Book Review: After the Change
Happy Friday Everyone!
I hope you had a nice relaxing Thanksgiving and have plenty of leftovers to munch on. I took a nap yesterday between gorge fests and have plenty myself.
A little writer’s rant before we begin. As much as I enjoy this holiday weekend I’ve been busting my butt on the last of my Reaper: Aftermath edits. I still have eight more chapters to get through with a deadline of sometime on Monday, so the struggle is definitely real. Wish me luck!
Yesterday I finished reading another book.
This time I read After the Change by Michael J. Moore.
Fun fact, this book was recommended by my friend Iseult Murphy, a talented author friend of mine. I couldn’t resist temptation with this new author (to me at least), and I believe I got this one while it was free on Amazon. Anywho, let’s get on with the review!
Diego Conner was at school when his world changed. As soon as his classmates started killing each other, he ran. Then, when he got home, his parents tried to eat him. They weren’t zombies though. They were alive and could be killed like any other living thing. He chose to simply call them “the changed”.
The only people he knew who didn’t turn were his friends, Sheena and Wes. With their families gone, the fifteen year olds are forced to look out for each another, constantly moving and hiding in the shadows. Eventually, though, they decided to search for survivors and colonize a local prison. Along the way, they quickly learn that the brainless, flesh-eating monsters that roam the streets are the least of their worries after the change.
I gave this novel three stars.
I had high hopes for this book, but in the end I felt that it was just okay for me.
In a nutshell, this book is about the zombie apocalypse. Young teenagers Diego, Cali, and Wes traverse the scary landscape six months after the change, trying to figure out what direction they should go in with their new lives. This journey is fraught with action, chills, and heartache as they try to clutch to their humanity and persevere against the odds.
This book had a lot of potential with the elements it started with, but there were some things that detracted from my reading journey.
I think what worked most for me was the concept and general plot. Most of us have seen a number of zombie flicks or The Walking Dead, so we’re not strangers to the concept of a zombie apocalypse. Walking into this felt like seeing an old friend. I liked the general world they were living in. It had plenty of zombies/changed, danger, and of course humans make things more complicated when they pair off in groups or factions. That way of life was reflected well here I think, especially from a teenager’s point of view.
Our main characters are interesting. Diego, Cali, and Wes were part of a band together, and they had a lot of good dialogue between them. You could tell they had history, even if they didn’t have a ton of depth (I mean, they’re teenagers so that’s understandable). Diego was the obvious favorite for me. He battled with what it meant to be human in this world, and I can see why he struggled to keep his humanity but feels forced to change himself, to become hardened in a way. I did think here and there some of the decisions they made were questionable (around the beginning and less throughout the second half), but again they are teenagers and probably don’t know any better. They’re just trying to do what they can.
I think the main thing that made this book less great in my eyes was the writing. Throughout the book the writing felt a bit disjointed. Sometimes sentences would cut off for no reason, or I’d have to backtrack a paragraph or two, only to find that something still felt off about the structure of the writing. Dialogue felt a tad too sporadic for me at times. Conversations could tend to get off subject before veering back to the original point. While I understand that is definitely the case in real life, reading it like that makes it a bit difficult to follow.
There was also something about the pacing that made the events of this book drag, especially with the second half. I wanted things to progress more quickly and found myself antsy to hurry forward because I didn’t like what was currently happening.
Ultimately, this book was alright for me but I didn’t feel wowed or inspired by it. While I can’t quite recommend it, it did have plenty of adventure and battles that a zombie lover might go crazy over. If that’s you, this may just be the right book for you. Happy reading!
That’s a Wrap!
Thanks for stopping by, and happy reading!
Have you read this book before? What did you think? Do you have a book recommendation similar to this one? Feel free to share in the comments!
If you’d like to see other reviews of mine, feel free to check out the book review section of my blog or my GoodReads. You can also follow my GoodReads reviews here. There are some great binge-worthy books on there!
Have a great day!
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Sorry this wasn’t a hit with you, Jonny. I agree with your review, especially about the pacing. I wish there had been resolution to the story, I think that would have fixed a lot of issues. However I simply loved what happened to Wes. Made the book for me.
No worries friend. I’m glad I gave this one a chance.
I also liked what happened to Wes, but I wanted more explanation behind it.
Yes, I think the book would have been stronger if it happened earlier in the book and was explained by the end.
Yeah, even slightly explained it would’ve made a difference for me. No worries though. I love getting book recommendations from you regardless of how I feel afterwards.
Exactly. Aw thanks bestie 😊
Yeah, I don’t like it when I have to backtrack and reread a sentence or two. It takes my head out of the story. Eh, on to the next!
So true. Next up is Animorphs until Monday when I start another buddy read. Can’t wait!