Tuesday, August 19, 2014

With Zombies by Michael F. Stewart

With Zombies (Assured Destruction #3)
by Michael F. Stewart
Publication Date: March 31st 2014
Publisher: Non Sequitur Press
Source: Kickstarter
Find This Book: With Zombies
Rating: 5/5

Being a read-to-review blogger for Stewart in the past, I naturally helped fund his Kickstarter campaign for book three back in March. This landed me with a nice paperback collection of the trilogy in April that I was dying to start! The wait until now fed my excitement and I was not disappointed.

            Michael F. Stewart has a knack for entrapping readers in his high tech-storytelling. I picked it up this morning around 10 and did not set it down until I finished at 2 (which says a lot considering it took me an hour to concentrate and read 20 pages of my psych book yesterday). I love getting immersed in Janus’s world of hacking and Shadownet. All of the funny pop culture references don’t hurt either (Star Wars is my favorite). It just really feels like he’s writing about and for the young adults of this new generation. The problems that Janus faces are a little extreme, but really they’re not so far off. They are problems that anyone could be going through and that’s part of what makes Stewart’s novels so interesting and relatable.
            In this book everything really pieces together, plot-wise. Questions that were raised in Assured Destruction and Script Kiddie are finally answered, but in an exciting and dramatic way. Everything finally comes together! Some writers can drag out their books and get caught up in telling emotions that make their stories boring. This was NOT the case. The stakes were raised, the plots were twisted, and I was super excited! Sure, Janus has been through a lot, she needed to sort herself out and show her more emotional human side, but made her even more relatable. I was rooting for her the entire 225 pages no matter what she was up to, Michael wrote so much heart and spirit into this young woman that it would be hard not to love her.
            One thing I especially liked about this book is that she relied on the people around her. With her family business still on the line, her mom being hospitalized, community service, not being able to miss school, and having to deal with a virus that has infected Ottawa, Janus has quite a lot on her plate. The first two books she tried to do things her own way, risking her life and getting severely injured each time. For this adventure Jonny is Janus’ rock, always being there for her and helping her to the best of his abilities. Honestly he’s a keeper and I really hope after everything they’ve been through that they stay together forever. On top of that, Jan calls in all of her friends to help her and their friendship was just the greatest thing to read. She never would have made it through without them! She can finally trust people and isn’t alone anymore.

            This book, as well as it’s counterparts are perfect YA contemporary fiction novels. The technological geek side of me was eager to eat up the words as quickly as possible. This is a also a book I would recommend to people who seek diversity when they read. Jan’s mom as MS (Multiple Sclerosis) and I think this was represented well. The author deals with each character’s disabilities flawlessly with out making them seem like they’re not a whole person.

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