Deadtown by Nancy Holzner

Deadtown by Nancy Holzner
Deadtown by Nancy Holzner

For lovers of zombies and urban fantasy.

Victory ‘Vicky’ Vaughn is the only professional demon slayer in Deadtown, the section of Boston reserved for its inhuman and undead residents. Years and years ago a plague hit the city, turning a large number of its residents into zombies—walking, talking, thinking, eating undead. Deadtown was primarily created to regulate their residence and that of the other supernatural creatures that made their presence known after the plague.

Vicky is Cerrdorion, descended from the Welsh goddess Cerridwen, and can shapeshift. Ten years ago, when she was learning to be a demon slayer, her father was killed by an evil Hellion who has somehow made its way to Deadtown. Vicky has to find a way to kill it before it takes over the city.

Vicky was a kick-arse heroine. I couldn’t help but picture Milla Jovovich from Resident Evil, guns blazing over a wasteland, as I read about her (except Vicky has a sword). Heltzer did a good job of depicting the scenario—Deadtown is what happens a few years after the apocalypse when you have some sort of organisation that’s risen out of previous chaos. I thought the world building was excellent, and I liked how the zombies aren’t just mindless, brain-eating creatures. They have feelings, even if they are still gooey.

I also enjoyed the use of Celtic mythology—I don’t see it as often as Greek or Roman mythology, and for me it was a refreshing change. Also, vampires were not central to the story. (Have I mentioned how I am starting to get over the whole vampire thing?) Heltzer was able to set up the characters’ motivations through the effective use of flashbacks and the interactions between characters.

Okay, so it’s an urban fantasy so there isn’t really any romance. The little bit of romance squeezed in—with Vicky’s non-boyfriend, workaholic werewolf hotshot lawyer Alexander Kane—was sexy, and it would be great if it looked like it was going in that direction. However…

*** SPOILER ALERT***

…later on there is a potential other love interest, whose way is made clear by her pseudo-relationship with Kane and by something he has to do later in the book. (Which is done rather well, I might add, and not in a force-the-plot way) I really, really don’t like love triangles so I didn’t really like that it was looking like a set up for one.

***END SPOILER***

Yay or nay?

If you like urban fantasy, go for it. If you are mainly a romance reader there is a promise of romance in future books but, as always, you take the risk of this promise being unfulfilled. Hope you love zombies, too!

Title: Deadtown (excerpt)
Author: Nancy Holzner
ISBN: 9780441018130
Release date: December 29, 2009
Publisher: Ace
Format: Mass market

Where you can buy this book

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WORLDWIDE: Ace (Publisher) | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Book Depository

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Wandergurl is a sometime traveller who spends her daylight hours making sure that things go the way they're supposed to with minimum bureaucracy (don't ask!). A firm believer that thirty is the new twenty, she will probably never look her age (or act it!). An enthusiastic football supporter (that would be soccer to you) she will get up at odd hours to watch a game, and of course it's not just because the players are hot. She loves history, geography and is pretty good at trivia, thanks to her propensity to remember random bits of celebrity gossip. When not reading or travelling, she can be found indulging in her other passion -- eating -- and can be found at Wake up and smell the coffee.

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