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Book Chat: Revolt of the Dead

by Keith Gouveia

Two high school friends bring the dead to life for a Halloween prank, with results they did not expect.

MYRA’S HORROR BLOG REVIEWS : I wanted to write reviews as if I were sharing the love of a book with a friend. What I liked about it, from storyline to characters; to include any parts that had a negative impact on me as a reader. Join me on the couch as we explore today’s exciting read.

2009

Amazon

 

 

Two friends. An ancient book. One heck of a problem. Best buds Barry and Shawn hate going to school. Well, that’s not exactly true. They go, but it isn’t the most pleasant place to be, especially when Mitch Johnson makes a fool of Shawn in front of everyone. After stumbling upon an ancient spell book hidden in the school library, Shawn and Barry decide to play a prank on those at the beautiful Belinda’s Halloween party, a party Mitch will be at with his jerk friends. First stop: the local cemetery. Except something goes wrong and instead of raising just one or two of the dead, the entire cemetery bursts to life and masses of living corpses go to work feeding on the living. Including Shawn. Heartbroken, confused and scared, Barry tries to escape the dead’s clutches as life as he knows it falls apart all around him, leading him on a journey across Florida and into a battle bigger than anything he’d ever imagined or thought possible.

Review:

 

Shawn and Barry are normal teenagers; a bit awkward, not popular, but not on the bottom rung in high school. A bully, Mitch, bothers them regularly, but they chose to ignore him. It’s Halloween and they are looking for a way to scare their classmates. They stumble across an old book hidden in the library and Shawn starts reading it. He tells Barry it can raise the dead, and he wants to try it at the cemetery. Barry doesn’t want to go but does anyway.

Shawn plans on raising one or two dead people to frighten the party goers. When the dead do actually start to come out of their graves, the friends are shocked. Barry runs but can’t get his friend to follow. Shawn is convinced he can control the ghouls, but they don’t obey and attack him. Barry flees home and hides under his bed. Later, he hears something in the house and can tell his parents are being attacked. He discovers their devoured corpses in the morning and leaves.

Barry meets a man, Eddie, who shows him the dead can only be “killed” by destroying the brain. The government message on TV explains that intense heat is the only sure way to destroy the zombies. Also, that the residents in that area of Florida have been quarantined and anyone still alive needs to make it to the constructed wall. The military will nuke the place in hours.

It’s a race against time as Barry tries to escape and keep from being eaten. Eddie left him and Barry stops to help two strangers. Clearly, though a teen, Barry is made of better “stuff”. He is determined to get the injured Richard and his wife Denise to safety. After many run-ins with the undead, he makes it to the wall with Denise. Richard was shot by soldiers guarding the wall when they saw he had been bitten.

After a nuke rocks the city, soldiers go out in Hazmat suits, carrying flamethrowers, to dispatch of any zombies not burned up by the blast. Barry wants to find and annihilate his old friend Shawn, who he’d run into earlier while inside the quarantine area. Shawn is a zombie and has to be stopped; he is giddy and wishing to spread the undead plague. Barry encounters Mitch inside the safe area, and ironically it is the bully who sneaks out with Barry to help on his mission. They put on suits and slip out with the soldiers.

The two do find Shawn and manage to burn him up with flamethrowers they’d borrowed. Barry sees the book snuggled inside Shawn’s ribcage and grabs it. But spying what Barry holds, the General takes it from him, assuring the kid the government will take care of it. Hmm, I see undead soldiers in the future!

It seems we, the reader, are inside a child’s mind when the plot turns to the government very quickly making the decision to destroy everything inside the quarantine area. Government moves slowllly! As anyone who has been in the military knows, one of the favorite sayings is “Hurry up and wait.” So the soldiers would be guarding, but would have to wait some time to receive a decision about what to do in this situation. That’s my two cents on that topic. Maybe there is a contingency plan, but against zombies?! I dunno….

Reminds me of the 1970’s movie “Children Shouldn’t Play With Dead Things”. People should never utter incantations in a graveyard. While not a top notch read, it was a fun one.

 

 

 

NOTE: All my reviews are published in Uncaged Book Reviews emag. This review will be in the March issue.

 

 

Uncaged

 

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