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Countdown: A Newsflesh Novella Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • File Size: 777 KB
  • Print Length: 82 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit (August 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: August 1, 2011
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0053HDJSK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,241 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Mira Grant aka Seanan McGuire has become one of my favorite authors - and the zombie genre has NEVER been at the top of my reading list. But Grant is such a stunning writer that the first two books in her Newsflesh trilogy - Feed and Deadline - have become two of my favorite books EVER any genre. And I can hardly wait until "Blackout," the final book in the trilogy is out in May 2012.

"Countdown" was just what I thought it was going to be - a prequel to the first two books. It goes into much more detail on the WHYS and HOWS of the pandemic that started the zombie apocalypse. It takes place in the year 2014, so no, Georgia and/or Shaun Mason, the protagonists of the trilogy do not play a role in it (the trilogy starts in the year 2039). The writing was top notch. Grant really has a gift for making the science understandable.

While you could read this novella first, it is probably a good idea to read it after "Feed" and "Deadline" so you get the full impact.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The tagline of Mira Grant's amazing Newsflesh (zombies + politics) trilogy is "When will you rise?" Countdown is a series of short works telling the story of how our civilization fell just before and during the initial zombie outbreak.

It was written during the lead up to the release of Deadline and while it's technically a prequel, I strongly advise one read it AFTER reading Feed. The characters and references will be much more clear if you have some familiarity with the world Mira Grant's writing about.

The writing for the short pieces is just as good - and just as heartbreaking as the novels. This is an amazing exploration of what led to the world that the Masons are living in. It's not necessary for understanding the trilogy, but it adds to the depth of it.

The previous reviewer on this site seemed confused about where this collection fits into the Newsflesh universe so I say again - this is a prequel! It's not the third book. It's not even the first chapter of the third book. But it's well worth the price.
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Seriously, I already enjoyed the first two books of the Newsflesh series, but I never thought I'd want something to be longer in my whole life. This is the intro that all of us wish was written into Feed, but was so much better. It gives all of the details that you wanted and covers a few bases that had you scratching your head after Feed.

If Mira/Seannan wrote a longer version of this novella, I would buy it again in a heartbeat.
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This was an ok novella... A bit of a let down after reading the Newsflesh Trilogy.

What worked:
-- I liked seeing the doctors who created the virus and the jerk who set it free as far as understanding how it all began.
-- And despite the peeks at the Mason family before Shaun and Georgia became a part of it, the POV of Marigold was most effective at explaining how innocent lives were being affected.
-- I liked at the end of each "chapter" they showed the news reports.

What didn't work:
-- The writing was frantic and vague; I know it was supposed to be a short story, but if a prequel is going to be invented it should add to the story somehow; it needed a little development.
-- I wish the cause and effect had been built upon a little more; the Mason's are lovely before the infection and despite the devastating loss of their son I don't really see how they transformed into rating-hungry villains.
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I highly recommend this novella as a supplement for anyone who read Feed and/or Deadline. I can't wait for the final novel in the trilogy and Countdown provided some interesting background and was a fun diversion during this in between phase.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Countdown: A Newsflesh Novella shares the months and weeks leading up to the "creation" of the Kellis-Amberlee virus and the initial aftermath of the infection. There is a lot of good back-story here, told from the perspective of John Kellis, the man who created the untested Kellis Cure, and Dr Wells, the doctor in charge of the Marburg-Amberlee trials. You also learn more about the Mason family, pre-Georgia & Sean, as well as the bioterrorist group that released the Kellis Cure before it had a chance to go through human testing. This is a very interesting short story, since it really helps show what happened with the CDC and the news stations, and how the world collapsed. This story doesn't make me like the Masons anymore, but I can see where some of the motivation comes from and how their experiences could harden them. Even though this is a short story and a quick read, it still earns 5 stars since it is well written and fills in a lot of the history leading up to the Rising.

NOTE: Review edited and updated with second reading of Countdown on 10/14/2014. My initial review was still a five star review but I picked up more detail on a second read and wanted to expand my initial (short) review.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
So Mira Grant is pretty much the boss of zombie fiction right now, and rightfully so. She doesn't just write about nasty zombie attacks, she writes about nasty zombie attacks WITH a super-creative and intensely indepth backstory and multidimensional characters. This little e-book novella answered a lot of my questions about the series. The Alexander Kellis storyline broke my heart! I can't wait to read "Blackout", and this satisfied my craving for more Grant zombies.

I wish this was expanded into an entire prequel novel- I'm just greedy, I want more! I know the focus is on the aftermath and the rising, but the story about how it all began is so interesting as well, and Grant has enough writing talent to expand her universe even more.
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