Beautiful written and deeply unsettling. Layer upon layer of thoughtful horror. Slams up against the horror of mundanity and normality. The encroaching zombie takeover, meshed with the anxiety causing new procurement system at work, the bullying boss , the requirement to 'love' a nephew and how it gets in the way of the relationship you value with your sibling. And in that sense it’s reminded me of We Need to Talk About Kevin. But at its darkest, most f-----d up it plucked out the shuddery judderiness of Michael Faber's Under the Skin. It’s clear that MV Clark loves film. Every chapter screams to be made into something on the medium size screen - Netflix and “kill”. And that’s testament to her writing which is warm and familiar - drawing you in before thumping you in the gut with something deliciously putrid - for example the grand guignol of an infected child posting his rotting teeth through a letter box with a distraught mother on the other side. So many vivid images - that’s what I want in my horror novels. The ending left me slightly dazed and wanting more. It required a couple of re-reads and made me hopeful for a sequel. KEN
A fantastic zombie novel which is incredibly relevant to our times. It does all the things quality horror should do - builds suspense, delivers shocks and distorts everyday reality to great effect. And creates a creeping feeling that something is very very wrong. But it also deals with important issues such as the effects of trauma and the brutal suppression of knowledge by authorities whose power hangs in the balance. It's fun too - he pace never lets up and the characters' personal lives play out in intimate, cmpelling dramas that make this a true page turner. LOUISE
So I don’t like horror, and I don’t like Zombies. Not sure how the hell I ended up reading this but I am very glad I did. Compelling story telling from the get go. Devoured it like an infected. There is more to this story than blood and gore. Strong characters weave a social commentary of zombie Haringey. It reminded me a bit of The power, but with likeable and believable characters and a well strung together plot. JO
As you would expect with zombie fiction there is horror, gore and a fair bit of action which link to wider social and political trends during the end of the last century. Having lived through those decades, when reading this book, I cannot help but think of the devastation of the AIDs epidemic and the fear and sadness of those times both for those who were touched directly as well as the general climate of suspicion and hopelessness. More recently we have not escaped these dynamics as we respond to fears of otherness played out in discourse about war, terrorism, famine and disease.
The author holds these issues up to scrutiny in both an emotionally distant and at times light hearted action narrative as well as painful and beautifully written descriptions of human distress. These focus in particular on sickness within rather than without and the conflict and injuries inside our own minds and in very close personal relationships. These parts of the book carry a deeper emotional resonance and the author brings the two elements of the book together at the end in a surprising and skilful way. The writing becomes much stronger as the book unfolds and the deeper layers of meaning become revealed. I would strongly recommend the book as a serious and thought provoking attempt to tackle troubling aspects of human nature. GOLD NIGHTINGALE