Thursday, October 11, 2012
Review: Dearly, Beloved (Gone With the Respiration #2) by Lia Habel
Can the living coexist with the living dead?
That’s the question that has New Victorian society fiercely divided ever since the mysterious plague known as “The Laz” hit the city of New London and turned thousands into walking corpses. But while some of these zombies are mindless monsters, hungry for human flesh, others can still think, speak, reason, and control their ravenous new appetites.
Just ask Nora Dearly, the young lady of means who was nearly kidnapped by a band of sinister zombies but valiantly rescued by a dashing young man . . . of the dead variety.
Nora and her savior, the young zombie soldier Bram Griswold, fell hopelessly in love. But others feel only fear and loathing for the reanimated dead. Now, as tensions grow between pro- and anti-zombie factions, battle lines are being drawn in the streets. And though Bram is no longer in the New Victorian army, he and his ex-commando zombie comrades are determined to help keep the peace. That means taking a dangerous stand between The Changed, a radical group of sentient zombies fighting for survival, and The Murder, a masked squad of urban guerrillas hellbent on destroying the living dead. But zombies aren’t the only ones in danger: Their living allies are also in The Murder’s crosshairs, and for one vengeful zealot, Nora Dearly is the number one target.
As paranoia, prejudice, and terrorist attacks threaten to plunge the city into full-scale war, Nora’s scientist father and his team continue their desperate race to unlock the secrets of “The Laz” and find a cure. But their efforts may be doomed when a mysterious zombie appears bearing an entirely new strain of the virus—and the nation of New Victoria braces for a new wave of the apocalypse.
Lia Habel’s spellbinding, suspenseful sequel to Dearly, Departed takes her imaginative mash-up of period romance, futuristic thriller, and zombie drama to a whole new level of innovative and irresistible storytelling. ~ Goodreads
I really, really hoped (& wanted) to love this one but the pacing was so slow and I didn't feel any of the wonder that I felt with Dearly, Departed. The whimsical descriptions of New Victoria and discovery of the zombies was mostly absent this time around.
The multiple POV's are continued here and while I wasn't a huge fan of them in book #1, I felt that they at least overlapped and added to the overall story arc. In Dearly, Beloved the characters all have such similar voices that I had problems telling them apart. Also, instead of giving a different perspective to a scene, the pov’s kept whipping me away and throwing me in a new direction. That kept making me have to take time to adjust every time.
Despite dire consequences for New Victoria, because of the rising tensions with human – zombie relations, there was somehow a lack of drama throughout most of the book.
Dearly, Beloved focuses more on zombie rights and politics than action. While I love a good moral dilemma and debate I just couldn't drum up any excitement here. Even the relationship between Nora and Bram wasn’t enough to hold my interest even though I still like them both.
It seems that most other readers enjoyed Dearly, Beloved it so definitely give it a try. The writing was top notch but it just wasn't as compelling as Dearly, Departed for me.
Rating: 2 out of 4 This sequel just didn’t work for me between the multiple POV’s and lack of the whimsy and drama that I found so captivating in the first book.
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Source: ARC provided for review by Authors After Dark
Buy the book! Dearly, Beloved: A Zombie Novel (book #2) | Dearly, Departed: A Zombie Novel (book #1)