Saturday, April 30, 2011

Z is for Zombies

'One thing about the Deadlands, once you've been out there, surrounded by the dead, the living aren't anywhere near as scary...'

When seventeen-year-old Lele de la Fontein and her brother are forced to move to the city enclave to live with their estranged father and bitchy, war-hero stepmother, she has no idea her world is about to implode. Stuck in a school run by the Resurrectionists -- a fanatical sect who worship the sinister, all-powerful Guardians -- Lele dreams of escape. But she's trapped. No one can survive in the Deadlands, the shattered remains of Cape Town's suburbs, without being turned into one of the living dead. No one, that is, except for a renegade group known as the Mall Rats. But who are they? And are they the answer to Lele's prayers, or is she about to find herself in more trouble than even she can imagine?

I'm not a zombie fan. At all. Normally I would not pick up a book like this. But it was written by a South African and set in South Africa (where I live) and so I thought, zombies in Cape Town? This I gotta see!

A few chapters in I wasn't so keen, but then I got caught up in Lele's story and couldn't put the book down! Aside from the main story there are so many little things I enjoyed:
  • the names Lele has for certain people (her stepmother is The Mantis)
  • the random mention of real books and movies that were "in" at the time the zombies took over ("And I've got a treat for you, Lele," Ginger said, holding up one of his DVDs. "Transformers -- crap movie, but awesome explosions.")
  • the sprinkling of South African colloquialisms that reminded me I was reading about home :-) (kak, ja, hayibo, seriaas)

The only thing I was a little disappointed with was the ending. The story seemed to wrap up a little quickly. I think I was expecting.... more (hello, sequel! Come to me!). But I enjoyed all the rest of it enough to recommend it :-)

'Deadlands is cool, provocative and sharp as spiny teeth. A viciously satirical, pop-culture loaded, teen zombie apocalypse with heart -- it's smart, dark, sweet, gruesome, political and, best of all, funny.' -- Lauren Beukes, author of ZOO CITY and MOXYLAND

~ ~ ~

Phew! Made it to the end of the A to Z Blogging Challenge!
Thank you so much to Arlee and company for hosting this piece of blog epicness. And well done to everyone who completed the challenge!

And for anyone who's not feeling totally exhausted, don't forget the A to Z Challenge Reflections Mega Post on Monday 2nd May.


Sarah Ketley said...

Sounds like an interesting book. Thanks for the review.

Congrats on the A-Z challenge. I suffered somewhat from a surprise work related absence in the middle.

Have a great rest of the weekend


Mary Aalgaard said...

Great review. Isn't it fun when you are familiar with the setting. I love reading regional novels. My faves from Minnesota are Lorna Landvik and Jon Hassler. Enjoyed the challenge with you!

Michael Di Gesu said...

Yay, Rachel,

CONGRATS on finishing... I am amazed we all made it!


RaShelle said...

Rachel - Sounds like it could be good.

I've got this idea for a vegetarian zombie girl that gets asked to join the popular Zombie's Club, but she has to eat human brains to get in. LOL

iZombie said...

zombies rule! we are just misunderstood individuals with the love for a great mind...

erica and christy said...

i'm SO glad you admit to not loving zombies. i don't even really know what a zombie is, or why they're so popular, at least. if i do ever decide to give a zombie book a try, i'll go for this one. congrats on finishing the a-z challenge! christy

Ellie said...

Congratulations on making it to the end of the challenge!

Ellie Garratt

Sarah said...

Hi Rachel,

Thanks so much for your review and congrats on the challenge!
Have taken all your comments into consideration (busily writing the sequel, so it helps)

All best,
Lily Herne x

Rachel Morgan said...

A sequel? Awesome! It's a world I'd love to revisit and characters I'd love to hear more about.