Isla J. Bick
Publisher: Egmont USA
Source: the publisher via NetGalley.com
You can read the Goodreads summary here.
Alex has a brain tumor that just won't go away, so she takes a trip by herself into the mountains to try and find herself and to scatter her parent's ashes in their final resting place. While she is there she meets a grandfather and his granddaughter when something awful happens - an EMP sweeps over the continent killing a lot of people and turning others into zombies...
This book was amazing. Despite the unrealistic (but still awesome) plot, Alex's character feels so life-like. She has real problems and tries to solve them in realistic ways. The same with her emotions - they are real and she deals with them in realistic ways. The setting was great, too. The mountains in the winter can be so beautiful, but also so deadly as Alex begins to find out. I enjoyed all of the characters, especially Ellie, the granddaughter that Alex takes on as a travel companion early on in the novel.
Warning: This book is not for the faint of heart, which unfortunately I am. There's no sex, drugs, or profanity, but there are a lot of flesh eating zombies and maggots complete with lots of gory description. Bleh. But I got through it and enjoyed it because the plot drew me in instantly and the short chapters really kept the story moving. Then I got to the end. "Oh, what!?" I thought to myself, "You're going to end this story like that?!" This book is the first in a trilogy and now I feel duty bound and eager to read the next.
Despite the fact that the main character is female and there is a tiny bit of romance in the novel, I think I would recommend it most for high school boys. If you like zombies, you're going to want to read this. Ashes will be released in September.