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The Reapers are the Angels [Paperback]

Alden Bell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

2 Sep 2011

Older than her years and completely alone, Temple is just trying to live one day at a time in a post-apocalyptic world, where the undead roam endlessly, and the remnant of mankind who have survived, at times, seem to retain little humanity themselves.

Temple has known nothing else. This is the world she was born into. Her journey takes her to far-flung places, to people struggling to maintain some semblance of civilization – and to those who have created a new world order for themselves.

When she comes across the helpless Maury, she attempts to set one thing right, if she can just get him back to his family then maybe it will bring forgiveness for some of the terrible things she's done in her past. Because Temple has had to fight to survive, along the road she's made enemies – and one vengeful man is determined that, in a world gone mad, killing her is the only thing that makes sense . . .

Frequently Bought Together

The Reapers are the Angels + The Passage + The Strain
Price For All Three: 19.03

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  • The Passage 8.00
  • The Strain 5.59

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Tor (2 Sep 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330518968
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330518963
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 212,422 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"If you loved Justin Cronin's "The Passage", this summer's vampire hit, you'll get a charge out of "The Reapers Are the Angels". It's a literary/horror mashup that is unsettlingly good."--"USA Today"""The Reapers Are the Angels "is a knockout, a fresh take on the zombie novel, with a heroine you can't help but root for as she braves the land of the living dead and the dead living, pursued by a foe far more dangerous than flesh-eaters and with the beacon of redemption flickering ahead. Alden Bell will snatch your attention and keep it until long after you close this book."--Tom Franklin, author of "Hell at the Breach""Alden Bell provides an astonishing twist on the southern gothic: like Flannery O'Connor with zombies."--Michael Gruber, "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Book of Air and Shadows""Alden Bell has managed something improbable and striking: a disconcertingly beautiful tale of zombie apocalypse. "The Reapers Are the Angels" is soaked in all the blood that

About the Author

Alden Bell lives in New York with his wife, the Edgar-award-winning novelist Megan Abbott. For the past nine years, he has taught high school English at an Upper East Side prep school. Since 2002, he has also taught literature and cultural studies courses as an adjunct professor at the New School. Prior to coming to New York, he grew up in the heart of Orange County: Anaheim, home of Disneyland. He graduated from Berkeley with a degree in English and a minor in creative writing. In 2000, he received his Master’s and Ph.D. in English at New York University, specializing in twentieth-century American and British literature.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Read 4 July 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The Reapers are the Angels is the story of a fifteen year old girl wandering through an abused world, meeting friends, picking up strays and being chased by an enemy.

I think the word `zombie' is mentioned once and there seems to be a calmness and acceptance of these creatures (meatskins). Driving through the landscape with Temple I almost felt obliged to tip my hat and nod a greeting to the wandering dead, they seemed less of a threat than some of the unrelated kin she met.

There is no constant undead carnage however when the violence does erupt it is brutal and direct and not always absorbed by the meatskins. Temple's hostility is final and precise.

She is unable to read or write but is world-wise and intelligent. The dialogue from Temple is written with an accent, it's funny, honest and sometimes insulting. You forget she is only fifteen. Her mouth is almost as deadly as the Ghurkha knife she carries.

Underneath her tough exterior she is lonely, guilt ridden and friendly. I felt she needed her isolation for fear of `putting a killin' on someone either by her hand or another.

Then there is Moses Todd.

Alden Bell has written a very interesting and absorbing story.

I feel the story has scope for a prequel and a sequel.

Excellent read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A haunting tale of postapocalyptica 7 Jun 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What is it with English teachers making the transition to writing tales of horror? It must have something to do with seeing the darker sides of humanity as exhibited daily by children in classrooms across the world. Swelling the ranks of the likes of Justin Cronin (author of The Passage) is American High School English teacher Alden Bell and his debut novel, The Reapers are the Angels, a horror tale set in a post-apocalyptic America, plagued by zombies and beset on all sides by the more chilling side of human nature.

I think it is clear that this novel is not primarily about the undead menace that lurks around every corner but more about the survivors and how they are coping with the situation, with the primary focal point being that of Temple, a fifteen year old girl born into the torn world that Bell has so ably created.

Stylistically, Bell writes very much like Cormac McCarthy and the imagery is similar to that found in The Road. The tone is dark and bleak; and Bell himself has described The Reapers are the Angels as being more Southern Gothic than a tale of a zombie apocalypse. The zombie plague provides the backdrop to the narrative but it's Temple's flight from her pursuer that drives the story on and for me, evoked memories of Frankenstein and the Doctor's pursuit of his creation.

As I'm sure you can guess from the title, there is much discussion of religion and God throughout the novel and Temple's moral compass is very much tested throughout the book.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really Disappointing and Unrealistic 12 Mar 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having just read The Passage by Justin Cronin, I was really looking forward to reading this book, given the huge amount of positive reviews it received. However, it was a major disappointment. In fact, so bad I've been inspired to write my first book review in ages...
Firstly, the positives. I thought the writing style, dialogue and characterisation were actually ok, not great but ok. But what lets this book down massively (and a few other reviewers picked up on this) was that the world within which the story is set is both completely unrealistic and annoyingly inconsistent. So it is set 15 years (I think) after the great zombie apocalypse, but somehow there is still electricity, running water, working cars, plenty of fuel and helpful packets of Pringles lying around just wating to be eaten. How does that work then? I'm not some kind of nerd that looks for such inconsistencies in books (ok, maybe I am just a little bit), but this really made the book almost impossible to take seriously. However, what was even worse was the totally unthreating nature of the zombies (meatskins), as if they were just a bit of an afterthought by the author. The main character could wander around with almost impunity, completely unthreated by the slow, shambling zombies. If the zombie are this slow and stupid, how did they ever bring about the end of civilisation as we know it?
I don't suppose anyone will ever read this review, but if you do, do yourself a favour and give this book a wide berth and read The Passage instead.
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A haunting and epic story 11 Aug 2010
Zombies, much like vampires in recent years, have seen a resurgence in TV, film, novels and comics. Therefore finding something new and interesting can seem like an impossible task, but Alden Bell has accomplished it with style. The story takes place after a zombie apocalypse, and the closest story it resembles to me is The Walking Dead, a long running comic series from Image, which is currently being made into a TV series by Frank Darabont. Unlike The Walking Dead, the world has been like this for 25 years and the main character, Temple, is a teenager, so this is all she has ever known, which makes for an interesting and unique perspective. Enough time has also passed that humanity has clawed back small portions of the land, barricaded sections of cities and small communities, but Temple is a traveller. When she was younger she tried the sedentary life, with something resembling a normal life, but the inevitable happened and staying on the move seems safer. She's spent so long living with a shadow at her back that it has irreversibly changed her into an older, more brutal version of the girl she might have been if she had been born many years before the fall. The most poignant example of this divergence comes when she meets someone her own age who has grown up in a fenced community and the differences between them are shocking, touching and very telling.

The story follows Temple's journey across this rugged new version of America, where the wolves lurking at your eye corners are now shambling zombies or meatskins as Bell names them. Creatures driven by primal urges and instinct, to be dealt with if required but also pitied because of what they have become and who they used to be.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars The main character is dull and unlikeable
this book promised so much with the reviews i saw before i bought it that i couldnt wait to read it, but boy was i mislead. Read more
Published 22 days ago by Alex B
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Articulate, Sophisticated, Poignant, Sad, Wonderful and...
A Spoiler Free Bit About The Book ( A Little Bit of Blurb)

"Older than her years and completely alone, Temple is just trying to live one day at a time in a... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Molly Looby
4.0 out of 5 stars Loved it read in one sitting
I found this novel capitivating.I really felt for Temple trying to keep everyone at arms length. You know she has been through a lot but you dont quite know what. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Bonnie5649
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
I really enjoyed this book, it gives the impression the book is about a post-apocalyptic world, which is a factor, but its really about the journey of one girl. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Katie Colton
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent story
Slightly disappointed with the ending, but overall a very enjoyable read. It makes you want to keep reading and the story is very easy to follow
Published 2 months ago by Mr C J Hamilton
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome Post-Apocalyptic read
The ‘Reapers are the Angels’ is a book which I had wanted to read for a while and was constantly being teased by my kindles recommendations but I just didn't have the time. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars The Reapers are the Angels
After my disastrous re-reading of a popular zombie novel last year, I started to get more scared about re-reading books that I’d loved the first time around. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Kat
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a Fan
I am never one of these people that will not finish a book, even if it is bad. However, this book is boring, long and takes forever to move the story along. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Joseph Peter
1.0 out of 5 stars Illogical and sappy.
I tried to start this review with the positives about this book, but I could not think of any from the top of my head. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Conor Ellesmere
4.0 out of 5 stars Post Apocalyptic Journey Of Pennance
I put this book on my wish list on a whim, having been impressed by reviews and never having really read a whole 'post apocalypse' novel. Read more
Published 6 months ago by R. B. Powell
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