Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Deadline by Mira Grant

Here at last is the much anticipated sequel to Feed by Mira Grant - Deadline.  In a previous post see here I proclaimed that Feed was not only the best zombie novel of 2010 but one of the best novels I'd ever read. So as soon as Deadline, part two of the planned trilogy, was available for sale, I bought it.
I want to tell you the plot of the book but how much can I say without spoiling the events of Feed, especially the big shock near the end? In brief, Feed was about a group of bloggers, led by siblings Georgia and Shaun Mason, who were invited to report on the campaign trail of Senator Peter Ryman as he ran for presidency. The year was 2032 and the zombie apocalypse was over twenty years old. Humanity won but at a major cost to their freedom. Most folk rarely venture far from home.
Deadline kicks off nine years after the events of Feed. This time, Shaun Mason is the narrator of the novel. He and his team are still blogging. Blogging has replaced the major news media as the number one source of news and information. Shaun's life is given a new purpose when, right out of the blue, a researcher from the Centre of Disease Control arrives at his apartment with news of an earth-shattering conspiracy that will affect them all. The researcher is Kelly Connolly, who assisted Shaun and Georgia in Feed and was a close friend of theirs. After hearing what Kelly has to say, Shaun agrees to help her and from there the novel takes off. To say more would be unfair.
If book one was as much a political thriller with zombies then book two can best be described as a scientific thriller with zombies. I mention the "with zombies" because zombies appear infrequently in both novels but, nevertheless, they are a constant threat, just lurking in the background, ready to spring forth when least expected... which they do! There is a lot of science to be explained in Deadline, regarding the nature of the Kellis-Amberlee disease that causes the dead to return to life, but it is written in a way that is easy to understand, mainly due to the fact Shaun needs things explained to him in simple terms. This makes things a lot easier for us, the readers, to understand what is going on.
My verdict of the novel is that it is a good sequel that I can highly recommend but it is not as good as Feed.  Feed was a novel that got more exciting and more thrilling the more you read of it until it became unputdownable, well at least for me. Deadline  lacks that rollercoaster ride. Instead it has moments of frenetic excitement interspersed with long periods of inaction. Also, it has a shock ending that didn't come as a shock to me. I hope I'm not sounding over critical because this is still a well-written novel with characters who are given time and space to develop. When a major character is killed it has an emotional impact. Deadline may not be as good as Feed but it definitely sets up book three, Blackout, very nicely. There is a preview of Blackout at the back of the book that left me screaming for more. Blackout is due to be published next year but I want it now! It'll be interesting to review the trilogy as a whole.
Deadline is published by Orbit Books and retails at £7.99. I bought my copy from Amazon UK for just £4.99. If you've read Feed you're going to want to know what happens next. If you haven't read Feed, go buy it now, along with Deadline and experience the thrills of a major new force in zombie fiction - Mira Grant, winner of the 2010 John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer.

20 comments:

  1. I'm 2/3 of the way through and I actually think it's even better than the first, which is saying something.

    My only criticism is that she does get repetitive on some points and I'm almost shouting "Ok I get that!" from time to time.

    Other than that, definitely a must read. Low on Zombies, but high on how people are with people in a post-Zombie world.

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  2. Apologies I only read half of this post, I don't want to know anymore about the book, I'll defiantly be buying it asap though.

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  3. @Arlequin. I definitely agree with you on the repetition but it didn't bother me too much. If you think it's better than book one then that's great. Spread the word!

    @Ray. I can understand your view. It's a juggling act deciding how much to write about the plot of a novel as eagerly anticipated as this one. I hope I haven't given away any spoilers (I don't think I did) and I hope you enjoy reading it when you do get it.

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  4. I just purchased the first two Audio Books of "Day By Day Armageddon".
    It is like WWZ but focuses on a small group. There is some good Zed Action and a lot of smart human action in this series.

    http://www.audible.com/search?searchAuthor=J+L+Bourne

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  5. Will be getting this, thanks for the heads up.

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  6. @Brother Joseph. That book has been on my shopping list for quite a while.

    @Ray. Good man!

    @Fran. Ditto!

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  7. Doh! I just finished World War Z!! :D

    Thanks for sharing, I'll looking for these.

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  8. Awesome - I didn't even know about the first book... but I found in the audio book format, so I will be able to listen to it while at work :-P

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  9. Neither did I. Never heard of either of these books will add them to my to get list.

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  10. @Zerloon. World War Z is an awesome book. I'm looking forward to the film.

    @Shelldrake. That's the lazy man's option, LOL!

    @Brummie. A sensible decision.

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  11. I just picked this up myself. Loved the first one so looking forward to it.

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  12. Thanks for the heads-up VtG! I wasn't aware it had been released, so now I'm off to Amazon for some more Mira-Grant-zombie-book-goodness!!

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  13. @Adam. If you enjoyed Feed you'll definitely enjoy Deadline.

    @Colin. I know that a lot of my followers were a fan of Feed, so it seemed only fair to let you know about Deadline.

    @Brother Joseph. You'll be pleased to know that I have ordered Day By Day Armageddon. Thanks for the prompt!

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  14. @Adam. You'll be pleased to know that I have ordered Day By Day Armageddon, because I ordered it from Zombie Shop.

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  15. what a great blog! glad i found you +followed

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  16. @The Onion Gypsy. Hi and welcome aboard. I hope you find plenty to enjoy here.

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  17. Replies
    1. Much as I love Amazon, I will certainly respect Mira/Seanan's wishes. It's the least I can do.

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