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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Review: State of Decay by James Knapp

Title: State of Decay
Author: James Knapp
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Release Date: 02/02/10
Just because you're dead doesn't mean you're useless...

A thrilling debut novel of a dystopian future populated by a new breed of zombie.

They call them revivors -- technologically reanimated corpses -- and away from the public eye they do humanity's dirtiest work. But FBI agent Nico Wachalowski has stumbled upon a conspiracy involving revivors being custom made to kill -- and a startling truth about the existence of these undead slaves.

Plot: 3.5 Stars
The zombies in this novel were very interesting and original. And so were the regular citizens. There were different tier to citizenship, depending on your job and whether or not you decided to allow yourself to become a revivor, or zombie. It was an interesting play on the normal class structure. Some parts of the novel were a touch confusing or glossed over, but I love a good government conspiracy theory. Something plot points left me scratching my head for chapters on end, but most came together at the end, and the rest will hopefully play into the next novel.

Pace: 3.5 Stars
The multiples points of view really helped bring all the events of the novel together. I really enjoyed how the string of events throughout the novel really wove these four lives together. The pace of this novel was a bit weird. The beginning took a bit to grab me, but the middle was action-packed, and then the ending seemed to drag on a little too long. Not the normal pacing for me; the middle of a novel is where I tend to drag in my reading.

Characters: 4 Stars
Niko was an interesting main character. I haven't read too many Urban Fantasy novels with male main characters, so it was a nice change of pace. I didn't have trouble relating to him (but I'm not the girliest in the world). He has a troubled past that I hope we get more than a glimpse of in future novels, and it gave him a slight vulnerability that many male characters don't have. The three women whose stories intertwined with Niko's were each intriguing in their own way, and essential to the plot. They each had their ups and downs, and really made the novel for me.

Cover: 3.5 Stars
I like the overall feel of the cover. It really fits, even though it's not depicting a certain scene. The cover model is as good a choice as any considering Niko was never described in too much detail. The hand streaking down the window is a nice touch. It makes me think of zombies, rather than vampires or werewolves, without having to actually picture the zombies. I just wish there had been a woman or two on the cover considering three of the four points of view were women. Niko was the main character and the link between the three women, but they played pretty big parts nonetheless.

Overall: 3.5 Stars

Disclosure: I borrowed this book from my local library for my own enjoyment.


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