Last Ones Left Alive
by Sarah Davis-Goff

Once I started reading, I couldn't put this down, and not just because the atmosphere was so tense that I was white-knuckling my e-reader.

TENSE is the best word for this book. Orpen is never safe, even in the idyllic flashbacks to her peaceful childhood on the zombie(skrake)-free island where she was raised by her mother and her mother's partner, Maeve. And these memories are made all the more tragic by the readers' knowledge that Orpen wouldn't be pushing an unresponsive Maeve through a wasteland in a wheelbarrow unless that bucolic life had come crashing down.

Orpen is brave and remarkably in control despite the complex conflict raging inside her between fearing other people and knowing that the only hope for saving Maeve and finding a better life lies with them. She has never met anyone other than her mam and Maeve, and finally meeting them brings to life new desires and instincts she had never felt.

And of course, zombies. Lots and lots of fast runner zombies who are bizarrely tough for walking corpses and seem to retain a bit of their memories and reasoning, making them even more dangerous. The scenes of violence are incredibly well-written, and I could clearly imagine myself as Orpen, kicking and stabbing and running for my life.

I loved the unexpected ending, although I'm sure others will hate it instead. There is a nice conclusion to the story, but there remains an opening for further tales, should the author choose to continue.

Recommended for fans of The Stand, The Passage, Walking Dead, suspense/adventure fans.

arc received from the publisher