Review: “Devour,” R.L. Blalock

Pros: Likable characters that you come to care about; plenty of variety in action
Cons: I probably would have shifted some of the end elements around. Maybe.
Rating: 4 out of 5

R.L. Blalock’s Devour (Death & Decay) (Volume 1) is the third zombie/survivalist book I’ve read this week. Zombie stories tend to hit two of my soft spots: bio-thrillers and gritty horror. One of the fun aspects of reading three in a row is that I get to do the compare-and-contrast thing. For instance, the two earlier this week ended up being a two-star and a three-star, while this is a four-star. One of the biggest differences is the characters. I got tense when the characters were threatened. I didn’t want them to die and empathized with the situations they were in. For some of the less likable characters I could still empathize with their viewpoints. That’s pretty impressive considering some people tend to get stripped down to their worst in bad situations. This was more of a story of people vs. zombies rather than people vs. people. Also while there were definitely survivalist elements, the main character wasn’t a survivalist, hadn’t trained for the end of the world, and was going on gut instinct. As much as I like following survivalist plots, I’ll take characters I can empathize over that any day–this is just a better story than the last two.

If it were me writing this I’d probably have shifted some of the end elements around. The only thing I’ll say (don’t want to ruin anything) is that I tend not to be the biggest fan of cut-off endings. If I remember to keep an eye out for it I probably will buy the second book when it comes out, though, which says a lot. I rarely manage to keep track of multi-book series unless the multiple books are already out.

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