Author: Tom Leveen
Publication Date: October 1st 2013
Publisher: Harry N. Abrams
My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Breakfast Club meets The Walking Dead as a group of unlikely allies tries to survive a deadly outbreak. Brian and his friends are not part of the cool crowd. They’re the misfits and the troublemakers—the ones who jump their high school’s fence to skip class regularly. So when a deadly virus breaks out, they’re the only ones with a chance of surviving. The virus turns Brian’s classmates and teachers into bloodthirsty attackers who don’t die easily. The whole school goes on lockdown, but Brian and his best friend, Chad, are safe (and stuck) in the theater department—far from Brian’s sister, Kenzie, and his ex-girlfriend with a panic attack problem, Laura. Brian and Chad, along with some of the theater kids Brian had never given the time of day before, decide to find the girls and bring them to the safety of the theater. But it won’t be easy, and it will test everything they thought they knew about themselves and their classmates. -Excerpt from Goodreads.
This book is a mixed bag for me. While it was a fun read, I can’t claim that it was anything special.
There are minor spoilers in this review.
Sick features a cast of highschoolers who are suddenly all getting “sick.” At first they think it’s just a flu until their flesh start falling off and they go on a murderous rampage, eating everyone in sight. Our protagonist, Brian, is stuck at the school with his best friend Chad in the drama room with a bunch of other students. He’s been separated from his sister and ex-girlfriend and he can’t get ahold of either of them. This book is all about survival of the fittest and what you are willing to do to save the people you care about.
I was so on-the-fence about what rating to give this. I don’t know that it is a three star book, the writing isn’t very good. It’s quite clunky at parts and sometimes that was hard to ignore. I also had a horrible time liking the main character, to the point that I almost stopped reading the book in the first few chapters. I can’t think of a character right now that annoyed me as much as this one did. I tried to cut him some slack because he was a 17 year old boy, but ugh. The fact that he had broken up with his long-time girlfriend because she had anxiety issues and “wouldn’t get over them” just made for a very unsympathetic character. He kept mentioning that he broke up with her for her own good, so that she would start becoming more independent. I guess supporting her never crossed his mind. Jerk!
The gore in this book is very graphic – we are talking body parts being chewed up and spit out, people being mowed down in lots of fun ways and blood, oh so much blood. If you are a gore fiend then you will certainly get your fill in this one. The action was pretty decent in the book, it really didn’t drag and for the most part I enjoyed the read for what it was.
There was one glaring issue with this book though that drove meMAD!The fact that Brian was risking everyone’s life constantly to save just his sister and ex-girlfriend made no sense. Why would the group of kids care about them when I’m sure they had people they were worried about as well? I mean a lot of people died trying to get these people safe for Brian and they had no motivation to do so. I can understand that some might be brave but there is a difference between brave and stupid and too many of them were willing to sacrifice themselves for Brian’s needs.
Overall, I would say this is a fun read if you are into the horror genre and specifically zombies. It’s not anything new but it’s good way to kill a couple of hours.