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4.2 out of 5 stars
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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 3 August 2009
This book was suggested by Amazon based on the volume of Zombie fiction I had previously purchased, I had never heard of the novelist before but decided to give it a try.
What a great book, fantastic characterisation (although the villain is a little clichéd), brutal pace and very violent action, the main character, joe ledger, is sure to feature in many more novels, he has just the right moral compass to succeed in a crowded market of disposable heroes.
The setting of terrorists using zombies as biological weapons gave the book a contemporary feel and sets it apart from the typical "end of the world" zombie novel.
I am working my way through the rest of the writers books and its always a joy to discover a new novelist in an unexpected manner, let's hope Mr Mayberry can keep up the high standard.
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on 28 July 2009
This was a very good read, I would go as far to say even if you weren't a zombie fan. The story did basically say what was on the back cover a mix of 28 days later and 24, some people have criticised the stereotypical characters but in fairness there were enough quirks that all characters did not fall into this mould. I also take the point about research into some of the facts like a female SAS major and some of the kit the British army uses, I would suggest 5 minutes on Google would have sorted that, but minor annoyances aside it was a good story that will hopefully see the main characters develop in his next book.
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VINE VOICEon 30 July 2010
I'm not a big fan of zombie books; it seems to me that there is limited scope once you get over the fact that zombies can only do one thing.

In this book, however, we've moved on. Anti-western elements have pretty much perfected a zombie which can think, talk and generally behave badly. That many hundreds are disposed of in this fast and furious helter-skelter ride is only a problem for the West.

Enter Joe Ledger, all action super-hero (yes, another American) with a little help from a Brit as the love interest who, mistakenly described as a major in the SAS, can also pack a punch above her weight.

The book is a great holiday read. Don't expect pages of moralising (there are a few) but do expect page upon page of a rising body count, an almost unkillable hero and his team and another Muslim extremist group intent on, again, taking over the wold, though, as ever, with a little bit of help from greedy Westerners.

My review is light-hearted since that's the way the book comes across, of course. I did begin to flag towards the middle of it because, as I mentioned ealier, there is really only so much you can do with a zombie. Much has been made of 28 Days etc. Maybe somebody will make this into a film but don't expect much by way of innovative ways to kill a zombie. We all know how to do it should the need ever arise.

Having said all this, I hope that we see Echo Team back again. The characters are larger-than-life, necessarily so, but it makes for a good read when looking for escapism. I got this book through a swap and I'm pleased I read it. I will look forward to book 2 which, hopefully, will exclude the living dead for a change.
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on 11 December 2014
This book is what is best described as every cliche out of an action film, ever, in book form. It's not exactly literary genius, but it isn't poor as some books I have read on Amazon recently have been.

Ultimately if you want something trashy to fill a few hours, this is perfect. It's entertaining, quite straight forward, and a lot of fun. Reminds me some what of the Clive Cussler books in that sense - and it does a perfectly good job.

Patient Zero tells the story of the DMS, Department of Military Science, who take on a terrorist trying to create zombies as a bioweapon for an attack on America. I did not realise that this was the first in a series of books about the main character, so my initial expectation was that it would go in a more World War Z fashion, but I still really enjoyed it nonetheless. I do recommend it if you're looking for some simple action writing.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 10 January 2012
'Patient Zero' is a competent post-9/11 thriller that mixes elements of zombie horror with futuristic bioterrorism and corporate skulduggery to produce a pacy but rather generic read. For the most part the book is designed to appeal to the reader who enjoys rapid plot movement, lots of twists and turns and violent bloody action. It's also written very much with a patriotic and anti-Islamic American audience in mind - although Maberry does provide the British reader with one source of entertainment in the form of a most unlikely female SAS major.

There are a few individual touches - notably an unusual preoccupation with the psychological consequences for the hero and his colleagues in the super-secret DMS organisation of the awful things they have to see and do - but on this showing, Maberry isn't a writer of the calibre of Max Brooks. His characters are mostly lazy stereotypes and the plot, though complicated and carefully worked out, is Bond-ishly implausible. On balance, 'Patient Zero' is just good enough: undemanding, forgettable entertainment to while away a long flight or train journey.
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on 4 May 2012
Cons - Not incredibly innovative, having echoes of various other books and films. Only an American could be equate Islam with terrorism in such a crude way - I spent my own youth dodging US funded terrorists who used Christianity as their excuse.

Pros - competently written - so many zombie books seem to be written by semi literate teenagers. Overall, a rip roaring read and I will probably get some of his other books.
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on 11 July 2014
I like Joe Ledger, he's seriously hardcore. And for me it's this character that carries the book. Zombies created by terrorists as a biological weapon, such a story of the times. Kick ass underground government agency created to deal with the threat.

Great idea for a story, and I love the whole back story and detail regarding the how and why the "walkers" were created. Well written story, in some parts felt a little over long. My only issue - not enough zombies for me! Solid 4 star read.
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on 16 August 2013
I'm a huge fan of Jonathan Maberry. His Rot & Ruin series is easily one of the best set of books I've had the pleasure to read, but unfortunately This was very poor.

All the hallmarks of Maberry's work (compassion, pace, great characterisation, character development, humanity) were absent from Joe Ledger's tale. I made no connection whatsoever and couldn't invest myself at all in the main character, or any other character. For me the book, was really just a series of set-pieces and honestly, I'd never have believed It was Maberry book if I hadn't know in advance. Puzzling.
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on 16 December 2014
we read this for my book club and opinion was split between awesomely fun and so bad couldn't even finish it. i myself reaally enjoyed it. it was a fast paced thriller and i asked for the sequel for xmas.
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on 1 June 2009
I've been obsessed with zombies my entire life. As a result, I've developed preferences for details such as the cause of an outbreak or the behavior of zombies. I was thrilled to read Mayberry's version of terrorists creating and using zombies as biological wepons: Seif al Din, The Sword of the Faithful. Out of all the outbreak scenarios I've ever read, this is up there in the top five of Most Likely To Happen.

Mayberry is another author who manipulates the time line to build up the story's intensity, but it's easy to follow because he notes the location, date, and time at the beginning of each chapter. Eventually the time lines join together before you are even halfway through the book.

The climax was incredible. I am so happy that Mayberry didn't have "intelligent" zombies returning to their former lives -- I'm getting sick of seeing authors trying to be philosophical (to date, Romero is the only one who could properly mix social issues with zombies). I also enjoyed the quotes placed at the intervals within the book; who ever imagined relating a Ralph Waldo Emerson quote with zombies?

This was fantastic as a stand-alone book, but I would love to see a sequel of some kind. I will be adding Mayberry to my list of favorite zombie authors. Another book of his is Bad Moon Rising.

If you are looking for another good zombie book, I recommend Eden.
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