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Extinction Edge (The Extinction Cycle) Kindle Edition
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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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This book, like the first, does a great job of keeping the reader engrossed. The author jumps from character to character, just as the fate of the current subject appears in jeopardy. This style makes it a real page turner, and for most readers, probably a good quick read, easily accomplished in a weekend.
I read a lot of Zombie fiction, and while this author's zombies certainly vary from your standard, they do tend to make it a little more tense and horrific. This book is certainly more science fiction oriented than the straight up survival stories that dominate the genre, but this allows one to have some hope that science will find the answer, all the while being horrified at how something like this could happen, and how quickly it is occurring.
Some of what I enjoy about these books is their attempt to set the Zombie Apocalypse in a science based setting. There is a lot of background, more so in the first book, about how the virus started and spread. While some of it may be a little far-fetched, I think every good ZA story needs at least a little grounding in reality, and I do love hearing how it all gets started.
Anyway, this is definitely a middle book in the series. There's a lot of action, and a lot of new questions, but not much in the way of plot resolution. That's alright by me though because I knew in advance that there is more on the way, and wasn't expecting a conclusion to the story in this book. I'm looking forward to the next book (possibly the conclusion?) in the cycle later this year with much anticipation!
Meanwhile, the guy in charge, safe in a bunker in Colorado, decides it's time for Operation Liberty--to take back the cities from the variants. He doesn't believe Kate's estimates that 10% still remain alive. Kate knows the rest of them are out there, but she doesn't know where they are. Sgt. Beckham and the remaining members of his Delta Force team head to New York to participate in Operation Liberty. He knows Kate's estimates and he soon finds out why the army's estimates are so different from Kate's.
At the same time, a helicopter inbound to Plum Island with variants for research crashes, putting all the scientists, doctors, and civilians on Plum Island at risk. Fitz, a former member of Delta Force who lost his legs, but is a sniper works with the marines to try to kill the 18 variants that survived the crash. Kate and Horn's kids are constantly on the run from the variants. They see and hear people dying all around them. They only have Riley, the Delta Force member with two broken legs to protect them and they just keep retreating until there's nowhere left to go.
The battle in New York is non-stop action. The Marines, Rangers, and Delta Force fight heroically. Some of the situations they find themselves in seem completely hopeless. Even Sgt. Beckham is worried about getting out alive. The image of Grand Central Station is terrifyingly described.
At the end of the book, Sgt. Beckham's status is unknown, while the head army guy in his safe bunker says Operation Liberty was a disaster. Ya think? Kate is more resolved than ever to find a scientific solution since the military one failed--and because science created the plague in the first place. She has to figure out if the Variants have any weaknesses, and, if so, how to exploit them. She is nowhere at the end of the book.
So, pretty much the entire human race is at risk (thus the title of the book series), although I suppose the Variants will die off once the humans are gone since they will have nothing to eat.
The was a highly-entertaining and action-packed installment. Even though there are many characters, the author defines them very well and you don't have to go back and say, "Now, who is that again?", when a character comes into a scene. Fitz and Riley were really standouts in this book. It really feels like the human race is on the verge of extinction at the end and all credit for that goes to the author.
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