Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry
In the zombie-infested, post-apocalyptic America where Benny Imura lives, every teenager must find a job by the time they turn fifteen or get their rations cut in half. Benny doesn’t want to apprentice as a zombie hunter with his boring older brother Tom, but he has no choice. He expects a tedious job whacking zoms for cash—but what he gets is a vocation that will teach him what it means to be human. (From Amazon.ca)
I enjoyed reading this novel through and through. Sure, Benny Imura is rather hard to deal with in the first part of this book. His attitude is something close to a lazy brat who doesn’t enjoy any of the jobs he gets. Even when he becomes Tom’s apprentice, his attitude still doesn’t let up. Yet that’s the best part of Benny’s character, because it develops in a big way throughout this book. He goes from immature, to mature as the novel progresses.
I enjoy reading Benny’s friendships with Chong and Nix. Especially with Chong. They both make a perfect friendship and that’s where some of the humor comes from. Character development in this book is wonderful and well done with all of the main characters. Of all the characters, Benny’s attitude wasn’t so great but it improved as the book went along. I found it hard to like Nix. She just wasn’t that great in my opinion. (Lilah on the other hand, ended up becoming one of my favorite characters, second to Tom).
The plot of this book was also good. The action was great and everything you could want in a zombie plot. Yet besides zombies, there’s also the threat of not so nice humans out there and this is what I liked the most about the book. It’s not all just pure killing zombies, but also what humanity does in horrible situations and what some very horrible people are quite capable of doing. This was well done, as like Benny, we’re assuming this is all going to be about zombie killing. Tom shows Benny and the reader what’s it really like, getting rid of these ‘zoms’.
Zombie fans rejoice, this is one of the better books out there regarding the subject. It’s catered to a younger audience but readers of all ages should enjoy this one as much as I did. Most definitely recommended!
I give it an 8.5 out of 10.
Side note: I just finished Dust and Decay. I laughed. Then I cried. Then I yelled out: “noooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!”