Recently over dinner with friends, I found someone who had also read Brian Keene’s works. It made me happy to say the least. Most people that I’ve encountered have not heard of him, much less read his work with the same enjoyment I have. So with that I would like to give a recommendation for his first book that I found: The Rising.
Brian Keene was on the forefront of the zombie revival, or resurrection as it were, along with Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later. Now some of you may remember my previous blog, where have all the undead gone (https://lagomorphflix.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/where-have-all-the-undead-gone/), let me say now that The Rising is good undead. It was a great take on the zombie apocalypse. The zombies do not take their lead from Romero’s shamblers or Boyle’s infected these are supernatural zombies with a very cool explanation behind them. Also these zombies are not hindered with just being human, they can be birds, rats, lions, deer, or any other animal that lives and breathes. So that made this a much more interesting read, you didn’t just have to get out of the city they could also be in the country. These zombies are also intelligent and work together to insure that their ranks continue to grow.
But enough about the dead in this book, the living are what make it such a compelling story. Our main protagonist is trying to save his son. One night while in his panic room (keep in mind this book was published not too long after 9/11) receives a call on his cell phone from his son who is living with his mother several states away. Thus begins his quest to rescue his son. Along the way he befriends a minister, who agrees to assist him. There are several other characters in the book, playing the parts of society. From the cannibal rednecks to the man and his son who have taken refuge in a mountain cabin, to the base military men who have taken over a small town. All of these characters reflect some glimmer of the world that was lost when the dead refused to stay that way. I won’t give any spoilers but needless to say that when this book ended, I hoped Keenewould publish a sequel. He did City of the Dead, a fantastic read continuing our hero’s odyssey of horrors.
If you aren’t really into zombies, then you are in luck because Brian Keene writes more than just zombie fiction. His books are phenomenal and I’ve enjoyed all of them (except Urban Gothic). Having said that let me go ahead and forewarn you, his writing is very graphic and R rated. So it’s adult level violence and material and not for the squeamish. Those of you still interested, please go forth and read. Check Amazon for him at http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Brian+Keene. So have fun and enjoy the read.