This review is going to be different than most of my reviews. I cannot honestly say I will be unbiased or objective. At this point, it is simply impossible for me.
So a month or so ago (roughly) I downloaded some books for my Kindle, as I’m wont to do these days. (and someday let me go off on the tangent of what it’s like to double-check my grammar/word-usage and find word snobs arguing about ‘wont’)
In the batch of books I’d downloaded, there was “Feed” by Mira Grant. First of all, it must have been discounted. Because I’d never heard of the book or the author (forgive me!), I would not have initially paid much. The idea of the book intrigued me, but I actually passed it up a few times before biting the bullet and getting it. After all, it’s a zombie book. I love zombie movies. Good ones, that is. I’m not a Return of the Living Dead chick. I prefer my Romero and 28 “somethings” Later movies. The idea of a zombie book being any good seemed unlikely to me. I’ll give “The Walking Dead” (Robert Kirkman) credit. Excellent graphic novel and seductive story-line! Otherwise, though, I’m not big on zombie books.
At least, I wasn’t. Until “Feed”.
Here I am, taking a look at my freebies or cheapies on my Kindle and I come across the title. “Feed“. *sigh* I’m still dubious. It’s supposed to be a contemporary zombie novel, full of technology and bloggers and Romero-esque fun. What author can possibly deliver on that promise? As it turns out, Mira Grant is that author. (Before I go further, Mira Grant is the nom de plume for one Seanan McGuire.)
I finished “Feed” in two days. Luckily it was only a week before “Deadline”, the second novel in the trilogy, was to be released. The day after I finished “Feed” I pre-ordered “Deadline” for my Kindle. I finished “Deadline” in three days.
These are two action-packed zombie novels with heart and intelligence. More importantly, they are well-written and have characters you fall in love with. You will care about them. You will root for them. You will cry for them. (seriously, not hyperbole)
The brother-sister team of George and Shaun Mason are dedicated to bringing accurate reporting of the news and live zombie action to their audience. As professional bloggers, they spend their time working with a small staff of Irwins (action-seeking thrill junkies who poke zombies with sticks), fictionals (self-explanatory…they tell stories and write poetry and stuff), and Newsies (news journalists who try to tell the truth and stay as objective as possible.) Buffy (Georgette Meissonier) is their head fictional and techie guru who keeps all the equipment working smoothly and gets the data where it needs to go. Shaun Mason is an unapologetic Irwin whose coffee-fueled zest for zombie poking and charismatic nature make him a ratings magnet and a fan-favorite on their site. Georgia Mason, though, is the serious-minded news-hound who anchors them all by bringing the unadulterated truth to their blogging audience every day.
After two miracle-cure viruses combine in an un-deadly fashion, Kellis-Amberlee (zombie virus) is unleashed on an unsuspecting world. Suddenly the dead begin to rise and only bloggers and fanatics seem to realize what is actually happening. By the time the CDC and government get involved, the infection has spread and everyone has to fight to keep the infected at bay. Years later, when society has resumed some degree of a normal life, the bloggers are who people turn to for news. They are the ones who told the truth during the Rising. They are the ones people turn to twenty-six years after the undead first began to shamble into their lives.
When George and Shaun get hired to cover the presidential hopeful Senator Peter Ryman, they are launched into a new sphere of responsibility and chaos. No longer ‘betas’ in the blogging world, they now get a much larger staff and it’s sink or swim as full-blown professionals. They go on the road with Buffy and the van, filming, recording, and reporting live on the campaign trail and their careers suddenly become a lot more life-threatening.
I won’t spoil the end for anyone, but I will say that I cried. By the end I didn’t know who could be trusted or who would live or die. This is, in my opinion, the hallmark of a truly great author. When you know that even your most beloved characters may not make it out alive, you are writing with all your heart. That’s what Mira Grant does. The book was fast-paced, adrenaline packed, and delivered on its promise of zombie-poking fun.
But wait, there’s more!
Check out my review of “Deadline”, the second book in the Newsflesh trilogy.
“Feed” gets a 5 out of 5
Go out and buy a copy, buy one for a friend, then download it for your e-reader.