Sadie Walker is Stranded: A Zombie Novel by Madeleine Roux
Publisher: St. Martins Press/Jan. 31, 2012
Kind thanks to St. Martins Press for providing a review copy
MONTHS AGO THE WORLD ENDED…
…when an unknown virus spread throughout North America and then the world, killing millions of people. However, that is where the horror only started. The dead began to rise and when they rose they had an insatiable appetite for the living. A new hell had been unleashed on earth and the fight for survival had just begun.
Sadie Walker is one of the survivors in this new world. Living in north Seattle behind barrier that keep the living in and the dead out, she trying to get back to a normal life, while raising her eight-year-old nephew, if anyone even knows what “normal” is anymore. Then everything goes sideways when Shane is kidnapped by a group of black market thieves and they bring down a crucial barrier in the city while trying to escape, and flood the city with the walking dead. After rescuing her nephew, Sadie and Shane escape Seattle on the last remaining boat, along with other survivors. However, now they must face the complete chaos of a world filled with flesh eating zombies and humans who are playing with a whole new rule book when it comes to survival in their journey to find a new place that they can call home.
So, what do you do if your 8 year old nephew is kidnapped by your supposed boyfriend and his group of thugs, intent on selling him to the highest bidder? Oh wait, also, this group of idiots, intent on making their escape, brings down part of the wall around Seattle that’s keeping the walking dead out, flooding the city with moaning, groaning flesh eaters. If you’re Sadie Walker, you rescue your nephew and catch a ride on the last boat out of the harbor, intent on getting you and your nephew, to safety. Sadie, along with her nephew, Shane, and her good friend Andrea (one of the few people left that she trusts), know it’s going to be tough going, but they’re hopeful that they’ll find safety, maybe in the San Juan islands. It’s not the best plan, but it’s the only one they have. When zombies strike, and they run aground ahead of schedule, they’re forced to make camp and hope the area isn’t infested with zombies. Desperate to reestablish trust with Shane, Sadie is determined to make the best of a bad situation.
Bad situation doesn’t begin to cover it. Picking up 7 months after the outbreak that caused zombie hordes to decimate humankind, every day is a struggle, and artist Sadie is finding it hard to leave her old life behind. Her nephew depends on her, however, and that’s a big part of what keeps her going, even in the face of pretty crappy odds. Aside from the zombies, there are a few members of their little group that she’s not sure she can trust, and when they meet another group on the other side of the island, things really begin to get interesting. So, when the going gets tough, Sadie asks herself: What would Allison do?
The Allison in question is Allison Hewitt from Allison Hewitt is Trapped, the first zombie novel by Madeleine Roux. I loved Allison Hewitt, so I had high hopes for Sadie Walker, and wasn’t disappointed. In Sadie Walker, Allison is become a folk hero, and is an inspiration to Sadie when things are looking especially bleak. Ms. Roux’s writing is top notch, and she manages to take the zombie genre and keep it alive and kicking, so to speak. There’s plenty of zombie killin’ action, and the author doesn’t shy away from throwing plenty of adversity at our heroine and her friends. Sadie is a tough cookie, but her vulnerability does shine through, especially when it comes to her nephew, and trusting others. When a rather hunky former cop tests the bounderies of that trust, Sadie finds her priorities shifting, and when a very human danger threatens her new “tribe”, she’ll have to dig deep and find the strength to save her friends. This is such a great series, and near impossible to put down. I really love how the author tackles the small details of survival and what the aftermath of such a horrendous event would be like, while creating tense scenarios among well rounded and rich characterizations. Horror and UF fans will find much to love with Sadie Walker. Just like Allison Hewitt, this one’s a keeper!