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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Review: Bad Taste in Boys by Carrie Harris

Title: Bad Taste in Boys
Author: Carrie Harris
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Release Date: 07/12/11
Reviewed by: Sara
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Someone’s been a very bad zombie.

Super-smartie Kate Grable gets to play doctor, helping out her high school football team. Not only will the experience look good on her college apps, she gets to be this close to her quarterback crush, Aaron. Then something disturbing happens. Kate finds out that the coach has given the team steroids. Except... the vials she finds don’t exactly contain steroids. Whatever’s in them is turning hot gridiron hunks into mindless, flesh-eating... zombies.

Unless she finds an antidote, no one is safe. Not Aaron, not Kate’s brother, not her best friend... not even Kate...

It’s scary. It’s twisted. It’s sick. It’s high school.

Plot: 3 Stars
My favorite part of the novel was the twist on zombies. I liked that the zombie virus was spread via a steroid given to some of the football players. I really enjoyed the internal struggle Kate had in regards to actually admitting what was happening was indeed zombies. She often referred to it as the "z-word" and didn't want to say it. Aaron, Kate's crush, gets caught up in all of the mayhem as Kate is trying to figure it out, and it felt like he accepted what was going on a bit too quickly and without enough questions. The ending of this novel definitely caught me by surprise, but I felt like a few things wrapped up a little too nicely.

Pace: 4 Stars
I read this novel in one day, while on vacation, so I think it's safe to say that the pace was pretty good. The novel was on the shorter side, but it didn't feel rushed. There was no downtime for Kate once the steroids were given to the football players. A couple scenes, including the pancake breakfast at the high school, added a bit of much needed humor as the zombies were going around biting everyone. This was one of those rare novels that sped by as I was reading.

Characters: 3 Stars
Kate was a very interesting character. I liked that she was a bit more of a nerd than the typical Paranormal Young Adult heroine. Her love of science was a very interesting character trait, and ended up helping once the zombies were loose. Her seizures also added some depth to her character. I've never read about a character that suffers from seizures before, but I really enjoyed Kate. Other than Kate, the rest of the cast of characters in this novel were a bit flat. Kate's brother added some humor when he was around, but we didn't get to learn much about him. Her friends at school didn't have big parts and we only learned what Kate tells us about them.

Cover: 3 Stars
This cover confused me a bit. I would have never guessed it belonged to a zombie novel without reading the jacket. The main focus is a set of lips that is covered in what looks like sugar. While the zombies in this novel do bite each other, sugar-covered lips never come into play. There was never a point in which any character's lips were focused on for any reason. But it is a striking image that makes you want to know more. I really enjoyed the title. The font was a great choice because it kinda looked like it could've been Kate's handwriting. I also liked how the color of the title echoes the color of the lips behind the sugar.

Overall: 3 Stars

Disclosure: I borrowed this novel from the local library.

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