Book Review: Life After the Undead


Life After the Undead 
Author: Pembroke Sinclair
Published by: Forsaken
Publication Date: 22 Oct 2015
Page Count: 218
Source: advanced digital copy provided by publisher
Audience: Young Adult – Dystopian/Zombies

Every author has their own idea of what would happen if there was an apocalypse, or zombie uprising, what the world would be like if the unthinkable happened, but they all seem to come to the same consensus that sometimes the people who survive are worse than what actually happened. 

Life After the Undead is exactly as the title describes; it's about the world after a zombie uprising. Seventeen-year-old Krista's world comes crashing down around her after some cheerleaders from her school attack the bus Krista is taking to school.  Soon she is fleeing with her parents, trying to get anywhere that is safe from the undead.  But her parents leave her and she's on her own.  Now, instead of worrying over surviving school, she is worrying how she will survive from day to day in a world overrun by zombies.  Her first new home is in Florida where the survivors act like nothing is wrong, she goes to school and has a job, because the undead can't survive in the humid climates there.  When she has finally had enough of that life, she goes with some soldiers and volunteers to the Midwest, North Platte, where the military are erecting a fence to keep the zombies out of the eastern states. Soon, however, Krista realizes that it's not the zombies she needs to fear, but the people running the camp.  She finds help in some guys who live on the other side of the fence, among the zombies in the west.  Krista must fight both zombies and survivors to hold onto everything she holds dear and loves.

I enjoyed reading this book quite a bit.  There were times it was a bit slow, but not enough to make me put down the book.  There were a few new and intriguing ideas in the story that really seemed to work well.  The idea that the undead would decompose faster in the hot, humid conditions of the east, as opposed to the drier, arid areas of the west in a way makes sense.  Anyone who has lived in the east (I lived in Georgia for most of my life) can attest to that.  

I also liked the idea that zombies communicate through their moans.  Not so much talking, but when they see prey, their moans call others to them.  In every book, TV show, or movie we have read or seen, the zombies always moan and attract others nearby, but I don't know that anyone has ever said it's their way of communicating.  You would think a zombie would want to keep it to themselves, but hunting in groups is safer for them to survive (yes, I just put myself into the mind of a zombie).

Some of the inventive ways the survivors deal with the zombies was also amusing to read.  Krista and friends drive semis through herds of them, squashing them against the grill like bugs.  I would enjoy that part, but not cleaning the mess up after.

These Dystopian type stories always make you think what if.  Among the humans, who would be in control, who would survive.  Governments fall apart and criminals take over, the rich and powerful find ways to survive, often pretending the state of the world is perfectly fine.  I enjoyed reading Sinclair's take on it all.  The entire state of Florida is a zombie free zone, run by a few rich families. They send the unwanted survivors to the military camps or out to de-zombify the rest of the eastern states.  

The characters were very well written, the main ones fleshed out and believable.  You find yourself crushing on the love interest and being creeped out by the antagonist of the story  The imagery was also very descriptive.  I found myself imagining the barren landscapes and deserted highways, the piles of dead corpses, zombie and human, smelling the smoke from the burning fires that destroy the corpses.  It was very grim, but it also showed hope and places not yet touched by the zombies.  

Life After the Undead is the first in a series.  The second book in the series, Death to the Undead, is available to read now.  I am looking forward to reading the continuing journey of Krista and her friends.

Favorite Thing About This Book: I love the ranch that Krista visits.  It's a sign of hope that there are still places that are beautiful and untouched by the zombies and the cruelty of the survivors.

First Sentence: I will never understand peoples’ fascination with the apocalypse. 

Favorite Character: Krista

Least Favorite Character: Liet 

Seventeen-year-old Krista must quickly figure out how she's going to survive in the zombie-destroyed world. The one advantage humans have is that the zombies hate humid environments, so they're migrating west to escape its deteriorating effects. The survivors plan to construct a wall at North Platte to keep the undead out, and Krista has come to Nebraska to start a new life. 

Zombies aren’t the only creatures she has to be cautious of—the other survivors have a dark side. Krista must fight not only to live but also to defend everything she holds dear—her country, her freedom, and ultimately, those she loves. 

Join Krista in her quest to survive in this thrilling apocalyptic novel by Pembroke Sinclair.