Cassie Forrest isn't surprised to learn that the day she’s decided to get her life together is also the day the world ends. After all, she’s been on a self-imposed losing streak since her survivalist parents died: she’s stopped painting, broken off her engagement to Adrian and dated a real jerk. Rectifying her mistakes has to wait, however, because Cassie and her friends have just enough time to escape Brooklyn for her parents’ cabin before Bornavirus LX turns them into zombies, too. This is difficult enough, but Cassie’s tag along ex-boyfriend and her friend’s bratty sister have a knack for making everything, even the apocalypse, more unpleasant. When the two attract a threat as deadly as the undead to their safe haven, Cassie’s forced to see how far she’ll go to protect those she loves. And it’s a lot farther than she’d anticipated. This, coupled with Adrian’s distant voice on Safe Zone Radio and, of course, the living dead, threaten to put Cassie right back into the funk she just dragged herself out of. Survival’s great and all, especially when you have leather armor, good friends and home-brewed beer, but there’s something Cassie must do besides survive: tell Adrian she still loves him. And to do that, Cassie has to find faith that she’s stronger than she thinks, she’s still a crack shot and true love never dies.
2014 Voice Arts Award Winner
2015 Audie Finalist - Solo Narration, Female
©2013 Saray Lyons Flemin (P)2014 Podium Publishing
I am a person who watches Walking Dead. That being said, I loved this book. It's basically like a season of walking dead with people who actually make good decisions and with more character development. This book is more about the relationships than the gore, but I loved that aspect of "zombie apocalypse" and the dangers constantly lurking. There were many surprises in this book, and I was on the edge of my seat listening (shouting out loud as things happened). I loved it and can't wait for the next one to come out.
Post apocalyptic listener with some thrillers mixed in. Follow me on twitter at @drewsant
I thought this book was great. It had some action, great characters and a great story line, everything you want in a good book. Everything from the action, to the interaction of the group to who lives and dies is well throughout and developed. It has something to make you feel annoyed, something to make you feel sad, something to make you feel excited and every range of emotion in between. Highly recommended for everyone!
Julia Whelan does a wonderful job with the narration bringing the characters to life and really adding to the enjoyment of this book.
Mother of 8, grandmother of 10, RN and book nerd...
What an absolutely great story! Narrator was PERFECT, characters were awesome, story was seamless. Perfect zombie tale, but so much more. Emotion filled book. I loved, hated, feared, laughed and cried. This author has done a wonderful job with this one and whoever choose the narrator did their job ten fold. Worth a credit or the price. I'll be revisiting this again and following this author for more!
Avid Zombie fan who's starting to listen to more and more Fantasy and Sci-Fi stories. So, my description is apt to change. Dog lover who's known to have cats. LOL C# coder, part-time prepper, B movie fan, AMC watcher, recovering but successful day trader, perpetual student, overjoyed uncle, former adrenaline junkie with a flare for cooking, and lots more. LOL
as the story opens, cassie and her best friend, penny, are heading to work. the author spends a little time introducing this small group of friends who work together before the action starts. cassie and her friends live and work in brooklyn, new york. the lx virus has spread across the world and has reached the u.s. however, most of the cases have appeared in the west and midwest so cassie and her friends haven't been too worried about it. later in the day when the local news reports that they expect 20,000 people in the greater nyc area to be infected in the next 24 hours, cassie and her friends decide to head to penny's apartment instead of going out drinking.
as they head to penny's apartment, most people are carrying on as normal- eating, drinking, and making merry on a friday night. before they reach penny's apartment, they encounter their first infected person that truly scares them. holed up at penny's apartment, they begin to learn the true extent of the outbreak as james, cassie's techy friend, discovers the local news has been lying about the rate of the infection. as things start to devolve, penny receives a text message from her mom, who works at the hospital. she tells penny to meet her at cassie's apartment so they can flee the city. everybody realizes the situation is much worse than they previously thought, except for anna, penny's younger sister. the publisher's summary describes her as "bratty," and that description is right on.
although the characters are in their late 20s, i would definitely classify this story as a young adult (ya) zombie apocylapse. why you ask? because of the themes. yes, there are zombies, but they act as more of a catalyst for the characters to confront their situations, feelings, and relationships than a terrifying threat. the story starts out as a zombie apocylapse story, but it quickly becomes more of a ya problem / coming of age novel. being in my mid 30s, i can relate to it b/c the main character, cassie, experiences THE most coming of age problems at that age- did i let go of the man i should of married.
this is more of a character driven story than zombie driven story. yes, there is a lot of zombie action in the beginning, but once they escape nyc, the story focuses mostly on the complicated relationship between cassie and peter and peter's and anna's belief that this whole thing will blow over and that things will quickly be back to normal.
i was innitially engrossd by the zombie aspect, but as the story continued, i got caught up in the inter-relationship drama. this was kind of surprising to me. i was kind of bummed that the zombies took a back seat, but i kept listening b/c of the characters. i could relate to them and feel their frustrations. and yes, i was at times very annoyed with some of them, but to me, that's good writing- when the author can stir emotions in you that you weren't expecting.
the narration is really good. julia whelan does a good job bringing the characters to life and portraying their emotions. i found the writing tight and the dialogue smooth and believable.
the story is kind of predictable and more ya than zombie. you could easily replace the zombies with any other serious disaster and have the same story. so if you're looking for a zombie-centered apocylapse story, you might want to read a few other reviews before deciding on this. if you're looking for a good ya story with an end of the world slant, look no further b/c you've found it.
i hope i don't come across as too sexist, but i think female listeners would enjoy this sort of story more than male listeners. but i may be wrong! i'm a guy, and i enjoyed it. but i only listen to ya stories every once in a great while, and i didn't know this was a ya novel. maybe i should've paid more attention while reading the summary.
after listening to the entire story, i would say my overall impression is a feel good zombie apocylapse. kind of an oxymoron, but it fits!
This book was a real surprise - I don't like zombie books and dystopia is depressing for the most part. But this book just hooked me and I have to admit to several sleepless nights. Ms. Lyon Fleming has found the key to making a reader invest in each character. One of the most compelling theme is how people can change as a result of their experiences. It was heartbreaking and yet, hopeful. Book 2 was equally good. I'll delve into book 3 when I've recovered. Highly recommend it.
I have read a lot of zombie genre books, this one is my favorite. I have read it 3 times. Sara Fleming is a prolific story writer & the narration keeps the book flowing.
I'm a Mark Tufo die hard and have struggled to find another story line worth listening to. well I finally found it. I loved it! found myself actually living along with Cassie and Nelly. GREAT READ!
I suppose I should have been prepared - I read the reviews, that this story was not for the zombie purist (which I am not), but I was wholly unprepared for how vapid and childish these characters would be. In other reviews, I see this compared to YA - but it would be insulting to Hunger Games/Insurgent/Twilight to put this in their category, The characters are all over 21, some over 30, but they behave like self-obsessed high-schoolers.
The story was far more about pining over lost boyfriends than it was about the Zombie Apocalypse. When one of the main characters has her major breakthrough of the plot-line by cutting her hair in the triumph of female empowerment, I actually said, out loud - "SERIOUSLY???" Even the usually stellar narration by Julia Whelan was not enough to salvage the story.
The story begins with a cast filled with every cliche imaginable - a long lost love, a whiny rich boy, a spoiled rich girl, a forgettable best friend, a token gay boy who reads more like a neutered pup than a real person, and a heroine who is filled with Bridget-Jones-like insecurity. Next, bring on the Zombie Apocalypse, by which we actually mean Road Trip! Arrive at a perfectly stocked farm with every advantage, where characters pick up a gun for the first time only to discover that have perfect aim. Nearly half the book goes by as a house full of twenty-somethings make eyes at each other while learning to can tomatoes. When the zombies do arrive, in five-minute blips here and there, they are completely separate from the plot. If you removed them from the story, very little would actually change. The stakes are never very high for the characters, and the reader (listener) knows it.
Suffice to say, it was utterly disappointing.
Until the end of the world reminded me of Forstchen's One Second After. They both take a catastrophic event (EMP pulse and pandemic) and deal with the aftermath in a realistic way. Infrastructure collapses and those who survive must learn how to live in what remains. There are practical characters and self centered ones. It is definitely not a typical zombie novel. Closer to Lucifer's Hammer or Life as we knew it. If you are a fan of this genre you will enjoy this book.
EOD wife and loving mother!!!
I really enjoyed this book. It's like a YA but geared towards adults. In most end of the world type books there are many bad decisions and the main character can be frustrating. This main character is extremely likable. I can't wait to listen to the rest of the series.
"Did not let me down! I am delightfully surprised!"
I will make this shortish and hopefully sweet!
If you like zombie fiction buy this book and if you don't and zombies are not your thing then I would still be inclined to recommend this tale of love,loyalty and tragedy.
Of course this is a work of fiction based around the zombie apocalypse but it is so character driven you almost forget in parts that the walking dead are roaming the earth! There are so many zombie based books around that follow a similar premise that as much as I am a fan of our reanimated foes, I do find that I am rarely surprised. I would say that the main focus of this book is the relationships between the characters, be that with friends, family or lovers, good, bad and indifferent. Its not sloppy or cheesy, its very honest and full of heightened emotion (as it would be if the world was ending) at times I really wanted to hit and scream at certain characters and I did cry at other moments.
It still has a fair amount of brutal bits and I am surprised its been placed as a teenage book, there are no teenagers in it! Its definitely for adults.
Good solid narration by Julia Whelan brings together I well written and characterised piece that keeps you engaged and hopeful until the end........ of the world and after, there has to be more.
More than worth a credit.
Haunting, Compelling, Awesome
The emotion she conveyed and variety of voices were fabulous
I laughed and cried
I hadn't come across this author before and took a chance on an Audible offer. I'm so thrilled I did. I've just bought the sequel and pre-ordered the third. I could listen to the narrators voice all day, it was one of those books that I would listen too even when I wasn't driving( which is when I generally do my listening )
The characters have become friends I don't want to leave. Loved it :-)
"easy listen, no surprises, ok...."
I guess its more or less the standard kind of story line for a zombie apocalypse, cant say much without spoilers, but group of people - city escape to the country kind of covers it without going into detail. The main difference here is the "hero" is female and there is a bit more relationship stuff going on. I hate to say it, but its kind of like "Twilight" does zombies.... without actually "doing" the zombies of course! It was interesting kind of to see a new take on the genre, but kind of... meh... not for me really.
"refreshing break from the military gun porn."
genuinely refreshing piece of zombie fiction. I get tired of the hyper military gun porn with varying degrees of libertarian philosophy sprinkled in.
reading a zombie book about human surviving the End by being humane and particle with out focusing entirely on revenge and trying to amp up the violence to the nth degree was a very enjoyable read.
my only criticism is that it gets a little mills and boon towers the end with hyperbolic declarations of love. that's probably just a bit pick and it really didn't affect the story or hamper the read but all in all an enjoyable book.
"Decent Storyline, Convincing Characters"
When I started listening to this audio book - it occurred to me fairly early on that a suitable category for it might be "RomZom". The story starts off being a little too "touchy feely" for for my tastes and I considered stopping - it seemed a little too much like a soppy romance.
However, on balance, I was wrong. Whilst I do feel that the story takes a while to gets going, almost as if the author gains confidence as she goes, it has a pace and depth to it that I really liked. I actually enjoyed the slightly emotional asides and really appreciated that the story was not constant action and hordes of zombies. There are zombies - and there are baddies - but there are also people with fears, cares, a past.
The story is well written, the dialogue and characters believable and well developed. One thing that does grate is that the zombies - whilst described as shambling and I thought I heard "unable to climb stairs" seem to be capable of destroying any fence or door - that grated somewhat. Also at times (actually more in the second book) the speed of infection seems inconsistent - and in one part at least somewhat unconvincing.
If you enjoy post apocalyptic stories - this is a pretty good one with deep characters and reasonably convincing storylines. If you want "bang bang" your dead hordes of zombies - look elsewhere (though in this there are hordes aplenty).
The narrator, Julia Whelan, does a really good job; she is consistent and convincing with voices, reads at a good pace and basically brings it all to life.
"Well worth a listen"
One of those books you end up creating jobs around the house so you can continue listening. It's a tad gory in places and a couple of chapters have you on the edge of your seat with you heart racing but it's a lovely story and I really enjoyed it
"You will not be able to put this audio book down"
This is my favorite audio book series, I have listened multiple times and it has made me think about the world in a different way
Nelly, he's a texan joker, solid as a friend, if he is hurt then the listener can't help but worry about him.
I have listened to this series and 2 other series by Julia and I must say her narration is always excellent, the pacing is always great and the story just flows beautifully when she tells it
hmm hard one, I mean its a series about zombies isn't it? well not really, the zombies are my least favorite thing from this, I think if i was doing a movie trailer I would focus on the house that her parents left her, on John, on the birthday party and what happens next, it should be lots of golden light, warmth and then a face looking in
Listen to this series, it has made me want to prepare, not for the zombie apocalypse but for the "what if" and gotten me to look at my cupboards and think, how long will I survive, the best prepper fiction that isn't really about prepping ever imo
i really enjoyed this book , great story especially as a lot of zombie books have no storyline
Definitely worth the read and i shall now purchase the next book 10/10
Was hooked from the first chapter. Great story, can't wIt to read the next book in the series!
"Perfect zombie story!"
Really loved this :) I have a bad zombie addiction and always need to be watching zombie shows, movies, etc, and this really filled the zombie gap in my life. It has everything you need - on the run road trips, being holed up and trying to be self sufficient, zombie slaying, enemy humans, romance. I couldn't stop listen ebony and finished it very quickly. Great to read a zombie book with a female lead as well,
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