Dead City by Joe McKinney

Posted on: January 25, 2011

Yes, yet another zombie book. In this case though, that’s not a bad thing.

In the aftermath of several hurricanes, the Texas Gulf Coast has been all but destroyed. While it isn’t made totally clear, somehow a deadly virus has been unleashed during this catastrophe. The dead are rising up and attacking the living. In just a short amount of time, the plague sweeps through the area.

Eddie Hudson is a police officer in San Antonio. He and his partner soon realize this won’t be just another day cruising the streets. Attacked by mobs of zombies, they fight their way across the city. Hudson wants nothing more than to get home and protect his wife and young child. But to get there, he’s going to have to battle hordes of the undead.

What I really enjoyed about this novel is the level of realism. Author Joe McKinney is a law enforcement officer and is well trained in emergency management. In this story, he presents what he feels would be how police officers would respond to a zombie uprising, the impact such a plague would have on the city at large.

The zombies here are of two types, slow movers and fast movers. No explanation is made as to how or why there are different “models.” But, such an explanation would just take away from the immediacy of the situation. The entire novel takes place in the course of one day’s time. The reader is swept along for the ride and oh, what a ride it is.

Very well written, with fleshed out characters you care about and action sequences that leave you breathless. You’ll feel the desperation Hudson experiences as he tries again and again to get in touch with his family. You’ll understand the confusion he feels during his first couple encounters with zombies. You’ll hurt along with him when he’s forced to make choices no one should have to make.

Highly recommended, even if zombies aren’t quite your thing.

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