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Showing 1-10 of 253 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 476 reviews
on May 9, 2016
I've never been a zombie fan. It is a genre I always avoided. But after getting hooked with "The Walking Dead", and enjoying the novel "World War Z", I figured I'd try and read something else starring this ugly folks. I came across this title in one of those lists, "10 best zombie novels" or something like that, and I gave it a try.

It is not only a great read within the genre, it is a great novel, period. Action scenes are amazingly well written, sometimes in a fast pace, sometimes in slow motion. Characters seem real, dialogues are good. I'm amazed I've never heard the author's name before (I am not from the US)

I already started the Benny Kimura series from the same author, and it also seems great.
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on February 22, 2017
"Where have all the good men gone and where are all the gods?..." By the end of Patient Zero, Bonnie Tyler's song, "Holding Out For A Hero," was going around in my head. I wanted Joe Ledger to be real. Maberry brings this larger than life superman to the DMS (Department of Military Science) and helps them take down a group of terrorists who have developed a Bio-weapon that turns people into zombies. It's a fun thrill ride that's hard to put down. If you travel a lot you will appreciate the pure escapist quality that will make a long flight seem like a puddle-jumper and take you to your hotel room singing, "... And he's gotta be strong. And he's gotta be fast. And he's gotta be fresh from a fight...."
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on November 27, 2016
Jonathan Mayberry is one of the best I have seen in a long time. His character of Joe Ledger is iconic. Beautifully executed, Ledger is truly a brilliant man, who is also very flawed. His other characters are completely believable, especially Mr. Church, the man of many names. I doubt we will ever know what is his real name. Altogether, the DMS will have many more adventures to come. I hope they make it into a movie, with just the right cast.
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VINE VOICEon April 3, 2016
This a better than average zombie book, with a very strong start. I liked meeting Joe, who had just killed several men in a bust gone bad. One of those men turns out to be our patient zero. I even liked the twist on the villains, with Sebastian having his own strange agenda and the jihadists theirs.. But after a strong few chapters, it just devolved into an action piece, with constant thrills and battles (and really, no sleep) and less and less characterization. If you want some exciting fight scenes and some spectacular zombies then you are in the right place. But the hero, Joe, became way too Mary Sue for me (the author just loves him, wants to be him, thinks we all want to be him) and sadly the women were all ciphers. Grace really had very little personality and the main men barely got descriptions but all the main women were unnaturally beautiful. It's clearly the start of a series (and perhaps a film franchise) but while I enjoyed this one, I think I'll pass on the next one... I wish he had given it a few more scenes between action moments. It became a great roller coaster ride, but character and nuance were thrown out to serve the action.
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on September 15, 2013
The story opens with an assault on suspected terrorist in a dockside warehouse, and a massive gun battle that reveals itself to be much more than that. It was a staging area for a bioweapon to be introduced to the American population by El Mujahid, one of the world's most fearsome threats. Joe Ledger, former Ranger, will be swept up into the world of black ops and the DMS (Dept of Military Sciences) - meeting some great characters along the way - as he struggles to prevent the release of a virus that would spread worldwide in short order turning the world's population into zombies. Plausible science is a hallmark in these Maberry books and this is no different. There's no scenery-chewing or world-ruling here, just driven villains with an interesting take on a new bioweapon, and the agency trying to prevent that. Ledger is an engaging character that's capable of snappy dialogue, killer action, and a head full of conflict. Sounds like a lot of action heroes, you say? No one holds a candle to Maberry's Ledger. Trust me. This is the beginning to a series where the action and writing is second-to-none and you'll put down each book at the end desperate to pick up the next. This series straddles a fine line that I've referred a lot of people too: it incorporates action, intrigue, technothriller, sci-fi, science, and much more without alienating fans of any one genre. A hallmark to the engagement that the book offers. Start it now! Five books from now, you'll be a member of a growing army - those of us eagerly awaiting the next Ledger installment.
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on August 4, 2016
This was a well-written suspense story, with a lot of cool twists and turns. It was a zombie story, with a lot of great science. It was also a war story, with awesome battles and weapons and interesting spy-type technology. There was even a little romance thrown in! I loved it! It's the most fun I've had reading in a long time! I'm really looking forward to my next Joe Ledger novel!
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on April 16, 2014
Now before you get pissy let me explain. I'm not a big flag waiver. But that having been said, I have to say that this is an excellent read. The characters are very well developed; the plot is too real, and the overall story fits the genre (Clancy/Spy-tech) perfectly. I give this book five stars because the book and its author deserves it, hands down. You will not be disappointed if you buy/ listen to this book. I'd like to see it made into a movie.

However, if you are sick to death of current stories that make the government look like an "omniscient" god, and its "ultra-secret" operatives as being our saviours, then you are going to get pissed off along the way. And as one of those pissed-off, anti-government types, I can say to my brothers and sisters, "Get over it and just enjoy the ride!" This is truly a good read/ listen. I'll be getting the rest of the series, if for no other reason than to laugh my ass off at yet another portrayal of a government that sets in motion an apocalypse, then tries to pretend to have the solutions to fix it. Enjoy!
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on July 2, 2014
I enjoyed this story very much. Joe Ledger is a warrior with special, almost super human skills. He is a strong leader and gets the job done. He isn’t perfect though, which makes the character more believable.

The story starts quietly with Joe enjoying the beach and the scenery (girls in skimpy bathing suits, lol). Then very quickly escalates in fight after fight of putting down a terrorist attack scheduled for the 4th of July. The bad guys have created a new biological weapon. It is almost fool proof. In the midst of all of this, it comes to light that there is a mole, a traitor, in the new super-secret organization that Joe is now a part of. Will Joe and his team save the day? Read the book to find out.

I’ve been following Maberry for a while, but this is the first book of his that I’ve read. It won’t be the last. Science, adventure, monsters, with a little humor. Just the right mix for a fabulous read. Pick it up and check for yourself.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon December 30, 2010
It's like Jack Bauer versus the undead, if only Jack Bauer cracked wise even a little. PATIENT ZERO is Jonathan Maberry's unputdownable mash-up of zombie horror and science-on-crack and military/anti-terrorist techno-thriller. Maberry's protagonist, Joe Ledger, is awesome. A Baltimore cop, Joe Ledger survives a zombie attack and gets recruited into the D.M.S. (Dept. of Military Sciences), a clandestine agency answerable only to the Commander-in-Chief and dedicated to eliminating the most extreme threats to America and the rest of the free world.

The zombies here aren't at all supernatural; they're more like those from RESIDENT EVIL in that they were genetically engineered. Joe Ledger and his Echo Team find themselves frantically countering a pathogen-induced virus - created by an insane (but extremely sexy) scientist - which transforms people into zombies (or "walkers"). And to raise the stakes, this scientist is so rat crazy that she's developed several strains of this virus - called the "Seif al Din" (Sword of the Faithful) - with each virus more virulent than the last. The penultimate strain has its victims converting to walkers mere seconds after infection. The final strain is even more insidious. That's part of the reason I couldn't stop reading the damn book. The villains are so nasty and have thought so far ahead. They seemingly had each of the D.M.S.'s moves figured out ahead of time. The good guys were playing catch-up all the way to the end. And, of course, there's a mole in the team.

The story is topical enough in this post-9/11 world; there's a sense of immediacy. Jonathan Maberry grabs you by the throat and doesn't let go. The story is told at a breakneck pace, but the writer doesn't skimp on characterization. Joe Ledger is a fully realized protagonist, and he's got his snide all perfected. The rest of the cast - even the villains - are nicely developed as well, from Joe's analyst buddy to the D.M.S.'s resident science whiz, the tactless Dr. Hu. Joe Ledger's unit is composed of frosty soldiers culled from the armed forces, and so we get that hoooah military speak and behavior. The gigantic Sergeant Harvey Rabbit (or "Bunny") is probably my second favorite character here, after Ledger himself. I also thought that the D.M.S. chief, the enigmatic Mr. Church, was enigmatically cool. For some reason, I dig that he loved snacking on vanilla wafers. Just the sheer idiosyncrasy of it, I guess.

Maberry injects science babble that doesn't get in the way of the storytelling. The action is insane, really relentless. Lots of firearms and bullets and tough guys acting tough. Some of my favorite moments - and, with this book, I had tons of favorite moments - had to do with Ledger attempting to put his own stamp on Echo Team. When the teeming undead attack and you're holed up in a corner and it's taking forever for backup to appear, chances are you'll eventually run out of bullets. This happens a few times with our guys, which I think is cool and more realistic than not. There are several times when Joe Ledger's firearms go dry and he ends up having to go one-on-one with the flesh-eaters. Ledger applies his extensive mastery of jujutsu with brutal, visceral results. Maberry writes his fight scenes amazingly well, and you get pumped up reading them. Jack Bauer, should he ever brace Joe Ledger, may drop a wee load in his pants.

Man, do I ever encourage you to read this book and its sequels THE DRAGON FACTORY and the upcoming THE KING OF PLAGUES. Jonathan Maberry is turning out to be one of the finest writers we've got around. His "Pine Deep" horror trilogy is really terrific stuff. And if you're looking for something similar to PATIENT ZERO, I also recommend Larry Correia's Monster Hunter International and Nick Pollotta's Judgment Night: BUREAU 13 - Book One. These last two books are more lighthearted in tone, but they both feature intense moments of monster assskickery.
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on July 3, 2012
Jonathan Maberry has a new fan, that's what I think. His sample portion sold me because I liked his crisp action and witty main character, Joe Ledger. Joe is a Baltimore Police Detective recruited into a secret counter-terrorism department, the DMS (Department of Military Sciences), and as Jonathan has said, is a hero at heart that has never had a real chance to prove it.

I really enjoyed this new approach to zombie stories. Most zombie stories have people either already in the middle of the zombie apocalypse, or enjoying everyday life when it lands on their doorstep. The Joe Ledger series takes a different approach. Joe is tasked with stopping a group of terrorists from unleashing the zombie plague on the U.S.. I liked it because of how much it reminded me of my joy watching Jack Bauer kick butt on 24, and even better, this has zombies!

I recently watched some DragonCon videos on You Tube (from 2009) where Jonathan says how he had the opportunity to interview special ops types about zombie combat scenarios (in research for his book Zombie CSU). That along with his martial arts background and extensive research into what he considers the most plausible method for creating a zombie virus makes this book horrifyingly realistic. I wasn't sure if zombies could scare me any more until I read this book. I'm glad to be proven wrong. The zombie action was also the best that I've read.

My only drawback is that the book started out with a great couple action scenes, and then slowed down to set up the DMS situation and the terrorist storyline. Both turned out to great effect, as you really do care about the characters, the science and military tactics feel more real, and the buildup creates an amazing climax. The thing is, I'm not a techno-thriller or detective story reader, so the part that was slow for me wouldn't be for more pure fans of those genres. That being said, I still plan to read all of Jonathan's stuff, so that should say a lot considering it's not my preferred zombie framework.
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