Written by: Frank Tayell
Narrated by: Tim Bruce
Length: 7 hrs and 56 mins
Series: Surviving the Evacuation, Book 1
Publisher: Frank Tayell
One of my favorite reading experiences was discovering Day by Day Armageddon by J.L. Bourne. This was about seven years ago, and I probably haven’t found as many books that I’ve enjoyed as much in that time frame. There was a magical kind of balance in the journal format combined with the onset of the apocalypse. Not to make this a review of DbDA, but ever since discovering that read, sitting on my couch with no other entertainment in mind that could compete, I’ve been searching for a replication of that. London (Surviving the Evacuation #1) is the closest thing I’ve found to DbDA, with Apocalypse Z: The Beginning of the End as a close second.
London has a couple unique twists to the zombie genre, while also fitting inside a sweet spot for what zombie fans love. Our main character was left behind due to a broken leg while the rest of England evacuated. I liked this because of how it set the pace, and because as you’ll notice in Walking Dead, at some point, fighting zombies isn’t that hard. London uses the slow kind that can pick up a little, so our main character has a bit of a chance, but if you can imagine fighting a rapid animal, “slow” or not, while also balancing on a crutch, you get that added suspense of risking death. With so many zombie stories out there, it’s the subtle distinctions that can grow into unique scenarios while also giving us the sweet spot zombie survival stories that we come for.
Another unique aspect that I liked was our main character. He’s one of the governmental leaders in terms of strategy for combating this sudden outbreak, so he’s smart, and gives us that trope of zombie stories where we hear about all of the fascinating ways in which humanity responds to the outbreak. I liked his humor, how he tries to battle the clock as he figures out how many days he will need to stay in a cast with how long his food and water will last while stranded in an apartment in the city.
London is an ideal zombie story for fans of the genre in general, but also for those who like journal format. There’s humor and intelligence with the main character, and as the story expands, the characters only add to the intrigue pushing the plot forward. I love finding a book that exceeds expectations and ends with the desire to pick up the next volume right away.
The narrator fits the accent for the English setting, and does everything you’d ask to keep these characters alive and the story on a strong pace.
*I’m catching up on reviews here, so I can say that the next book is even better.