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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The End Is Here with Odium by Claire C Riley!

Title: Odium
Series: yep... but the name?  I think it's Odium
Author: Claire C Riley
Published: Sept 2013
Format: Ebook provided for review

It's better to die by the gun than die by the dead.

Nina’s life was irrevocably changed when humanity’s dead began to rise.

Now, she lives behind the walls.

The barricaded cities, erected by the government to protect the remnants of civilization, have become a brutal dictatorship- causing the inhabitants within to starve, steal and claw for survival. Life behind the walls has become as terrifying as roaming the zombie-ridden landscape beyond.

Citizens trade what they can to gain food, water, and shelter. Nina has only one currency—her body and she is tired of submitting herself to the greedy hands of the self-proclaimed leaders.

An opportunity to escape presents itself in the fate of a young girl named Emily-Rose. For the price of a stale piece of bread, she is set for banishment from the city, and most likely a horrific death at the hands of the deaders. Nina tells herself that it is sympathy and not self-preservation that makes her follow the young girl out of the walled metropolis, and into the overgrown world beyond.

Unused to fighting the deaders, Nina tries to scrounge for her survival and against her better judgment, begins to care for Emily-Rose. However, when you have a bread-stealing liability providing your only back up, survival seems even tougher. Nina is forced to fight for their lives, and with every zombie slain, she becomes fiercer, faster – a grim reaper with her not-so-sharp butcher’s knife.

Along the path to a safe-haven that might not exist, Nina and Emily-Rose meet Mikey who introduces them to a new life they could not imagine, a life above the ground. However, this new world brings new dangers, and darker shadows than she knew.

Nina finds out that the deaders aren’t the only thing to fear beyond the wall.

And that fear will not be ignored, or Forgotten.

Yay zombies!  Ok, well, no, that would suck (not!) and we would all be in trouble (not me...ok, maybe me).  But either way, I love reading about them!  I've heard awesome things about Odium, and I couldn't wait to read it.  But first - I had to look up what Odium freaking meant!!  Odium: general or widespread hatred or disgust directed toward someone as a result of their actions. Oooh, Ok - I get it!  Especially after reading this book!

Ok, so I'm not going to rehash the blurb, it's all really self explanatory.  I'll hold while you go back and read it .  So, Nina.  Yeah.  She took a minute to grow on me, for real!!  I wrote this in my notes:  She's such a bitch!!  However, bitch or not, she did a rad thing by leaving the "safety" of the walls.  There were a few times where I felt she was a bit flip-floppy, but we are all lying to ourselves if we think we never do that, ya know?  So Nina ended up feeling pretty real to me.  She wasn't some badass Michonne with big ass sword.  Her character really grew through the book, and I always appreciate that.  

Emily-Rose, Mikey, Duncan, JD, Crunch and a few others... Characters come and go.  I had some I liked (Mikey!), and some I hated (hello, Crunch, you're on that list!) The thing with Odium is that these characters all have a past, and it's affecting their present.  They didn't just forget what happened in their old lives and move on.  Nope, it has importance.  Whether they were a druggie, a business owner, a criminal... It's kind of like a Breakfast Club of the zombie apocalypse.  They all end up having bits of everyone in their personality.  And that's how it has to be to survive.  Adapt and change!

Odium has something new.  The Forgotten. Talk about BAD news!!  They are society's outcasts.  Let's just say that 1) you don't want to be a part of it, and 2) you don't want to see anyone who is.  It's an interesting take on the apocalypse, especially once you learn more about life behind the walls, and life of the Forgotten.  The theme of history shaping the present shows itself again.

Deader number one is close enough now, and I swing for it in a panic.  My first one misses and I swing back wildly, cutting it through the stomach.  Its insides spill onto the blacktop with a sound somewhat akin to vomit hitting the ground, but it comes for me regardless of its loss of intestines and capacity to hold any of my fine meaty face within it. 

Something else I liked?  People are pretty clueless!  Sure, they learn as they go.  But when people suggest a bite won't turn you, I had to scratch my head a bit and wonder where this author was going with it.  As it turns out, she's pretty damn smart and used their ignorance for some awesome action, drama, and gore.  Odium definitely hits all my marks for what I look for at the end.  I cheered, I laughed with some snarky characters, I saw some very original ideas, I got grossed out, scared, and happy.  Claire C Riley writes a pretty striking story, and hell, I'm still excited about it!  If you are into zombies (you better be), then check out Odium!  I'm definitely moving forward with this series!