Sue Moro's Reviews > 100 Days in Deadland

100 Days in Deadland by Rachel Aukes
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it was amazing
bookshelves: first-reads, favorites

100 Days in Deadland is a first person account of survival after a zombie plague spreads rapidly through the population.

The book parallels Inferno, the epic poem written by Dante Alighieri. Ms. Aukes divides her book into nine parts representing the nine circles of Hell. Cash is the poet, and Clutch takes on the role of Virgil, her guide.

The book starts with a bang as Cash, our main character who receives this nickname later in the book, finds herself under attack by crazed fellow office workers. She has to fight for her life to escape the building. Shortly after her escape she flags down a trucker by the name of Clutch. He helps her get away but only agrees to allow her to stay at his farm for one or two days at most before she must leave. He has to consider his own survival, and he sees Cash as a liability who would just use up his supplies.

Cash is panicked that she could soon find herself alone amidst this chaos, and she becomes determined to prove her worthiness to stay. Clutch eventually relents and the two begin a journey of survival through the Hell that their world has turned into.

Clutch acts as her guide, teaching her survival training and hand to hand combat and how to shoot. She begins hardening her body and soul to the horrors she will inevitably face. I really liked the development of her character from a terrified office worker to an eventual badass who can more than take care of herself. It's not an over night change, and we see the hard work she goes through, and her struggles to retain her humanity.

Clutch is a complex character. A truck driver who lives on a farm, he is also a former Army Ranger who suffers from PTSD. He at first seems very hardened to Cash's plight, but slowly, very slowly softens and allows her into his world.

Not too far into the book, a teenage boy from a nearby farm joins the two and they become a sort of makeshift family.

Danger comes at them in many forms, the main one being from the zombies or zeds as they are referred to. They also have to contend with food and water shortages and the threat from other survivors who are willing to do whatever it takes to survive in this kill or be killed world.

The world building is well done in conveying this sudden event that has occurred. Cars have been abandoned in the middle of streets, stores have been looted, and everywhere are the dead or the walking dead. The book has some really intense action scenes, but what I really liked was the character development. I really cared about these people. I felt invested in their plight. I found it difficult to put the book down and wanted to just keep reading to see what happened next. The zeds were interesting in that the newly "turned" were faster and stronger than those that had started to deteriorate more.

We are introduced to more characters as the story progresses, including a protagonist more evil than the mindless zeds. He uses some unique, and horrific, methods of combat against his enemies. Sometimes it's the living that are to be feared the most. Some of the atrocities that they commit reflect the sins within the nine circles of Dante's Hell, and I liked how the author worked that into the story.

The ending is a bit abrupt, though similar to the conclusion of Inferno. A sequel is currently listed on Goodreads, at the time I'm posting this review, entitled Deadland's Harvest. Perhaps Ms. Aukes plans on completing her own Divine comedy with a version of Purgatorio and Paradiso to follow. If so, I will definitely be picking up copies!
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Reading Progress

June 6, 2013 – Shelved
June 6, 2013 – Shelved as: to-read
September 12, 2013 – Started Reading
September 15, 2013 –
page 113
25.11% "I'm really enjoying this book so far! Cash, the main character, is great, and so is Clutch. Great pacing right from the start!"
September 16, 2013 –
page 154
September 17, 2013 –
page 284
63.11% "Still LOVING it! Chomp...chomp...BRAINS... Cash is turning into a badass!"
September 18, 2013 –
page 352
September 19, 2013 – Shelved as: first-reads
September 19, 2013 – Finished Reading
February 28, 2015 – Shelved as: favorites

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message 1: by Sue (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sue Moro OMG! I just won the Goodreads giveaway for this book! I'm soooo excited!

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