Tuesday, October 2, 2012

DNF: As the World Dies

As the World Dies: The First Days, by Rhiannon Frater

The morning that the world ends, Katie is getting ready for court and housewife Jenni is taking care of her family. Less than two hours later, they are fleeing for their lives from a zombie horde. 

My Take:
Well, it's a DNF (Did Not Finish), so... I think you can guess what I thought of it, but since I'm already here, I'll tell you more.  ;o)  The short explanation is that it feels amateurish-- and even more amateurish than I'd expected, knowing that this was originally a self-published zombie tale.  I could pinpoint multiple little niggling details that turned me off, but why bother?  Here are just two tiny things that turned me off from the book:

1.  "An angry howl from the other side of the door made her jump and her thick raven hair fell into her face.  With trembling hands she pushed back her tresses."
Ok, two points.  First, where are my commas?  I demand commas!  Second, ugh.  "Thick raven hair"?  "Tresses"?  Really? 
2.  "'I'm Jenni.  With an "i", not a "y".  I like it spelled that way,' the woman said softly beside her."
You have to take into consideration that this comes mere minutes after the other woman has rescued Jenni-with-an-i from a horrible death at the teeth of her own family.  Alright, maybe Jenni's supposed to be numb-- in shock-- whatever... but still.  Meh.
Anyway, there's more (the cliched pairing of a battered wife and a lesbian, some random elderly man calling out to a woman he doesn't know that she should save herself, even as he's being eaten), but why be mean by pointing out each problem?

By this point (not even through the whole first chapter), I had pretty much decided I wasn't interested, but I read a few reviews on Amazon to see if it might get significantly better, later on.  It has tons of favorable reviews, but the poor reviews seemed to point out the same kinds of things that were already getting on my nerves... so I've decided to "call it" and move on to greener pastures.  

It's unfortunate.  I wanted to like this.  It's the first novel in a zombie trilogy, so there'd be more books to look forward to reading-- and it has a unique point of view (a female perspective of a zombie outbreak)-- but I just couldn't.  

Somehow, this book managed to gain a cult following online (probably because it was originally published for free, online, in a serial format)... so maybe it's perfect for someone.  Not for me, though. I'll pass.