Saturday, August 10, 2013


I needed a bit of a break from fairy tales and realistic I chose some YA horror!

Sick by Tom Leveen is your typical zombie apocalypse/outbreak horror novel.  Brian and his friends are the school misfits/troublemakers.  Due to an accident when the school had an open campus, a high wall with spikes has been erected around their huge, Phoenix high school.  Brian and his best friend Chad scale the wall regularly to cut class.   One day, though, they come back into the school to a violent viral outbreak, and a building on lockdown.  Turned into crystallized, rage-filled zombies, students and teachers are attacking the healthy ones.  Brian and Chad hole up in the drama department, and try to figure out how to reach Brian's twin sister Kenzie, and his ex-girlfriend (whom he still likes) Laura.  Both are on the other side of the school, with the living dead between them. 

The description said it was Breakfast Club meets The Walking Dead; it reminded me more of Lord of the Flies meets The Faculty...meets The Walking Dead.  An entertaining, fairly quick read, it gave me what I expect from a zombie story.

I was a bit put off by some of the dialogue, but this comes from someone who constantly has to remind teenage boys of appropriate language, etc. at the library- so, it may have just been my professional self creeping in.  Leveen's descriptions, though- wow!  Vivid and gory, super fast-paced...two thumbs up for that!  Just don't make the mistake I did and try to read it during lunch- though, that could become a new diet craze ("Just read a highly graphic, gory novel while you try to eat, and watch the pounds melt away!")

There wasn't much new zombie-wise in this book, though, I did like that Brian's Mom was a doctor and could kind of explain what was going on with the virus.  There were also some new visual descriptions I liked- physical changes, as well as motor skills.  The attack motive was good, too, and ties into a backstory. 

All in all, entertaining horror.  If you're into zombie books, you'll probably like it.  Cell it is not, but if you aren't super-picky about the genre, give it a go!

Sick is published by Amulet (an imprint of Abrams).  Digital ARC provided by NetGalley.
Release Date: 10.01.13

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