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Rot & Ruin | [Jonathan Maberry]

Rot & Ruin

Fifteen-year-old Benny Imura lives in a world infested with zombies where, when a kid turns 15, he must get a job to continue receiving food rations. Benny has no interest in the family business of zombie killing, but figures he doesn’t have much of a choice. He’s tried out a bunch of other jobs, and hasn’t found anything he likes. But as Benny starts training with his brother, he learns things about being human that he never expected.
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Publisher's Summary

Multiple Bram Stoker Award-winning author Jonathan Maberry’s Rot & Ruin is his debut work for young readers. Fifteen-year-old Benny Imura lives in a world infested with zombies where, when a kid turns 15, he must get a job to continue receiving food rations. Benny has no interest in the family business of zombie killing, but figures he doesn’t have much of a choice. He’s tried out a bunch of other jobs, and hasn’t found anything he likes. But as Benny starts training with his brother, he learns things about being human that he never expected.

©2010 Jonathan Maberry (P)2010 Recorded Books, LLC

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (890 )
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4.2 (754 )
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Story
4.3 (749 )
5 star
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3 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Dennis Fenton, Mo, United States 12-02-10
    Dennis Fenton, Mo, United States 12-02-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Totally agree with the first review"

    Very good. I found this transcended age . The young and old will find this audio book enjoyable.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Drew (@drewsant) Watertown, MA, United States 10-13-14
    Drew (@drewsant) Watertown, MA, United States 10-13-14 Member Since 2009

    Post apocalyptic listener with some thrillers mixed in. Follow me on twitter at @drewsant

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Middle of the road zombie story"

    It’s really hard to decide how I feel about this book. On one hand I like the story, it’s well written with a lot of action and adventure. I love zombie stories and it really does deliver on that level. On the other hand, I’m not too thrilled about the characters. Benny is your typical 15 year old who is a bit lazy and “me” centric which puts me off. Wrap in all the bad guys and the town which Benny and Tom talk down about and I just couldn’t really like anyone other than Tom and the lost girl. In the end I decided overall it was middle of the road in my humble opinion.

    The narration was good, a bit slow, but Mr. Hutchinson does a good job with all the voices.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Petra Sutton 04-10-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Teenage Angst"
    What disappointed you about Rot & Ruin?

    The main character was such an immature teenage brat that I couldn't continue listening to his story.


    What was most disappointing about Jonathan Maberry’s story?

    The conflict was internal involving a character who I cared nothing about. Story otherwise didn't hold my interest, mostly due to the poor choice of protagonist.


    What three words best describe Brian Hutchison’s voice?

    voice acting OK


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    disappointment. Really like this author's other works.


    Any additional comments?

    Maybe a teenage audience would enjoy or relate to this story better. As an adult, I had no patience for the protagonist and his emotional problems, poor choices, bad role models, and negative attitude.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 06-28-13
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 06-28-13 Member Since 2010

    I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "I Am Going To Leave the Dying to the Dead"

    WHAT IS DONE IN THE RUIN STAYS IN THE RUIN
    Maberry builds a world which is easy to picture and in which you will feel you live in. Some writers are so good that they set a mood. The mood set in this book reminded me a lot of the same mood Brandon Sanderson set in his book Elantris. In this world everyone fifteen and older must have a job. There are several imaginative jobs that you would only have in a society that includes Zombies. In the boy scouts they teach you how to defend against Zombies. The lead character is a teenage boy and a lot of people will have problems liking this teenager since he is kind of a lazy cry baby, yet does that not fit a lot of real life teenagers or yourself at that age.

    PEOPLE NEED SOMETHING TO BLAME
    The Zombie Queen gave this one of her rare five stars. She is half my age and I do believe younger people will like this a little better then older. I still don't understand why some authors think that books for young teens or kids should not be written as cleverly as those for adults. I believe a lot of people will like this and I did enjoy it, but not as well as the other books I have read by Maberry for adults. There is a lot of preaching in this and I don't believe kids like to be preached to anymore then adults. The character Tom is too perfect, he is the anti-Joe Ledger. He is kind of a professor Know it All. I am also tired of Albino people always being the bad guys. Why does Maberry and several other authors think it is okay to demonize anybody of any race. There is a lot of speechafying in this also. Like the bad guys in most bad movies, the good guys make long speeches before pulling the trigger.

    CLOSURE ISN'T CLOSURE UNTIL SOMEONE IS READY TO CLOSE THE DOOR
    These titles are just a small example of the constant platitudes given in this book. The narrator was alright for the first couple of hours, but his style started to bother me after a while. It is hard to describe and you may not notice it, he kind of talks at you. He puts a period at the end of every sentence. The second half of the book I put him on fast play and I enjoyed the narration better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel O. Buchholz Arlington, VA USA 09-01-12
    Daniel O. Buchholz Arlington, VA USA 09-01-12 Member Since 2004

    Computer Geek

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "This is what happens after the Zombies come"

    So many of the zombie books are about the actual event. This book starts in the ruins, some 15 years after the event. Benny Imura is the main character as well as his brother Tom. Benny has grown up in the post-zombie world where Zombies and Zombie Hunters (like his brother) are playing cards and the slice of humanity of that we can see is huddled behind the fences. Only a few people, like his brother, go outside the fence into the Rot and Ruin.

    But Benny faces the coming of age rite that once you hit 15 you have to find a job. And Benny is finding that he is either ill-suited for most the jobs or he sees no future in some of them (slinging dead zombies into the burn pit all day long? I can see why). So as a last resort he turns to his brother Tom. As with a lot of siblings, there is tension, and Benny blames his brother for his parents passing away, thinking him a coward compared to the more boisterous zombie hunters. Everything starts going wrong after he discovers the the ultra-rare trading card, "The Lost Girl," which serves as the focal point for the rest of the book.

    As to the rest? Read it and find out. Jonathan Maberry is a top-notch storyteller who spins excellent action sequences and keeps the story moving along. So come along and enjoy the ride.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meagan vR Ohio 02-01-12
    Meagan vR Ohio 02-01-12 Member Since 2010

    I collect spores, molds, and fungus.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very entertaining listen"

    Rot and Ruin is a great book if you just want some light entertainment for a while. It mixes the fantastical (zombies) with the everyday and paints a real world picture at how life would be with the living dead. The love story is a little dumb and unnecessary but it doesn't detract from the main story. Overall I liked it very much and was happy that there was a sequel. (Dust and Decay) Performance gets only three stars because the narrator would speak in his regular even voice when trying to convey yelling or some other elevated emotion. It sort of took away from the suspense of the moment. Otherwise he did a great job. I recommend this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dorothea Willow, AK, United States 10-08-11
    Dorothea Willow, AK, United States 10-08-11 Member Since 2009

    I am a passionate devourer of chocolate and books. I also listen to audiobooks and drink chocolate. When I die, I don't want to be embalmed!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not Your Typical Zombie Story"
    Any additional comments?

    This story follows teenager, Benny Imura, who has lost both of his parents to the zombie infection. The story starts out with Benny’s teenaged boy attitude and his need to find a job. He doesn’t like his older brother, has no respect for him, and doesn’t really understand what his brother does. He searches out all of the other jobs available and finally decides he has to go out with his brother into the place referred to as the ‘Rot and Ruin’ and learn the family trade.

    Outside the walls of their city, zombies walk around in the Rot and Ruin and will go after anything that moves, makes loud noises, or smells good to eat. There are also some other people out there and they can be just as dangerous as the zombies. Benny starts getting real lessons in what his new zombie-infested world is all about.

    I really enjoyed this story. I had some reservations when it started off and I got to know Benny a little, but once the story took off, I was hooked. These aren’t your typical zombies and this isn’t your typical zombie story. The world created by Jonathan Mayberry was very well done and I was left wanting more!

    Although this was the first book in a series, I was not left hanging with a giant cliff hanger. I was left with the feeling that I had just heard a really good story and wanted more. I will definitely be looking for the next book in the series, Dust and Decay!

    The Narration Review
    Brian Hutchison has a nice, clear story telling voice that is very easy to listen to. Although he didn’t have a whole cast of character voices in his pocket, I could easily differentiate between people when they were speaking in dialog.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annie Toronto 12-05-10
    Annie Toronto 12-05-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good once I got past the first couple of hours"

    And I almost *didn't* get past those first two hours. So much teenage angst! And worse, predictable angst. It was obvious from the get-go that there was more to the past than what Benny believed. I just couldn't wait for his eyes to be opened.

    But once the story moved out into the Rot & Ruin, it got more exciting and interesting. It's a zombie story with a twist, with true evil found not in the shambling undead but in those who would take advantage of the apocalypse for their own personal gain.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CRISTY Bluffton, SC, United States 04-21-12
    CRISTY Bluffton, SC, United States 04-21-12

    Mommy of twins

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Brian Hutchison is a pleasure to listen to.."

    ROT & RUIN is a dystopian type zombie book that’s more about the good and evil of human nature than the living dead. Written in an engaging narrative with unforgettable good guys, monstrous bad guys and…oh yeah, zoms. The characters are well rounded and fleshed out cleanly. Maberry obviously has a gift for dialog. It’s easy to be charmed by 15 year old Benny Imura’s quick wit and stubborn teenage disposition; as well as his older brother Tom, with his calm demeanor and authentic goodness.

    Beautifully written, ROT & RUIN (Benny Imura #1) is a book that anyone who enjoys a good story with lots of emotions, layers and adventure will enjoy, regardless of age or gender. This was my first taste of Jonathan Maberry’s work and I can honestly say I’m now a fan… and I’ve already started the next book DUST AND DECAY :)

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Russell 12-08-11
    Russell 12-08-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Is this a children's book?"
    Would you try another book from Jonathan Maberry and/or Brian Hutchison?

    I did not see in the description that this was a children's book but I certainly felt like it was.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Jonathan Maberry again?

    Would need to find some to borrow before wasting any more credits


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Brian Hutchison?

    ANYONE


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Angry that I used a credit on it


    Any additional comments?

    DO NOT GET THIS IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR FICTION FOR ADULTS! I felt like I was sitting in an elementary school library being patronized by the reader

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
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