Book Review: Edge of Mercy

“Edge of Mercy” is a post-apocalyptic, zombie infection novel told from the view point of teenager Charlie, as she attempts to live in this deadly world and protect her new-born sister, Star. It also sets the stage for the rest of the series to come. This first offering is a basic story that adheres to the zombie-universe rules set down by its predecessors – with a new element added – and introduces us to the characters, setting, and hazards.

It is a character driven story, taking time to develop the main individuals and draw the reader into the world. As a result there isn’t much action but that’s not to say there is an absence of conflict. This small group of survivors live in an abandoned and fortified mental institution, and as the plot unfolds it becomes less clear as to where the real monsters are – outside the compound or within its very walls.

Charlie is a well-developed character without the usual overabundance of angst. I appreciated that because it helped avoid cliche and kept me interested in the character. There are a few twists, not to surprising for the reader who is paying attention, but well executed even so.

Overall the writing is very good and kept me engaged the whole time. I rarely pick up YA stories and I enjoyed this one. I would consider reading the second book. The lack of zombie-killing may or may not disappoint some, and this opening book is a strong foundation for the ones to come – which are set up to throw the reader right into the midst of the zombie hoards.

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