4. Them or Us – David Moody
Welcome to the post-post-apocalypse, where if you can’t get your mental shit together, you’re doomed. Then again, you always were doomed, even if you could get your mental shit together because there’s some probably tiny handed dictator waiting to only give you food if you’re fittingly sycophantic and brutal. Sheesh. How do these people gain power? Oh wait, regardless of country, sometimes they get voted in.
Them or Us is a fittingly bleak and mildly brutal end to the Hater trilogy, set in Lowestoft, and yet, The Darkness’ fate was not mentioned. I assume Justin and Dan and co. are fine and were in a bunker when the bombs fell – after all, bombs are really only supposed to fall on Slough, isn’t that how the poem goes?
It was the coming of the …Belvedere. Damnit, too many syllables, and “Bel Bel” just doesn’t have the same ring as “Black Shuck.” He was certainly “a curious beast” though. Oooooooh.
49. Dog Blood – David Moody
The second book in the Hater trilogy follows main character and thinking-man’s Hater Danny McCoyne as he searches for his daughter, who has also become a Hater aka not superhuman, not undead, but not interested in anything other than brutally killing or changing over anyone who isn’t currently a Hater.
Along the way there are also threads that the thinking man who generally hated many things is not entirely gone, was not entirely consumed by the Hate and has the possibility of something more moderately hatey… I can’t see any overtones of this book happening in current society today, no sir, I cannot.
Let Belvedere teach you the way. Feel the urge to sneef and chuckle in the face of your enemies wash over you.
47. Hater – David Moody
David Moody is a hit or miss author for me thus far. I was totally underwhelmed (“if that’s a word, I know it’s not ’cause I looked it up,” hee hee, Sloan) by Autumn and so I chose not to read the rest of the series. It probably got better. Hater and Dog Blood were both recommended to me before I knew that they were by the same author – and I have to say, I was much happier with the pacing, the characters, and the setting of Hater and its sequels. There’s an end of the civilized world for everyone. Some of them are more interesting than others and more action packed.
I’ve read that Guillermo del Toro has the rights to Hater, although not much seems to be happening with it. The recent World War Z adaptation made me think of what would happen if you forced the Haters from this series to mate with the dead on a global scale, and I’m not sure that’s necessarily good. World War Z was all right, as nearly the universe is aware by now; not much like the book I love so very, very much, but tense to watch and it followed an interesting journey. It was actually kind of nice to see so many location changes in a zombie movie, especially when each one was ruined in short order. I guess the global scale was the part of World War Z the film writers thought was useful.
Belvedere was really, really good at biting people in places where there wasn’t much between skin and bone. He’d be good in a epidemic biting plague.
58. The First Days – Rhiannon Frater
This book reminded me greatly of another zombie novel – Autumn by David Moody. If you liked Autumn and its inability to bring anything new and/or interesting to the world of zombies, you will enjoy The First Days. Oh look, it’s someone who is a tad shellshocked (and her name isn’t Barbara) and wearing inappropriate clothing for running away forever (she may or may not be missing her shoes). And there, over there, it’s someone who lost their girlfriend and watched her re-animate and come after her! They make it to a sporting goods store run by totally not the couple from Tremors because the wife is a former sniper, what a shocking development. Shock me shock me shock me with that deviant storytelling. Wait, are they going to adapt and yet make terrible decisions to retrieve people who should be left behind and then find a group of survivors trying to build some semblance of a protective society only to be slightly undermined by some random power struggle and some dude going nutballs? Nnyayybe. Sometimes, there are novels that seem to prove that nothing more can really be said about rising plagues of the undead. I do believe and wish upon a star that I will find more zombie stories that deviate enough to achieve greatness, perhaps Jiminy Cricket will help me out when he stops helping that jerk Pinocchio. I hate Pinocchio. I even read the book and I still hate it.
Anyway, I didn’t start this to discuss Pinocchio, who sucks. I started this because The First Days includes people who’ve lost loved ones, as all zombie stories do, and two of the methods of coping with losing loved ones – shock and moving on. I lost my little Belvedere this past weekend and I am a little angry with myself for choosing the moving on option. He had a saucy combination of everything that killed his two sisters and I did every possible thing to make him more comfortable while I didn’t know exactly what was going on. I gave him all of the treats that he wasn’t supposed to have repeatedly in the three days before he passed as well and I guess that’s part of why I can move on. When you do everything you can and you know you’re not half-assing there’s nothing to regret. I miss my little man and these are my first days without him and they do in fact suck, but checking out mentally is not going to help my living piggies. Bel lived his entire life with me and I’ve always been super proud of his slightly vindictive nature.
Say goodbye to the little Bel tree.
My favorite photo of Bel and his glorious sister Pickles. What’s a little face-nibbling between siblings?
One of the few photos where the little siblings were getting along – Morty using Duncan as a head rest, Pickles, and Belvedere and his little white pants. My little family, minus their mother Murderface, who finally got a chance to relax.
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26. Autumn – David Moody
Zombies and Britain are two of my favorite things. I loved living in Northern England and I’ve always been a big zombie fan. So one would assume that I would be very pleased by this novel combining the two…but I was ambivalent. It definitely satisfies that random jones for a new zombie story and technically it adds an interesting element to the genre – zombies that stay dead for a couple of days and some don’t even return from the grave despite having the bacteria or virus or whatever, reanimate as random automatons that don’t even notice people, and then later begin to get angry and regularly mobile as they disintegrate. Interesting, but without characters I’m really pulling for it’s hard to really care.
I guess the reality of the survival genre is that you’re stuck with whoever shows up or doesn’t die, but I wasn’t involved with these people. Any of them. Things came a bit too easily and the build up to the upwardly mobile zombies didn’t really make things dire or gory. I did like what Moody did with Carl, I knew a Carl in Northern England and all I’ll say is, he might also have driven everyone apart instead of bringing them together in a semi-gleeful yet bizarre manner during a zombie apocalypse.
My main question about this book at the end was – why were they watching so many films using the generator? Couldn’t they keep one light on and play Parcheesi? Save the gas if you want to live. Perhaps one movie a week. It is important to debate whether you want to waste your resources and assume your life is about to end or slowly ration everything and assume you’ll be living a relatively long life…tough decision…can’t decide…brain aneurysm!
I have to say I wish Twigs and Duncan would come back and start their own zombie apocalypse. I'd let them in my abandoned farm house though; they'd probably just be after the vegetables like Bunnicula.
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