Kat Kennedy's Reviews > Rot & Ruin

Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry
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's review
Jun 11, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: fun-fantasy, kat-s-book-reviews
Read from June 10 to December 06, 2010

My little brother and I generally get along very well. Except for an occasional intellectual disagreements on ethics, morality, religion or politics we're pretty close. However, he can sometimes be a naive pain-in-the-butt. Until reading Rot & Ruin by Jonathan Maberry, I assumed this was something that would have to be cured by time, experience, and several well-timed and well-placed blows to the head.

However, parents and old siblings can now breath a sigh of relief because Jonathan Maberry has devised the perfect solution to our problems with snot-nosed, idiot teenagers!

In ten easy days your temperamental child can be transformed from shit-head to SMART-head! That's right. For only $49.99 plus postage and handling, to be paid in three easy installments you can have your very own zombie apocalypse! Guaranteed to straighten out and rectify almost any maladjusted behavior in children (excluding violence and extreme fear) and turn them into useful members of society. And if it doesn't work out - the zombies clean up the mess FOR you and nobody needs to know... CALL NOW for 250,000 extra zombies FREE for the price of 6,837,452,001!

Rot & Ruin is a great first installment in a zombie dystopian future about a boy named Benny and his older, exasperated brother Tom. This book is well written. Benny is a great character and his friends Chong, Morgie and Nix are good for a chuckle.

Tom, his dashing, debonair brother is lovable and... well, kind of hot really. Trying to deal with Benny as a fifteen year old and regular pain-in-the-ass and build some kind of relationship between the two of them, he drags Benny out of their safe town and into the 'Rot & Ruin'.

Benny's adventures there lead him to new insight into human nature and zombie nature. When things turn bad for his girlcrush, Nix, ("Oh no!" Benny says, "Don't tell people I have a crush on her! It's embarrassing and I might get cooties!") Benny has some quick growing up to do.

I really liked this story. It was such a refreshing difference in both the genre and in terms of the books I've been reading lately. The big romance in this book is not really between Benny and Nix or Benny and Lilah. It's a bromance between Benny and his brother Tom as they come together to heal their relationship and bring their small family back together.

The story is packed with action, adventure, zombies, gore and violence. That's why we read it, right? But it's also filled with loving, tender moments between the two brothers as they learn and discover new things about each other.

Nix and Lilah, the two girls in this story, are kick-arse and I give Maberry full credit and appreciation for developing two complex, intelligent and capable characters that totally own this book. From Nix who is strong and thoughtful, resourceful and compassionate, to Lilah who is cold, intelligent, capable, resourceful and dangerous. I want to see more women like this in fiction.

All up, this book is a fun, wonderful read. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I can't wait to read more from Jonathan Maberry! Oh, and if you call now, I'll add in ANOTHER 250,000 zombies to that offer. 555-ZOMBIE-YEY-111. That's, 555-ZOMBIE-YEY-111.
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Reading Progress

06/11 page 240
68.0% "This book is fantastic!"
05/14 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-19 of 19) (19 new)

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

awesome review!!!

message 2: by Kat Kennedy (last edited Jun 11, 2010 05:54PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Kat Kennedy Thanks - it's nice to be appreciated for my stupidity!

Kat Kennedy Er. I meant to say my 'silliness'.

message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

ooooh. that actually makes much more sense.

Jonathan Glad you enjoyed the book, Kat.

I'm currently writing the sequel, DDUST & DECAY.

The book will be available in the UK, by the way, also from Simon & Schuster...not sure when it lands in bookstores in Oz, however. (Sometime BEFORE the actual apocalypse I hope!)

message 7: by [deleted user] (new)

Dust & Decay is such a great title.

Kat Kennedy Ah Jonathan, you should know that nothing comes to the bookstores ANY time before the apocalypse in Oz.

I eagerly await the sequel. I'll have you know that I expect brilliance equal to the first one!

Jonathan Thanks...I'll try to throw you a few curves. (Actually, I just wrote a scene involving a rhinoceros and a field full of crippled zombies).

Kat Kennedy *tips hat* that, dear sir, is pure brilliance in the making if I ever saw it!

Jonathan The release date for ROT & RUIN has been changed. It was Oct 5, but it's been moved up to September 14 (next Tuesday!).

message 12: by [deleted user] (new)

YAY! I can't wait! The cover is absolutely stunning, Jonathan.

Jonathan Thanks...and Simon & Schuster hired noted zombie artist Rob Sacchetto to do a zombified author portrait and 'Zombie Cards' for the endpapers. (The kids in the story collect the cards).

I like Sacchetto's zombie art so much that I wrote him into the story.

message 14: by AH (new) - rated it 4 stars

AH Jonathan wrote: "Thanks...I'll try to throw you a few curves. (Actually, I just wrote a scene involving a rhinoceros and a field full of crippled zombies)."

Reading Rot and Ruin now and am enjoying it. Rhinoceros and a field full of crippled zombies - now I am going to have to read the sequel.

Great review, Kat!

Eyehavenofilter Loved this review, made me laugh, and I really needed that today!
You are AWEsome!

Lindsey Fantastic review- starting this one tonight.

Caitlin I'm glad you enjoyed it. I was a little disappointed that Maberry did more telling than showing & found myself completely dry-eyed when we thought Tom died, but I own the next two & am awaiting the fourth in the series, so I can't be overly critical without being hypocritical. Oh, the difference those four letters make.

Caitlin And I definitely find myself engaging more & more with the characters as the series progresses.

Dylan Trudeau Good review! I totally agree, and it makes me happy to see more zombie lovers

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