Book Chat: Generation Z
by Peter Meredith
The first novel in a series set in a terrifying post apocalyptic world. The heroes are the survivors who have learned to live in a zombie infested world.
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.
It’s been twelve years since the undead hordes swept over the earth forcing mankind to the brink of extinction. We now live like rats, scavenging in the ruins of our fallen civilization as the dead hunt us night and day.
There is little left to scavenge, however. Grocery stores were emptied ages ago, gas tanks have long been dry and bullets are so precious that a man is lucky to have two to his name.
Still, we survive.
But for how much longer? Instinct and love have combined to turn Darwin’s theory on its head. The strongest didn’t survive in this world. They were the first to die, leaving behind a generation of orphans.
It’s a generation that’s never had a full belly. It’s a generation that has no idea what an Xbox did, or what algebra is for. It’s a generation of children who never laugh out loud, and who have learned to cry softly because the dead are always near and the dead are always so very, very hungry.
We’re introduced to several main characters living different lives. Jenn and Stu abide on land in the Hill People community, while Mike lives with the Islanders on Alcatraz. Jenn’s life is run by her belief in signs and the supernatural. The leaders of the Hill community are called the Coven, dictating life by signs and omens. The Coven and poor Jenn also believe she is bad luck. We follow Jenn through her daily routines, like gathering wood or checking her traps for game. But nothing in her life is ordinary. The world is still filled with zombies, ones that continue to grow as they age, many 8 feet tall. Jenn is a very capable fighter and takes down the dead whenever she can.
Jenn and Stu are sent to the Island to facilitate trade, but unbeknownst to the two teens, the Coven has an ulterior motive – Mike and Jenn are to be married. No woman is left alone in this world, especially young ones. When several members of Jenn’s community are injured, she decides to search for a girl doctor rumored to live near Seattle. Stu and Mike insist on going with her. They know Mike’s smaller craft won’t make an ocean crossing; hence they “borrow” the largest boat the Islanders’ own. All three realize they will not be welcomed back into their communities unless they find antibiotics and the doctor.
After a hazardous journey, they stumble across a well-fortified community. It reminds them of the “before time” – people look well-fed and their clothes are clean, there is electricity and running water. Stu was injured earlier aboard their boat, and miraculously the girl doctor, Jillybean, lives at the community and takes care of him. Jillybean is a shocking surprise, pretty and around 18 years old. The friends slowly discover she is a genius, but also has multiple personalities. The “mad” doctor wants to go with them and helps the three escape on a skiff. They don’t know how she hopes to make a journey on the small boat and are shocked when Jillybean unveils her plot to take a Corsair ship. Stealing form the most dangerous slaver pirates is crazy, but with Jillybean’s strategies they do snag a boat.
The ship barely keeps ahead of the pirates, who trail them all the way to the Hill community. With the doctor, Jenn creates a plan to use the zombies to attack the Corsairs. I loved the end when Jenn comes into her own; taking over as leader and telling the Coven what to do. She finally also realizes her love for Mike.
I have not followed The Apocalypse: The Undead World series, where we were introduced to Neil, but have been meaning to. I loved Neil’s character, so I was very interested in seeing him in this one. I was shocked to discover Jillybean was Sadie. This gives me more incentive to go back to this series. Recommended for zombie fans and those who follow Peter Meredith’s work.
NOTE: All my reviews are published in Uncaged Book Reviews emag. This review will be in the March issue.