Book Log

Book Log #19: State of Decay, by James Knapp

State of Decay

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Oh, this was a fun one. James Knapp’s State of Decay, the first of his Revivors series, put forth a nice take on zombies: a futuristic society where people can be reanimated via technological means. Volunteering to have yourself reanimated upon your death comes with the temptation of improvement of your citizenship ranking, and many unknowing citizens go for it. But there is, of course, the obligatory Dirty Secret.

The so-called “revivors” are kept out of the public eye, serving as mercenaries in the brutal wars being fought in Asia. But our hero, FBI agent Nico Wachalowski, finds out someone is customizing revivors to kill local targets–and that, furthermore, the conception that a revivor does not remember his or her former life may be disturbingly wrong.

Be warned though that we have not one, not two, not three, but four POV characters here. Chapters cycle regularly between Nico’s storyline and those of police officer (and Nico’s former girlfriend) Faye Dasalia, ring fighter Calliope Flax, and Zoe Ott, a young woman shattered by visions of the dead. Each character is, however, critical to the plot and to Nico’s eventual discovery of the conspiracy behind what’s going on with the revivors. Points as well for the fact that three out of the four POV characters in this book are in fact female, even if it’s Nico who gets the attention in the blurb. Everything moves along quickly enough, at a suitably gripping intensity, that you never stop in one character’s point of view for long. I didn’t find this too difficult to follow, though a reader who takes better to one character over the others may get impatient for the camera to cycle back around again.

And yeah, this is a book that moves along at a thriller’s pace, and which furthermore doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to what our lead characters have to go through. Four stars.

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