Let me start by saying that the post-apocalyptic/ zombie apocalypse genre has never really appealed to me. However, this book is written in such a unique format that it drew me in right away.
This story is told in the first person in the form of a letter that the protagonist, Decker, is writing to his neighbor, a woman he has never met and starts to doubt that he will ever meet. He has barely left his apartment in two years, and this agoraphobia adds an interesting layer to this already intriguing setting. So what happens when a man who has barely left his apartment in years finally leaves, only to witness first-hand the end of the world as he/ we know it? Well, you’ll just have to keep reading like I did, and believe me, it won’t be hard to do! This is a short book which I read in one sitting, and I think those who are fans of this genre will as well.
I found this novella to be well written for two reasons. First, it made me think of the post-apocalyptic world in a new way with passages such as this:
“Today I realized that I will spend the rest of my life looking for shoes my size. They won’t manufacture them any time soon, I figure, nor will the ones I’m wearing last forever. So if and when I happen upon them, it will be a big deal.”
When picturing the end of civilization as we know it or the zombie apocalypse or whatever you choose to call it, I have always pictured the destruction, chaos, and hopelessness of any unfortunate enough to survive. But to read Decker’s words, his thoughts about seeking shoes his size in this world destroyed was a fresh and unique perspective. It is passages like this that make this book stand apart from other stories of this genre.
The second reason I found this book to be well written was because of poetic passages such as this:
“Everyone I’d ever known and everyone they’d ever known and so on throughout all of human history had gazed upon these same stars. Something about that seemed strange. Everyone dies, and the stars never even blink.”
Again, this made me think of the post-apocalyptic world in a new way, not just from a survivor’s perspective but from a survivor who is used to being alone, willingly isolated, yet finds himself reflecting on the lives of his loved ones and humanity as a whole.
It is my understanding that this is just one story in a series of The Scattered and the Dead stories that take place in this post-apocalyptic world. I think that if you enjoy this genre, you will enjoy this book and likely the ones that follow it. My review: 4 out of 5 stars!