Love in the Time of the Dead by Tera Shanley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
No spoilers and colorful language abound! I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
OK you guys. Fair warning, this book includes a speshual snowflake, zombies, and a love triangle, but truth be told, I liked all of it.
I really dig this author, I've read a few of her shorts before and she has this really wonderful way of laying down the foundation of a story without making the reader feel bogged down in mundane details. I'm a chronic skimmer, I get really fucking bored when authors hammer out paragraph after paragraph of descriptions. Shanley is just vivid enough to make you feel like you are there, but holds back in the right places, it's an art form I wish more authors had, and she has it in spades. From the first page I was engrossed and I finished this book in one sitting, without skimming a single paragraph.
It's 2020, nearly three years after the outbreak and a small group of hunters travel from colony to colony, sleeping in trees, slaying the Dead, and searching for the right doctor. Laney is our SS, brimming with uniqueness, as her blood and flesh are lethal to the Dead. No one really knows why, and although it's a clear plot facilitator, it really isn't the end all or be all of the story, which I appreciated. For being under 200 pages there is substantial flow to the book, she packs a wallop into her books no matter how many words there are. There is truly great world building, rich character development, and overall intrigue. True story, this made me cry for a hot second, it was a brief little misting, but it happened.
The love triangle is... heavy handed but not in a all consuming, "I'm going throw up on myself" way. Take that as you will.
What I didn't love was what seemed like an endless supply of ammo. No matter where they went, there was more. Dafuq. It's been three years since civilization has crapped itself and you can still get chocolate and ammo? Uh. No.
Also, they are super trigger happy, which seems dumb. They reach for guns before blades and frankly, I'm just not down with that survival method. Neither of the love interest are all that great, so a big fat meh to them, but Laney I liked which is more than half the battle. She's a badass and carries her own weight in this zombie infested world.It's not as heavy on the zombies as I would have liked, the focus is more character driven, and I like a bigger helping of "creeped the fuck out" than this offered. However, her story telling skills trump any minor issues I might have had with the plot.
When I got to the end of this book, there was an epilogue and closure, so I was surprised to hear there is a sequel! I have it on my Kindle, so time to get reading, I'm curious to see where she is going with it.