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Deadlands (Mall Rats #1)

3.77  ·  Rating Details  ·  255 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
Ten years after Cape Town was destroyed in the War with the living dead, zombies ramble free in Cape Town's suburbs (known as the Deadlands), and the remaining living are either in fenced in on farms or in urban shantytowns.

The living are watched over by the mysteriously robed Guardians, a race of humanoid figures who appeared at the end of the War and who keep the living
Paperback, 293 pages
Published February 2011 by Penguin
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(showing 1-30 of 632)
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Kimberley doruyter
Sep 03, 2015 Kimberley doruyter rated it liked it
the country goes to hell in a zombiebasket and people go absolutely mad.
Stephanie (Stepping out of the Page)
Deadlands is not a book I had heard about and I hadn't heard of the author, Lily Herne, before I picked this book up, but I'm always willing to read books that are new to me, and it's even better when they're unexpectedly fantastic like this one! I am so glad that the publishers put Deadlands on my radar and I'm glad to be able to share it with you, too.

Deadlands is the beginning of a new young adult series set in Cape Town, South Africa. I have only read one other book set in South Africa, so t
C Hellisen
Mar 28, 2011 C Hellisen rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Deadlands is Cape Town after the zombicalypse. Or at least, that’s the premise, but there’s more to it than a rehash of The Forest and Hands of Teeth for the South African market. And while it has the same feel as its YA contemporaries like Suzanne Collins’s Hunger Games and Carrie Ryan’s The Forest of Hands and Teeth, it has a pervasive political wit that shimmies along underneath, poking fun at giants and wanna-be giants alike.

It is gritty and ugly – the Cape Town it paints is not the Cape Tow
Side note: A shortened version of this review orginally appears on the women24 website, which you can find here.

Young Adult satirical zombie fiction has a new home. And it's right here in South Africa. And yes, you should get a copy.

17-year old Lele and her brother are stuck and living with her parents in the city enclave.

It's one of the few safe places following both the war and the appearance of the Zombie menace that has been ravaging the Deadlands (the area designated as unsafe and outside o
Craig Smith
Jul 21, 2011 Craig Smith rated it it was amazing
Lele is your typical teenager, she hates school and she has a crush on the cool guy, but there's one very large twist to her story. Everything isn't normal. When people die they don't stay dead. Yes, you've got it. She's living in the time of Zombies. Zombies that have destroyed the world and pushed humans down a notch in the food chain.

And if that wasn't bad enough a group of people known as the Resurrectionists have taken control of the enclave. The only safe spot in Cape Town. A safe spot cre
Christa  Seeley
I am a sucker for zombie novels. I can't quite put my finger on why but I absolutely love them. So when I was offered a chance to review Lily Herne's Deadlands (a novel with the tagline - Everything's better with Zombies - Not) I jumped at the chance.

Deadlands starts out on a strong note. As the reader we're immediately introduced to Lele, a zombie apocalypse survivor living in South Africa. I think I can count the amount of books I've read that were set in South Africa on one hand. It's not a s
Mar 14, 2011 Monique rated it really liked it
Deadlands is the first of its kind- a South African zombie novel. While the SA slang and expressions are pretty abundant, it is nothing a decent glossary can't fix and this book can easily be enjoyed by readers worldwide.

The plot and characters are well-thought out with twists that left me thinking "ahhh, that totally makes sense". Lele is spunky and brave. She outshines plenty of YA heroines.

My only peeve is that the last sentence of each chapter could have been done away with. It was usually a
Nerine Dorman
Jun 26, 2011 Nerine Dorman rated it it was amazing
Finally! A South African publisher brings out genre fiction for YA with a South African setting. This is a fun, easy read that not only offers some zombie arse-kicking action, but also takes a look at a post zombiepocalyptic setting in a way that takes not so subtle stabs at current South African society.

This book is very much geared toward being a quick read and offers plenty of pop culture references with a nod toward Max Brooks' World War Z and The Zombie Survival Guide, as well as George A
So, there were good points and bad points to this book. World building was good, I liked the setting and I REALLY liked that it was set in South Africa, it is always great when I get to read about different countries, even if they are completely changed by being 10 years into a zombie infestation. Things I wasn't so keen on was that the story seemed to taper off and get a bit by-the-numbers at the end, but also I felt things jumped about really fast and while I understand things were going down, ...more
Michelle Moore
Apr 25, 2015 Michelle Moore rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2013
Deadlands is a YA book set in South Africa, somewhere in the near future. Most of Cape Town is now infested with zombies, and those unaffected live in enclaves, protected by the mysterious Guardians.

It starts with Lele attending the funeral of her grandmother, which takes a unusual turn when the Guardians arrive to take the body out to the Deadlands, where she will turned into a zombie by the existing ones. In addition, a lottery is held yearly, when teenagers are chosen to be taken by the Guard
Aug 22, 2014 Jude rated it really liked it
I read all three of the books in this trilogy over four or five days. I liked them very much. I have read other reviews that point out obvious flaws - for example too many sections end with a predictive "we couldn't have been more wrong" expression alerting to the reader to the next disastrous event. Other issues for me included the attempt to give one of the characters a London accent, which mainly consisted in adding "innit" to the end of most of his sentences... The ending of the third book i ...more
Apr 05, 2014 Kirsti rated it it was amazing
A random selection bought me this book, along with about five others. I was sure I'd like it, but zombies terrify me. Like I'm talking I'll be having a shower and hear a noise in the house and start planning my zombie escape plan. I don't live long. This book does give you the sense that zombies are scary, but since the main character is immune I didn't get so scared. I loved the unique (for me) setting in Cape Town. I am so used to reading YA set in America, Australia or the UK that this felt l ...more
Lobke Minter
Jun 22, 2012 Lobke Minter rated it did not like it
Not having encountered Lily Herne before, I was enthusiastic to read this novel, as it was highly recommended to me.

The plot and characters are definitely written for an audience between the ages of 12 - 14. It seems incredibly difficult to write a story that focuses on both the love interests of an adolescent girl and being chased by zombies. When making a decision on where to focus the narrative the author makes sure that the potential love connection wins out every time.
Lucy Saint-smith
May 24, 2016 Lucy Saint-smith rated it liked it
Deadlands is about a girl called Lele who lives in Cape Town after the zombie apocalypse. It's written in three sections. The first, the setup, is 4-star-worthy, not perfect but intriguing and fresh with some interesting characters.
Unfortunately parts 2 and 3 are more like a 2-star book, the action shifts to a pre-determined plot, where the main character moves along on rails and nothing really rings true. The new characters introduced at this point try so hard to be good characters that they ar
Aug 07, 2015 Delta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: z2015
I'm not really a fan of the zombie culture, but this book was a little different. While there were definitely zombies, the focus of the plot was really about the interactions between the people in the story. The tension and fear was handled well and I really enjoyed the suspense. It felt a lot like the Hunger Games meets the Walking Dead. There will be plenty of people that will enjoy this book. Don't let the setting in South Africa intimidate you!

I listened to the audio version and Annie Heming
Gina -   Behind the Pages
See the original review on my blog, Behind the Pages

Thanks to Murdoch Books (Much in Little) for providing a copy for review

This book is completely kick-ass! Jam packed with action and suspense, Deadlands will keep you coming back for more.

Honestly, this is the perfect way to describe this book (and hoping, the series):

I imagine this happening as soon as some zombie fighting action starts! Haha and now that you’ve seen it (and imagined it being said the same as in White Chicks), you will think
Rachel (The Rest Is Still Unwritten)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 29, 2013 Carien rated it liked it
This is a nice zombie read.

I was excited to see it was set in Cape Town and had high hopes for this setting, but apart from some of the language that was used, it felt like any other post apocalyptic setting and the story could just as well have been set in any other town.

That aside: the story is intriguing and I really liked Lele, the lead character. She's chosen as one of the teenagers to be handed over to the Guardians, but instead of going along, she escapes and takes her chances outside of
Dec 21, 2012 Lainy rated it liked it
Time Taken To Read - 4 days

Blurb From Goodreads

Ten years after Cape Town was destroyed in the War with the living dead, zombies ramble free in Cape Town's suburbs (known as the Deadlands), and the remaining living are either in fenced in on farms or in urban shantytowns.

The living are watched over by the mysteriously robed Guardians, a race of humanoid figures who appeared at the end of the War and who keep the living dead at bay, albeit for a steep price. Every year the Guardians stage a human
Murphy's Library
Apr 26, 2013 Murphy's Library rated it liked it
Deadlands’ scenario is Cape Town, South Africa. It’s filled with political references to South Africa’s past and present. And, of course, there are the zombies.

This book takes place in a world after a War, where people leave confined inside the enclave. The Guardians protect people from the zombies: those who have passed are taking outside the enclave, to the Deadlands, and they become zombies. I couldn’t really figure out why there are zombies outside, besides the fact that they’re turned into
Apr 15, 2013 Celine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, zombies
Forget all the comparisons that cover Deadlands - it is more than capable enough to stand on its own.

One day during the World Soccer Cup in 2010 the Rotters came. Humanity would be lost, if it wasn't for the mysterious robed Guardians. They're the only thing that stands between humans and Rotters, but their protection comes with a price. More and more teenagers are handed over to the Guardians for unknown purposes. The public doesn't seem to mind, they even worship them. Lele isn't a Ressurectio
Mar 09, 2015 Emma rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: guest-reviews
Review by Matthew (Year 9)

Told in first person narrative from the perspective of Lele, throughout the story she faces difficult emotional challenges that push her to her very limits. Lele is a complex character complete with a short temper, however with the events within the story it is easy to understand why she has such a temper. The journey she undertakes in the Deadlands is mirrored by her journey of self-discovery; she makes friends along the way and unlocks suppressed memories within herse
Lauren Smith
Apr 11, 2011 Lauren Smith rated it liked it
Recommends it for: YA and zombie fiction fans
It's been a decade since the zombie apocalypse destroyed Cape Town in the middle of the World Cup. The survivors have established a new but distressingly familiar kind of order in heavily walled enclaves while outside, in the Deadlands, the zombie hordes still lurch. But no one is trying to wipe them out; instead, they're worshipped.

It's a brillint, unique twist on the zombie novel - zombies are the new religion, revered for 'cleansing' Cape Town of its violence and corruption so there could be
Constable & Robinson
I am an absolute YA fantasy geek and I LOVED Deadlands. It ticked all the boxes: Slightly awkward teenage heroine? CHECK. Some kind of conspiracy going on? CHECK. She's torn between two love interests, one of whom has dreads and the other is a mysterious zombie-fighter? CHECK and CHECK, my friend. It's The Hunger Games meets Zombieland, what more could you possibly want?

In a nutshell, Deadlands is about a badass teenager, Lele, standing up to The Man in the post-apocalyptic version of South Afri
Lu (Sugar & Snark)
Jul 25, 2011 Lu (Sugar & Snark) rated it really liked it
Rating 7/10

At first I thought that I might not like this book as zombies does sound like a terrifying subject, but the author made it work! With just the right amount of horror, mystery and post-apocalyptic feel, you get drawn straight into the story and you will be delighted at the twists and turns.

You can easily visualize everything in this book and I think that it would make a terrific movie or TV series. I must say I liked all the references to movies, books etc. in this novel (the main char
Shelagh (The Word Fiend)
Review from my blog: The Word Fiend

Lily Herne is the pen name of mother and daughter team Sarah and Savannah Lotz. This is their first book together and makes for an entertaining debut.

The cover of Deadlands is what first caught my attention with its mysterious hooded figure and fog shrouded landscape. It sets the scene for this apocalyptic zombie story and the feelings of dread and uneasiness it inspires followed me into the book. I was also very excited to see a book of this kind from a South
Fiona Leonard
Nov 17, 2013 Fiona Leonard rated it liked it
I've been looking forward to reading Deadlands for a while - not simply because a book about hunting zombies always makes for a bit of entertaining reading - but because this is a YA zombie novel set in South Africa. I feel very strongly that in order to promote literacy and reading in general throughout Africa, there need to be more mainstream novels set in African countries - people need to be able to read books that come from their own cultural and social experience and those books need to co ...more
Alexandra Pearson
Sep 17, 2015 Alexandra Pearson rated it really liked it
I love zombies, so I picked this book up hoping for a real treat and I wasn't disappointed. It reminded me of Romeo in the way that it uses a zombie apocalypse to comment on modern society and it was really refreshing to read a YA book set in South Africa. I could almost have lived without the romance element, but it's not too annoying and does add tension at the end. I really enjoy all the pop-culture references, especially to some of my favourite films. Looking forward to reading the next in t ...more
Apr 03, 2015 Amanda rated it really liked it
Let me start off by telling the tale of how I got this book. Long, long ago, before last summer when I got a kindle, I had to physically have a book to read it. And this book was sold exclusively in South Africa. I bought this book from a bookstore called "the book lounge" in cape town. I ordered it ground mail, and it took a perilous, rocky journey to come to me.

2 years later, I read the book.

This book is completely insane. Its post-apocalyptic, its religiously zealous, and its...spaghetti bra
Aug 21, 2013 Samantha rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror, romance, reviewed
Since the beginning of last year I have found myself becoming increasingly "into" zombie books. I have no idea why as I'm usually quite the wimp with anything gory or scary but that's the way it is.
So when I saw this book on the shelf in Big W (a miracle in itself as Australia seems to have this thing against zombie books, hell just try and find half the ones listed on this site in a regular store or library, you won't succeed I assure you) I jumped at it.

The book takes a few different stances
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Lily Herne is the pseudonym of mother/daughter duo Sarah and Savannah Lotz. A fan of fake identities, Sarah also writes an urban horror series with author Louis Greenberg under the name SL Grey as well as various crime novels, internationally anthologised short stories and screenplays under her own name. Savannah, a die-hard fantasy fanatic, is currently in her second year studying screenwriting a ...more
More about Lily Herne...

Other Books in the Series

Mall Rats (4 books)
  • Death of a Saint (Mall Rats, #2)
  • The Army of the Lost (Mall Rats #3)
  • Ash Remains

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“Everything's better with zombies - NOT” 8 likes
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