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review 2015-06-05 18:32
Fabulous Book!
The Dead Days Journal (Volume 1) - Sandra R Campbell

I received an ARC copy of this book via the author through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Beyond the synopsis, I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into when I requested to review this via Net Galley as I've never read any of this authors work before. I have to say I was not disappointed in the least. This book was great! It grabbed my attention and held it through the entire book. If you are a fan of books that have little bits of multiple genres within them then this is a book for you. It is first and foremost a paranormal romance and Dystopian themed book. You also have aspects of suspense and horror involved. Some of the parts will maybe shock and disgust you but after all it is part of the whole dystopian theme of the book. It was really well written and I loved all the characters even as I was hating a few of them at the same time. I'm really excited to see if this will ever become a series. Sandra Campbell is an author to watch out for and I will definitely be reading more of her books.

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review 2015-04-30 05:13
Review: Dead Days Journal by Sandra R. Campbell

The Dead Days Journal : Volume 1The Dead Days Journal : Volume 1 by Sandra R. Campbell

 

Synopsis: The daughter of a radical doomsday prepper, Leo Marrok spent her entire life preparing for the end. A skilled fighter and perfect marksman, Leo is her father’s second-in-command when Armageddon comes to pass. Together, they lead a group of survivors to a secure bunker deep in the Appalachian Mountains.
 
Vincent Marrok is willing to take extreme measures to repopulate their broken world. Leo’s refusal marks her as a traitor. With father and daughter at odds for the first time, their frail community is thrust into turmoil. Until the unthinkable happens, a blood-thirsty horde arrives. The impending attack will destroy all that they have worked for. To protect her home and everything she believes in, Leo puts her faith in the arms of the enemy—a creature only rumored to exist—the one she calls Halloween. An alliance born out of necessity evolves into feelings Leo is ill-equipped to handle.
 
The Dead Days Journal is a post-apocalyptic story of love and family told through Leo Marrok’s first-hand account and the pages of Vincent’s personal journal, giving two very different perspectives on what it takes to survive.
 
Mature themes, adult language, sexual situations, violence and gore. 18+
 
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***Disclaimer: I received a free copy in exchange for a review.***

 

It’s a rare thing to read a book and find the core characters so unlikable. From the main character Leo(na)- who admits she’s been nothing but a tease to her love interest, Ben- to her father, Vincent- whose obsession with survival leads him to do some pretty horrible things to his own children- to Orrin, the vampire- who has the means to ensure the survival of both his race and humanity. He just needs a MarySue tween love interest to do it with. Literally.

 

The reason for the catastrophe that all but ends the world isn’t revealed until later in the book, and not only is it ridiculous by then you almost won’t even care anymore- it’s that corny. (It all has to do with a war between Heaven and Hell- a war which is the reason these creatures exist).

 

Vincent’s descent into madness was interesting for a while but just went so far beyond the pale it was a parody. The way the story alternated between his journal notes and Leona’s POV was a nice idea but comes up short. We spend the vast majority of the book in Leona’s head but basically get Vincent’s crib notes for his perspective on what’s happening, and it falls flat. Especially in light of his actions- actions that felt like a cheap plot device. They were so far out there I stopped caring- a wise move given his ultimate fate.

 

Leona, aka Leo, was one of the worst protagonists I’ve read so far this year. Utterly self-absorbed in the face of fighting for the survival of those she claims to love, it’s her selfish actions that draw the ‘blood-thirsty horde’ to their enclave to begin with. In a dying world, as the only one in the group truly capable of bearing a child at this point it’s her refusal to do so that ultimately dooms both her and the group. Because in the face of extinction it’s only right that a woman decide to hinder the survival of humanity simply because she likes to go jogging.

 

As for the ‘blood-thirsty horde’… well, they are blood-thirsty, being a new kind of vampire and all. But since it’s a YA novel, these vamps aren’t quite so demonic. Well they are, but they aren’t. I’ll leave it at that. Gladly. Orrin, the lead vampire and third member of the pre-requisite love triangle, was uninteresting, even when trying to be manipulative. His on-again/off-again routine just bored the heck out of me, and makes even less sense when you discover what his endgame is.

 

A nice enough idea, but badly executed.

 

 

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review 2015-04-25 00:00
The Dead Days Journal (Volume 1)
The Dead Days Journal (Volume 1) - Sandra R Campbell Great read! The story of a group of individuals who have survived the "end of days" and how they survive as well as interact with each other. They are also having to deal with a group of monsters in this new world ... and they aren't the monsters you would expect.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I loved Leo, the main character. She was a strong young woman who was willing to stand up to whoever she needed to - specifically her father who is leader of the group - in order to do what she felt was best.

Not your typical dystopian book. It is filled with surprises and twists that you do not see coming, and it does end in a bit of a cliffhanger. I am really looking forward to Volume 2!
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