Overview (via Goodreads):
She won’t rest until she’s sent every walking corpse back to its grave. Forever.
Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.
Her father was right. The monsters are real….
To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies….
I wish I could go back and do a thousand things differently.
I’d tell my sister no.
I’d never beg my mother to talk to my dad.
I’d zip my lips and swallow those hateful words.
Or, barring all of that, I’d hug my sister, my mom and my dad one last time.
I’d tell them I love them.
I wish… Yeah, I wish.
I felt totally hypnotized. The two last books I’ve read were awesome, and this one exceeded my expectations. Now I think I’m afraid to start the reading the next book, because after three brilliant books I might just feel disappointed.
I read some reviews about this book where people totally disagree with what I will say.
First, this is not a book to compare with Alice in Wonderland. There’s nothing, besides maybe a rabbit-shaped cloud, that resembles in the two stories. So, if you expected, like I did, that this is a different view on Alice in Wonderland, forget it.
What I look for in a book when I read it is not which things make sense and which doesn’t…specially when it comes to fiction and fantasy books. When I read, as well as when I watch a movie, I don’t rationalize things, not like this. I may think about them for a few moments, but that’s it. It’s a fantasy book… What I look for is a story that can blow me away, making it hard to close the book and stop reading it. A story that makes me want to read more and know more, and in the end makes me want the a sequel in that same minute. And I try to look at the writing of the author, hoping it makes the story even better. In my review I’ll try to show you why I liked this book so much.
Okay, fans of zombie books may be disappointed with the zombies in this one. They are not the gore-zombies we are used to see, I agree about that. But while reading I forgot about that.
I forgot about the “two-girls-who-like-the-same-boy-hate-each-other” thing, which is annoying and I kind of started having doubts about the book when I first read about it… but this “girly issue” is not important, specially because we almost don’t read about that, it’s just a tinny detail in two or three paragraphs in the whole story. The book tells us more than this.
This is the story of Alice (aka Ali) Bell. She’s an ordinary girl…or so it seems.
The book starts with an adrenaline rush, and I kept feeling that adrenaline rush while reading the rest of the book with some of the scenes.
After tragedy takes over her life, she moves to a different school and she has to start over. But from that day one, Ali’s life will not be the same, whether she wants it or not, whether she runs way or she fights. And plus she has to live with an huge pain in her heart, which will make things harder for her. We read a lot about Ali’s monologues, but I didn’t feel bored. I think it was a good way of developing the character, letting the read know about the way she felt.
She meets Kat, who will turn to be a very special friend (the best!), before school starts, and when they run into each other at the first day of school, Kat is more than happy. Kat is quite a cheerful character, and she makes me smile, as she does to Alice. Kat immediately starts telling Alice what she needs to know about the other teenagers. Alice soon meets the “bad boys gang” of the school. Among them, is Cole. Strange things start to happen, she doesn’t know what she’s supposed to think or to be afraid of.
I like Alice, she is stubborn and when she’s talking to Cole I found myself smiling quite a few times, since he is really stubborn and bossy himself. And even if she is described as someone that looks like a doll (or a “princess“, as someone call her in the book), she it wild and determined.
Okay, Cole kind of annoyed me sometimes with his bossy away of treating people, but Alice decides not to let him boss her around, and it turns to be really funny to read their dialog sometimes. And the way Cole protects Alice…well, I guess we can forgive him and forget about his bossy attitude. It wouldn’t be the same if he wasn’t bossy, with Alice proving she can handle him.
But remember when I said Alice is an ordinary girl? Well, forger that… Cole and his group will find out she’s not ordinary, and she does things they can’t imagine.
The fighting scenes were wonderfully described, full of adrenaline and energy.
At the same time she has to think about training and fighting zombies, Alice has to take care of her family and starts being worried about Kat.
Many things happen, things we do not expect, people may not be who they seem to be.
The book kept me reading like crazy until the very last page. Now I want more of it.
About the writing, I read some reviews that say something completely different from what I will say, but I’ll try to, again, explain my opinion.
I loved the way Gena Showalter writes. She knows how to make people keep reading. The pauses, the end of each chapter… It’s easy to read and yet she managed to write everything in a way that I had to keep reading. This book is funny, somehow exciting in the fight scenes, and it exceed my expectations, even if it’s not another version of Alice in Wonderland.