Loved the inflection provided by Kristin Allison.
I have to admit, I was drawn to this book by its cover and decided to pass because it was “zombies”. Although I don't mind zombies once in a while, I'm not a big zombie fan...I was asked to read and review this book for a book tour. Deciding to give it a shot, I'm so glad I did!!!
I flat out loved The Last Bastion of the Living: A Futuristic Zombie Novel! It is a nail biting, fresh, futuristic, roller coaster that will have you riveted to the pages.
Vanguard Maria Martinez is a guard for the Bastion, the last living strong hold of humans. A virus has converted most of humanity into zombie like creatures that only crave to spread their virus by a bite. She is tired of her life behind the walls, all except for the time she spends with Dwayne Reichardt, an officer in the Bastion Constabulary (city guard). But they are keeping their relationship a secret because Dwayne is going through a divorce and he is a commanding officer over Maria.
Things are not going well for the Bastion, they are experiencing power failures, shortages and they need to expand the strong hold to include the farming areas they lost by a gate failure.
Maria is offered a chance to work with the Science Warfare Division to finally get a chance to destroy the Inferi Scourge (Zombies) that have taken the valley and close the gate. She jumps at the chance but might loose everything she holds dear.
Maria and Dwayne have an amazing love story. Although they are apart for most of the book, they share a bond that can not be broken. Dwayne gives Maria the backing, love and support she needs to be the amazing solider and heroine she is while fighting to protect her the only way he can.
The plot twists and turns are accented by brilliantly bloody action and amazing deceptions that will blow you away. The political mechanization will astound you.
I know Rhiannon Frater wrote The Last Bastion of the Living: A Futuristic Zombie Novel as a stand alone, but I would love for more!!!
The Last Bastion of the Living is a shocking, fresh, post apocalyptic master piece.
I would recommend this to anyone interested in zombie fiction. The story was a little different than the many same old, same old. Sure there were some things I could see coming a mile away but the author still managed to keep it compelling. Maria, the main, is a Dominican-Puerto Rican woman. Now that's something I don't see very often especially not in zombie fiction. The author didn't make too much of that which was also good. I hate it when they go on and on about that sort of thing but I do like it mentioned enough so you know who the main is and what her/his influences were.
I would compare to Rise Again by Ben Tripp to this. Another interesting take. Another strong female main. Somewhat different from Maria in this book. Certainly more flawed but still kick-ass.
Her voice was a little dull, kinda flat-line in a lot of places. Overall, I still enjoyed the book.
I think the author struck a good balance for her heroine. She was emotional about the really important things, her family and her man but at the end of the day she was bound by her duty as a soldier. She wasn't overly guilt-ridden by a lot of what she had to do because it had to be done. I can't say I was moved, but then again, I've read so many of these.
Love to exercise while listening
The reader has a voice that sounds almost bored. After you get used to her, she does grow on you.
Of course the woman!
I was very happy with this book until the govermental b crap. Even in the end I can dream of the next chapters.
Would like more chapters
A great reading can make a good book into something amazing!
I think this is one book that can be read rather than listened to -- the narrator is not my favorite. I prefer narrators that add some flavor to the reading.
That said, the book is worth the listen (or the read ... if you're that worried, I suggest getting the e-book instead).
I'm trying to avoid spoilers here, but there is a pretty reasonable reason for why the narrator uses less warmth and emotion in the reading ... the main character is a weary soldier, after all. The city everyone inhabits is repeatedly descried as drab and dreary, so it is quite possible the main character is simply weary.
There is one other reason for the less emotional voice, but I don't want to spoil anything ...
I enjoy sci-fi books and I've been on a heck of a zombie book tear of late, so this was a great 'peanut butter & chocolate' combo.
More warmth and a less clinical delivery would have helped ... nothing as over-the-top as the narrator for Frater's other zombie books, but a bit more would have been good.
Seriously, don't let the narration comments put you off--there is a very good zombie story you'd be missing otherwise!
I loved the last Zombie series that Rhiannon Frater wrote, but not this one. It just did not have the emotion wrapped into it like The Last Days series.
I plan to listen to The Clockwork Princess when it becomes available in March
Kristin just did not seem to understand the character enough to bring her to life. It was just a very unemotional read.
Disappointment because The Last Days series was so great.
I born a long time ago and grew up to be who I am today.
As a whole, this book is outstanding. Character's are clearly defined and both their motives and actions seem to evolve organically though I don't seem to care for all of them as much as I think I should. The action is well paced and doesn't devolve into a boring "play by play". Frater has a strong grasp on her world and there is a very rich back story put in place. This feels it could be the setting for a whole new series of books taking place in the same world. Military. Action. Hard Sci-Fi. Zombies. Political Intrigue. It's all in there so there's something for every genre fan. Ironically this selling point is also it's biggest weakness because problems start to arise when a few of the "big reveal" moments seem cheap or forced. More foreshadow or just a hint earlier on would have probably set up those moments a little better, instead of feeling like seasoning added after the duck was already cooked. It's still a good book and a unique take on the Zombie mythos that has something for everyone, regardless of the type of story you usually get into and stands strong as a sum of it's various parts.
A great re-imagining of the zombie story, set in a technologically advanced future. Very good, but a few loose ends. It would make a great film.
However the narration is unbelievably bad. It sounds like a female Stephen Hawkins, that is mechanical and strange with odd pausing, stress and pronunciation. I almost gave up. I dont think I have heard anything quite so bad. Nevertheless I am glad I stuck with the story. Hopefully there will be a sequel (read by a different person, please god!)
On the whole, a fairly good zombie book, though I could have done without the mushy stuff, and the one bedroom scene. More time should have been spent on the "mission" and less on romance. In spite of this, I would recommend this book to my fellow zombie fanz.
EOD wife and loving mother!!!
I did get use to the narrator after awhile, but it was really hard to get into because of the voice. It was read way to fast and not a pleasant voice. The story was okay. Some of the concepts were a little hard to believe. Some parts were a little frustrating. For example, if you are running out of bullets then why not use a blade instead? Or if there is the technology to create a cure for the new version of the cure then why isn't there a cure for the original?
I received this audiobook from the author in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive any compensation for my review, and the views expressed herein are my own.
Rhiannon Frater has done it again! She has totally sucked me into her zombie-infested world!!
The Last Bastion of the Living: A Futuristic Zombie Novel is a post-apocalyptic story, where zombies (now named “Inferi Scourge” because they were infected by the Inferi Scourge Plague Virus or “ISPV”) have taken over the world. About 40 years prior to the current setting of the story, a walled city was established and Earth’s remaining survivors were flown there. The bastion was capable of housing 2,000,000 people and included a valley for cultivation so that the residents could be self-sustaining. The valley also included the city’s water and power sources. An immense 10-story wall, which was 12-feet thick, encompassed the fortress to protect the city from the Inferi Scourge (aka “scrags”). Due to what was believed to be a mechanical malfunction, the gate to the wall in the valley was opened and the scrags overtook the valley.
The residents of the bastion are prisoners. Because they no longer have access to the resources in the valley, their supplies are dwindling. To conserve power, there are nightly black-outs. There are some people, like Special Sergeant Maria Martinez, who have never known life outside of the walled city. She is a constabulary officer, and she is a part of the army that is responsible for protecting the city from the scrags. They keep watch atop the walls for any breaches in the perimeter. She had participated in a previous mission into the valley to try to rid the valley of scrags, but the attempt failed. She sustained critical injuries, but she survived. She dreams of life outside the walls, but she fears that it is an unattainable fantasy.
When Maria is summoned by the Science Warfare Division of the government to a top secret meeting, she is informed that the Division has developed a serum that will enable her to walk among the scrags undetected so that she can neutralize them. Desperate to make her dream a reality, she agrees to the assignment. Maria soon discovers, however, that she has not been told the entire truth.
Frater’s sci-fi element adds something different to the typical zombie story. I was worried that the story might be too similar to her other zombie series, As The World Ends trilogy, but the futuristic components gave this book a fresh feel. Maria is a totally kick-ass heroine, and I loved her right from the get-go. Her strength and bravery are limitless, and I love her devotion to her family notwithstanding being shunned by her mother because she fears for her daughter’s safety. Frater makes us sympathetic even to Maria’s mother, whose husband was also a constabulary officer who was killed by scrags. She cannot bear to lose her daughter as well. The romance between Maria and Dwayne, an officer who is nearly twice her age, had the right combination of passion, vulnerability, and sweetness.
Narrator Kristin Allison is new to me, and I quite liked her portrayal of Maria. Her pace was excellent, and I found her reading to be enjoyable. You could hear the different ranges of emotion in Maria’s voice, and Allison held my attention.
I have to add that the cover is totally hot! Whoever designed it did Maria justice! She manages to look both kick-ass and wickedly hot at the same time!
I have no idea if this is a stand-alone or if there are plans to continue he series, but I want more! Frater is my favourite author that I have discovered this year, and I can't wait to read more of her work!