Fall of Night
Author: Jonathan Maberry
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 4 Stars
Book Summary: Stebbins Little School is full of bodies. It's unthinkable to Desdemona Fox. Children are sobbing as panicked teachers and neighbors beat down their family members outside of the school...or the things that used to be their family members. Parents don't eat their children do they?
Officers Fox and Hammond, along with journalist Billy Trout, are calling it the beginning of the end. This is the zombie apocalypse. An insane escaped serial killer is infecting Stebbins County with a deadly virus, and now the whole world is watching while fox, Trout, and the remaining inhabitants of Stebbins fight for their life against...what? The undead? The President and the National Guard are ready to nuke Stebbins, PA off the map and cut their losses. But the infection is spreading and fast. Worse, the scientist who created the virus is missing. It's a numbers game as the body count rises; Fox has to contain the infected and evacuate the living before it's too late, and the clock is ticking...
Personal Review: I love Maberry's books as he's one of the few authors out there that can still give me that horror fix I crave in novels (although Nick Cutter is still the reigning champ). This book is the sequel to Dead of Night and gives you another entry in his zombie apocalypse series. Unlike the slew of books published about zombies, thanks to the success of The Walking Dead, Maberry is one of the few writing entries that are actually really good.
In this book, you get the start of the zombie apocalypse, which always seems to start in small town USA, and the craziness always starts because someone has the brilliant idea to make a virus...because nothing bad can happen from that. Whereas the first entry was an appetizer, this book gave you more information about that virus, named Lucifer 113 (that should have said it all right there).
Picking up right where the first book ended, Maberry instantly throws you into all the craziness. Characters you knew from the first book are dropping like flies and new characters are coming in (it's the zombie apocalypse so not everyone is going to make it). But at the heart of the novel, what I appreciate is the fact that not only is it a book about zombies and all the carnage that entails, it also focuses on humanity, which can be just as scary when faced with a crisis like this.
The pacing of the novel was fantastic and I found myself not wanting to put the book down, wanting to just read a few more pages before I called it a night. Comparing it to the previous book, this entry was much darker, but not in a bad way. I don't know about you, but if I'm reading zombie fiction, I'm not looking for a light read. Break out the heavy stuff and let's get it poppin'.
The terror was there, the panic, the anxiety, the feeling of dread around every corner, and it didn't subside one bit. I would highly recommend this book, and series, to anyone who enjoys horror novels and zombie fiction. Maberry is talented in how he can craft a story that's well-written, thought out, filled with rich characters that you can relate with, and has the ability to make you, in a sense, feel what's going on in the story when the proverbial "you know what" hits the fan.
I will certainly be looking out for future books in this series and if you want to check it out for yourself, be sure to look for a copy at your Abilene Public Library.