Pabkin’s One Liner: Hold on to your knickers it’s super heroes versus zombies!
Stealth. Gorgon. Regenerator. Cerberus. Zzzap. The Mighty Dragon. They were heroes. Vigilantes. Crusaders for justice, using their superhuman abilites to make Los Angeles a better place. Then the plague of living death spread around the globe. Despite the best efforts of the superheroes, the police, and the military, the hungry corpses rose up and overwhelmed the country. The population was decimated, heroes fell, and the city of angels was left a desolate zombie wasteland like so many others. Now, a year later, the Mighty Dragon and his companions must overcome their differences and recover from their own scars to protect the thousands of survivors sheltered in their film studio-turned-fortress, the Mount. The heroes lead teams out to scavenge supplies, keep the peace within the walls of their home, and try to be the symbols the survivors so desperately need. For while the ex-humans walk the streets night and day, they are not the only threat left in the world, and the people of the Mount are not the only survivors left in Los Angeles. Across the city, another group has grown and gained power. And they are not heroes.
Just when I thought I had read almost every kind of zombie book out there, along comes Ex-Heroes. I didn’t quite know what to expect from it, having never read anything with super heroes, but what I got was a whole FACE PUNCH full of awesome! Ex-Heroes was everything I felt a good zombie book should be, with a little added spandex and flapping capes.
The amount of detail on the gore, and suspense was perfect. It was more than sufficient to paint vivid images in your mind, maybe even give you the heebie jeebies a bit. In my case with my overly active imagination, it had me flipping on all the lights in the fucking house and tossing and turning in bed with nightmares.
On a funny note, It was freaking hilarious how survivors would claim bragging rights on taking out celebrity exes.
It’s two years after the first ex-human attack, and survivors are hanging on well enough in the city of Los Angeles, with a lot of help from a handful of heroes. All of the survivors and events felt so real to me. People die, that’s what happens in the apocalypse, but they also don’t forget to keep living. What hurts the most is seeing someone’s fears taken out on those that have been trying the most to protect them. It hurt my heart to read it.
So obviously, I had total nerd love for the heroes. They were strong, tragic, arrogant, beautiful, humble, self sacrificing…they just were…heroes. My heart went out to them and I rooted for them. They aren’t just super heroes, they are people with needs and emotional baggage just like everyone else. What makes them stronger than everyone else to me isn’t their super powers but their willingness to take so much on themselves to protect so many others.
Now, even though the POV jumps around a lot to all of them and even a few times to the normal people, it works really well. Each hero had a very distinctive personality that no way could you confuse one voice with another. Also, throughout Ex-Heroes the story often jumps back in time and we get to see something of that heroes past. Whether it is how they came to be a hero or their first ex encounter, I thought these flashbacks were excellently placed, well done and extremely important! So pay attention!
And remember…exes aren’t the only thing a person has to worry about after the apocalypse! – because after all even a hero can die.
Personally, I’m like an ex gnashing my teeth for another meaty Peter Clines fix!
Tabitha the Pabkins
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