Feedback by Mira Grant
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
If I'm to be honest (and there's no point in writing this if I'm not), this book disappointed me. I am a great fan of the original Newsflesh trilogy: the first book, Feed, made me cry (and anyone who's read it will know what I'm talking about). Shaun and Georgia Mason, Buffy and the rest are great characters, and the premise pretty much reinvigorated the standard zombie-apocalypse genre, I think.
This book continues the story of that world, taking place concurrently with the events in Feed. Our narrator, Aislinn "Ash" North, is an Irwin (those who, in this universe, actually get out in the field and kill zombies). She and her team of bloggers are covering the Democratic candidate for President, just as the Masons were covering the Republican candidate in Feed. We get quite a few zombie attacks in this book, there is a conspiracy revealed that is much more straightforward than the somewhat convoluted plotting in the original trilogy, and our team ends up on the run in the wilderness.
All well and good. However, the reason this book falls flat for me is the characters. To put it bluntly, despite the author's best efforts, these people are simply not as interesting as the Masons. Ash marries her Newsie (news blogger on their team), Ben Ross, to get a green card to work in the country, but she's really in love with her Fictional (fiction writer on their team), Audrey Wen, and the three of them are in some sort of fake polyamorous relationship. Then there's the other member of the team, genderfluid Mat, who unfortunately gets offed (or zombified, rather) about two-thirds of the way through the book. Mat's characterization, as far as I'm concerned, is not well done. I realize the author is trying to be consistent by calling this person "they" and not describing them, but the end result of this is that the character came off as vague and opaque, and I didn't care about this person very much.
The writing is as good as ever, but the story just sort of peters out at the end, with an unsatisfying conclusion. To me, this book is ranked at the bottom of the Mira Grant books I've read, behind the original Newsflesh trilogy and the Parasitology trilogy.
View all my reviews