Tuesday, 17 November 2009


ISBN: 978-0-575-08692-0

It never ceases to amaze me that, just when I think a sub-genre has been done to death, someone can come along and actually make it exciting again.

Zombie novels are one of those sub-genres. Brian Keene did it with THE RISING, Rakie Keig did it with TERROR ISLAND and now Jonathan Maberry has succeeded the almost impossible by doing it yet again with PATIENT ZERO.

As usual I will not divulge the plot… I want to keep that a surprise, but needless to say, PATIENT ZERO is a must for anyone who loves zombies but wants something original.

PATIENT ZERO literally grabs you with the first chapter… It may only be three lines, but it is a hook that imbeds so deep you have to read on. Let me show you…

“When you have to kill the same terrorist twice in one week, then there’s either something wrong with your skills or something wrong with your world.
And there’s nothing wrong with my skills.”

How can you not read on when the author has just thrown you the biggest bone in the history of biggest bones?

We are quickly introduced to JOE LEDGER ( a character I am happy to say now has his own franchise, the second book due out in the UK April 2010). LEDGER is a great hero, willing to kill when the need arises but able to tell you about it with a light hearted wit that makes you want to be his best friend.

JOE isn’t the only likeable character within this fast paced tale, in fact all the characters are well written, perfectly crafted to make you either root for them or want them to die painfully. With some characters he makes you do both, GAULT and TOYS being the perfect examples.

Another stand out character is CHURCH. He is written with just enough mystery that you don’t trust him even though you know you must. And his obsession with wafer biscuits is a quaint touch that never ceased to make me smile.

PATIENT ZERO is a big book, a paperback the size of a hardback and coming in at 424 pages, but don’t let that scare you. It reads so fast your eyes will start smoking and the pages will begin to smoulder. Jonathan Maberry has effortlessly managed to create a tale that darts across America (and the world) at such a cracking pace that it feels like a book only half its size.

If you buy only one book I recommend please let this be the one… You won’t be disappointed.