This started out promising, with some funny, self-deprecating commentary on the "prepper" mentality, but quickly went downhill from there. Two things that could have immensely helped the author:
1. An editor
2. A thesaurus
There were many times when the writing's syntax and grammar were questionable at best, and I lost count of how many times he used the phrase "find purchase," among others. The book is written in first person, but a few chapters randomly skip to the first person perspectives of a different character. This would be fine if it happened throughout the book, but it happens once or twice, simply for the sake of telling a different part of the story and it makes the whole thing feel disjointed. If the author wanted to tell those stories, he should either have found a way to do it using the main character's point of view, or not have chosen to write in the first person at all.
Even as a fan of zombie fiction, I cannot recommend this. The writing is amateur, lazy and uninspiring. Avoid it.
His style of writing is too distracting to keep me invested.
The narrator did a pretty good job.
Everyone. Swap out every single main and supporting character and keep the scenario. This is such an odd book to review.
The problem with this book for me isn't that scenario the characters find themselves, it's the characters themselves -- more specifically the writing for the characters and I'm not talking about the grammar or narrative.
To put it bluntly, the humor in the book feels like it has been written by a 60 year old man. Every joke and quip feels like it's supposed to come off funnier than it actually is supposed to be for the reader. The playful banter between husband and wife feels like it has been written by that same 60 year old man and it's supposed to come off more endearing than it actually is. The wit of the main character's inner monologue also has this same problem. It feels like it's supposed to be wittier and it just falls flat.
I have no idea how old the author is, but this is just the sense I get as a reader to the point of distraction.
I had no connection with any of the characters even though I could see that the situations they found themselves could provide a solid foundation for future books. I've never written a review like this before, but needless to say, I'm dropping the series. It just isn't for me.
People who don't mind fat, ethnic jokes, countless references to the main character's stench, and just plain insensitive characters.
I only listened to about 1/3 of the book. I didn't like any of the characters. I couldn't make myself be interested at all in what was going to happen next. Usually with a book that bores me a little, I can still listen to it and finish it. This book aggravated me so much that I just can't finish it.
I'm not sure he could have made the book any better. The performance was fine, it was the content that was so irritating.
Listen to the preview. The whole book is like that. It could be considered funny to some, I just didn't get it.
Maybe. The technical detail is a bit too sparce and inconsistent. And the mindset of the main character is way off. It's like what some young urban writer would imagine a former marine's mindset to be, though it's way off what reality would be. Too many obvious and illogical mistakes for the expediency of an easily written story. And the author is obviously out of touch with the reality of gun ownership in the U.S.
The voice work was clear and appropriate to the text.
Willy Wonka of it
Sigh. This book had both highs and lows, so I'll just begin there. How about some pros?
-- Decent zombie tale, grounded in reality with a bit of a supernatural twist.
-- Writer injects a lot of humor
-- Some memorable characters whom you connect with
-- To sort of counteract pro #1, while the origin of the zombies was believable, the supernatural bits thrown in don't fit as well, and, at least in this book, aren't explained
-- To counteract pro #2, the writer injects a lot of humor. The writer injects a LOT of humor. The problem is, the writer can't go a paragraph without trying to elicit a guffaw from the reader/listener, and while there were some quips that drew a grin or a chuckle, they were lost in a sea of jokes that either fell flat or they just got run into the ground so badly that the effect was ruined. There are jokes and tangential stories that just drag on for what seems like forever, and never really hit home.
-- To counter Pro #3, the characters I actually liked and took an interest in were in the minority. The aforementioned characters didn't include the protagonist, and con #2 is just a single reason why. The two main women in this book (there's a third, but she's barely mentioned) were the protagonist's wife and daughter. The daughter was whiny and useless (while still being a worrisome PITA for the other guys), and the wife was created to be the snarky counterpart to the husband, while also filling the stereotypical role of "wife rules the roost". Not a chapter went by when we weren't reminded he was a dummy compared to his wife who had all the power. "Yes Dear!". It got annoying (especially since she wasn't particularly strong, clever or insightful), and just further added to the feeling I was reading something aimed directly at the low-brow humor readers.
We also meet the protagonist's supposed lifetime buddy, and his wife (the third woman never really mentioned) who both manage to be useless tag-alongs.
-- We also didn't get much in the way of explanation for a bunch of the events that happened in the book. The book seemed to wander from random story to story until it culminated int he typical fashion for zombie books, and left you hanging on all the bits that were actually interesting.
As for the narrator, he did a good job, except he made the character seemed even more hokie. I'm guessing that was the intention, but it wasn't to my liking.
I'm not sure if I'll examine any of the other books in the series (if there are any). A lot of books came out recently, so I'll likely see what else is out there before subjecting myself to a round 2.
Spreadhead and Biblioholic.
I just couldn't. Within the space of about an hour I came to loathe the protagonist of the story. I'm not sure if it was the narrator, who has (to my ear) a sneering, condescending voice, or the actual character himself, who I found to be an insufferable jackass. Probably a combination of both.
That said, perhaps the voice acting was spot-on (it's this possibility that made me up the performance rating from 1 to 2 stars). Perhaps he perfectly captured the tones and nuances of the first person narrator of the book, who came across as the kind of person you would jump out a window to get away from at a cocktail party. It's hard to enjoy a zombie story when you feel that. were you in the shoes of one of the other characters, you'd prefer the company of the zombies.
Narrator is the worst -- dry, deadpan delivery on EVERYTHING and i do mean everything. Same tone/quality of voice regardless of character is not pleasant, think Ben Stein reading the thing and you get the idea.
Story has some positive elements, but very little "news" on the decline of society, it literally says "it all fell apart" and picks up the story there.
That voice thingy Stephen Hawkins uses, more emotion and better tone from that thing.
Few -- what there are get lost in the mass of annoyance that is listening to it
Reviews are good -- shows how desperate we ZOMBIE fans are of a passable book -- but do not be fooled. This one makes the whole Morningstar series seem like the work of Shakespeare. This book is, for lack of a better phrase, zombie dung.
People with little brain power. The book reads like something written for morons. The characters are two dimensional (the women or written HORRIBLY, offensively bad, if this book hit mainstream I would expect protests from women's rights groups) and its just so so bad.
Example: Parents rushing to save a child in danger of dieing, stop to argue over whose car to take as they don't want zombie guys on their pretty cars. Women stay home and drink while the men go out to protect the town and the women complain about home values dropping due to zombie proofing houses.
I'm not sure, as this series is well rated on audible, I no longer trust audible ratings.
He put a lot of emotion into his voice and was very easy to understand. I believed him as the character speaking.
Disapointment and anger. I feel like I wasted 10 hours of my life. It also makes me question audible's rating system. This book has a high rating but is pure drivel.
Its a shame i had to find this series through the cross over with " a new world" becaus lissening to the character in that book with no back ground i didnt think i would enjoy the series bit like with the "adrians undead diarys" series this book brings an equall amount of serious to silly with a good story happening in the meantime. I recommend and hope the others are as entertaining.
This book was awesome. If I had one complaint it would be Sammy Davis Jr. Narrating. Other than that it kept me on the edge of my seat all day... At work;)