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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Review: Allison Hewitt Is Trapped

Title: Allison Hewitt Is Trapped (Zombie, #1)
Author:  Madeleine Roux
Publisher:  St. Martin’s Griffin
Publication Date:  January 18, 2011
Reviewer: Elisa

Summary: "One woman's story as she blogs - and fights back - the zombie apocalypse"
Allison Hewitt and her five colleagues at the Brooks and Peabody Bookstore are trapped together when the zombie outbreak hits. Allison reaches out for help through her blog, writing on her laptop and utilizing the military's emergency wireless network (SNET). It may also be her only chance to reach her mother. But as the reality of their situation sinks in, Allison's blog becomes a harrowing account of her edge-of-the-seat adventures (with some witty sarcasm thrown in) as she and her companions fight their way through ravenous zombies and sometimes even more dangerous humans. (goodreads)

Review:  The zombie apocalypse is happening and Allison and a few of her co-workers and customers are trapped in the bookstore she worked at part-time. Allison is blogging about her days.  A few people are responding to her posts as well. It is a fun set-up.  Also, each chapter is named after a book which oddly fits the events.
Funny and horrifying, Roux juxtaposes a tongue in cheek whit with the horrors of a zombie plague, not knowing where family is located, having to kill your family and friends who are bitten and the breakdown of society and its morays. But it is pretty darn funny at times if you like that type of humor.
"You don't realize until you've gone without Q-tips and tampons how instrumental they are to your comfort and sanity. Just knowing that I can wake up and clean my ears is a relief." (pg 125)
The issue with the blog device is that the immediacy and tension is lost quite often.  It is not a scary zombie novel, though it can be a little gross.  But even then, since we are a bit removed from the action, it isn't as yucky as it could be. Also, certain things can be glossed over or sprung on the reader.
There is a little bit of romance, but there are no details about any tent time (they all live in tents at some point) because she is reporting these stories online, so things are pretty PG-13 because of a little bad language and you know, killing zombies and stuff.  There are also quite a few pop culture references which are fun. This story is mostly about people and how they react to insane adversity. Some go crazy, others lose all focus and drive and yet others keep it together and make good decisions, perhaps even become leaders.
There was one event which really turned me off from Allison.  I didn't understand why it had to happen and it made me not like her much for a little while.  But I kept reading and things got better.  I know what the writer was going for, but it turned my stomach.
Anyway, this is a "fun" zombie apocalypse read where lots of people die and have a tough time of things.  It is light-hearted until it isn't.  Allison keeps things as snarky as she can, but she is a survivor and will chop you down if you stand in her way.  It made me wonder about myself and how I would deal with this type of insanity, both being stuck in a small space with too many people without running water as well as where your former friends and family try to eat you.  I enjoyed it, will probably read Sadie Walker is Stranded at some point and give this little story 3.5 stars found in a vending machine, they taste like Cheetos and won't go stale.

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