Genre: Adult, Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian
SciFi Element: Post-Apocalyptic World, Zombies
Series: Aftertime Series Book 1
Order Online:  Amazon.com
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Review copy provided by publisher.

PJ’s QUICKIE POV:
In a world overrun by Young Adult Dystopian an adult version of the currently “hot” genre stands out among the rest. I can tell you personally that I usually prefer the young adult versions of this genre, for the simple fact that in adult-speak it can be too much. A zombie ripping the flesh off of your best friend in a YA tone is more palatable than in an adult tone. Call me a wuss, but dystopians always hit closer to home for me than your normal run-of-the-mill horror novels. I can read the scariest, bloodiest, nastiest scenes and not bat and eyelash — but give me a dystopian, with real-world type scenarios and I’m a blabbering, emotional mess. That is why when I opened the first page of AFTERTIME I was cringing before I even began to read. Yet, as word after word was digested I was caught and while I was disturbed a good bit, I was so enmeshed within the story that it didn’t matter. AFTERTIME was riveting, emotional and real, it was a true journey that struck a chord with me that I didn’t expect in a “zombie” novel. When you break it down, this was a story about a mother and a child and the things a woman will do to save her offspring. As a mother I could only hope my strength would be as great as Cass’.

REVIEW:
Cass Dollar awakens to a dystopian landscape in clothes that do not belong to her and healing bite marks along her back. Her hair has been ripped from her head, there are self-inflicted wounds all over her body. She doesn’t know how long she has been out of it, maybe weeks, months? As memories begin resurfacing she focuses on one thing, Ruthie, her child. She has to get her back.

Cass’ world is a barren landscape of death. Once the great state of California, the area is now dead, ripe with flesh eating infected humans called Beaters and the remaining humans that will do anything to survive. Hardly anything lives, killed off by terrorist attacks or government experiments gone wrong. Cass has to travel through this wasteland and hope that she isn’t attacked by Beaters or survivors and that she’ll some how make it back to where she last saw Ruthie.

Along the way, Cass meets Smoke. Not one to trust, but she knows she can’t do it alone, she begrudgingly let’s him help her find her daughter, all the while holding him at arms-length. He is kind though and without him they’ll be no chance for her, no chance for Ruthie.

I know what you are thinking, More Zombies. But, don’t let your preconceived notions hold you back from this gem. Littlefield takes a tried and true horror element and infuses it with new life, real human elements and a voice that will have you enthralled. The perfection of this tale was the character of Cass, she wasn’t likable at all times and sometimes you didn’t agree with her actions, but her character was real, her transition and development was real. Littlefield did a remarkable job with portraying a scarred and slightly used woman and making her into a heroine. There was nothing special about Cass Dollar, but because of Littlefield’s portrayal she became larger than life and in the end very special.

I can not wait to get my grubby hands on Rebirth, book 2.

RECOMMENDATIONS:
Recommended for fans of horror and zombies and dystopian, any will do. There is also a bit of romance in the pages so ladies you will be satisfied. For fans of King and Koontz this is a good female voice to compare. This is an adult novel and recommended for a mature audience.

Like this, Like That:

  1. The Stand by Stephen King
  2.  Strangers by Dean Koontz

The 411:

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  1. Book two will be released in July 2011 
  2. Rebirth (Aftertime Novel)
  3. Sophie Littlefield will be at BEA 2011