by Rhiannon Frater
Kindle Edition – Read July 19, 2012
Cost: $3.99 (As of This Post)
Length: 375 pages
A walled city surrounded by lush land, protected by high mountain summits, and fortified by a massive gate to secure the only pass into the valley, The Bastion remained humanity’s last hope against the fearsome undead creatures known as the Inferi Scourge. On one fateful day, the valley gate failed and the Inferi Scourge overran and destroyed the human settlements outside the walls, trapping the remaining survivors inside the city. Now, decades later, the last remaining humans are struggling to survive in a dying city of dwindling resources…and dwindling hope.
Vanguard Maria Martinez has lived her entire life within the towering walls of steel. She yearns for a life away from the overcrowded streets, rolling blackouts, and food shortages, but there is no hope for anyone as long as the Inferi Scourge howl outside the high walls. Her only refuge from the daily grind is in the arms of Dwayne Reichardt, an officer in the Bastion Constabulary. Both are highly-decorated veterans of the last disastrous push against the Inferi Scourge. Their secret affair is her only happiness.
Then one day Maria is summoned to meet with a mysterious representative from the Science Warfare Division and is offered the opportunity to finally destroy the Inferi Scourge in the valley and close the gate, reclaiming the lost lands and energizing the populace with renewed hope for the future. The rewards of success are great, but she will have to sacrifice everything, possibly even her life, to accomplish the ultimate goal of securing the future of humanity and saving it from extinction.
I was excited to hear about this book because a) it has zombies and I love zombies and b) I really enjoyed Rhiannon Frater’s, As the World Dies books so I had to get my hands on this one as well. I think that the author is a great story-teller, the world building is fantastic and very detailed so it is easily visualized. I think that a lot of fans who like As the World Dies will naturally gravitate to this book but it is different from that world. I’ll be honest the first 34% of the book was a lot of set up for the rest of the book and got a little slow in parts and in retrospect I was glad for all of the build-up, but getting through it was a little difficult. Not because it was boring or poorly written, I just go into zombie books expecting lots of action. I did get the action and the suspense later, of course and it was great, It was just that the whole military bit was a bit of putting, I don’t know why but I’m too unfamiliar with military to really understand ranks and stuff like that.
Maria was such a great heroine and she went down some unsuspecting turns and valleys throughout this story and she was pretty bad ass through the whole thing. I expected one of two options for the ending and neither of those were what happened, which is good I’m not a fan of predictably. I couldn’t stand most of the side characters except Dwayne, Lindsay and Denman, but I don’t think we were supposed to like most of the characters. Dwayne was pretty awesome and such a great partner to Maria even though he couldn’t be with her out in the field. I loved the POV s of Dwayne and Maria and that the reader gets to see everything going on, one fills in the blanks the other leaves but leaves more blanks to be filled in later. Oh the imagery was beautiful, the world building was done fantastically, the characters were perfect and the action scenes were fun and sometimes suspenseful. I really did enjoy this book.