Sunday, July 6, 2008

Zombies in NYC

I just finished reading Monster Island by David Wellington. It is the first novel in a trilogy, originally written on the internet. The book is a bit scattered, jumping back and forth between characters, this takes a bit of getting use to. I think that it was easier to follow online, as each entry probably dealt with a single character. There are even a few author notes scattered through out for the online readers. Wellington also uses a lot of flashbacks to set up the back story of the two main characters. The plot: an epidemic has broken out across the world, and the dead are walking. The dead, in fact, out number the living.

The book opens with Dekalb, a former UN weapons inspector, on a boat heading into New York harbor with some Somali nationals. They are in search of some much needed medication for the leader of Somali. This is an extremely dangerous mission as New York is full of the walking dead. You may wonder why a former UN employee would help militant Somali nationals. His young daughter, Sarah, has been given refuge in their stronghold that is safe from the zombies and in exchange for this service he will be allowed to stay with her. Having a daughter makes the mission even more difficult for Dekalb, as the soldiers with him are all girls of about 16 years old. They remind him of his daughter and has conflicting feelings about the girls as soldiers.

The other main character in this book is Gary, a former medical student. Gary believes he is the only survivor left in New York and takes a unique approach to ensuring his own survival in what is left of the world.

Dekalb's and Gary's interests conflict and they must "duke it out" as the saying goes. The danger is intensified later in the book when our heroes discover that not only have the human residents become zombies, but some of the animals too. I do not want to say much more about the events of the book, I don't want to spoil the experience for anyone else by giving away the book's secrets. I really enjoyed this book and am eager to read the next in the series Monster Nation.

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