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Down the Road (Down the Road #1)

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  548 ratings  ·  51 reviews
A bizarre biological plague is unleashed in major U.S. cities, causing the bodies of the dead to rise and attack the living. The plague spreads across the country within hours. George Zaragosa is a kind hearted, yet bitter, school teacher who chooses to escape the madness of Austin, Texas, and journey home to his family miles away in San Uvalde. Along the way, George encou ...more
Paperback, 176 pages
Published February 28th 2005 by Authorhouse
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,236)
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Becky Ippolito
I picked up this book at a going out of business sale at borders, took it all of the way on my vacation to Disney World, only to find out that I read the stupid thing before. This book is another end of the world zombie story. Don't get me wrong, I love post-apocalyptic fiction, and I LOVE zombie stories. This one however, left much to be desired, the first time and the second time I read it. The protagonist deals with the dying of people and searching for survivors in the same way as any other ...more
Melissa Caldwell
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Bryan Zako
How awful can a story be and still get published? I think Down The Road provides insight into the publishing world on this topic. I wish I could have rated this -1 stars, that's right, a negative entry because I wasted precious hours of my life that I will never get back reading this drivel.

Here's a partial short list of the bad points:
-Author has remarkable problems with grammar, syntax, spelling, etc. I wonder who his editor at the publishing house was. That the author is a high school teacher
Mar 07, 2008 Thee_ron_clark rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: die hard zombie and post-apocalypse fans.
Shelves: zombies
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joel Wiebner
This book was like an Oreo cookie if the cream was something sucky. It started out well, and the ending was fun, but it was was stuffed with suck in the middle. Oh well, onto the next one.
Pretty much this book starts out as most zombie stories. There is an unknown plague which animates the dead. A bite or scratch spreads the infection. In this story it is mostly told from George's POV. He sees what is coming and decides to try to reach his hometown where his mother and uncle still live. The government has taken over and put people in FEMA camps for "their own good". There is also a ban on living in private homes and owning weapons, even for safety. As things progress from bad to ...more
Nov 21, 2008 Michael rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Zombie Lovers
Shelves: zombie-stuff, 2007
Down the Road: A Zombie Horror Story is Bowie Ibarra's first novel and is a respectable effort. The book follows George Zaragoza, a teacher, as he tries to make his way home through a zombie infested wasteland. Along the way he has to fight through zombies, FEMA road blocks, and other survivors. While the story keeps you interested and the book is well paced, it just lacks the moxie that some of the better zombie novels have.

I'll start with the good in the book, which makes up most of it. First
Doug Lewis
Alright .. so it wasn't terrible. But it wasn't great. I could tell far before i read the "authors commentary" that this book was very autobiographical, in a way. Being that the settings and the protagonists were based on, yes, his home area and HIS vocation. (the protagonist is a school teacher in texas, so is the author) WHile i understand this - hell, i do it - write-what-you-know thing ... you have to hide the fact that you are doing it from us within the text of your book. It was just reall ...more
Patrick D'Orazio
Overall I enjoyed this story as a traditional zombie tale. True to Romero, these zombies don't do anything that will surprise the fan of the classic movies. Bowie obviously has as much love for the stories that GAR told and added to it with his own flavor and characterizations.

I don't read other's stories so that I get spoon fed exactly what I want to see. I like an author who speaks their mind even if I might disagree with their point of view. So I can pass over what felt like a very strong in
Baidan Cortez
Picking up this book, I was genuinely excited. I love zombie stories, and "Down the Road" by Bowie Ibarra seemed promising from what I've heard. The payoff was.... genuinely disappointing.

The story starts off immediately with the zombie virus already having spread to pandemic levels. George Zaragosa is in his apartment preparing to leave. Right off the bat, this strucks the wrong cord in me, as I think part of the fun parts of zombie stories is watching the gradual fall of humanity. Here, we're
Jeremiah Boydstun
As a literary trope, the zombie has become one of the most prescient and fruitful symbols of contemporary and future human society and its many problems. It seems as if there is no limit to the possibilities that the zombie presents to enterprising writers. Nevertheless, some things will forever remain the same where writing is concerned. Despite how fantastic, weird, or stylized an idea, theme, or topic becomes at the hands of a writer, readers still expect, at the very least, that a story rema ...more
Bowie's tale sets off in a world that is slowly falling apart. The reader is quickly thrown in to the action packed tale of George (undoubtedly named after George Romero after reading about Bowie's fixation with the director), who struggles to survive as he tries to reach his hometown San Uvalde.

The characterization is somewhat simplistic throughout the novel, but this doesn't seem to detract from the tale too much. Bowie's military group FEMA is a fabulous addition to the tale, screaming of a
Frank Watson
Another zombie novel that makes the Military out to be blood thirsty and greedy. You want to pull for the main character, but the fact that he is full of personality conflicts makes it hard to do. Sometimes I wished that he would be killed and a new main character introduced. The plot was non sense, with the government, military and police bigger villains than the zombies. Along with the visions and dreams of a dead fiance who is leading the main character to avenge her death six months later an ...more
This book just wasn't for me. There were numerous plot holes indicating that the author didn't have a cohesive outline for the book. For example, the main character states early on that he only has pocket change, then when he needs to buy gas he has $30 in bills to pay with. Later his wallet is taken at a check point but he suddenly has it again after he escapes from the FEMA camp. That's just one example. The writing is also poor especially from an author who claims to be a teacher?? I'm very d ...more
DOWN THE ROAD is a great premise. It has a good idea that is not executed very well. The author tried his dead level best to make the story emotionally engaging. I have to say he fails. The story has a lot of the zombie cliches we have come to expect. However, the book reads like a personal fantasy of what the author would do if a real zombie apocalypse struck. The main character, George, has stupid amounts of sex at inappropriate times in silly settings. There is a vain attempt to insert a subp ...more
Max Kalininskij
You know, I do like the story here, the narrative. It's something different from a survival story, albeit the zombie apocalypse features heavily enough.
Here we have a man who's on a journey, yet ends up getting shuffled from one situation to the next in the process.
I can't say that's it's all that believable (yeah I know, zombies, but you know what I mean), but there's a nice little theatrical story here alright, and I like it for that, the story is very much protagonist-driven and it stays from
Jul 15, 2008 Trevor rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Trevor by: Zombies! Group
Shelves: zombies
A very cool book for those looking for a "traditional zombie" fix! It's got everything I wanted for a "summer read" - its gory, action packed, and surprisingly sexy (didn't ever think I'd be writing that line about a zombie story!). Awesome beach reading.
Andy Phillips
I was looking forward to reading this book as it had been recommended by several sources of zombie fiction fans, and by the author Travis Adkins in the book itself. Bowie Ibarra explains in his notes at the end of the book that he's a zombie fiction fan himself and a teacher, so I expected the novel to be better than average for a first attempt. I guess that it is better than average, but it's not a masterpiece.

The story centres around a teacher living in Texas ("write what you know"!) who makes
All George Zaragosa wants to do is get home safely to San Uvalda. The world around him has gone mad. A deadly plague has turned most of the human population into flesh eating zombies.

George has two choices…he could either sit in his apartment as he does have enough food to last him for at least three weeks or he can make an attempt to go down the road to San Uvalda. George decides to risk it and travel home. It will be a dangerous trek. One that George will by lucky to survive.

I recently becam
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Review provided by Black Lagoon Reviews:

Down the Road by Bowie Ibarra was a thrilling fight for survival and absolutely one of the best zombie novels that I have had the pleasure of reading. Filled with blood, gore, violence and the inevitable journey through the collapse of both humanity and society, this novel delivers to fans of zombie horror like no other.

The world Ibarra created is a devastating and frightening mirror to our own allowing us to easily slip into George's situation. This easy
Eh...just okay. If you put it on your to-read list, move it towards the bottom. There are far better zombie reads out there.

I really wanted to like this book more, but it just fell short for me. I couldn't get attached to any of the characters as no one ever really stood out in any important way. There was nothing memorable about any of them, and for me to care if the characters live or die, I need to feel something for them one way or another. The zombie action was so-so, could have more origi
Here's an old review that I wrote for this a few years back.

This is the first novel to my knowledge by the author Bowie Ibarra, and in my opinion is the beginning of a very promising career. It centres around George a school teacher who attempts to make his way home after a zombie epidemic breaks out.
It is quite an easy read, being that it is not very long, but in the short time it will take you to read there is a well written story in there. I think the main character of George is well written
After recently reading The Fall of Austin, the third in this series, I went back and reread Down The Road. It was the first of this series. I had not realized this fact until 3/4's of the way through The Fall of Austin. Well, I sat down last night and reread Down the Road.

I have to give a hats off to Mr. Ibarra. It is official he is my new favorite zombie author. I can't believe the subtle tie ins I missed. Wow! I have since ordered the second book of his on my e-reader and will start it tonig
Andrew Cormier
An okay horror story. The writing keeps your attention, but doesn't really captivate you. I found there was nothing extraordinary about this novel, and I didn't find much within it to distinguish it from most other zombie stories. It is a decent read, though, so have at it if you're not reading anything else
Lori Franklin Hopkins
I love this series! Yeah it is different, with the way the characters react to things, but not everyone is going to have the reaction that everyone wants or expects. I know Mr. Ibarra's stories have only gotten better since, because I have read some of the others in this series before this.
Jul 20, 2008 Robi rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Zombie fans; Zombies.
Recommended to Robi by: nobody
Shelves: zombie-horror
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Saint No Stopping Us

Six out of ten.

One man tries to get home to his family during the middle of a zombie outbreak. On the way he has to deal with military roadblocks, thugs and of course, zombies.

Quite typical zombie fare. Not the best but readable.

This is the worst book I have ever read, and it mat by one of the worst ever written. Please read @Bryans review for a thorough dissection.
Alexis Winning
Hmm. Well, I can't say this was a great zombie book, nor can I say that it's bad. It is exactly as described: zombie pulp fiction. There's certainly nothing wrong with a little gory self indulgence, as long as you don't take it too personally.

Ibarra has written a fun book. I do have to give it a nod, because it was one of the first zombie books published at the start of this undead craze, so when I say it doesn't really add much to the genre, perhaps I mean it helped to shape the genre? hmm.

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Bowie Valeriano Ibarra was born and raised in Uvalde, Texas on April 15, 1975. In his youth, he enjoyed acting, writing, and drawing. His most notable acting roles in High School include Huckleberry Finn, The Mad Hatter, Charlie Brown, and the Artful Dodger. Bowie also played wingback for the Uvalde Coyotes football team.
Bowie graduated from Uvalde High School and earned an acting scholarship to
More about Bowie V. Ibarra...

Other Books in the Series

Down the Road (3 books)
  • Down the Road: The Fall of Austin
  • Down the Road: On the Last Day
Down the Road: On the Last Day Down the Road: The Fall of Austin The Cruel Fate of Dr. Brewster McGill Code Name: La Lechusa Alamo Rising

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