books based on recommendations that pop up on the Amazon site. Do you know how those recommendations come up/where your books are ranked? That might help, if you knew how to push things in that direction. Social media (Facebook, Twitter, blogging) is also supposedly a crucial part of any "author platform" that you develop, so if you haven't been doing much of that, you may want to look into it. You could also try promoting your work via channels like the Kindle Nation Daily, which offers discounts and lists of free books for Kindle users and allows some paid promotion of other books that is sent out daily to their reader list (http://kindlenationdaily.com/).

 

For some offbeat zombie action, check out Blackmore's Mountain Man and Safari. Hugh Howey has his new release, I, Zombie, which is extremely well-written, but very, very static. I'm not sure what to make of it--it was very good, but for folks who demand strict adherence to the zombie canon, this one won't float your boat.

 

Mountain Man and Safari are fantastic for being not at all what you expect out of a typical zombie novel, with truly unique characters! I'm going to have to check out I, Zombie because I have been wondering for days now whether you could write a first-person zombie novel and make the zombie a sympathetic character. Obviously the zombies couldn't be totally mindless for that to happen, and probably not possessing decaying, smelly flesh either. But what other zombie rules would have to change? And if more rules would have to change, then would it be stupid to still call them zombies?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any of you read Monster Hunter International by Larry Corriea? Not zombies but a real fun read about a secret organization that hunts monsters hidden in our society. There are three books at present in the series. The sequel, Monster Hunter Vendetta, was a New York Times bestseller. The third book in the series, Monster Hunter Alpha, was released in July 2011 and I am reading it now. Rip-roaring fun with lots of guns!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey, Rod, I'm a huge fan of Larry Corriea's stuff. Good monster writer and a non-fiction gun writer too if I am not mistaken. My brother exchanges e-mails with him from time to time on another site but I don't recall which one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i just got done reading a new world: chaos it wasn't too bad a little slow starting takes you to page 50 to meet a zombie. and the airplane trip is a little stupid but i get the idea. the zombies are unqiue in this one too. i think i'll get parts 2,3,4,5 should be some good reading.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hang in there, Wally. The "night runners" are pretty terrifying in there own way and anyone going into a building has to deal with them en mass. The later books have some hairy situations, not to mention some "normal" folks who need to be put down, too.

 

Guys, has anybody seen Devil's Playground? Not exactly great cinema, but this British made film has some really active zombies that gave me nightmares. Running, jumping, and snarling like wild animals, they would really be a handful given their speed and ferocity. Actually, watching this example of zombies reminded me of Aliens, but I don't recall the quote. Something about having to bomb them from space as the only way to be sure to get them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Knight, sorry I did not respond to your post earlier. I have no dog in the fight when it comes to rankings, and unit sales for that matter, other than hoping my favorite authors sell enough to keep them in vellum and India ink (that is how you prefer to do your scribing, correct?), but I routinely see books selling like crazy when I could barely finish the thing, and I have some pretty wide (some may say catholic in the old sense of the word) tastes when it comes to my reading. I was just complaining on another thread about a really good SHTF book I read entitled Wrath of the Dodo that was incredibly well-thought out and, in my humble opinion, well written, that is getting no love. On the other hand, some books that are just tearing up the rankings just leave me cold.

 

That also leads me to a completely unrelated question, but I just wanted to know if I am completely sexist or is it really hard to find any good zombie fiction other there written by women? The only one I can think of off the top of my head are Bonnie Dee and Rhiannon Frater. Case in point, I just read Ruination by Wendy Owens. Just terrible. I almost couldn't finish it but i forced myself to see if it got better. No luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That also leads me to a completely unrelated question, but I just wanted to know if I am completely sexist or is it really hard to find any good zombie fiction other there written by women? The only one I can think of off the top of my head are Bonnie Dee and Rhiannon Frater. Case in point, I just read Ruination by Wendy Owens. Just terrible. I almost couldn't finish it but i forced myself to see if it got better. No luck.

 

I haven't read (and won't read, based on your comments) the book by Wendy Owens. But I agree - zombie fiction seems to be largely written by - and for - men. I say written for men because if you look at female characters in these books, they are rarely complex or even that interesting. There's usually a fair number of female victims who are helpless and get killed, or helpless and get raped, and sometimes are helpless, then raped before being killed. There are sometimes women who are military/police who are tactically useful, but they aren't often more than mentioned in passing - in fact, I can only think of two series where these women are given much attention at all. There are occasionally women who don't know as much as the men around them, but are very demanding and insist upon doing things their way, and those women are described with scorn and often meet a very bloody end. The women who receive the kindest descriptions in these books are those who fall in line with the hero's plans, don't ask too many questions, don't mind getting left behind while everyone else is out adventuring, and of course, fall in love with/sleep with the hero.

 

Actually, this is also how things tend to shake out in survival fiction. There's almost always a subtle message of "the men should be in charge" or "this is men's business" in these books, like women aren't capable of truly pulling their weight and are either going to be lucky or unlucky depending on whether the men around them are good or bad, prepared or clueless, but that their fate is rarely in their own hands the way it is for male characters. Don't get me wrong, I think women are at a disadvantage in terms of physical strength when compared with men. But in terms of adaptability and perseverance? That's more on equal footing. Also, women have already been conditioned to think of the world around them as not entirely safe (don't go places alone, don't be out after dark, don't go into parking garages at night, etc.), so they are closer to "survival mode" on a day-to-day basis than most men are currently. So why would men - of a non-military background - be better at accepting and handling the new status quo than women?

 

I wonder if there were more compelling female characters if there would be more female zombie fiction readers, and therefore more women who would be inspired to write those stories? Or if there's something inherent in the genre (focus on death instead of life, broken connections versus building relationships) that makes this just less appealing to women authors overall? I don't have answers, but I definitely agree with your observation!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OC, maybe you can fill that void. Give it a try.

 

One strong female character I recall is Spec4 in the Ragnorak Rising book. She is not the lead but she is the right hand "man" for the protagonist and he trusts her skills and smarts more than anybody else. Otherwise, Rhiannon Frater wrote her trilogy around two very strong, and very different, women. Read them if you have not already.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spec4 was one of the characters I thought of, too, along with Lynn from the A New World series by John O'Brien. I'm going to check out Rhiannon Frater's trilogy, but I cringe at the price tag (yes, I'm a total cheapskate). LOL

 

If I can find a hook or a plot that is substantially different from what I've read before, I could definitely see trying to write a zombie novel. I do love reading them, after all, and my guess is that I could get some helpful critiques from some of the folks on this board!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are correct about Lynn and I just read his new book, too. There is a reason Lynn is the drill instructor for all the new recruits. As for writing, I am sure you can get a lot of support here for your work, whether it is technical advice or beta readers.

 

I have been working on a PAW book for a little while but between 70-80 hours a week at work and having a young child at home I have not had time to really devote to it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recent Topics

  • Posts

    • This is a great inspiring article. I am pretty much pleased with your good work. You put really very helpful information.
       
    • here is the survival coupons codes to get a amazing material of survival struggling 
    • Hey all, This is sort of cool (okay really cool) and maybe some of you have heard about it because it's been plastered over FOX and mentioned by POTUS as well as other conservative-leaning news people (Huckabee, Diamond/Silk, Candace Owens, Mark Levin, etc..) and politicians. #walkaway is a movement based mostly on social media. Started last year, by Brandon Straka (pronounced Strawk - like "straw" with a "k"). He's a former 2016 HRC-voting hair stylist, from NE, now in NYC, homosexual, liberal who began to question the MSM and what he was hearing. He got really frustrated as he began to do his own research. Anyway, after having his own awakening to the lies of MSM he had been following, he began an online testimonial campaign in which former liberals can post their #walkaway stories, written or video. Many are now on the "Trump Train." Many have simply left the Left. Still, others have always been non-Left and are members in support. The amazing thing is how many different people from all walks of life are beginning to wake up. Lots are not conservative on all issues, but all have a love for the USA and dislike the demonization of open political and social thinkers and speakers. This group gives solace to people scared to voice their conservative opinions or views for fear of negative professional or personal responses. It now has budding smaller groups in all 50 states and an online discussion group where people discuss current topics or issues (WITH no vitriol, gasp).  Here's the original video from Brandon.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=51UGcghHZsk This man, Brandon has a unique, stylish, well-articulated voice to help move people "in hiding" out into the open and not be silenced. Pretty much any video Brandon does is great. Here is the Facebook page: www.facebook.com/groups/OFFICIALwalkawaycampaign/ As I see fights erupt online, I simply leave #walkaway in the comments. Brandon has a goal of 1 million members! The liberal media has called this campaign "Russian Bots" and "paid actors." It's not!!!        
    • thanks to all who  have served or are serving our great country....243 years in the making....   Trump did a good job today thanking each branch of our military and a long time coming salute to the coast guard too....
    • I can imagine food prices going up this Fall or Winter. Corn is used for live stock feed, & us humans consume a lot of corn based products, as well as corn based biofuel. I’ve been keeping a watchful eye on the mid-west of America, which is flooded by water. Where corn  & other crops are normally grown there. Farmers are quite worried about this years growing season. Time to stock up on extra food if you can, if you haven’t already. Stack it high, stack it deep. Store the foods that you normally eat. What ever the  amount of food you’ve stored,  try to double it if possible. Better extra safe, than sorry.