note: This is a book review that I wrote for the old Gutmunchers website. As I was always looking for more zombie stuff to cover the work of McKinney caught my attention. I suppose this is a spoiler but while this was my first dive into his work it certainly wasn’t the last.
Let me say something right here at the beginning of this review. Dead City follows a familiar and predictable story that anyone who has ever seen a zombie movie will recognize. But I still enjoyed the heck out of this book. I like the main character of Eddie, as well as the other characters that he runs into as the plot unfolds. McKinney does a wonderful job of making him likeable and as a result bringing the reader into the story. I was completely invested in the character and that kept me turning the pages wanting to know what happened next (it was a long night without enough sleep!). Another thing that McKinney does very well is the structure of the story. Most of the book takes place during a single night. I’m not sure how he pulled it off, but when I was reading Dead City it felt like it had a manic pace. As a reader I was getting as exhausted as the main character was. Though again the book kept me hooked and up way past my bedtime, so that might have played a part in this.
Lets talk about some gore. While McKinney doesn’t linger much on describing the terrible things done to the living and the dead in this book, I did find it satisfying. Don’t get me wrong we are treated to plenty of headshots, teeth gnashing, and a bit with a baby that is disturbing. As I’ve already touched on the pacing of the book is part of the fun, so if each zombie and kill were described in great detail the pacing would have suffered.
I’m a sucker for all things zombie and Dead City is a great zombie novel. If you like your monsters shuffling and deceased, you will enjoy this book. I recommend taking the time to track down a copy.
© Copyright 2023 John Shatzer