Thursday, October 3, 2013

Flesh and Bone (Benny Imura #3) by Jonathan Maberry

I have to say thanks to Mr. Jonathan Maberry himself for this book, because when I won the contest to help name one of his e-novellas, my prize was an autographed ARC of this very book!  I had intended to read it as part of my 2nd Annual September is for Sequels Challenge, and while I did start it in September, I didn't actually finish it until the 1st of October.  It was a good lead up to really get me back in the mood for The Walking Dead to start up again.  The only reason it took me so long to read it was because of how busy I seem to be.  Not because it wasn't good.  Because as usual with this series, as soon as I picked it up, I could barely put it down again to do the things that needed to be done.  I just love this world, and finding out what happens to the characters.  Now unfortunately there will be some spoilers in the next paragraph if you haven't read the two books before this one, so you may want to stop reading now, knowing that the series just keeps getting better!
Where we left off, there were only four of the crew left, Benny of course, his girlfriend (?) Nix, his best friend Chong, and The Lost Girl, or Lilah as everyone now knows her name.  Benny's older brother Tom having been shot in the last book, and fortunately not coming back as a zombie, so that Benny wouldn't have to quiet his brother, like he and Tom had been forced to do to their own parents.  Chong and Lilah seem to have a bit of a relationship.  Well, we know Chong has a crush on her, even though Lilah calls him a boy from the city who can't take care of himself.  But she does show that she has feeling for him in return when as she leaves to go find the parents of a little girl, she unexpectedly kisses Chong.  Now this little girl is named Eve, and she got separated from her parents by some people that we come to learn are called The Reapers.  They are basically a death cult.  People who don't see the reason for going on after all that has happened, and so they go around trying to get people to either join them, or they will usher them into the next life, or "the darkness" as they call it.  They do this by "opening red mouths into their skin".  Wounds, fatal wounds obviously.  The leader of this cult, well there are kind of two.  We do find out later that one leader was a serial killer before all the zombie plague started.  The other leader, a woman, well, not sure exactly what her deal is, other than she wants to get to the Sanctuary.  A place she's heard has food and doctors and everything to take care of people.  Throughout the story all four of them get separated at some point.  We learn about all the wild animals from zoos that escaped.  And that animals up until now haven't gotten the virus.  Although that may be changing as Lilah finds out in the story.  We also get to meet one of the people from the Zombie cards as well.  Where the book leaves off is kind of disheartening in a way.  I'm not sure that I liked it.  I'm hoping we can pick up from that ending with the fourth, and what I believe is the final book in the series.  Although I will be sad to leave the characters and this world behind.  I guess that means I will soon have to move over to the other zombie series by this author.
If you're a fan of zombie books, this is a definite read for you.  All four of the books in the series are now out, and the e-novella that I got to help name, Tooth and Nail, is now available.  Below I've shared two pictures.  Me with the author, Jonathan Maberry, at BEA 2012.  And 2nd is the autograph inside my copy of this book, proving my part in helping with naming the novella.