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review 2018-06-18 00:44
Walking Dead Vol. 1 - Days Gone Bye
The Walking Dead, Vol. 1: Days Gone Bye - Tony Moore,Robert Kirkman

 

The Walking Dead will be the zombie movie that never ends.

- from the introduction by Robert Kirkman

 

I'm a huge fan of The Walking Dead tv show. It's hard to put into words what this show means to me and how it has played with my emotions over the years. I can't believe I waited this long to read the graphic novel. 

 

I loved everything about this graphic novel and I can't wait to read Volume 2.

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review 2018-06-13 03:28
Rise and Fall by Michael Whitehead
Legion Of The Undead: Rise and Fall - Michael Whitehead

Note: Even though this is Book 2 in the series, it works mostly well as a stand alone.

I have returned to the land of Roman legions and zombies! I really loved the first book in the series and this is a decent follow up. My new favorite character is Garrick, a butcher who lives in Rome. He’s basically conscripted to guard the wall but he soon earns the respect of his centurion and fellow guards.

Vitus, the archer from Book 1, is still around but he’s not the sole main focus of the story. He does a great job of being the counterpoint to Garrick. Two Roman emperors are fighting for superiority. Titus is the rightful emperor but he doesn’t hold Rome. Indeed, he’s quite a distance away and there’s all those pesky zombies in the way. Meanwhile Otho holds Rome. However, he’s got these crazy secret zombie plans that could bring him to ruin.

This tale does have a weakness and that is the lack of ladies. Book 1 had some impressive female characters getting stuff done but this book totally sidelined Lucia and Flavia. We only get glimpses of them and when we do, they are there for comfort or romance. There is one woman who gets to smash some zombies but her role is brief and part of it is spent being rescued. Another woman gets her chance at Otho, but once again, she has a small, fleeting appearance.

The zombies themselves come in a few flavors. The newer, more robust ones can leap! Yikes! There also appears to be some evil paranormal force that drives them, having some hidden motive. I hope we learn more about that in Book 3. The pacing is really good, keeping me engaged the entire time but also avoiding zombie battle fatigue. 4/5 stars.

I received a free copy of this book.

The Narration: Terry Self gave us yet another amazing performance. He had distinct voices for all the characters and his lady voices are feminine. I like his spooky voice for the evil paranormal entity. I also like his voice for Otho, who sounds like he’s talking with a mouth full of marbles. There were no technical issues with the recording. 5/5 stars.

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review 2018-05-30 15:01
3 Out Of 5 "feeling meh..." STARS
Dread Nation - Justina Ireland

 

 

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~BOOK BLURB~

Dread Nation

Justina Ireland

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Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg and Chancellorsville—derailing the War Between the States and changing America forever. In this new nation, safety for all depends on the work of a few, and laws like the Native and Negro Reeducation Act require certain children attend combat schools to learn to put down the dead. But there are also opportunities—and Jane is studying to become an Attendant, trained in both weaponry and etiquette to protect the well-to-do. It’s a chance for a better life for Negro girls like Jane. After all, not even being the daughter of a wealthy white Southern woman could save her from society’s expectations.

 

But that’s not a life Jane wants. Almost finished with her education at Miss Preston’s School of Combat in Baltimore, Jane is set on returning to her Kentucky home and doesn’t pay much mind to the politics of the eastern cities, with their talk of returning America to the glory of its days before the dead rose. But when families around Baltimore County begin to go missing, Jane is caught in the middle of a conspiracy, one that finds her in a desperate fight for her life against some powerful enemies. And the restless dead, it would seem, are the least of her problems.

 

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~MY QUICKIE REVIEW~

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If wanting to like a book is enough, then I would have loved this…but, in reality, I just found it rather dull.  The zombies or "shamblers", were the dullest of them and the story just fell flat for me.  Although, if they had been more kill-y than I probably wouldn't have finished it due to the nightmares I would have had. {{{shrugs shoulders}}}

 

The plot didn't play out the way I envisioned it.  I thought it would center around the civil war and how the walking dead changed how it ended.  But after rereading the synopsis, I realized I shouldn't have thought that…but even knowing that it didn't change my disappointment. (This is why reading the synopsis doesn't spoil the book for me, I don't really pay attention to what it says...)  Overall the story wasn't all bad, but it's likely that I won't read the next book. 

 

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~MY RATING~

3STARS - GRADE=C

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~BREAKDOWN OF RATINGS~

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Plot~ 4/5

Main Characters~ 3/5

Secondary Characters~ 3/5

The Feels~ 2/5

Pacing~ 2/5

Addictiveness~ 2/5

Theme or Tone~ 3/5

Flow (Writing Style)~ 2/5

Backdrop (World Building)~ 3/5

Originality~ 4/5

Ending~ 3/5 Cliffhanger~  sort of…

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Book Cover~ Awesome, it drew me in…I feel like the cover promised more than I was given…

Narration~ 3 -Bahni Turpin…it's not that she was bad, only that I think they were too many characters for her take on by herself.

Setting~ Alternate United States

Source~ Audiobook (Library)

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review 2018-05-20 17:44
4.5 Out Of 5 "Zombie Love" STARS
White Trash Zombie Unchained - Diana Rowland

 

 

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~BOOK BLURB~

White Trash Zombie Unchained

Diana Rowland

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Angel Crawford has finally pulled herself together (literally!) after her disastrous dismemberment on Mardi Gras. She’s putting the pieces of her life back in order and is ready to tackle whatever the future holds.

 

Too bad the future is a nasty bitch. There’s a new kind of zombie in town: mindless shamblers, infectious and ravenous.

 

With the threat of a full-blown shambler pandemic looming, and a loved one stricken, Angel and the “real” zombies scramble to find a cure. Yet when Angel uncovers the true reason the plague is spreading so quickly, she adds “no-holds-barred revenge” to her to-do list. 

 

Angel is busting her ass dealing with shambling hordes, zombie gators, government jerks, and way too many mosquitos, but this white trash chick ain’t giving up.

 

Good thing, since the fate of the world is resting on her undead shoulders.

 

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~MY QUICKIE REVIEW~

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I'm thinking this could be the conclusion of the series…if it is, I'm fine with that it tidied everything and everyone up well.  I will miss it, though.  Angel has really grown on me.  I do believe she is my favorite zombie. Her and Liv (iZombie) are running neck and neck. 

 

Somebody finally listened to me griping about the covers because this one is perfect.  This book (the whole series, actually) is a guilty pleasure at it's best…overtly cheesy at times, but sometimes cheesy is okay, at least when you really come to know and love the characters in a story, it can be.

 

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~MY RATING~

4.5STARS - GRADE=A-

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~BREAKDOWN OF RATINGS~

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Plot~ 5/5

Main Characters~ 4.5/5

Secondary Characters~ 4.3/5

The Feels~ 4/5

Pacing~ 4.5/5

Addictiveness~ 4.3/5

Theme or Tone~ 5/5

Flow (Writing Style)~ 4.2/5

Backdrop (World Building)~ 4.5/5

Originality~ 5/5

Ending~ 5/5  Cliffhanger~ Nope…

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Book Cover~ Hands down the best cover of the series.

Narration~ 4.5 -As always Allison McLemore is the voice of Angel Crawford

Series~ White Trash Zombie #6

Setting~ Louisiana

Source~ Own on Audible

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review 2018-05-03 17:23
Book Bebops All Over the Place (Good Debut)
Dread Nation - Justina Ireland

Well, I am really glad that I finally got a chance to read "Dread Nation." Not going to lie though, I was pretty bored for most of the book. Even after the action moves there just seemed to be endless indignities our main character had to deal with until she does a reveal about her past. The world building was good, but I still questioned some things and I am glad that the book didn't end on a cliffhanger. I am not a fan of cliffhangers. 

 

"Dread Nation" is about an alternate United States where the Civil War is ended when the dead start to walk among us. In order to fight and put down the dead, the United States creates a so-called Native and Negro Reeducation Act that requires all Native Americans and African Americas to be put into schools to train how to fight the dead and become Attendants. Jane McKeene who is our main character, is a teenager that is currently enrolled at Miss Preston's School of Combat for Negro Girls, hoping to graduate soon and be able to return to her family and friends at Rose Hill. When Jane starts to realize that something strange seems to be going on with her school and the nearby Mayor, her life is turned upside down. 

 

It was great to read a book starring a bi-racial young adult character. Jane is fierce, lies, and makes no bones about who she is and what she has done. I am not going to lie though, at first Jane bugged me, but she grew on me and I loved that she refused to back down and just let evil (bad guys) win. 


The book keeps pace with Jane in the present though with little vignettes showing how her life was back at Rose Hill (her family's plantation) with her Aunt Aggie and her mother. 

 

The secondary characters development is a bit thin though except for the character of Katherine. I really don't get the character of Daniel Redfern or Red Jack. The motivations of the teachers at the school Jane went to didn't really work for me. And we got like four token racist characters. They could have been combined. Katherine and Jane's growing friendship was wonderful though. I really enjoyed the frenemies becoming true friends. And I loved both of their backstories that we got in this one. 

 

I also enjoyed how Ireland uses this book to showcase racism in our past in this country, but also certain incidents in this book could be updated to modern times quite easily. 

 

That said, the book could have been split in half. There were so many characters and motivations we had to keep track of during this book it got to be a bit much towards the end.  

The writing was good, I especially liked the letters from Jane to her mother and from her mother back to her. The flow was off though. The first part of the book with Jane at her school was dry as anything. 


The world building was interesting. I still have a problem though. I do think that African Americans are considered free in this new alternate history. But, we still have them being forced to be subservient to whites. It didn't make a lot of sense to me on how this was done without African Americans or Native Americans just fleeing and or making up their own towns/communities. The characters who are white in this book don't seem to be able to do that much, so training a highly skilled community of people that you keep treating terribly seems dumb to me. I think Ireland was using Jim Crow laws as an inspiration for how something like the above could have happened (with minorities forced to still be forced to be subservient to whites) but I wish that someone had brought this up or that we heard about minority communities or those arguing for change. 

 

The ending was good and sets up the next book nicely. 

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