Unlike the previous two zombie books Author Brian Keene, Dead Sea is written a little bit differently than The Rising and City of the Dead. The terror is still there; this book focuses on a different character named Lamar Reed. The pacing in this novel is good, it’s told from his point of view. The threat is still there. The dead are returning to life to feast on the flesh of the living. The zombies portrayed in this novel are like the corpses in the George Romero films, slow moving, mindless eating machines where the only way to take them down is a bullet to the head. The difference of this book is, the corpses aren’t inhabited by entities from the Void like in the previous two novels.
These zombies are your basic living dead human flesh eating machines. Dead Sea is not just about the horror. There’s more to this book than zombies dismembering their prey and feasting on their bloody innards. There are a lot of human elements that come into play for Lamar as he desperately tries to fee the city that has become overrun with the living dead. The authorities believe that people are infected with a virus which they call Hamelin’s Revenge. It starts off with infected rats which then travel upwards and begin attacking people.
Lamar faces all sorts of challenges within this book. This is the first novel that I read about a homosexual lead character, which isn’t seen very often in horror literature. As readers will read on, Lamar faces all sorts of challenges in his quest to stay alive. The challenges he faces are just like what we face each and every day we wake up, although we’re not fighting the living dead, we’re trying to stay alive with the economy falling and job losses and what would one person do in order to earn money. The trying times presented in this novel are a reflection of what we go through on this very day. A lot of people would do anything to stay alive, just like in Dead Sea.
The setting of this novel mostly takes place out on the open sea onboard a ship that was basically used for tour guides. The tension is high on board this vessel as the last of the human race tries to survive in this dark time. Brian has a way of making us care for his characters throughout every book that he has written and I’ve had the privilege of reading. His stories are intense and downright really terrifying. We readers would hate to see what happens to them when faced with an obstacle that is unlike anything we’ve ever faced.
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