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Dead Set: A Novel by [Kadrey, Richard]
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Dead Set: A Novel Kindle Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 52 customer reviews

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Length: 325 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


“A dark and eerie world, a razor sharp plot, and a heroine worth rooting for make DEAD SET unforgettable.” (Kami Garcia)

“If punk and underworld mythology got into the mosh pit, it would come out something like this book; spiky and pretty with lashings of black eyeliner and its heart tattooed on its sleeve.” (Lauren Beukes)

“A fantastic supernatural horror novel with deep punk roots ... Kadrey’s underworld is a gloomy mirror of the overworld with all its injustice and broken dreams, and Zoe’s battle with her fear and her honorable spirit put her in enough jeopardy for six novels. (Cory Doctorow, Boing Boing)

“Kadrey again has painted a world that draws you in with its mysterious, yet frightening, beauty…The imagery is just phenomenal.” (Crimespree Magazine)

“An intelligent stand-alone tale of quiet horror that should appeal to Kadrey’s many fans, as well as to lovers of more subtle shivers.” (Library Journal)

“This bittersweet and elegaic fantasy will appeal to both fantasy fans and mainstream readers.” (Publishers Weekly)

“A tender, if terrifying, story of a lost teenager trying to find her way.” (Los Angeles Times)

From the Back Cover

After her father's funeral, Zoe moved to the big city with her mother to start over. But change always brings trials, and money is tight. Zoe's only escape, as always, is in her dreams—a world apart from her troubled real life where she can spend time with her lost brother Valentine.

But something or someone has entered their dream world uninvited. And a chance encounter at a used-record store where the vinyl holds not music, but lost souls, has opened up a portal to the world of the restless dead. It's here that the shop's strange proprietor offers Zoe the chance to commune with her dead father. The price? A lock of hair. Then a tooth. Then. . . .

Product Details

  • File Size: 773 KB
  • Print Length: 325 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager; Reprint edition (October 29, 2013)
  • Publication Date: October 29, 2013
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #147,250 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Zoe is a character I think we all can relate to in some way: she's mourning her father, angry about having to move, and she's lonely. Her one true friend is her dream-brother, Valentine, who she visits every night. However, something new has invaded their dream world and is starting to affect Zoe's waking world. When Zoe ditches school and wanders aimlessly, she comes upon an old record shop. Now, as her parents were both into music and art, she's drawn in and stumbles onto a very special section of the store. For the right price, Zoe can see her father again...

I absolutely adore the Sandman Slim novels, so when I saw Mr. Kadrey had written a YA novel I was super excited. Mix Gaiman and de Lint with the special Kadrey touch and you have `Dead Set'. With exquisite world-building, well-defined characters, and a beautifully seamless blend of ancient mythology and modern life, 'Dead Set' does not disappoint! As we walk beside Zoe in her travels, we are introduced to the hidden world of Iphigene where the restless dead are ruled by the iron fist and decayed heart of its queen. Zoe brings a ray of hope to a world resigned to its fate and her journey begins to heal not only herself, but the whole of Iphigene. `Dead Set' is a treasure I will enjoy reading many times over!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dead Set is a slightly different tale from Richard Kadrey, different than his Sandman Slim stories.

The story is about Zoe, a teenager who has lost her father recently. She's living in an apartment in San Francisco with her mother and the situation is not great. They're both in a period of mourning and their home life is in flux. Zoe is attending a new school away from her friends and adrift. She happens to wander past an odd record shop which leads her on an adventure into a weird world. Yes, that's vague but I'd rather not give the book away.

Dead Set asks a few questions of Zoe and the reader. What would you do if you could have a chance to talk to someone you loved again? Would you take that risk? That's the question that Zoe has to ask herself and I found it really fascinating. What if you have the chance to have some closure? What would you do? Zoe gets the chance to ask that question on her journey in a very visceral world.

Overall, I was surprised how compelled I was to finish this book. I'd recommend highly. A good story from a good author.
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Format: Hardcover
I got a copy of this book through Netgalley(dot)com to review. I have really enjoyed Kadrey’s Sandman Slim series, so I was excited to read a young adult book by him. This was an excellent and creepy read and I really enjoyed it.

Zoe and her mother have moved to the Big City after her father’s death. Things are tough, her mother can’t find work and Zoe is having trouble fitting in at school. Zoe’s only escape are her dreams, where she travels to a different place and visits with her lost brother Valentine. Then Zoe discovers a strange record shop. There the store keeper shows her a record of her father’s soul and allows her to watch it for the price of a lock of hair. Then for the price of a tooth she can actually visit her father in the realm of Iphigene. But as the price gets steeper and Zoe get more and more drawn into Iphigene, the question becomes will she ever escape this dark and deadly alternate world?

This is a very creepy book. The whole idea of a person’s soul being trapped on a record and of the creepy shop keeper asking for parts of Zoe for payment is eerie. The land of Iphigene is even more so. Iphigene is haunted by hungry trapped souls and ruled by Hecate, an evil witch of a character.

Zoe is an interesting character. She has a history of self-inflicted wounds (she was a cutter and struggles with this still) and misses her dad horribly. She is driven by the idea that finding her dad will somehow fix everything even though he is dead. She is also haunted by the dreams of Valentine, a brother she never actually knew. At times in the book Zoe is teetering on the edge of insanity and becomes extremely desperate and reckless.

Zoe’s mother and father are intriguing.
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Format: Hardcover
Dead Set is Richard's first foray into the YA genre, and what a fantastic debut it is, full of intrigue and nail-biting tension that will have you on the edge of your seat as you travel along with Zoe on her journey.

Richard has crafted an originally fresh and exciting read, which culminates in this story all being fit into a stand alone novel which seems to be rare these days.

Zoe and her Mother have moved to a new town after the death of her Father, money is very tight and Zoe and her Mother aren't getting along at all.
One day while skipping school, Zoe finds herself at a store that sells vinyl records, but these aren't normal records, each has the soul of a deceased person stuck in them and one of them has the soul of her Father.

To constantly keep visiting her Father, Emmett the store owner as payment requests first a lock of hair, then a tooth, some of Zoe's blood etc.
When she finds herself in Iphigene the place where lost souls end up including Zoe's Father and brother Valentine she discovers that it's ruled by Hecate (from Egyptian mythology) and she uses the souls to feed her children (her snakes and dogs) and has also stolen the sun which has left Iphigene in total darkness 24/7.

But when Hecate discovers the presence of a living girl she'll stop at nothing to catch Zoe and set in motion her nefarious plans, it ends up becoming a race against time for Zoe to find her way home, and keep her Father and brother safe in the process.

A great mix of paranormal and Egyptian mythology creates an intriguing story that you will find hard to put down once you immerse yourself in this world that Richard has created.
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