Sherry has lived with her family in a sealed bunker since things went wrong up above. But when they run out of food, Sherry and her dad must venture outside. There they find a world of devastation, desolation…and the Weepers: savage, mutant killers.
When Sherry’s dad is snatched, she joins forces with gorgeous but troubled Joshua – an Avenger, determined to destroy the Weepers.
But can Sherry keep her family and Joshua safe, when his desire for vengeance threatens them all?
**Review copy provided by Netgalley…thanks Marshall Cavendish!**
You’re probably saying, “another dystopian with a young female protagonist and zombies/mutants/killers?” Well, yes. But don’t just lump it in with all of the others and dismiss it. This debut by Susanne Winnacker is really, really well-written and very engrossing. I blew through it in a single sitting and it felt like hardly any time passed at all.
Sherry is tough, but not unrealistically so. She feels a strong sense of guilt as well as a strong sense of responsibility to help take care of her family, but she’s still a little girl in many ways. She’s scared of the world outside her family’s bunker (although she’s willing to brave that world just to get outdoors, which you can’t really blame her for). She doesn’t react in a particularly calm manner when faced with frightening situations. The rest of her family is somewhat highly annoying, which is unsurprising since they’ve been locked in a room together for over 1,000 days. As much as I love my family, if we were ever locked up together that long I’d most likely be going right from a bunker to a prison cell. In the well-spoken words of Buffy Summers, that much quality time with my mom would likely lead to some quality matricide. Although in Sherry’s case, any one of her family members would be a serious candidate for a good killing. Then there’s Joshua. Strong, mysterious, tattooed (YES) Joshua. I liked him immediately because he was calm and cool, and rather hardened as I’d imagine anyone who spent any length of time living in a dystopian world would be.
While there is plenty of action to keep the book flowing quickly, there’s also a ton of character development in the book. Particularly in the case of Sherry and Joshua, who grow as people even as they grow closer together. They both become more likeable as the pages go on and new layers of their personality are revealed. And while their attraction seems to happen reasonably quickly they don’t really fall into the insta-love category.
As far as the Weepers go, they’re really scary. They’re not really zombies, they’re closer to the rage-infected people from 28 Days Later if I had to make a comparison. I’d also say that the book has a little sprinkle of The Omega Man, only not crappy and no Charleton Heston. The one thing I would have maybe liked to see a little more of is the world building – they live within view of downtown LA, which is basically a wasteland – and that has the potential for some seriously awesome world building. I’m wondering if there will be more of that in the next book, particularly considering how this one ended.
I really enjoyed this debut and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series!