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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Proper zombies - just the way I like 'em
You know how clothing addicts have those 'I've nothing to wear!!!' tantrums whilst standing in front of an overflowing wardrobe? Well the other day I had a similar moment, replacing the wardrobe with my bookshelf, stamping my feet and saying 'I've nothing to read - I want zombies!!!!'. So I picked up my trusty e-reader and Dead City caught my eye.

Dead City is...
Published on 27 May 2012 by Kat

versus
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Zombies may be cool, bad writing is not
Most of these new self-published ebook authors are exactly like those kinds of people you see on X-Factor. You know, the kind who truly believe they can sing, and then when we get to hear them, they sound like a cat being strangled; and you wonder to yourself: do they ever listen to themselves back? Well, I often wonder if these people ever objectively read themselves...
Published on 31 Mar. 2012 by JKG


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Zombies may be cool, bad writing is not, 31 Mar. 2012
This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
Most of these new self-published ebook authors are exactly like those kinds of people you see on X-Factor. You know, the kind who truly believe they can sing, and then when we get to hear them, they sound like a cat being strangled; and you wonder to yourself: do they ever listen to themselves back? Well, I often wonder if these people ever objectively read themselves back, because if they did, they would realize their work if below acceptable par and save us poor readers the time and effort of wading through these virtual pages they've foisted upon us.

What we have here is lots of zombies and even more dialogue. And lots of action to complement it all. There's no real cohesion here, no proper narrative structure; the prose is rubbish. The author simply doesn't know how.

As another reviewer correctly pointed out, the sentences are often very strange. To be a little clearer: there are often sentences and references made which need not have been made. The whole thing is stuffed to the gills with bad form. It's overwritten in some places, and woefully underwritten in others.

Anyway, there's a zombie outbreak and cliched things happen. The main character says and does stuff, and you don't really care what happens to him. He has a buddy who's like something out of a cartoon; doesn't seem to take any of it seriously at all (probably because he knows he's part of a made-up World within a novel). And the action? It's ill-constructed and completely devoid of tension; it merely exists as a means to an end. There's no passion here.

I gave this two stars. It's a complete waste of your time, but, I regret to say, I've come across amateur ebooks which make this look like Shakespeare.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nothing like The Walking Dead..., 4 April 2012
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This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
The story is about Eddie Hudson, a San Antonio cop trying to find his wife and son among a city infested with the dead.

The action takes off from the first chapter without any real character development but enough interest to keep the pages turning. Unfortunately at chapter 13 the story descends into nonsense. The main character seems to lose focus on his main objective of finding his family. He meets up with his ex partner (too coincidental) and the amount of zombies they escape from and shoot is quite unbelievable.

At 288 pages long, the action comes thick and fast however the scenes in the second half of the book are quite repetitive - the road ahead blocked, back up, crowd of zombies, fight with zombies, escape and that type of scene. It sort of turned into a black comedy.

The ending was appalling, by far the worst ending to a book I have ever read, there is no room for a happy ending in a zombie world.

The really unfortunate part is that there are two sequels both of which I bought before reading the first, I am hopeful there will be an improvement.

Overall - great fun and action to begin with but became tedious half way through.

Two stars for the first half of the book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Proper zombies - just the way I like 'em, 27 May 2012
By 
Kat (Netherlands) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
You know how clothing addicts have those 'I've nothing to wear!!!' tantrums whilst standing in front of an overflowing wardrobe? Well the other day I had a similar moment, replacing the wardrobe with my bookshelf, stamping my feet and saying 'I've nothing to read - I want zombies!!!!'. So I picked up my trusty e-reader and Dead City caught my eye.

Dead City is what I call a proper zombie book. Why? Because its action packed, gory, scary and creepy, the main characters are tough but flawed and people die. A lot.

Eddie is a cop, and whilst trying to deal with some problems at home, receives a call to investigate a disturbance in a local neighbourhood. When arriving he finds a whole bunch of people acting strangely....but within minutes the true cause of the disturbance becomes apparent - it's zombie time!

While he struggles to survive and move through the city he meets a bunch of different people who are also trying to ride out the zomb-apocalypse and get the hell out of town - but the zombies obviously have other things on their mind, and his journey is fraught with intense, life-or-death situations.

This is an action-packed book, there's very little 'down time' or intense dialogue - most conversations take place on the fly, whilst dodging zombies but the relationship building between the characters is done well considering the circumstances. I liked that Eddie wasn't super-cop, he screwed up and got scared, wasn't a crack shot with a pistol and had to rely on hard work and guts to get himself out of trouble. There is some information on the zombie-virus itself, but it's more the catalyst to the story than a part of it.

There are some slightly sexist connotations - the vast majority of the characters are male, and have some badly-disguised condescension for women, but it didn't bother me. There's also one slightly stereotypical moment involving a group of survivors that Eddie meets along the way, but again it was quite mild.

Did Dead City satisfy my zombie craving? Totally! It was everything I was hanging out for, but now that I've got a taste for it, I can't wait to read the next book in the series.

Favourite Quote: ''I refuse to let a bunch of zombies ruin the end of the world for me.''
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Relentlessly fast paced zombie fest!, 4 Feb. 2007
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This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
This book starts in the thick of action and never lets up until the end. It's all about one cop's journey from one end of an infection, zombie ridden city, to the other to find his family. The zombies are the classic 'Romero' type.

I was disappointed with the ending as there was no surprise but the rest of the book is totally action orientated and as you finish one chapter, you have to start the next. Good page burner.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dead City (they won't stay dead), 18 Dec. 2009
By 
M. Adlam (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
Considering the good reviews listed, and the 4 stars this book has received in the past, I was expecting a well written, well rounded book with characters that I could be easily relate to.

It's true, you start the book in the thick of the action, following a cop that really wants to find his family whist struggling to understand the world, ethics and behaviours of a zombie infested city. It's also true that the action is constant and bloody with the perpetual night that just doesn't seem to end, ever! For these reasons, I didn't score the book at one star.

But as I read this book I struggled to understand the authors points of reference. He uses language, descriptions and metaphors that I find hard and strange to follow. The grammar is sometimes poor and the author seems to get excited with the current story line which has the feeling of being caught up in the moment and leads to him adding in sentences at the end of paragraphs to explain the text, just incase you got lost? All being said this is still not the worst book I've read on this subject but very close.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not the best Zombie novel, 17 Nov. 2011
By 
N. Offer (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
The only good thing about this book was that the story got going quickly. I never really felt any affinity to the main character, the character with the next biggest part, was just plain awful and I dont know what the author was thinking.

The book was short and never stopped moving, but I still found myself skipping pages, as I was just uninterested.

I do not recommend this book, read jl bourne Day By Day Armageddon.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Fast, Furious & Flawed, 10 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
So! Where to begin with this novel.

I hate writing negative reviews, but ladies & gents, this review has more negative than positive :(

The book starts off with our hero Eddie Hudson (Private Hudson anyone?) ;) on patrol in San Antonio Texas. Edd is a patrol officer with a wife and new born child waiting for him at home. One night, he receives an emergency call to go & inspect & from here it all kicks off! The zombie apocalypse has been unleashed. Why? We do not know. How? We do not know. All we know is that Edd is in for the worst night of his life as he fights off the zombie horde, whilst trying to return to his wife April & his son Andrew.

Dead City is very fast paced. It moves along at breakneck speed & doesn't relent from start to finish. Its pace is also its downfall. There is so much happening that you become a bit bored by the violence and the action. Don't get me wrong, its set piece after set piece, which keeps the action going, but there's no room for development. No character development, story development or anything like that. Its just walk, shoot, walk, hide, walk, shoot, run, hide , shoot & run. It gets a bit repetitive over a while. Other than Edd, every character is cannon fodder. Just about every character he meets is devoured or ripped apart by zombies. No-one stays around long enough for you to care about. I like fast paced books, but there was little substance here to make me really like it.

The author Joe Mckinney is an ex homicide detective & he seems to know what he's talking about, when describing the crime scene scenarios & the job of the San Antonio Police Force, but his writing is very bland. He doesn't really know how to properly build suspense. He writes like "I was surrounded. I had one bullet left and six zombies to kill. As they surrounded me I knew this was the end. Fortunately I remembered I had a machine gun, so I killed them all" It reads like something a teenager would write for an English essay and you find yourself questioning how easy it was for our hero to escape the situations he finds himself in.
This kind of writing happens a lot throughout the book. There is a big lack of desperation and seclusion within the book.

The whole book feels like one of those cannon fodder straight to dvd action horror films & not the good kind, just the type of film that you watch to kill an hour & a half. Plus the ending is one of the worst endings I have ever seen to a book. Think No Country For Old Men. It comes from nowhere & leaves you feeling robbed. It was as if the writer went over his deadline and had no choice, but to end the book where he was at the time. Very poor.

If you want a fast paced mindless zombie book, then this is for you. If you like mindless action, no brainer pop corn fodder, then read this book. But if you like your books to have a plot with character & story development, then avoid this at all cost.

The pace of this book kept me going and that is why it gets an extra star, other than that, this book was a bit of a let down. It tries to be Dawn Of The Dead, but doesn't quite pull it off. I admire the author for trying to go all Michael Bay in a genre that so many people love and at one point will be done to death. He tried to go epic, but unfortunately he does not complete his mission successfully. Think Rambo 2.

If you decide to read this, I hope you enjoy it more than I did. It didn't do enough for me to keep me engrossed. The pace & gore is great, but other than that it there's not a lot going on here

3/5

10/3/14

IWC
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5.0 out of 5 stars McKinney's impressive debut novel, 27 Oct. 2013
By 
John Milton (Glasgow, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
Over the last year or so, I have read and enjoyed a number of novels and short stories from American author Joe McKinney. Next up on my `To read' list was McKinney's 2006 novel Dead City.
Here, the author puts the old adage "write what you know, write what you love" to use and bases proceedings in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas and unleashes a series of hurricanes on the Lone Star state which seemingly cause the dead to rise with an insatiable appetite for living flesh. Furthermore, McKinney draws on his years of experience as a serving police officer to add depth to both the plot and his characters that is often lacking in other similar titles in the sub-genre.

There is little in the way of preamble in Dead City. Almost immediately, there is a pitched battle between the emergency services and the walking dead. I had never thought of this before but it's only logical that this is how proceedings would pan out in reality; when people are in trouble and make that call, it is the police that would respond and effectively be the first line of defence against any such outbreak. Given such a frantic start, I had expected matters to slow somewhat thereafter. This wasn't to be and McKinney sets an utterly relentless pace with the events occupying the pages of Dead City taking place largely over a period of about 24 hours.

Naturally, McKinney's protagonist is a police officer. Usually I would baulk at the idea of yet another zombie tale with a hero cop/ soldier as the main character. However, McKinney's lead is no stereotype. Officer Eddie Hudson is no one-man-army, being at best an average shot with his pistol and his main concern is getting home to his own wife and newborn child.

As for the villains of the piece, the quote on the front cover sums it up well "These aren't your mother's zombies..." and I'll say no more than that about the nature of McKinney's flesh eaters, leaving it for you to discover for yourself. There are some expository characters within Dead City that aid in adding death to proceedings without slowing down the pace set by the author. This however, is also my main criticism of Dead City.

There seems to be a degree of negativity about Dead City, largely aimed at having a lack of empathy for the main character. I can't say that I agree with that, for the reasons outlined above, I found the main character and his actions to be entirely plausible. On a critical note, at times I had to put the book down in order to digest all that had occurred, since there is little in the way of let up or respite for the reader as McKinney whips along, throwing Eddie Hudson from one perilous situation to another.

Despite being less than 300 pages, Dead City has much to keep the more gore-hungry horror fan sated as McKinney lays waste to his hometown. A word of warning though: watch out for chapter 12; it's a kicker...

Dead City is unquestionably a quick but ultimately satisfying read, delivering a high paced action-driven plot that's enriched by the author's own personal experience; and I certainly can't wait to get started on the follow up titles to this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok book., 10 May 2011
This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
I am a big zombie fan in books and films i liked the story of this book but found it very annoying the way its been written there is is to many i said, i did, i went, i, i, i, does not need it the story is built around 1 character and you know its him saying these things. found this very hard to enjoy as has a very good story,
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fairly typical zombie uprising, 12 Dec. 2007
By 
Andy Phillips (Leicestershire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Dead City (Mass Market Paperback)
Although I enjoyed this book and I think it's well written, it's not very original and that's why it only gets 4 stars. The story consists of a police officer making his way through San Antonio via various encounters with zombies along the way in an attempt to reach his family. The zombies are the classic dim-witted slow dead people type zombies, allowing the hero to take on hordes of them by himself or with small groups of survivors that he encounters along the way.

None of this is a bad thing as there is enough action to keep the story going. Some of the scenes are a little unrealistic, but then how realistic is a zombie pandemic anyway? I personally found the ending refreshing, even if it isn't particularly logical.
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Dead City
Dead City by Joe McKinney (Mass Market Paperback - 5 Nov. 2010)
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