When “Plague Town” by Dana Fedsti was published, I was happy to review a “genre” book with such a cool heroine. The main character, Ashley Parker, is just your average student at the beginning of the book; and then things get crazy.
There’s a zombie virus, “walker flu” and people get sick and then mutate into flesh eating zombies. There’s a very cool catch though. Some people, like Ashley, have a kind of resistance to the virus. When these special people are infected they become “wild cards”. They are faster, stronger, and everything about them is just a little bit better.
“Plague Town” brought us an introduction to the zombie virus and the team of “wild cards” as they were trained to become a kind of zombie hit squad.
“Plague Nation” is the second installment in this zombie-packed series. Taking place only days after the first novel; this novel is a fast-paced, trip through another set of issues! This time, the team of zombie-killing machines is facing some of the same issues. There’s still a lot of sexual tension between Ashley and, her superior, Gabriel. There are some members on the team who may not be taking their zombie fighting as seriously as they should and there may be lasting repercussions. Sometimes, zombies are kids, babies, or they’re people that the team of souped up soldiers may have met before – and that certainly takes the video-game mentality out of the trigger pulling.
What’s new for Ashley? Well, the outspoken heroine is no better at keeping her inner voice from going public (admittedly, one of the things I most admire about her.) There’s a conspiracy afoot! Ashley and the team of “wild cards” are finding out that things may be far more complicated than they ever thought. What if the walker flu was all part of a big cover-up? Sure – they know some of the bits and pieces behind the unfortunate creation of the virus (I’m not going to spoil you! Read the first book!) but there’s a lot going on behind the scenes.
Using a series of flashbacks, Fredsti slowly unfolds some more history for us and it’s packed full of intrigue. This book is part thriller, part modern (real) romance and that’s all wrapped up in about as much zombie gore as you can take.
I love it.
This novel is clever without stepping over the line into being “too” clever. The fabulous and timely pop culture references I loved so much in the first novel continue in the second. And even while I’m laughing along with the internal monologue of Ashley Parker – I gotta say – there’s some breath-stealing sadness in this one too.
Pick it up – you will not be disappointed. Where else can you find a liquor store aptly named “Licker Up”, and the phrase “hot monkey sex” used in the same novel. I challenge you to find it.
Thank you Ms. Fredsti for creating a bold, tough, kick-ass chick that I can read about without rolling my eyes.
- Plague Nation excerpt (boingboing.net)