“Autumn: The City” by David Moody

Christmas Eve in the middle of a pandemic. Everything definitely hits differently. So naturally, I picked up a zombie book to read. But, because of the nature of our world right now I feel like I should put some kind of trigger warning? I think I said the same thing in the last review.

This book continues on from the last, but this time we meet new characters. Donna, who showed up to work early only to have her coworkers walk into the building to immediately die around her. Her reaction was probably what most people would do in the given situation – she grabbed supplies and locked herself in her office. The office with the lights still on attracted another survivor, who survived the bus he was commuting on careening into a building after the driver spasmed and died. Their stories start back from the beginning, but we don’t have to sit through a whole book of stuff building. The dead bodies started to twitch, and then walk, and then evolve. Their eyes now tracked the survivors, their shuffling done with more intent.

Most of the survivors in the books just want to hide in their safe rooms and do nothing, the other half want to party. Sound familiar?

Another thing the survivors learned was if you shuffle and keep with the group speed and don’t make sudden movements, you can follow the hordes safely. Not exactly safe for sanity, but safe in a way. Many survivors had to adapt this tactic to make it to a larger group that had taken over a school.

The zombies react to the smallest noise, and now seem to actively pursue them, instead of just happening across them in their trundling path. So the smallest noises of life – walking, breathing, talking, whispering – drew the zombies in. Best place to find survivors is to look for the biggest group of shuffling dead.

Normally I’d be flying through the series, but I do have to periodically stop, just simply because it gets a little too real. And the way people react in this book makes them almost unlikable, but since living through an actual world-wide pandemic …you start to see much more unlikable behavior. No one jumps up to be the hero, most people just want to keep to themselves, and the ones that do cluster together talk about nothing but the pandemic and deaths. They assist one another, but only to benefit themselves and as soon as their lives are endangered they withdraw. Which, yeah, a little too familiar.

This book was a great look at how people react to trauma, because everyone in the book reacted differently. And it has zombies. Zombies are always good. But, remember not to push yourself if you are not comfortable with post-apocalyptic/pandemic media. We are in a strange time right now and if you can lower your stress, do so. Watch Disney, wear the fluffy pajamas, or, if you want to jump into a great zombie horror definitely check this book. Still the slow burn, but he gives you enough questions that you NEED to keep reading.

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