Del Rey, Sep 25 2012, $16.99
By the end of the twenty-second century, much of the planet was devastated; the United States nuked itself into a united wasteland. Central and South America consolidated as New Victoria with the capital in New London, Nicaragua. The society is based on the historians' interpretation of life in Britain during the reign of the late nineteenth century monarch.
Not all is idyllic as the Laz virus has created sentient and feral zombies. Most humans refuse to distinguish between the two classes of zombies as a majority of the humans believe a truly dead zombie is a good zombie. However, some individuals like teenager Nora Dearly knows otherwise ever since she met Punk undead Bram Griswold who saved her life (see Dearly, Departed). The civil rights issue explodes into hostilities especially between the Changed dead and the Murder alive. Collateral damage is an acceptable norm by the two enemies as each believes innocent civilians is an oxymoron. However, as both extremist sects focus on a zombie sympathizer who’s dearly father the scientist seeks a cure for Lax, the heated dispute changes for the worst when a zombie with a new strain of the virus emerges.
The key to this great futuristic urban fantasy is Habel World as the author makes her vision seem vividly real through an insightful historiographical premise and a racist profiling. Action-packed, readers will relish the second Dearly thriller as the heroine and her allies push for equal rights for all, her endeavor enables the Changed and the Murder to agree on one thing: Nora’s permanent demise. Harriet Klausner
Richard E. Gropp
Del Rey, Sep 25 2012, $15.00
A biological incident leads the government to quarantine Spokane, Washington under military control. There is no information as to what has happened except for sporadic leaks out of the shutdown metropolis.
Photographer Dean Walker breaches the military sentry around the city to sneak into Spokane with plans to take shots of whatever he finds in order to tell the world and gain fame. He is unprepared for what he sees in the embattled city. Dean is fortunate to meet struggling survivors in a world turned grotesquely anti physics as time no longer flows in the same way and monsters are everywhere and people trapped at the subatomic level within solid items as Dean’s mission changed from informing the world to surviving this inner collapsing world.
This is an exciting cautionary horror tale that uses Dean’s photos to describe the grotesque state of Spokane. PTSD becomes a common link between those still clinging to their humanity and theorizing what happened though like readers not knowing for certain. Although a deeper look at the change in physics would have been appreciated, Bad Glass remains one of top horror thrillers of the year, as fans will relish this profound psychological drama of the end of civilization when a city collapses. Harriet Klausner
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, $14.99
Teenager Killian feels alone as her mom died a few years ago and her dad ignoring her remarried. When she graduates from the Green Mountain Academy in Vermont, her maternal great Aunt Hannah Winthrop invites her to stay at Cuttylea Island with her; she accepts in spite of the isolation with Hyannis being three hours away by boat and limited electronic access.
In a storm, a frightened Killian, who cannot swim, sails in a small boat when the driver picks up Perth, an Olympic Gold medal quality swimmer. Hannah welcomes her niece who will work at the nearby inn. Killian is attracted to Perth, but as a wallflower accepts he is out of her league. When she hears a mother’s plea to rescue her children, Killian is confused as the woman is dead. Meanwhile Perth confuses her as he seems to like her before instantly turning into a grouch. However, Killian becomes concerned when Dr. Davenport and a team arrive ostensibly to study wind energy, but asks questions about Perth’s wheelchair bound father Walter. Wondering what is going on with elderly Lynx warning her to leave, Dr. Davenport’s inquiry and what the birthmark on her lower back has to do with pentagrams inside older abodes. Killian seeks the truth.
Aquarian is an exhilarating young adult paranormal mystery that will have the audience wondering like the heroine what is happening at Cuttylea Island. The storyline starts leisurely as the heroine’s personality and the island setting of “no cell phone service; no cable TV; no mall … and no Facebook” are established. Once done, the plot turns into a fascinating tale as Killian begins to learn the dangerous truth about her ancestry and that of Perth. Harriet Klausner
Harlequin Teen, Sep 25 2012, $9.99
In Jacksonville, Texas until recently Savannah Colbert never comprehended why the Clann overtly loathed her. At school Tristan Coleman refused to acknowledge she existed as he was warned to keep his distance. That ended when she came back from a week of absenteeism totally changed as Sav and Tristan became an entry (see Crave).
After a warning from the Vampire Council to never see Tristan or else, Sav ends their relationship to protect her beloved from what she is tuning into. Tristan refuses to accept her assertion that it is over as he knows there is more to this. Vowing to find a way for them to be together, neither is ready for what awaits them.
The second Clann teen urban romantic fantasy is an engaging coming of age thriller. Both protagonists mature out of necessity as much as due to their love, while the support cast enhances the insight into the Darnell vampire mythos. Leisurely paced for the most part, readers will enjoy this fresh vampire romance. Harriet Klausner