Top 5 Wednesday (15)

This feature is hosted in the Top Five Wednesday group on Goodreads.

The topic this week is….

Okay, so the topic is actually : Books Featuring [paranormal creature of your choice]. I chose zombies. 


To say I was excited about this topic is an understatement. Zombies are my jam. I love everything about a good z-poc story: the demise of civilization, how people overcome and adapt (and how some don’t), the survivalism aspect, and the many different interpretations  zombies. Social psychology is fascinating to me (hence, the degree in it, lol) and what better social experiment than the end of the world! I think the best zombie books are the ones that focus less on the actual zombies, but more on the people scraping by to survive in spite of them. It was so hard to pick only 5, so I picked my 5 favorites and added some honorable mentions at the bottom 🙂

As always, click on the book cover for a link to purchase the book.

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.1.

Until the End of the World series and The City Series by Sarah Lyons Fleming

I put these two together because they are in the same universe. My reviews are linked below for both. Oh, and Until the End of the World is FREE on Amazon right now! Mordacious is free if you have KindleUnlimited (which I highly recommend. For more info on Kindle Unlimited click here: Join Amazon Kindle Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial).

My Reviews:

Until the End of the World

Mordacious 


.2.

The movie was great, but it just couldn’t due this book justice because of the format. If you enjoyed the movie, definitely pick this one up. It’s a collection of “interviews” done after the zombie apocalypse strikes the world which allows for the telling of stories from multiple people all over the world. 


.3.

This is a very “adult” series due to language (the main protagonist is a prior Marine and speaks like it). It was actually one the first zombie series I read, and there are 10 books in the series so you will be entertained and occupied for a while reading these. Keep in mind that Tufo is an independent author who cranks out several books a year so there are some minor errors sometimes. 


.4.

I actually haven’t done my review for this series yet, but it’s another I highly recommend. Strong characters, great world building, and a plot that keeps moving make this one of my favorites. 


.5.

This is another series I haven’t reviewed yet, but is really good. There are a bunch of books because they were all released as novellas, but two books if you buy the volumes (volume one is above). Both volumes are also part of the Kindle Unlimited program!


More Zombie Books


Happy reading! Link your lists below so I can check them out!

‘Mordacious’ by Sarah Lyons Fleming

Title: Mordacious

Author: Sarah Lyons Fleming

Genre: Zombies, Sci-Fi, Dystopian

Format: eBook and Audio

Narrators: Luke Daniels, Therese Plummer

Description (Source: GoodReads):

Sylvie Rossi has the loner thing down pat, with the exception of her best friend, Grace. But when the two are trapped in a hospital during the last gasp of a dying city, alone time is no longer an option. A nurse’s offer of sanctuary promises Sylvie the supplies she needs to survive the zombie apocalypse–it’s the coexisting with people that might do her in. Eric Forrest will do whatever it takes to get into the dead city for his sister, including ending up dead himself. He’s used to taking risks, but with every mile he travels death looks likelier and likelier, and finding his sister may be his only prospect for survival—if he can make it home. Sylvie doesn’t need more than food, water and shelter. Eric wants only to find his sister. But sometimes what we think we need isn’t what we need at all, and what we find is more than we expected.

mordacious

Overall Assessment:
FINALLY! I have been waiting for this book since Sarah Lyons Fleming announced it after releasing the last book in her last series (Until the End of the World, book/series review here). The City Series will be on the same timeline as UTEOTW.

giphy-1

Of course, it did not disappoint! I have been waiting to hear what happened to Maria (Penny and Ana’s mom from UTEOTW) and Eric (Cassie’s brother). I am so glad we finally get some answers! I’m so excited to see what she will do with Sylvie, Eric, and co. !

Rating:

 

‘Until the End of the World’ by Sarah Lyons Fleming (the whole series)

I couldn’t decide how I would review this series. I had to put the reviews of these four books on my site because this series is my second favorite series (only behind Harry Potter). In the end, I decided to make one large post including all three books and the novella. Instead of my typical format I will just be doing one overall assessment of the series and links to my GoodReads reviews under each cover. I contemplated putting the small reviews all in this post, but there are some spoilers to previous books in the reviews-so don’t click on the links unless you want to have the events in the previous book(s) possibly spoiled!  

Check out the review I did on Sarah Lyons Fleming’s newest book ‘Mordacious’ here.

Titles: links to Amazon to purchase within each title, beware of possible spoilers in the descriptions of the books
  1. Until the End of the World
  2. So Long, Lollipops‘ (Novella)
  3. And After
  4. All the Stars in the Sky

Author: Sarah Lyons Fleming

Genre: Zombies, Sci-Fi, Dystopian

Format: eBooks and audiobooks (interchangeably)

Description of only book one (because spoilers, duh):

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.

Overall Assessment:
I am NOT a ‘re-reader’. I have only ever re-read my favorite classics (ie Alice in Wonderland), and the Harry Potter series. However, I recently finished reading Sarah’s most recent book (Mordacious) and decided to revisit this series after I was done (also while I impatiently wait for her to finish book #2 in that series). The second time around was even better. I missed some small details of character development the first time around and I’m so glad I went back. It was fun to compare the time lines and characters that overlap from the two different series. Since I already know what happens in the series I found myself rooting for characters that go through some major changes. It also made the impending deaths that much harder to go through again. 

This series made me laugh, shattered my heart (repeatedly), and made me wish to have friends like Cassie and her gang. Ms. Lyons Fleming’s writing is so refreshing. I loved that she wasn’t afraid to take risks with her character developments (and deaths). It is the zombie apocalypse, after all. 😉 Along with all the bad that can happen in the ZPOC, she gave a story about hope and love and showed us that even when we want to give up there is almost always something worth fighting for.

These books were just as much about family, friends, and love as they were about blood, guts, and killing zombies – which just happens to be my favorite love:zombie ratio.

Rating: 

 

The entire series and each book gets 5 stars (you did read that I love this series, right?)

‘Rise of the Chosen’ by Anna Kopp

Title: Rise of the Chosen

Author: Anna Kopp

Genre: YA, Dystopian, Zombies 

Format: eBook (I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.)

Description (Source: GoodReads):

In Sam’s world there are two rules. Rule #1: Nobody dies. Protect the living at all costs. Rule #2: Everybody dies. At least once.

The Waking was a global event in which a force called the Lifeblood invaded all humans who died. The few strong enough to control it came back as powerful immortals. The rest let the blood lust take over and awoke with one goal – to kill.

Newly appointed Watch Guard Samantha Shields has a legacy to uphold. Her father died a hero defending their city and now she wants to follow in his footsteps. Except for the dying part, of course. Unfortunately, fate has other plans as she discovers deep dark secrets that make her choose between her loyalties and the lives of everyone in her city. Both rules are in play as Sam is forced to make hard decisions that could cost her everything – including the person she cares about most.

Overall Assessment:
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It wasn’t your typical “zombie” storyline, which I appreciated. I was also surprised at the f/f romance. Not in a bad way,  but just an ‘oh, ok then’ kind of way. Just a head’s up for those of you who need it. 🙂 I will definitely be picking up the sequel, as this ended on a pretty big cliffhanger. I’m excited to see what happens to Sam.

Rating:

 

‘Taking on the Dead’ by Annie Walls

Title: Taking on the Dead

Author: Annie Walls

Genre: Horror (I guess?), Zombies, Romance

Format: Audio and eBook

Description (Source: GoodReads):

Life for Kansas was perfect until the day the world changed.

She has been hiding out for four years in solitude. It’s the only way to survive. The only way not to draw the living dead. Helping a small group of people, she learns the new world might not be what she assumes. Venturing out of her refuge and comfort zone, she meets Rudy, who helps her find a greater purpose. She realizes that the world has moved on without her. Only it’s not what she expects. Her knowledge of the living dead grows and only makes her more curious as humanity continues to hang on by a thread. While on her search for answers she finds comfort in new friendships and love, but her past seems as if it will haunt her forever. Kansas takes it upon herself to help other survivors, which would be easy if the famished were the only obstacles. In a trilogy plot thick with twists and turns, it is emotional as much as it is horrifyingly gripping.

Overall Assessment:
Meh. I’m not sure what else to say overall. I was very underwhelmed. I’m sure I’ll read the next two books eventually, but I’m in no hurry.

Rating: