Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry

Hey everyone I hope you had a great weekend. As you may have noticed Halloween is quickly approaching. I’m so excited to read all of the spooky stories that are posted this time of year. If you have any requests for horror, thriller, or paranormal books you’d like me to read drop me a line through my contact form along the right hand side of the page.
This week I finally broke down and bought a book that I’ve been seeing in stores for years. The only reason I did was because it was on sale at my bookstore on campus for $2. Even then it sat in my bag until I literally had nothing else to read.
The first thing I noticed when I started looking at the book was it was written by an author I had read before. This wasn’t overly reassuring for me since I didn’t have the best review for his first book I read. Despite this I tried to have an open mind.
Right from the start I enjoyed the story. I expected more drama and bullsh!t based on the description but for both sides of the argument there were valid reasons for the drama.
Let me give you a better idea of what the books about:

Benny lives in a world of zombies thirteen years after they first rose on the First Night. He lives with his older brother Tom, who he hates for abandoning his mom on the First Night and who he considers a coward. He’s a bounty hunter after all, he’s supposed to kill all the zombies like his idol Charlie. Instead he only makes small kills, which drives Benny crazy.
Benny has just turned 15 meaning he has to get a full time job or risk having his rations cut in half. After trying a bunch of different jobs he has no choice but to join his brother in ‘the family business’ despite his reservations.
On his first day out of town and into the Rot and Ruin Benny learns what it really means to be a bounty hunter. What his brother teaches him, shows him out in the real world, will change everything he’s ever felt about zombies.
Back in town Benny has trouble coming to terms with all that he’s seen. It isn’t until he sees a girl on a collectable card called ‘The Lost Girl’ that he finally understands a few things about the people he once looked up to.
But when his friend is attacked in the center of town, taken from her home, Benny and Tom will have to leave the safety of the town behind.
They’ll race into the Rot and Ruin to face one of the most threatening bounty hunters that roams the lands.
Benny may not be ready to be the trained fighter Tom is but he will have to risk it all to save those he cares about and survive long enough to make it back to safety.

I loved the realism in this book. From his hatred from his brother to the things he learns Benny is a great character. He isn’t driven by anything more than his need to know and protect the ones he cares about. But the thing I loved most about this book was the ending. It was heartbreaking and emotional in the best way to wrap up a book. I know there are more books to this series, but for the time being I think I will leave it where it is.
The only thing I didn’t like about the book was the amount of information that withheld and the length of time they do it. From beginning to end they keep building on the ‘I’ll tell you later’ line until the end when there was just too much to tell at once.
Plot: A-
Pace: B+
Setting: B
Characters: A-
Ending: A
Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Have a great day everyone and happy reading!
- K


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