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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Review/Giveaway: Revamp by Beck Sherman

Title: Revamp
Author: Beck Sherman
Published: March 2012
Format: Ebook provided by author and Bewitching Book Tours for review

News reporters scrambled. This was the biggest story to come along in weeks. 

They called it a blackout. 

The last one was in New York City in 2003, but this one was different, special, because the grids in six major cities across the country had been fried, kaput, see-you-next-Sunday. Everyone with some jurisdiction blamed each other, and when there was no one left to blame, terrorism rode in on its gallant steed. 

It was the media’s fault. They were so busy stuffing fanatical Muslims with a penchant for Allah and decapitations down the American citizen’s throat, that they never saw it coming. I guess I shouldn’t be too hard on them. 

They were partially right. 

It was terror after all, but a whole new kind. And when the lights came back on, things had changed. 

The dark had brought us visitors.
"Life doesn't always give us a choice" - Cooper to Emma 

I haven't completely finished this book by the time of posting, although I will have it finished later in the day.  But I wanted to get the post up, and I felt like I've read enough so far that I could give an honest review without blowing sunshine.

This is absolutely a crazy story.  It's like Dawn Of The Dead meets Slumber Party Massacre meets Night of the Comet.  It is a bit apocalyptic, and a bit dark.  The lead female, Emma, is an independent and strong young woman.  She's got a sharp wit and a bit of snark, my favorite combination.

If you woke up and it appeared that everyone was gone, what would you do?  That dilemma happens pretty quick in this story, and it was pretty eerie how it all went down for Emma.  But she is surprisingly tough and she gets herself out of a couple sticky situations, and finally she is "rescued" by Cooper.  And she also picks up a canine companion along the way, naming him Schizo.  These three, while not the only characters in the story, are the ones making it interesting for me.  Of course, Emma has a lot of qualities I like to see in my heroines.  But Cooper definitely carries the hero qualities that I look for too.  My only real complaint about Cooper is that any description I saw of him seemed to fly by, and I have a hard time picturing him in my head.  So the picture I've built of him probably isn't accurate, but it works for me haha.  And then of course Schizo provides some comic relief at some points, and even being a dog, he adds a bit of humanity and gives faith when needed.

"I wanted to go home.  I was drugged, I was hungry, I was angry, I had just committed my first murder, and I was covered in other people's bodily fluids.  California was not at all what I expected."

It is writing like that which will make me snatch a book up.  I love the horror, wit and snark, all rolled into one.  And it is all plentiful in this book.  On top of that, this book isn't about zombies, its about vampires.  That is very different in and of itself.  Usually, as readers, we run to vampires as our sexy and dark heroes.  But in Revamp running to these blood suckers is going to get you killed, and in a bad way.  In the beginning things seem a little off.  People act a bit odd, and some things don't add up.

The thing I like about dystopian and apocalyptic books is that the survivors usually find eachother and rebuild some semblance of past lives.  Revamp does this also, and in a place I've never seen it done.  A storage unit facility.  I love this idea!  Actually, I love it so much that I had to email an apocalypse planner that I know and suggest the idea to her.  Beck Sherman definitely has an original idea here, one that I am definitely going to keep in mind when the times comes!

I'm really enjoying this book on several levels, and I wish that I had picked it up a bit sooner.  It's a longer story, coming in at over 400 pages (although I think I saw 650 somewhere online, but that would depend on ereader formatting, I'm sure)  It definitely doesn't feel like it is that long, it goes quick.  But it is something I didn't realize in the beginning (the length).  But I find that is a good thing (not knowing), because I might have not picked it up at all.  This book won't be in any race for cover love, as far as my opinion goes.  But once you read it, the cover kind of fits the quirky nature of the book. Beck Sherman has a terrific writing style, and things flow well.

So yes, I recommend this book.  If you want a unique storyline, and you want to read about vampires that aren't the object of our desire, then this is a good place to start.  There are some grotesque parts in this book, but hey, that's what makes it better.  The horror element is fantastic, and there is a lot of action. This book works for me with its style, funny quips and comebacks, and there are definitely some touching scenes.  It works for me on every level, actually.  Just consider me a new fan.

Smashwords       Amazon           BN

Please note that this giveaway is tourwide.  Fictional Candy is not responsible for notification or delivery of prize

Prize: Two Print copies of REVAMP, open to US Shipping only

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Author Bio:

Beck Sherman was born and raised in Massachusetts, studied undergrad at Syracuse University, has a master’s degree in photojournalism from the University of Westminster, London, and when not writing, enjoys exploring abandoned insane asylums and photo-documenting the things that go bump in the night, when they’re kind enough to pose.