Eighteen year old Bach, from a race known as The Family, has no interest in human affairs. He was sent here to complete his Great Walk and return home as a man—as a Sen Son. The Family regard humans as Dirt People, but Bach is drawn to this Terran girl, whom he has never seen before, but somehow knows.
Hunted by flesh eaters, cannibals, and the mysterious blood thirsty group called Red Phoenix, Wisteria and Bach make their way back to the Isle of Smythe, a community built on secrets and lies.
I can go either way with a YA book. Some are fantastic and I devour the entire series in a week. Some have the stereotypical teenager I hated in myself and despise in books I wish to read for pleasure. Wisteria fell into the former category. She didn't make me want to scream and beg for it to end, she was a very well-visualized teen. I liked her a lot and felt really awful for her over the abuse and treatment she endured from everyone throughout.
Seriously, I'm amazed she didn't go zombie-psycho on the town. Maybe in book 2...
The zombies were simply the world, the Nero virus how it all started. The story really centered on the characters, however, not the zombies so much.
The rest of the book, however, I had some difficulty with. For instance Bach. As in most all of Bach--his back story, his Family, his speech. Didn't like him at all. Nope. I could have done without his storyline and equally bad treatment of Wisteria. In fact, he's not worthy of being her love interest OR of having a distinct storyline.
Other little things that bothered me were the slang and the lack of description for the Isle of Symthe (Is this a real island? Or one of those places where it's made up like in Hunger Games and Panem?) I had no real physical layout of the place and found myself confused over distances and locations. As for the slang, I'm all for that, don't get me wrong but a little description on what it means would probably have helped. Are these English words? Or the post-apocalyptic world's words?
I'm all for Indie writing, definitely, but I'm also all for editing. I think Ms. Layton needed another pass with a really great editor. There were continuity errors, weird sentence structuring, repetitiveness, and lack of character development until the very very end. Hey, don't get me wrong, there's that in a 'publisher' published book, but again I recommend a great editor to weed some of that out.
Overall I'd give this book 3 stars for the interesting plot, the execution of said plot, and Wisteria. Give it a chance and see for yourself.
Thirteen months after the first official case of Nero Disease
“Wisteria, run!” Rebecca O’Leary screamed over the radio.
Wisteria Kuti whipped around and came face-to-face with the blood-red eyes of a hungry flesh-eating biter. The biter was a man, infected by Nero Disease, who had long lost his mind. He looked more animal than human and he wanted one thing—to feed on the flesh of uninfected people. The biter growled and staggered toward Wisteria.
She fled down the deserted road to the nearest house. The front door was locked. She kicked at the door, but it didn’t open. Taking out her handgun, she smashed through the window of the door.
Wisteria’s heart jumped and she darted up the stairs as fast as she could.
A biter grabbed her ankle as she ran. Falling hard on the steps, she wailed in pain. “Ah.” No time to cry, Wisteria. She fired at the biter holding her. One bullet left.