by Lori Whitwam
After being rescued from a brutal band of marauders, Ellen Hale rebuilt her life in the fortified neighborhood that became her home. A heartbreaking decision and devastating loss pushed her to become a fierce fighter, because weakness only got you and those you loved killed.
Now her community is facing a deadly threat, and Ellen has another choice to make.
Ellen volunteers as a member of fallback team three, tasked with establishing a temporary refuge for their citizens in the event their community is overrun by the enemy. As the danger intensifies, she and her adopted sister, Melissa, set off with the rest of their team on the road trip from hell.
Their mission is cloaked in secrecy, but suspicions of a traitor arise.
Something is affecting the zombies’ migration patterns, and when blacksmith Tyler Garrett is discovered trapped in a farmhouse, the team refuses to trust him. But Ellen believes his story, and it’s not just because of his rugged, blond good looks and soft-spoken manner—his skills can greatly benefit their team.
As the team struggles to reach the fallback, previously secure locations are overrun, and their chances of success seem remote. With the likelihood of a traitor nearly certain, and the lives of everyone she loves at risk, Ellen must figure out who to trust before the traitor—or the zombies—destroy them all.
Is there a spy among the fallback team,or is there another threat lurking in the Kentucky hills?
We raced to the east gate, while Melissa and Faith clambered up the ladder to the guard tower. The two men currently on watch brought us up to speed. “Forty or fifty,” one told us. “Came from the logging road on the north side of the clearing, not moving fast, but clustered tight and coming steady.”
Marcus gave a terse nod, and we were out the gate, which was secured behind us. We fanned out before the advancing zombies, automatically pairing off with fighters we knew. Rebecca and I drifted to the right, angled slightly away from each other to widen our collective range of vision.
“We got this,” my partner said confidently, tucking her braid down the back of her shirt and giving her sword a practice swing.
This pack of zombies was a mixed one. There were some that seemed—for lack of a better word—fresher, and those moved a little faster than the ones with more wear and tear on their bodies. Funny how missing a foot or having a knee bent the wrong way slowed you down, even if you were already dead.
I selected my first target, a woman with half her scalp missing, the remaining strands of steel-colored hair trailing down over the shoulder of a tattered and gore-encrusted knit poncho. I didn’t think the garment had been stylish even when its owner was alive. Gave a whole new meaning to “I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing that.” I swung my machete, putting an end forever to her final fashion faux pas.
I enjoyed reading this fast-paced zombie romp and hope to go back and pick up the first book in the series, also. It read just fine as a stand alone, but I loved the fluidity of the prose and the voice of this story. It sounds like the first book is well-worth a read, too. I could tell from her thoughts and actions that Ellen, the heroine has matured and become more selfless since the first book and I’m interested now in reading the story that brought about such change in her.
Here we have a tight knit group of individuals who have suffered horrendous losses and must now split up in order to better defend their community and ensure their survival. Ellen describes that journey with a youthful, contemplative voice I quickly found endearing.
If you love Walking Dead you should enjoy this exciting book. I intend to read the whole series and follow the adventures of Ellen and her friends as they struggle to bring sanity back into a world ravaged by disease and plagued by barbarism.
This book was given to me in exchange for my honest review.
Reviewed by Laurie-j
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Lori spent her early years reading books in a tree in northern West Virginia. The 1980s and 90s found her and her husband moving around the Midwest, mainly because it was easier to move than clean the apartment. After seventeen frigid years in Minnesota, she fled to coastal North Carolina in 2013. She will never leave, and if you try to make her, she will hurt you.
She has worked in public libraries, written advertising copy for wastewater treatment equipment, and managed a holistic veterinary clinic. Her current day job, conducted from her World Headquarters and Petting Zoo (her couch) is as Managing Editor for Limitless Publishing, as well as editing for a select list of indie author.
Her dogs are a big part of her life, and she has served or held offices in Golden Retriever and Great Pyrenees rescues, a humane society, a county kennel club, and her own chapter of Therapy Dogs International.
She has been a columnist and feature writer for auto racing and pet publications, and won the Dog Writers Association of America’s Maxwell Award for a series of humor essays.
Parents of a grown son, Lori and her husband were high school sweethearts, and he manages to love her in spite of herself. Some of his duties include making sure she always has fresh coffee and safe tires, trying to teach her to use coupons, and convincing the state police to spring her from house arrest in her hotel room in time for a very important concert. That last one only happened once—so far—but she still really, really appreciates it.
Lori will be awarding one prize pack consisting of $25 Amazon/BN GC, plus a signed print copy of Fallback, as well as bookmarks and magnets (international) to one randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway