Book Review: The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

In Mary’s world, there are simple truths. 
The Sisterhood always knows best.
The Guardians will protect and serve.
The Unconsecrated will never relent.

And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village. The fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth.

But slowly, Mary’s truths are failing her. She’s learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets, and the Guardians and their power. And, when the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness.

Now she must choose between her village and her future, between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded by so much death?

The Forest of Hands and Teeth
Carrie Ryan
Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Hardcover: (March, 2009), ISBN-13: 978-0385736817
Paperback: (February, 2010) ISBN-13: 978-0385736824

Debut novel The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan is a compelling action-packed story filled with the horrors of a world succumbed to zombies and is the first of a series.

Mary’s life within the village surrounded by the Forest of Hands and Teeth is too secluded for her after growing up listening to her mother’s stories of the ocean and what the world was like before the Return. She dreams of leaving the village one day to see the ocean for herself, and after a breach threatens her home, it looks like she’ll get her wish as she and her closest friends take a journey that leads them into an unknown world.

While Mary is torn between the boy she loves and the boy who loves her, she never loses faith in her mother’s stories and strives forward in their journey to see that what her mother said was true.

This book is captivating, compelling, and a fast-paced zombie thriller that will have you turning page after page and sitting on the edge of your seat until finished. Never have I been so pulled into a book, wrought with emotion, and nearly screaming out loud as things went bump in the night in the story and in reality. It pulls you in, holds you within its pages as you make your way through with Mary’s narration and intense internal dialog that has you feeling every emotion, every fear, and hearing every sound—especially those ongoing moans of the Unconsecrated.

The Forest of Hands and Teeth is a top-notch YA book that carries a lot of praise with it, which can be found on Carrie Ryan’s website:

Kudos to Carrie Ryan for writing such a brilliant piece of work and for coming up with a title that literally jumped off the shelf at me. It was the reason I bought the book!

Read the excerpt here.

The Dead-Tossed Waves continues the series, available now, as is book 3, The Dark and Hollow Places.

Bewitching Book Tours: The Zombie Story by M.M. Shelley

MMShelley_TheZombieStory_HRHi Everyone! I’m M.M. Shelley and I’d like to give a BIG thanks to The Zombie Survival Crew for having me today so that I can share my novella:

The Zombie Story

My story is about Magick and Zombies, a little different take on the Zombie genre and follows the adventures of Orlando as he arrives in a new city.

Ruben Juarez has always been careful; he’s had no choice not to be. Orphaned at a young age it has been just him and Elodie, his younger sister, they avoided the foster system by staying anonymous. It hasn’t been easy and it has made him feel disconnected.

To make money he became involved with underground fighting and he has become quite good at it. He can detect someone’s weak spot just by watching how they carry themselves. Ruben has never boasted about the number of wins he has on his belt or about anything else for that matter. Boxing has always been a way for him to burn off steam, a way to forget about everything and just live in the moment.

He didn’t begin hunting zombies until he learned that he could make money at it. He was approached by a man named Maxwell who made him a generous offer if he would agree to train Orlando Drake.

It was an odd offer, but the money was good so he didn’t question it. Maybe he should have questioned it and just maybe he should have walked away. If he had not felt a deep responsibility to look out for his sister he just might have walked away.

His dream would be to just ride on his motorcycle from town to town, nowhere in particular–just far away from everyone who knows him. Ruben has never been one to run away from his responsibility but if it wasn’t for Elodie he just might decide to up and leave.

Thanks again for hosting this stop on my tour!

About the Book:

The Zombie Story is the first novella in a young adult series.

Unfolding on the streets of Los Angeles is a new breed of monster…

Orlando, fresh from the mid west, arrives at his new high school on his Harley Davidson.

All he wants is to make it through the day, and begin his training as a Zombie Hunter.

But someone has different plans for him.

Currently free for your Kindle


* * * * * * * * * *

Dead Relatives
Book 2

After discovering what was hidden in Mexico and having to sneak back across the border Orlando returns to Los Angeles, but is unable to return to his home.

Instead of hunting Zombies he is now hunted.

Betrayed by those he thought he could trust, Orlando must keep the truth of what he knows to himself.

That is until dead relatives return with dire warnings.


* * * * * * * * * *

About the Author:

M.M. Shelley is a storyteller, word smith and dreamer. She has traveled the world extensively in search of the magic which is often overlooked in every day life. M.M. Shelley is a native of southern California, and a student of mythology from which she gets much inspiration.

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Bewitching Book Tours: The Necromancer’s Seduction by Mimi Sebastian

We’re happy to give our crew a special Valentine’s Day treat and give you a sneak preview of an upcoming book featuring Necromancer, Ruby Montagne. What could go wrong on the day of love between a necromancer and her demon warrior… especially when you throw in an alliance with a witch and a zombie? And we have an interview with author Mimi Sebastian and have included the book trailer below, so don’t miss out.

the-necromancer's-seduction-cleanThe Necromancer’s Seduction
The Necromancer Series, Book One
Mimi Sebastian

Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: ImaJinn Books

Cover Artist: Patricia Lazarus

Book Description:

She has never feared the walking dead. It’s the power required to reanimate the dead that startles her, seduces her. The power that dwells inside her…and is growing.

For Professor Ruby Montagne, being a necromancer has brought her nothing but heartache, and she walked away from that part of her life long ago. However, her quiet existence in San Francisco is shattered when she stumbles upon the body of a slain witch, and the supernatural community insists she transform him into a revenant to track the killer. But his murder was just the beginning, and Ruby soon realizes that the stakes are higher than anyone can imagine—and that revenants have nasty minds of their own.

Now demonic creatures have escaped into the human world, and zombies once again walk the streets. For humanity’s sake, Ruby forms an unlikely alliance with a witch, a zombie, and Ewan March, a demon warrior who sets her senses on fire.

She’s always distrusted demons and Ewan is no exception, but circumstances push them closer together, and Ruby not only finds it harder to resist him, she isn’t sure she even wants to. But she suspects his job of patrolling the portal separating humans and demons conceals a dark and deadly past that may consume them both.

With events spiraling out of control, Ruby unravels a plot that not only threatens the human and demon realms, but puts Ruby’s very soul in jeopardy. Because when the dead walk, no one is safe. Especially Ruby.

Interview with Mimi Sebastian

  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?
    • I have journals starting back from when I was ten or twelve years old. I used to write a lot of poetry and short stories. Writing has always been a part of me, but I never sat down to write a book until a couple of years ago.

      Ruby, the necromancer, inspired me. Her story kept knocking around in my head, telling me about her power, control of the dead, and how that affects her humanity. Ruby’s power almost has a mind of its own and influences her in negative ways. And there are definitely limits set, lines that a necromancer should never cross, because it warps them, so it’s fun to explore what happens to her when she crosses those lines. In my mythology, without giving too much away, necromancers were born from the interference of the demons in the human realm. They have the ability to reanimate the dead, create zombies and revenants. Those are the basic powers, but I expand beyond those abilities, which plays into the necromancer/demon mythology, but that’s about all I can say.

  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?
    • Mark Twain because he was so funny, irreverent, but cared enough to write some of the most wonderful political satire ever, and along those lines, Kurt Vonnegut. I saw him speak once and things he said about life and writing still resonate with me. Dracula influenced the horror buff in me, because I love the atmosphere Stoker created and the way he wrote Dracula. Dracula is a horrible creature that eats babies, but Stoker still makes him appealing. Poets have also inspired me, like Lawrence Ferlinghetti and T.S. Eliot. Eliot’s Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock is one of the most amazing poems ever, and I still reference it in my head. Oh, Ray Bradbury. I don’t know if he influenced my life, because that might scare me a little to explore that, but his writing has definitely inspired me.
  3. Tell us a little about your main characters. How has being a necromancer brought nothing but heartache for Professor Ruby Montagne? And how did she become embroiled with Ewan March, the demon warrior?
    • Well, Ruby’s mom and grandmother died tragic deaths as a result of their ability. Her identity keeps her from developing close relationships with men or non-supernatural people, so she has actually lived a pretty isolated life, especially after her grandmother’s death. Her only supernatural friend is a witch, but mostly, she avoids the supe community, avoids using her power as a result of what happened to her mother, etc. (Can’t tell you that, sorry.) Ewan March has kind of watched her from afar, kept his distance because he understands her trepidation, but lots of unsavory things hit the fan, and they wind up working together and he takes full advantage of that situation. Ruby is not prudish or sexually immature, but her past and her powers have isolated her, despite her best efforts. She’s attracted to Ewan, but doesn’t want to get involved with a demon, but he has his own dark past (of course), and that intrigues Ruby so she begins letting down her guard to understand him better.

      One of the things I’ve enjoyed doing with my characters is to not make them black or white, but to explore the gray areas. They all have to make horrible choices based their allegiances to their own supernatural race and past events.

  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?
    • Gosh, plants, lots of plants. Especially watermelons and cherry bombs. They seem to work very well. (I just couldn’t resist. I love Plants vs. Zombies and they are coming out with Part Two this year.) World infested? Even Canada? My thought was in taking off to Canada. Canada never seems to suffer from plagues, asteroids, or nuclear attacks. I like road trips, so maybe staying on the road in a Zombieland way.
  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?
    • sells tactical canned bacon. Toss them out to the zombies as a distraction, or snack food when in a pinch. Underwear. A flame thrower. And fake blood and torn clothes in case you have to pull a Shaun of the Dead type zombie impersonation.
  6. How did you come up with the premise for The Necromancer’s Seduction? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie lit world?
    • It goes back to my necromancer and telling her story, and because of the necromancer angle, my zombies are not disease zombies, but are brought to life by the necromancer. One of the main characters in the book is Adam, who she raises as a revenant, basically a zombie with his soul restored. He is bound to the necromancer. Her power is the only thing keeping him from launching into a Night of the Living Dead frenzy. The interplay between them was great to write because Adam struggles between remembering his human side and human emotions and his craving for flesh and urge to free himself from the bond with Ruby. There are moments when he attacks Ruby and, while she must work with him, she’s always wary of him.

      I have zombie demon creatures and zombie rats. Actually, the rats come out in the second book. I live in an old house and a couple of years ago had to deal with a rat nest in the crawlspace of the house. Although they are gone (thankfully), they still haunt me, and I decided they needed to haunt my necromancer as well. When we were dealing with the infestation, I’d wake in the middle of the night and hear the faint patter of paws in the wall behind my bed. Nuts! Sorry, I digress.

  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?
    • Well, I can’t say my book is geared toward the horror audience, but I tried to include elements of horror because zombies are horrifying, even if Shaun of the Dead convinced us a zombie might make a good videogame partner. I’m not buying it. I think the challenge with horror is imparting fear through mood and atmosphere and not simply writing gore. I’ve read lots of classic and contemporary horror and, I like when authors build suspense slowly and carefully, and use sound description well. One of the things I never forgot about reading The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker and seeing the movie Hellraiser is the damned bell described in the book and used in the movie to announce the arrival of the Cenobites the first time. Bells in general kind of creep me out.
  8. Tell us a little bit about your years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps. Are there things we could use come the dawn of the zombie apocalypse?
    • West Africa is fantastic. There’s a saying in the Peace Corps: a volunteer goes to East Africa for nature, South America for politics, and West Africa to smile, or something like that. I was doing urban environmental management, and unlike many volunteers in the villages, my site was a small town, about 50,000 population. I had running water, electricity, a toilet in my house. We are talking luxury digs! I had to learn to completely change my understanding of cultural norms and boundaries. Kids used to show up at my house and hang out. At first, it rubbed my American sense of personal space, but once I made the mental shift, I began looking forward to the visits. They’d come over and I didn’t have to entertain them. They just wanted to hang, make tea, whatever. (Most people did not have tvs) And this is a key aspect of West African culture. Very social. Very community. Little kids ran around the neighborhood naked and everyone knew who that kid was, so it was okay, and if the kid had a problem or needed help, whoever was around, took him home. I often just sat with some of the woman in my neighborhood who sold street food. See, they’d often give me freebies. But it was that type of integration and just taking the time to sit with people that built the strongest relationships. I’m just as caught up in the rat race as the next person, but I wish we would just sit with people more.

      We could learn a lot from the Africans to confront the zombie apocalypse. Every household had a machete or some type of sharp tool they used to kill live animals purchased in the market because a home cooked meal often required home butchering. If zombies showed up, the sense of community and butchering skills would serve them well, and I imagine the people would band together to take down the offending horde. And, talk about women kicking ass, women did most of the cooking and butchering, so they would probably lead the charge.

  9. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?
    • My book comes out July 15! I’m currently editing the second book, The Necromancer’s Betrayal, and am trying to find time to edit a pirate book I wrote. The pirate book does not have zombies, but the beginning does start with a hanging.
  10. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?
    • Still being an avid reader myself, I appreciate good characters, and I hope that’s what people take from my stories. This has been a fun interview. Thanks!

MimiSebastianAbout the Author:

Noemi Ghirghi writes as Mimi Sebastian and raised herself on books and the strange and unusual with an unhealthy dose of comics and Scooby Doo. Loving angst-filled romance thrown in the mix, she decided to blend all those elements in a steamy mix in her first Urban Fantasy series, the Necromancer Books. The first book, The Necromancer’s Seduction, debuts July 15, 2013, with ImaJinn Books.

Noemi spent two years in the Ivory Coast with the Peace Corps and loves to introduce tid-bits from her experiences in her writing. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America and the Fantasy, Futuristic and Paranormal chapter of RWA. A transplant from the beaches of Florida, Noemi now wanders the desert in Phoenix, AZ, and attempts to balance writing with a day career, fantastic family, and household diva: her Amazon parrot.

Don’t forget to check out the book trailer below!!

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Bring in the . . . Incubus?

NeeNormally we’re all about the undead, but so many of our ZSC commanders have been busy working on awesome projects of their own, we just have to share. Today we’re proud to announce the release of Orange Brigade Commander R.C. Murphy’s novel, Enslaved.

There aren’t man-eating corpses in this book, but it isn’t fluffy like Commander RC’s zombie bunnies, either. Take a look:

The gods are flawed . . . and they make awful parents.

Deryck knows first-hand the cruelty of the gods. Three thousand years after his birth, he is still trapped, forced to service humans as an Incubus—unable to choose who he sleeps with, and living a life completely devoid of love. There is no out for him. No hope. Or so he thought.

Shayla McIntire spent five years getting her life back on track after the accident claiming her husband’s life. She is content to a nice, boring, subdued life free of the abuse she suffered before. Her friends are worried. They want her to find the man of her dreams and move on.

Little do they know, the Powers That Be have decided the man of Shayla’s dreams for her. There’s just one hitch, he’s enslaved to the gods and it will take power she doesn’t know she has to free him. Deryck isn’t the only one hoping Shayla will free him, though.

Click on the cover to grab your copy of Enslaved today!

Enslaved Final Cover

Click here for Amazon!
Other formats TBA

Dauntless by Shannon Mayer

Dauntless is the third book of Shannon Mayer‘s Nevermore trilogy, a Zombie-ish Apocalypse novella series.

In this final installment, be prepared for death to come knocking, as the apocalypse and monsters stretch the bonds of love and friendship, demanding a reckoning of those who are willing to do what they must to survive.

When “I Am Legend” meets “Resident Evil,” the Nevermores in this trilogy are similar to the “vampires” in I Am Legend with their feral pack mentality, and the cause of the change in humans is because of a supposed cure-all drug, similar to the toxin in Resident Evil. The Nevermores aren’t quite zombies, in that they aren’t dead, but they will eat anything and everything.

Minor spoilers:

Dauntless picks up after Bound, continuing Mara’s and Sebastian’s story of love and survival even when everything on the planet is stacked against you. It begins in the mad scientist’s compound, follows their escape, and Mara’s struggle to fight for Sebastian and their child, even when he doesn’t want to continue on. Did Donovan’s cure work? For a good amount of time, Sebastian is sick as hell and on the verge of death. Throughout the trilogy, Mara makes some pretty stupid decisions, which someone points out to her, and yet, she somehow manages to make it. How, we’ll never quite know.

Scout, Mara’s loyal Nevermore, returns to help and in the end, gives his life to save his alphas’ lives. He was a very likable character; one that was written well enough to be remembered for a long time.

The trilogy is essentially one book split into three. There is also a short story, first published in Forever Nocturne e-zine, that goes with the trilogy, centered on two other characters. The entire Nevermore trilogy is a quick and easy read, though it could have used a better copy edit. Some of the mistakes were a little distracting, but the average reader likely won’t notice most of them.

Dauntless was definitely the “love will conquer all” happy ending. I won’t, however, tell you where they’re heading or the surprise that waits.

Thank you, Ms. Mayer, for such an entertaining series. I look forward to your Celtic Legacy series next.

You can find Shannon Mayer on her website:

The entire Nevermore trilogy is available at the following links:




Scattered – (Scattered first appeared in Forever Nocturne e-zine under the title No Way Safe)

This review originally posted on Jinxie G‘s book review site.

Bewitching Book Tours: Mama Lona’s Man by Brett O’Neal Davis

MamaLonasManWe had the pleasure of catching up with Brett Davis on his web-wide tour of Mama Lona’s Man a zombie/voodoo thriller, and he was kind enough to answer a few questions we felt our Zombie Survival Crew brigadiers would be interested in.

Mama Lona’s Man
The Straw Man Series, Book One
by Brett O’Neal Davis

Genre: Paranormal Romance
Number of pages: 219
Word Count: 74,000
Cover Artist: Cate Meyers

Book Description:

Mama Lona’s Man combines a Caribbean love story with a zombie thriller. It’s a bit James Bond, a bit “How Stella Got Her Groove Back” and a dash of “Night of the Living Dead.

The leading man is an ex-Navy SEAL controlled by a witch doctor. When he meets an American girl caught up in island intrigue, they fall in love even though he’s been dead longer than she’s been alive.

  1. When did you first begin writing, and what inspired you to write your first book?

    • I have been writing my whole life, although I didn’t start trying seriously to write a novel until I was 21 years old. I have always enjoyed reading, mainly novels, so at some point it seemed natural to try to create one of my own. I have nothing against short stories—they are very hard to do well—I just have always tended to think in terms of longer stories, so novel writing was more natural to me. And, this is going to sound bad, but when I was younger I read “Less than Zero” and thought, I could do that. So I tried.

  2. What books and authors have most influenced your life?

    • I have always been most impressed, I think, by authors whose work I find very difficult at first. I am a huge fan of the poet Dylan Thomas, whose imagery can be very dense and hard to tease apart. I am amazed at the career of William T. Vollmann, whose “You Bright and Risen Angels” blew me away, although I still don’t think I quite understand it. I also admire J.R.R. Tolkein. I got through “The Hobbit” easily enough as a kid, but it took me a lot longer to be able to tackle “Lord of the Rings.” I am envious of the ability to create a world that people can inhabit as if it’s real, and someday maybe I’ll achieve something like that. And, although he’s largely forgotten as a writer per se, I’ll add Ian Fleming to this list. My zombie character was greatly inspired by the James Bond series. Not the movies, but the books.

  3. Tell us a little about your main characters. How easy/difficult was it for you to write a 20-year-old college girl and at the same time climb into the head of a dead ex-Navy Seal?

    • Abigail Callisto is a troubled but brilliant young college student whose father works for the government in a very hush-hush intelligence role. Her mother died when she was young and she doesn’t remember much about her. She’s very self-reliant and couples an artistic temperament with a real genius for electronics. Randy Straw, short for Ravinell, is a young SEAL who was killed in the invasion of Grenada in 1983. For reasons that are detailed in the book, he’s brought back to life as the slave of a witch doctor. He’s a young man removed from the effects of time, kind of like a more muscular Peter Pan.

      Each character presented a unique challenge. I have been privileged to know a lot of smart, strong women in my life and I drew upon all of them in creating the character of Abigail. The toughest part was writing about her computer hacking ability. She’s much, much smarter than I am. As for Randy, I did a fair amount of research on Navy SEALS but the hardest part was trying to cast my mind back to the world of 1983, which is the last time he was really connected to the world of the living. He has no idea what a cell phone is and the hottest computer of his day was probably a Commodore 64.

  4. Faced with a world infested with flesh-eating biters, what would be your go-to method of defense and why?

    • I admire Daryl Dixon’s work with the crossbow, so I’m going to have to go with that. It’s quick and quiet and doesn’t attract more biters. Maybe if I really wanted a good workout I would switch to a regular bow, and if I were being truly he-man I would make my own bow from a tree that I chopped down, with maybe zombie gut for string.

  5. In this ever-changing world, it behooves us to be prepared for disaster to happen at any moment. The Zombie Survival Crew members have a “go-bag” filled with items essential for their survival should disaster strike and they must flee to survive. What are the most essential items for your go-bag and why?

    • A bunch of contact lenses and fluid so I could see (I really need to get Lasik done before the apocalypse arrives). A digital camera and a laptop. Once the plague passes, people are going to want a record of what happened and I intend to corner that market. A solar charger, so the laptop and camera won’t die. Some clean underwear. Coffee beans, and some kind of coffee-making device, maybe one of those little French-press things. Because without caffeine, I just wouldn’t care.

  6. How did you come up with the premise for Mama Lona’s Man? And what do you feel makes your book stand out in the zombie and voodoo lit world?

    • I got the general idea for “Mama Lona’s Man” quite a long time ago, when my uncle gave me a cool set of original edition James Bond books that were published in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The books have a different vibe from the movies … they’re almost as much travelogue as adventure, because Bond goes to fun places and Fleming liked to describe them at some length. And, of course, Bond never gets killed. So I started thinking about having a secret agent type who cannot be killed, which led me to make him a zombie, and I wanted the setting to be a Bond-like romp in the Caribbean, and the rest started to fall into place. It took a long time, though. It wasn’t until I focused the book around my lead female character, Abigail Callisto, instead of my zombie hero, Randy Straw, that it fell into place and really became something that could sustain a short series.

      As for what makes it stand out, I think it’s the sort-of return to the classic Haitian zombie model of old. I say “sort of” because I play pretty fast and loose with actual historical Voodoo practice, and I just flat out made up some things to suit my story, which calls for the zombie man to be truly dead but not in an icky way. There are some other sexy zombies out there, but they are in the minority, and I think the way I created mine is unique.

  7. Is there anything you find particularly challenging in writing for a horror audience?

    • Being scary is the hardest thing for me. Even though there are some pretty horrific scenes in the book, in the main it’s not particularly scary. In general I find movies to be more effective in actually scaring people than books, because if you’re reading a book and get creeped out you can always look at your cat or something to reassure yourself, but you can’t really do that if you’re in a dark theater.

  8. Tell us a little bit about your work with robotics. Are there things we could use come the dawn of the zombie apocalypse?

    • I edit a magazine, published by a trade association, that covers unmanned systems and robotics. I couldn’t put a robot together if you gave me a Lego kit and built half of it in advance, but I like to talk to people who can. And, yes, there are many systems that would come in handy when the end times begin. Any kind of far-seeing sensor that would tell you where the shambling hordes are at any given time would be handy, and there are a lot of those out there. The forward-looking infrared sensors that can detect body heat would probably not be of much use against zombies, but a ground robot with a machine gun on top would be just the thing.

  9. What are you working on now? Can you tell us your latest news?

    • I am plotting out more adventures for Abigail Callisto and Randy Straw, the heroes of “Mama Lona’s Man.” I’m picturing a five-story arc. I already know how it’s going to end, just am not positive yet how I’m going to get there. Also, I spent a big chunk of last summer shooting a (very) low-budget vampire movie with some great actors from the DC area. I’m just beginning the editing on that, which will take a while, but should be a lot of fun. I hope it will show up on a screen near you at some point in 2013. It may be an iPad screen, but that’s still a screen.

  10. Is there anything you would like to say to your readers?

    • Yes … please give me feedback on my zombie man and his brainy gal as their adventures progress. I want their adventures to span the globe, so please contact me via my blog and let me know where you’d like them to go. Don’t just read the adventures, help direct them. And, pay attention to the advice you get from the Zombie Survival Crew. You just might need it!

BrettDavisAbout the Author:

Brett O’Neal Davis is a native of Florence, Ala., and attended the same high school as Sam Phillips, who discovered Elvis Presley. He studied journalism at the University of North Alabama and the University of Missouri, writing about music whenever possible. He also briefly “fronted” the one-man punk band Screwhead. Despite clearing $1.50 in profit on consignment sales of the band’s lone album at Salt of the Earth Records in Columbia, Mo., he turned to the slightly more stable world of aerospace and defense journalism, working today in the field of unmanned systems and robotics in Washington, D.C.

He is the author of four science fiction and fantasy novels, all published by Baen Books. The first, The Faery Convention, was listed among the best fantasy novels for 1995 by Science Fiction Chronicle, and Two Tiny Claws was named to the 2000 Books for the Teen Age List by the New York Public Library. An occasional panelist at area science fiction conventions, he also has discussed fiction writing at National Press Club events and at literary festivals, including the annual T.S. Stribling celebration at the University of North Alabama. Mama Lona’s Man is his first foray into paranormal romance, but it won’t be the last.

Smashwords | Amazon | Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Bound by Shannon Mayer

Bound is the second book of Shannon Mayer‘s Nevermore trilogy, a Zombie-ish Apocalypse novella series.

A continuation from “Sundered” that will again shock you with life in an apocalypse with twists, thrills, monsters, and, of course, an undeniable love story.

The trilogy is “I Am Legend” meets “Resident Evil.” The Nevermores are similar to the “vampires” in I Am Legend with their feral pack mentality, and the cause is because of a supposed cure-all drug, similar to the toxin inResident Evil. The Nevermores are quite zombies, in that they aren’t dead, but they will eat anything and everything.

Bound continues right where Sundered left off, where Sebastian attacks Mara along the back path behind their house. Directly after, they’re captured by an “army” squadron and taken from their farm. One of the Nevermores consistently outside the fence of their home, whom Mara named Scout, crawls up under the truck without being seen and makes it to the squadron’s compound, to Mara’s pleasant surprise. When the leader discovers she has control over Scout, mainly due to the fact that she stopped Scout from killing him, he decides to have Mara train the Nevermores.

Bound is a quick and easy read. There seemed to be a character name mix up at one point, but I could be mistaken and misjudged the relationship the author was attempting to build. It left me a little confused. Listed as paranormal romance, Bound is full of warmth and the power of love at its best, and heart wrenching at its worst.

We can only hope that in the next book, Dauntless, love truly will conquer all and Mara and Sebastian will get their happy ending.

You can find Shannon Mayer on her website:

The entire Nevermore trilogy is available at the following links:




Scattered – (Scattered first appeared in Forever Nocturne e-zine under the title No Way Safe)

This review originally posted on Jinxie G‘s book review site.

Sundered by Shannon Mayer (Book Review)

Sundered is the first book of Shannon Mayer‘s Nevermore trilogy, a Zombie-ish Apocalypse novella series.

Compared to “I am Legend”, Sundered will take you into the dark realms of an apocalypse, with a new breed of zombie that will have your heart pounding, your palms sweaty and the pages flying. A Novella with true bite.

This is Ms. Mayer’s first release, and it’s a good start. The story is an “I Am Legend” meets “Resident Evil” book, in that the creatures are similar to the “vampires” in I Am Legend without the vampire aspect but having the wolf pack mentality, and the cause is similar to the Resident Evil drug/toxin that kills everyone off. Except in Sundered, people don’t die from getting the Nevermore shot; they become feral predators. Quite the unique little twist—one of many within the book.

Readers can easily identify with Mara, the main character. She’s trying to lose weight and trying to get pregnant…again. After having a miscarriage, her world was devastated and it threw her into a deep depression. But when the Nevermore “miracle” drug becomes available, Mara’s excitement can hardly be contained. Her husband Sebastian isn’t quite so convinced, but when Mara goes in to get the shot, her world shatters once again. She discovers it may have been her saving grace, but as the apocalypse takes hold of the world around them, Mara soon learns that not every story has a happy ending.

The novella could have used another edit, as the timeline is a bit off in one area, but all in all,Sundered is a quick, easy, and entertaining read. Listed as paranormal romance—and no, there is no “zombie” sex, thankfully—Sundered is full of warmth and the power of love at its best, and heart wrenching at its worst, enough to make one cry. Three. Times.

We welcome Shannon Mayer into the world of published authors and look forward to reading more from her.

You can find Shannon Mayer on her website:

The entire Nevermore trilogy is available at the following links:

Sundered – Book 1

Bound – Book 2

Dauntless – Book 3

Scattered – Short story – Scattered first appeared in Forever Nocturne e-zine‘s October 2011 edition under the title No Way Safe.

This review originally posted on Jinxie G‘s book review site.

Bewitching Book Tours: Life After the Undead by Pembroke Sinclair

Today, the Zombie Survival Crew welcomes Pembroke Sinclair and a peek at her book, Life After the Undead. It’s a pleasure to have someone stop by who knows her zombies and isn’t afraid to express her views. Take it away Pembroke.

I was on a panel at a convention recently with Life After the Undead on display, and one of the guests from the audience asked about the book. He said, “Is that vampires?”

“No,” I responded. “Zombies.”

“Oh.” The man raised his eyebrows. “Are they sparkly zombies?”

I was taken aback and slightly shocked. I was the only female on the panel with five males, but why would he assume I would make my zombies sparkly? Was he trying to be funny? If so, I wasn’t amused. Just because I’m female and the book is YA doesn’t mean I can’t write blood and gore.

I snorted and said, “Absolutely not. They are regular, evil zombies.”

Later, the encounter got me thinking about how traditional “bad” guys have been redefined and altered for modern audiences. Obviously, the most apparent example here is the Twilight series. It changed our view of vampires. Other stories and movies have altered how we look at werewolves. But nothing has come out yet that redefined the zombie. Granted, shows like 28 Days Later and the sequels introduced a fast zombie, but I know many people who would argue that they aren’t actually zombies. Many people still believe that the Romero Zombie, or shambler, are the only true zombies.

IronE Singleton

I’m a purist. I believe that zombies are slow moving and rotting. They are dead humans that have returned to life to feed upon the living. They are absolutely not shiny, and they have no thoughts in their vacant minds except to eat. But having the same old story over and over can get a little boring, the convention can get stale, so I made a few changes to the traditional zombie. For one, I made them aware that if they stay in a humid environment for too long, they will deteriorate faster. Therefore, the zombies in Life After the Undead have migrated to more dry climates to survive. They still crave human flesh and can change the living into the undead through a bite, but they are just a little more aware of how quickly they are falling apart.

For me, it was important to stick to the accepted definitions of what constitutes a zombie. I remember watching Night of the Living Dead when I was 15 and not being scared but utterly creeped out by what I saw. I wanted to recreate that feeling for a new audience, but I didn’t want it to feel stale or like I was rewriting the same story, hence the small change. It’s good every now and then to change a traditional monster to make it appeal to a new audience. It perpetuates the myths and introduces them to a new generation. However, I’m pretty sure sparkly zombies will be a sign of the apocalypse.

Life After the Undead by Pembroke Sinclair

Genre: YA Horror | Publisher: eTreasures Publishing | Length: 356 pages | Cover Artist: Jerrod Brown

Madison Lintz

Book Description:

The world has come to an end. It doesn’t go out with a bang, or even a whimper. It goes out in an orgy of blood and the dead rising from their graves to feast on living flesh. As democracy crumples and the world melts into anarchy, five families in the U.S. rise to protect the survivors.

The undead hate a humid environment, so they are migrating westward to escape its deteriorating effects. The survivors are constructing a wall in North Platte to keep the zombie threat to the west, while tyranny rules among the humans to the east.

Capable but naïve Krista is 15 when the first attacks occur, and she loses her family and barely escapes with her life. She makes her way to the wall and begins a new life. But, as the undead threat grows and dictators brainwash those she cares about, Krista must fight not only to survive but also to defend everything she holds dear—her country, her freedom, and ultimately those she loves.

Pembroke Sinclair

About the Author:

Pembroke Sinclair has had several short stories published. Her story, “Sohei,” was named one of the Best Stories of 2008 by The Cynic Online Magazine. She has novellas and a short story collection available from Musa Publishing and eTreasures Publishing. Her two novels, Coming from Nowhere (adult, sci fi) and Life After the Undead (YA, horror), are available from eTreasures Publishing, as well as Death to the Undead (YA, sequel to Life After the Undead), which is forthcoming. Life After the Undead was a Top Ten Finisher in the Preditors and Editors Reader’s Poll in the YA category and the cover art category.

As Jessica Robinson, from March 2008 to January 2011, she wrote scientific articles for Western Farmer-Stockman. Her nonfiction book, Life Lessons from Slasher Films, is available from Scarecrow Publishing (an imprint of Rowman and Littlefield).

Jessica/Pembroke received her Master’s in English, and she is a freelance content editor for Musa Publishing, as well as a former content and line editor for eTreasures Publishing.

Website | Facebook

Amazon | eTreasures | Barnes and Noble

Book Trailer:


And now to help you get a little Halloween freak on, an excerpt from Life After the Undead:


I will never understand peoples’ fascination with the apocalypse. Why would you waste so much time and energy worrying about something you can’t change? Besides, most of the time, it never comes to fruition anyway. Remember Y2K? What a hullabaloo that was. People were so afraid computers were going to fail and throw society back into the Dark Ages that they were stockpiling supplies and moving into the wilderness so they could get away from technology. Why would they move to the wilderness? If technology was going to fail, wouldn’t they be just as safe in a city? I guess they were afraid when technology failed, everyone would go crazy and start killing each other. Either way, it didn’t happen. I wonder how those people felt afterward.
     Then, there was the whole 2012 scare. This one was supposedly based on ancient prediction, so you know it was reliable. Are you kidding? Even the Mayans didn’t believe their own ancestors‟ “vision.” What happened was there had been a tablet that had the Mayan calendar carved into it. The end was broken and faded, so no one knew what it said. Our culture, being the pessimistic lot that we are, automatically assumed it was an end-of-the-world warning. But, again, nothing happened on December 21, 2012. Christmas came and went, and I think everyone, everywhere, even the skeptics, had a little something more to be thankful for. Life went on as usual, and all those doomsayers faded into obscurity.
     The day the world did end was pretty nondescript. By that I mean there was no nuclear explosion or asteroid or monumental natural disaster. There weren’t even any horseman or plagues to announce the end was coming. The world ended fairly quietly. I couldn’t even give you a date because it happened at different times depending on where you were. It was never predicted, and I’m sure a scenario that no one even considered. Who really thinks the dead are going to rise from the grave and destroy the majority of the population? No one but Hollywood, and we all know those are just movies. But that is exactly what happened. Those of us that survived were left wide-eyed, mouth agape, trying to figure out what to do next.
     There were a few who were able to pull their heads out and organize those left behind. They made sure the populace had food, shelter, and protection. They were saviors, the United States’ heroes. Life wouldn’t have gone on without them, and it was pretty difficult those first few years after the zompocalypse.
     Sometimes it’s difficult for me to remember what life was like before the rise of the undead. I was a teenager, though I hesitate to say normal. I wasn’t deformed or anything, but my classmates thought I was strange. I had a fascination with the dark, the macabre, but I wasn’t a Goth or Emo. I read books and magazines about serial killers. I didn’t idolize them or want to be like them—hell no—but I was fascinated with how evil and black a human’s soul could get.
     I wanted to be a psychologist and work with the criminally insane, maybe figure out why they did what they did. Apparently, when you’re 15, your friends think you’re weird if you have desires to help someone other than yourself. While they were worried about becoming popular and getting the right boyfriend, I was trying to figure out how to make society better.
     Of course, those dreams will never come true. Society doesn’t exist. Everything I once held dear is gone. I lost my parents to the horde, like a lot of kids. Unlike some of the others, mine weren’t taken by surprise or in some freak accident; they were taken because of their own stupidity. Some days I miss them a lot, but others I believe they got what they deserved. I might sound callous and uncaring, but what about them? Why would they abandon their 15 year old daughter? It used to keep me up at night, trying to find the answer to that question, but I’ve given up asking it. No reason wasting time on things that could’ve or should’ve been.

Kevin Galbraith

     As I stare out the passenger side window of the semi, I’m reminded how bleak the future has become. The truck rolls down a once heavily traveled highway that has been reduced to a cracked trail. Gas stations and towns dotting the landscape have been abandoned and are crumpling into the weeds that are taking them over. There are a few areas that still resemble pre-zombie destruction, and these are the military outposts set up along the road, used for protection and refueling. I use the term “military” loosely because there is no formal military anymore. It’s a rag-tag group of men and women who were lucky enough to get guns. I chuckle to myself. It’s been two years since I was last out in the world, and a lot has changed since then. I still remember the day the zombies attacked. It’s as clear as if it happened yesterday.

Undead Is Not An Option: Grab Your Go Bag

We’re giving you another excerpt from the debut Zombie Survival Crew Anthology: Undead Is Not An Option, but don’t forget, YOU can be a part of the second anthology!! Click here for more details.


Zombie Survival Crew First Lieutenant Neil Brown Jr. has got the survival gig down pat. You may know him for his on-screen characters’ fights with zombies or aliens in productions like The Walking Dead and Battle: Los Angeles, but this wise-crackin’ vato has got skills – and the Katana to back ‘em up. This son of a marine takes a look at what we should all have pre-packed in our go bags for the kind of day we hope never comes.

Grab Your Go Bag
(…and get it right!)

By Neil Brown, Jr.

Dad always used to say “police your brass” and “you need to know whether you’re hurt or injured.” And that’s just the way he raised me—to live a clean life, depend on common sense and preparation to get me through life’s bumps and bruises, and develop the mental fortitude to push through the hurts.

Served me well even from a young age. When I was about 12, on one of our many family salt water fishing trips, I tumbled off the side of the boat in the early morning while everyone else was still sleeping. I know, I know. Shouldn’t have been hanging over the side of the boat in the first place.

Even though I was terrified and screaming like crazy, I remembered what my dad taught me—tie the ends of my pants together, lift the whole thing up over the water and push down to grab the air and make a mini-life preserver. It worked. I bobbed in the water for several minutes before my dad dove in to rescue me. And it was about ten years before my dad or I told mom about the incident. What? She never would have let me go on another fishing trip.

It was common sense and preparation that saved me all those years ago, and that very same combination is our best shot during a cataclysmic event, like a Zombiepocalypse.

As for me, I can catch a rabbit, squirrel or fish in the woods faster than I can find you a gas station, so my go bag is naturally geared more towards hunting and gathering—even so it’s a combination of items that will serve any would-be survivor well.


To read more, and learn from one of the best, check out Undead Is Not An Option.