Title: Writing on the Wall (Survival Series #1)
Author: Tracey Ward
Release Date: 1st January 2014
Source: Own Copy
It's been nearly a decade since the world ended. Since Joss watched her parents die at the hands of a nightmare, a nightmare that stalks her even now, all these years later. That's the problem with the Risen - they refuse to die.
But Joss is a survivor. A loner living in the post-apocalyptic streets of Seattle. It's a world dictated by Risen and the looming threat of the Colonists, a group of fellow survivors living comfortably in their compounds and patrolling the wild, looking to "save" the orphans of the end.
Orphans like Joss.
Like Ryan. As a member of an all male gang, Ryan is a threat as real as the Risen, a threat Joss avoids at all costs. Then one night their paths cross and Joss makes a choice that goes against all of her instincts. A choice that will threaten everything she has.
Now a new outbreak is imminent and the Colonists are closing in. Joss' solitary, secret world is blown wide open and the comfortable numbness she's lived in for the last six years will burn away leaving her aching and afraid.
I do like my end of the world books and I picked this series up a while back when it was on special offer.
Set ten years after a plague has picked off most of the population and turned the unlucky ones in to flesh eating zombies, Joss lives by herself. Her parents killed at the start of the outbreak, she trusts no one and lives very carefully.
But one day her "peaceful" life of hiding from the undead and keeping herself alive is disturbed by the arrival of Ryan, a young gang member who she saves from death. Taking him to her home to help him recover from his injuries she gets to know him better but she does not let her guard down, as soon as he is better he has to be gone.
Of course the path of teenage post-apoc survival is never easy, Ryan does indeed leave but he is not gone for good, he and Joss have a spark of a connection and they look out for one another by leaving messages on a wall.
This arrangement proves to work well with some good banter between the two of them and as their relationship progresses, friendship turns to a hint of romance but before you scream "oh no its a stereotypical dystopian romance" its not like that. It is just an occasional kiss not a can't live without you I'm a tortured soul, you know the usual you get in books of this genre.
Anyway, as well as zombies and roaming packs of wolves another problem in their world is the Colony, a group of fellow survivors who live securely with power and running water in their own little havens, they are recruiting and that means taking people from the street. People like Joss.
Taken against her will she ends up in one of the colonies but all is not happy in paradise, she discovers others there against their wills and some of the colonists have agendas.
Joss needs to get out, will she be able to?
This was an enjoyable read which I read happily over an evening, the first book in the Survival series shows promise for the books to come. Joss takes no shit, having been by herself for so long she can certainly look after herself and you know what, I hate reading about pampered princesses who can suddenly take on zombies, Joss is certainly not like that, she is a character you can get behind.
In a market where they are literally thousands of post-apoc zombie books out there, they do have to stand out for me to take notice these days, Writing on the Wall certainly got my attention.