LZR-1143: Within / Bryan James
synopsis – The zombie apocalypse is here, and only a hero can save the day now. Too bad there’s no heroes left, though. Zombies took ’em all out. That’s what zombies do. So it’s up to a run-of-the-mill everyman to save the day. Too bad an everyman isn’t up to the job. That’s what an everyman is – a man who isn’t up for the job. But within every man there’s the fight to be the last one surviving…
reaction – A solid zombie apocalypse story told in chunks of “outside the barricaded place” and “inside the barricaded place.” Long, drawn-out suspense with plenty of internal speculation. I enjoyed the perspective of a guy who knows he’s no hero, and will never be a hero. Read this for a quick and creepy zombie tale with just enough gore to set the scene.
recommendation – This book renewed my will to live.
314 / A.R. Wise
synopsis – Star-crossed lovers Alma and Paul just can’t keep away from each other. So when goody two shoes Alma finally decided to confront her repressed abusive childhood memories, bad boy Paul swears to be her knight in biker’s armor. Filling out the roster are a couple of indie paranormal investigators, a wanted man, and a prostitute. This band of misfits take a journey into the past of the time-looping Widowsfield, Alma’s childhood hometown.
reaction – This story was told looping from 2012 to 1996, and described the circumstances and aftermath of a horrific abuse which opened a hellish portal to the supernatural dimension. The characters were well-developed, and I identified with and cared about all of them. The Skeleton Man, green fog, and dog-children mutants appearances were puzzling, but kept me turning the pages. A graphic description of adult and child torture near the end. An open-ended ending which invited further speculation (further reading).
recommendation – The book renewed my will to live.