My guilty pleasure reads of recent years have been post-apocalyptic, or zombie apocalypse type novels. They are books where I know a great deal about the things in the book, already agree with the likable parts and characters, and generally don’t have to pay much attention to understand what is going on. There are other books I have read the others would call “guilty pleasures”, but for me, they are a learning experience, either by the material in the book, or about the groups of humans particular to that type of information.
As with most fiction work of this nature, these books come as a series. Given the word count, I don’t blame them for doing this, and as a generally held principle, the more money anyone in a creative field can acquire the better for everyone. The series Surviving the Dead, by James N. Cook starts us off on book 1: No Easy Hope. I’ve read most of the entire series, but I’ll focus here on book 1.
We begin this journey down the road from where it all began, and quickly move in to the journal of one of the main characters, taking us back to a start point. The two main characters, Eric, and Gabe, meet during the sale of a isolated cabin. A friendship developed between the two over mutual shared interest, and escalates in to a close brother-like bond. Over time, Eric learns a great deal about Gabe, and his interest in the cabin he sold to Gabe, which leads to the building of survival shelters, and everything that goes along with that. We quickly learn that Gabe knows about things that warrant a great deal of money going out for these shelters, so when those things come in to reality, more information flows from him to Eric.
Cook takes us from that point to following Eric as he departs his safety looking for Gabe at that old cabin. Because things have changed, and become dangerous, a simple drive to the sticks isn’t in Eric’s future. What we do see, is Eric’s resolve to find Gabe, and how he isn’t changed much from who he became after meeting Gabe. The plans they made are still being followed, and those still living have yet to make everyones decisions overly complicated.
By the end of book 1, the stage is set for the following books. News comes to Eric and those around him, the loss of friends and strangers has began hardening people’s resolve, and the journal to get to Gabe’s place has not left Eric’s vision.