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No Easy Hope (Surviving the Dead, #1)
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No Easy Hope (Surviving the Dead #1)

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  1,498 ratings  ·  111 reviews
My name is Eric Riordan. Once, I was a wealthy man leading a comfortable, easy life. Then my old friend Gabriel told me how the world would end. Gabriel tried to help me. He taught me everything he learned as a Scout Sniper in the Marine Corps. All the hard lessons from years spent in the sand choked battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan. I did everything I could to prepare ...more
Kindle Edition, 349 pages
Published November 8th 2011
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,649)
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Mar 25, 2012 Seawood rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: gun freaks
An example of pure awfulness. GUNS! MEN! Er...plot? Any understanding of science whatsoever? Believable characters? Women who do more than cooking and fucking? All the men got firearms before the little ladies did, despite several of the women being ex-military or otherwise "excellent shots". And all the way through there was this irritant, persistant mosquito whine subtext of "no homo...really, honestly, I'm not gay! Or homophobic! See, I have a gay character! In the military!" Yeah, a gay char ...more
I can not, in good conscience recommend this book to anyone above the age of 15.The fact that its average rating is almost a 4 is both surprising and casts a serious shadow of doubt over my own sentiments. Regardless, I'll offer my rationale for such a poor rating. No disrespect intended to either the author or the fans of this book, which there appear to be many. Since I'm new to offering my thoughts on books, I'm uncertain as to whether these types of disclaimers are necessary, and frankly fin ...more
From the first sentence I knew what to expect from this book; a shallow tale written by an author who is obsessed with guns, yet has probably never used one. His weaponry commentary is above and beyond unnecessary. The pages in this book that don't mention a gun are few and far between. And firearms aren't simply mentioned; the main protagonist can identify any and every type/manufacturer/chambering/and custom mods on a weapons platform at first glance, and will comment on such information at le ...more
This book was a bit frustrating. The story concept is solid and actually contributes a slightly different take on the societal response to a zombie apocalypse than most other books in the genre (at least those I've read). It was also a very quick read as it absolutely did not offer any weighty theories the reader might want to take time to digest. Nothing wrong with fairly superficial fiction if that's what you're in the mood for.

But the book has problems, and not minor ones, that would either i
Brian Switzer
"Dude- great concept!" "Terrible execution Bro."

No Easy Hope really frustrated me. Cook had a terrific idea- a guy trying to make it a couple of hundred miles to his buddy after the zombie apocalypse, fighting zombie hordes and encountering myriad troubles along the way. There is so much that could have been done with that.

Unfortunately what he did was produce a book that seems to have been written by a 15 year old virgin gun nut.

I looked past the contrived beginning where our Hero just happened
John Podlaski
I have been loading up my Kindle with "free" books that appear interesting, then find it difficult to choose which one to read next. The other day, I had just finished a murder mystery and came upon "No Easy Hope" on one of the websites advertising free Kindle books. It just so happened that I didn't have any other zombie books lined up so I downloaded it and began reading. As many of the other reviews state, it does start out slow with much discussion about weaponry and other reasons for being ...more
Rhys Chamberlain
No Easy Hope by James Cook was a pretty good read. Set in North Carolina (which I was excited about as I lived in the state for a while), it follows Eric Riordon a man wrapped up in the quickly decaying World during a zombie outbreak. I liked how it described in-depth how the outbreak occurred and how it spread. I liked his description of the infected and their attributes and movements. Cook created characters which had personality and were believable. The plot kept me reading along at a reasona ...more
TW Brown
So, we have met Gabe and Eric up to this point and we get some more of the backstory on these two as their friendship solidifies. Also, we learn about some of Gabe's dirty little secrets. Then, at about 12% into the book, the zombie event resumes its center stage role. This is another book that does a great job of giving a plausible cause. Of course, on the down side, it does use the US Government (CDC to be even more specific) as the culprit. But that is really my only story-related critique at ...more
Robert Fabregas
1. What did you like about the book and what could of been better?
I loved this book for every part of it. Everything was described in a very real and understandable way, bringing the reader to believe the world was real. The only thing I think could of been done better was that it moved too slow around the middle of the story, and that it ended kind of abruptly. While I understand suspense is a great way to get people to buy the next book, I think it could of been eased into it a bit more.

2. Wha
When I first came across this book, I read the reviews first, of course, and I distinctly remember one of the reviewers saying that it was ‘a man’s book’ full of manly descriptions involving weapons etc. I am not a man, I am also not a weapons expert nor do I know anything about military terms and manoeuvres, but I though why not, it looks interesting, and downloaded it. One of my better decisions – it was a page turner and I could not put it down.

It was extremely lucky for Eric that he was a ve
This book was a hilarious joke that demanded public readings for all my friends. I have never read a more ridiculous collection of bromance cliches strung together between endless armament and supply lists passed off as fiction. Don't get me wrong, I like all the ingredients, but they have to be mixed together in correct proportions with some editing or it's never going to be palatable. I can't believe this guy couldn't find a friend or any woman on the planet to read this and say, "whoa! Hold o ...more
This was my second zombie apocalypse genre book I've read. This one was a lot better than Mountain Man. It wasn't as vulgar and more descriptive. You can tell it was written by a pro-gun conservative...which isn't a bad thing at all. The story was great. Minus the zombie hoard, it made me want to go check out the mountains in North Carolina. I wouldn't recommend this book to minors though since it does have adult situations in it. The biggest fault of this book was it badly needed an editor. The ...more
Barbara Chandler
Loved it

This was a quick read, enjoyed it thoroughly, this is the 2nd one I read, started on 5 not realizing it was a series. The two books are fine as a stand-alone book. I'm liking how each story may flow into the others at some point, it seems to be written that way.
The author does a nice job fleshing out the characters, pun intended. I could tell this was the first, the writing style and editing were fine tuned by the fifth book.
I recommend these books, I'm moving right into the next one, th
Michael Clifton
No Easy Hope was a very enjoyable read. If you like the zombie-apocalypse genre (a growing and crowded field!), No Easy Hope was a cut above the "pack". I particularly liked the book's introduction on how the zombie apocalypse started and how the main character, Eric, prepared for it. I felt this was one of the book's strengths.

As a zombie-apocalypse novel, familiar themes were followed: a virus creates hordes of the undead which is spread by being bitten; the undead have an insatiable appetite
As far as Zombie books go, it's decent for it's price on Kindle. The story has less edge-of-your-seat drama than the other books in the genre I've read. If you are looking for a less anxiety-filled zombie apocalypse story, this would probably fit the bill. The author also set up our main character too well for the events that unfold, which is why I didn't give it more stars. But it is quick and somewhat entertaining. Not worth $10 so I'm glad it is priced under $4. :-)
Cheryl Landmark
I think I would have enjoyed this post-apocalyptic book about zombies much more if not for a few issues that tended to deflate my enthusiasm at times.

First of all, the tedious, continuous, annoying in-depth descriptions of all the guns and weaponry. Okay, if you're a manly, macho Rambo-type person with an obsessive passion for all things that shoot bullets, then I suppose this book is definitely for you. For me, my eyes tended to glaze over when the author went into pages and pages of descriptio
2.5 stars. Starts out awful, just terrible. I nearly quit at the 20 page mark and was going to write a review to the effect of "if you're a macho, sexist pig who like to read about other macho, sexist pigs then this is the perfect book for you."

I stuck with it and it does get better. Dialogue becomes less ridiculous although the main character has about as much personality as a telephone pole. Stock zombie novel, amateur first book.
Emma Williams

Excellent! Loved this. Really interesting and engaging. Characters very well drawn. It focuses more on the people than the situation I felt which was a welcome change. Loved it so much read the next one straight after.
"No Easy Hope" was not an extremely satisfying read for me. I found it easier to suspend my disbelief in the creation of the zombies and the reason for the plague than I could ever suspend my disbelief of the existence of the protagonists. Two multi-millionaires in great physical shape with all the training and weaponry they need to survive the beginning of the apocalypse? Really? Often, I felt as if I were reading a manual for use of specific types of weapons or hand-to-hand combat. Interesting ...more
Trying to read more books out of my comfort zone & a Zombie Apocalypse books certainly fits that bill. This book could have easily received a full 3 stars from me, if it had been edited better & if the men in the book were not portrayed like a bunch of Rambo Frat boys & the women portrayed like a bunch of sex-starved bimbos. There is a lot of gore, violence & some pretty foul language, but the real problem IMHO, were the awful stereotypes. Part of me would like to see if the auth ...more
Finally! A zombie novel that makes sense. Smart decisions, high aggression and a wide range of human response to the event.
David Briggs
A great read... Old school zombie book that was alot of fun to read
Joe Sullivan
I would have never thought I would read a Zombie novel. A topic that never seems to go away. Worn out would be a better way to describe it. However, I was surprised how Cook makes the story very interesting. First book in a while I have been so interested in that I couldn't wait to get off work to start reading to pick up the story. Thanks for the long chapters without breaks. And it's a ZOMBIE novel? Now I am interested in the genre. This book was free through amazon, but I will buy the next bo ...more
I'd have to put this in my top 3 zombie series out there today. Maberry's Rot & Ruin is hands down the best right now. Bourne's Day by Day Armageddon would be next. Considering Bourne's disappointing part 3, this actually might be my second favorite.

Pros - the plot didn't always necessarily make perfect sense but, for me, it did very well at not going in the direction that you'd expect it to. Decisions and situations never seemed to follow the exact stereotype of what is expected in the maj
Chad Beaudin
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I stumbled upon this author through some of my other recent "first published independently" reading lists. When I discovered the author was a fellow North Carolinian and that the story takes place here in NC, I was fairly excited to try him out!

The zombie genre is, in a word, overdone these days, but I was hoping for a new twist on the theme. This one is well written, and kept me interested all the way. There were a few minor snags for me, though.

The prologue started out great. Once we get into
Owen Baillie
I thought this was a good first effort.

The story is told in first person several years after the virus has occured. It then recounts the backstory up until that point, beginning with the onset of the infection and subsequent collapse of civilisation.

There was lots of technical information about weapons and military hardware. I don't mind that but much of it is lost on a layman like myself. The prose flows well and is easy to read, but it could probably be cut by a third. I noticed definite impro
A post-apocalyptic novel about the spread of zombies throughout the earth.

-The writing is coherent. It works well, and is edited properly.
-The story is a decent one, with good explanation on the back end.
-It doesnt take long to get into the meat of the story
-Works in the idea of people who want to profit from the downfall of humanity.

-Some items in the book are repeated too often. Common phrasing sort of thing.
-Certain points drag on a little bit.
-There is a portion when meeting surv
Nick Grayson
More end of the world how to be a survivalist story then a oh my god zombies are gonna eat my guts run run run! supernatural/fantasy fiction. but yeah this guy has money makes only one friend and that guy knows it all and gives the main character a handy little manual when shit hits the fan. would have been way better with some sex scenes/deep and dark romance but it did hook me into reading the next book so maybe the ongoing story will improve in that direction hopefully.
Marie Bayer
Overall not bad as the start to a series. A lot of pages spent on establishing the main character and how the changes affect him.

The now-common "CDC screwed up" trope is used as the plot device. It's the easiest way to get zombies into the story.

There's a LOT of detail on the firearms and other weaponry. At times it gets intrusive then I skipped over those parts because at this time they have no bearing on the story.
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Zombies!: Buddy Read: No Easy Hope 4 8 Sep 11, 2014 06:57AM  
Apocalypse Whenever: Free on Kindle: No Easy Hope (Surviving the Dead #1) 2 37 Jul 09, 2013 02:29PM  
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James N. Cook (who prefers to be called Jim, even though his wife insists on calling him James) is a martial arts enthusiast, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, a former cubicle dweller, and the author of the Surviving the Dead series. He hikes, he goes camping, he travels a lot, and he has trouble staying in one spot for very long. Even though he is a grown man, he enjoys video games, graphic novels, an ...more
More about James N. Cook...

Other Books in the Series

Surviving the Dead (5 books)
  • This Shattered Land  (Surviving the Dead, #2)
  • Warrior Within (Surviving the Dead, #3)
  • Fire In Winter (Surviving the Dead, #4)
  • The Darkest Place (Surviving the Dead, #5)
This Shattered Land  (Surviving the Dead, #2) Warrior Within (Surviving the Dead, #3) The Passenger (Surviving the Dead, #3.5) Fire In Winter (Surviving the Dead, #4) The Darkest Place (Surviving the Dead, #5)

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