Review: Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Written By: Kellie - Oct• 29•12

alice in zombieland

Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publish Date: September 25th, 2012
Source: Purchased

Review: 4/5 White Rabbits

Synopsis: Had anyone told Alice Bell that her entire life would change course between one heartbeat and the next, she would have laughed. From blissful to tragic, innocent to ruined? Please. But that’s all it took. One heartbeat. A blink, a breath, a second, and everything she knew and loved was gone.

Her father was right. The monsters are real….To avenge her family, Ali must learn to fight the undead. To survive, she must learn to trust the baddest of the bad boys, Cole Holland. But Cole has secrets of his own, and if Ali isn’t careful, those secrets might just prove to be more dangerous than the zombies…. -Goodreads

Review: I am a long time Alice in Wonderland fan, but a recent zombie convert, so Alice in Zombieland was definitely the book I was most excited to read for Zombie Dayz. The Alice in Wonderland story is a good matchup for a lot of genre based stories where a character from our world starts to uncover strange new elements to their world that they never imagined. Plus, the cover is wonderful. I’m definitely not sick of the girls in pretty dresses trend yet, and I love that the color and image of Alice still go along with the more traditional tellings of this story.

At first, I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t a typical zombie story, and as such would be missing a lot of the survival story-lines that I usually read these books for, but the story still worked and had a lot to offer in place of cowering in abandoned hospitals as hordes of the undead converge. Gena Showalter brought a really unique perspective to the usual zombie rules, so don’t go into this book expecting to know how everything works. At times the Showalter zombies did come off as a bit silly, but having victims being able to surive zombie bites does make for some extremely scary scenes.

The pacing of the story flows nicely, and I never felt as though I had way too much information being thrown at me. Like Ali, I would be the one getting right down to it and asking every question that came to mind, and I felt like the author satisfied this need really well. If you’re going to go ahead and change all the rules on me, you better be willing to provide any and all of the information I’m looking for.

Of course, the scenes are only scary because the author managed to make all of her characters genuine and likeable. Each scene played out so nicely in my head because such vivid images of the characters had been created for me, right from each introduction. Ali is of course the favorite as she is pretty damn fearless, but never in an obnoxious way. She is probably one of the strongest lead characters I’ve read this year, and that’s saying a lot. Her best friend Kat was also down-right charming and unstoppable. I would love to hang out with both characters, any time. The love interest of the book gets an honorable mention as well, but this is arguably spoiler territory, so I won’t go there for now.

I’ll admit that the first book I read by Gena Showalter wasn’t a big hit with me, but this concept was just too good to pass up. I couldn’t resist, and I’m glad I didn’t. I loved this book. It’s not remotely a “typical zombie book”, but it does combine zombie lore with YA reading almost perfectly. I can’t wait to see what the next book in this series will bring.

Buy Alice in Zombieland
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Second Opinions
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