Sunday, July 1, 2012

Deadline & Blackout (double review)

I read both Deadline and Blackout so quickly it's hard to write separate reviews for each book.  The Newsflesh trilogy is one of those series where every book is a necessary part of the whole story.  The complete series is brilliant, from Feed (review here) to Blackout.  If you like zombies, political thrillers or stories about kickass journalists, then you need to read this series.

5/5 stars
I've become convinced that Mira Grant's Newflesh series has become the peak of the zombie genre.  This book is ballsy, a bit like a punch in the face sometimes because it never holds back.  I was nervous about the sequel because I was so attached to Georgia that I wasn't sure I could cope with Shawn as a narrator.  He's the goofy lovable sidekick who likes to poke dead things! Not my inspiring powerful heroine!  But boy did Shawn surprise me.  He's a tad bit mentally unstable but he's no idiot.  This book manages to avoid the middle book slump.  It's bold, switching narrators, taking us a new adventure to uncover the conspiracy that led to Georgia's death.

4/5 stars
This book is really good. But I'm not sure if it's as good as the other two.  In the end it's almost too...neat and tidy.  There's still lots of zombies, blood and the deaths of major characters.  It wouldn't be a Newsflesh book without that. Yet somehow there is this lingering, dare I say, happiness that left me uneasy.  Happiness is not what I expect from this series.

Some of the formerly minor characters shine in this novel.  Maggie really grew on me, going from someone I sort of ignored to one of my favorite characters.  It's one thing to risk your life when you have to, entirely another thing when you don't.  Maggie's wealth is a little bit of a convenience plotwise, but I like her character growth enough to accept that.

Everything that's been building for three books is lurking in the background, ready to push itself to the front.  You finally start realizing what exactly the CDC is trying to protect the public from.  There are other things, romantic things to be exact, that while the clues were there I wasn't happy to be right.  Yes I want Shaun to have a happy ending. I'm just not sure his chosen happy ending is healthy. Of course in a world full of zombies maybe that's not such a big concern.

This book deals with alot of the same issues I've enjoyed pondering.  Should you tell the truth even if it's dangerous? Do people have the right to know EVERYTHING?  These are important questions, especially now when information is almost a currency.  There are governments around the world who want to "protect" their people from the truth.  When the truth comes out and the crew of After the End Times know everything, they have to make that decision for the whole world.

Despite a few problems, this book is a great conclusion to an even better series.  This is the peak of the zombie genre.  There is no way to top this series.


Catie said...

Great reviews Cassi - I was pretty surprised at how much I enjoyed Shawn as a narrator too. I was so attached to George!

I'm glad you enjoyed the last book, overall. Like you, I had a few difficulties with it but I will definitely be back for more if Seanan/Mira writes another series. And I still haven't read the first Tobey Daye novel, even though I have it. Gotta get to that!

Cassi Haggard said...

I need to read your review. I only skimmed pre-reading. Some of your issues were related to the...romance...weren't they?

There was more depth to Shawn than expected without changing his character. I was impressed with how deftly the POV switched.

Mrs. Jones said...

I havent heard of this series, but I love Zombies, so I will definitely be reading them soon!
Onto the TBR list they go!

Cassi Haggard said...

If you like zombies you need to read this series!!

It's not all about the zombies, but it's so intelligent and well done. Not much in the genre compares.