ALLISON HEWITT IS TRAPPED (Zombie Series #1)
by Madeleine Roux
PUBLISHER: Headline (UK) | St Martin’s Press (US)
RELEASE DATE: January 2011
FORMAT: Trade Paperback: 344 pages
GENRE: Horror, Zombies
Allison Hewitt is trapped. In the storeroom of Brookes & Peabody’s. In a world swarming with the Undead, the Doomed, the Infected. Locked away with an oddball collection of colleagues and under siege, Allison takes advantage of a surviving internet connection and blogs. She writes, as the food runs out and panic sets in, as relationships develop and friends die, and as zombies claw at the door, all in the hope of connecting with other survivors out there.
But as she reads the replies to her posts, Allison begins to comprehend the horrifying scale of the damage. And when no one comes to the group’s rescue, they are forced to leave the safety of their room and risk a journey across the city; streets that crawl with zombies, and worse – fellow humans competing for survival.
ALLISON HEWITT IS TRAPPED is just fantastic. I was absorbed after just a couple of chapters and didn’t want to put the book down. Allison is a great character, she’s spunky and real – a woman I would like to be if the world was overrun with the undead. She’s scared of everything going on around her but she’s brave, not afraid to fight and put her life on the line for others.
Allison is locked inside the break room because it has the strongest door in the department store, which means They can’t get in. There are also surveillance cameras which are used to keep an eye on what’s going on in the store, it’s a helpful tool to be able to see where the zombies are, especially when you have to do a food run. Allison is not the only one in the break room. There are five other people who she’s sharing the small room with and they are all very different, but all very realistic, personalities.
The relationships between the characters is as close to real-life as you would imagine in such a situation, there’s no gun-ho stud with a shotgun over his shoulder, instead it’s a skinny chinese guy with broken glasses and a baseball bat. It’s a store manager and his golf clubs, it’s Allison who’s weapon of choice is an axe.
The novel is actually the content of Allison’s blog, which she updates regularly, and uses to connect with other survivors. And although I was a little skeptical of this format at first, wondering how the flow of the story would be and how the dialogue would work etc, but I needn’t have worried. It’s brilliantly written and I couldn’t stop myself from reading chapter after chapter – it was very addictive reading.
Eventually Allison and her co-survivors have to leave the break room. Lives are lost, friends are killed and she is longing to know if her mother is safe or one of the undead. I really went on Allison’s journey with her and felt every emotion of despair, hope, anger, and complete bewilderment of the circumstances.
From the moment I met the characters in the break room until the end of the novel, which sees Allison far from where she began, it really feels like a long pilgrimage. I could feel Allison and the other survivors become weary, harder, jaded, and their actions and decisions reflect all those feelings. Although Allison does some very bad things I understand why and don’t judge her for them.
There is love between certain characters, including Allison but it’s written with sensitivity. It’s understated romance – there are no sexual scenes and hardly any kissing, it’s all shown through Allison’s words on her blog and it’s believable, tender and heartwarming. There’s a lot of heart to this book and I enjoyed it immensely.
ALLISON HEWITT IS TRAPPED is an emotional rollar coaster and the ending was so perfectly bittersweet it brought tears to my eyes. It’s a fast-paced read with believable characters and convincing story that will move you and because of this you want Allison, and the other characters, to succeed and survive. This is no ordinary zombie novel. It’s fresh and original and I just loved it.
This book is a must read for fans of horror, urban fantasy and zombie fiction. It’s a story that stayed with me for many days after I’d finished it, and a book like that stays on my shelf forever.
BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER
1. Allison Hewitt is Trapped
2. Sadie Walker is Stranded
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