- Jonathan Maberry’s Dead of Night will be released Oct.25th. I had the great opportunity to preview it and WOW! Here’s the premiss: A condemned serial killer is injected with a virus by the prisons Dr. to keep him conscious while his body rots in the grave. However all drugs have side effects. Before he’s buried he awakes unleashing a deadly virus contaminating an entire town. Now he can finish the work he started in life….now he’s unstoppable. This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang…but a bite..
Dead of Night is the type of novel which gets you thinking. It’s billed as a stand alone novel, but like many of Mr. Maberry’s stories he opens the door for a sequel. Through countless hours of research Jonathan Maberry has carefully crafted a zombie novel which may not be that far of a stretch from reality. The story has several conflicts including the military and police at odds with each other, the Federal government trying to take the quick and easy way out, and the fact an uncontrollable virus is quickly wiping Stebbins county PA off the map.
Multiple characters bring this story to life. Jonathan Maberry didn’t give us just one hero. Or two. He took us into the hearts and minds of each character.
Let’s start with Dez Fox. A police officer and Gulf War vet she’s full of insecurities stemming from family tragedy and a rough childhood. She’s portrayed as a sexy take no crap from anyone cop, but her emotional swings definitely reflect deeper issues. She’s torn between protecting her town , herself, her partner JT and her on and off again love interest Billy.
Speaking of which, Billy Trout is a reporter for a local cable network who’s spent the last few years in a dysfunctional relationship with Dez, however he’s not about to let her go. He’s come to understand her and through this, keeps up a glimmer of hope that she still cares for him. Caught in a balancing act he tries to uncover the facts of the developing crisis and keep himself and Dez safe at the same time.
JT is Dez Fox’s partner. He’s described as a large black man who treats Dez like his daughter. Like Billy, he has come to understand her and tries not be judgmental. When Dez first encounters the zombies at a funeral home It’s JT that backs her ridiculous sounding story.
Now the Villains. We have a serial killer named Homer Gibbons and a great explanation on how he came to be. There’s a former Soviet scientist Dr. Volker who created the virus which he injected into Gibbons in an act of simple retribution. But there’s more. Mr. Maberry also provided his readers more realistic antagonists…those that are supposed to protect society from evils. It’s clear that the breakdown in communication and a continual denial during the spread of the virus created monsters worse than the zombies.
I’m no stranger to Jonathan Maberry’s outstanding novels. Dead of Night like Mr. Maberry’s other zombie stories is fast paced, action packed and full of suspense. His characters are quite vivid … but that’s where the similarities end. This story is more “edgy” than some of his others due to the graphic dialogue . I However, found this a necessary evil considering the personalities of the characters. I even enjoyed the shorter chapters which were a deviation from his other books. The story pulled me in almost immediately and by the end I wanted the nightmare to end. I could “see” the families being devastated and the feeling of hopelessness. It wasn’t just about a small town and another zombie plague where the Calvary arrives and everything seems to “work out” in the end.
This is where Mr. Maberry’s talents really shine. His ability to take every zombie themed story in a different direction. He always does his homework so the scary thing is OMG what if? Jonathan Maberry made sure his readers had a lot to think about in Dead of Night. It was a very compelling and like so many of his other bestsellers this one too would definitely be worthy of a movie.
I know…I know..you thinking another zombie novel..If you’ve read one then you’ve read them all. Not true! Yes, while the country is being flooded with undead stories right now Jonathan Maberry is still leading the pack! Go to our Amazon .com link and order your copy today and good luck at putting it down!