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A Place Outside The Wild (Z-Day Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 628 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top customer reviews
Probably one of the best bits of zombie fiction I've experienced in a while. Go read it.
The long version:
Yes, I know what you are thinking to yourself here: "Merciful heavens, not another self-published zombie book." And I get it. Trust me. I thought the same things as I downloaded the sample for this book.
I was halfway through the sample when I bought the book.
This might be one of the best zombie books I've read. True, that's not the highest bar in the world (and if you've read some of the self-published zombie books out there, you know <i>exactly</i> what I am talking about), but <i>A Place Outside the Wild</i> clears that bar with room to spare. The characters are good and react in a way you would expect people to react (as compared to how a person in a horror movie would react), and the tension builds nicely until fecal matter hits the rotary propeller.
Not quite good enough for a 5-star rating, but a solid 4 star book.
This book is actually quite enjoyable. Take the zombie apocalypse, skip 8 years ahead, and then tell the story of humanity learning to deal with the psychological and cultural impact of having survived. This is a story of rebuilding and rediscovering, of humanity and their desperate need for belonging and security. Zombies just happen to be in the book. That's how I like my stories, exploration of human nature first, monsters second.
Not to say that this book lacks action: the action scenes are great. The author knows how to take you real quick from comfortable to gripping your chair with your fingernails, in a way that reminded me of the movie Signs. The last 10% of the book is such a frantic rush of nonstop burning action that you'd better hope you've got time set aside to read through it all, because you won't want to stop. And the action scenes are choreographed very well.
Characters grow quite a bit and are likable, villains are not cliched or vague, the setting is fleshed out and breathes with life, and the plot advances at a steady pace. Tension is maintained right up to the last sentence in the book, with no trailing off.
This book means that there are now two authors in the world I can stomach who write zombie books. This was well done and didn't spend the whole time just dwelling on "Hey look, gory zombies! I'm trendy!" The author actually put a lot of time into thinking it through and making his take on this genre unique and interesting enough that it felt new, and I was eager to learn more. Despite hating this genre, I can confidently recommend this book to anyone who loves a good action story which takes a real hard look at what it means to be human.
The book struck me as having clearly been written with a cable series deal in mind. I suppose I shouldn't fuss about this, but I still haven't gotten quite comfortable with it after all these years. In fairness, Tolstoy and lot of others did it and did it well. It seems like the smart financial move for the author. Still, I could only give this book 4 stars to distinguish it from other books that I liked better as stand-alone novels, as opposed to scripts. The book is very capably done; I'm afraid zombies just aren't my genre. Zombie and post-apocalyptic novel fans, however, should love this!
A first novel for the writer which shows a lot of polish and talent, enjoyed it a lot. Look forward to seeing where the story goes.
Second, the title is the only weak link in this work. Generic nouns don't tell you how thrilling, moving and ridiculously engaging this story is. The genre is zombie apocalypse, but don't prejudge. If you like zombie, this book will pleasantly surprise. If you don't, the human drama will make you forget the genre.
The greatest pleasure is that Humphreys is so confident a writer. You can trust him with your time and emotions. Enjoy the ride.
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