Day #20: My Life as a White Trash Zombie (Novel)

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My Life as a White Trash Zombie (Book 1 of the White Trash Zombie series) | Diana Rowland

Synopsis:

All it takes is one simple catalyst for Angel Crawford to start thinking about getting her life back on track: her death.

Thrown into a life of gainful employment in order to sate her need for human brains, Angel finds herself having to come to terms with her (un)life; and when bodies start showing up without their brains, Angel finds herself struggling to maintain control of her hunger.

My take:

Confession time: I’m burnt out on zombies (and sexy vampires) at the moment. They’re everywhere, and a lot of people seem to be a-okay with engaging with them in really generic ways. In fact, I loudly announced just how over zombies I was (to a room with one other person in it, who didn’t particularly care) riiiight before making the decision to read this book.

Smart, huh?

Thankfully, My Life as a White Trash Zombie isn’t a generic zombie story.

My favourite thing about this book is that its main character isn’t perfect. In fact, she’s kind of a fuck-up before her death; living a life of drugs and booze, hooking up with a guy that doesn’t treat her very well, and living in a house with an abusive father. Her life-before-death is barely a life at all.

What Angel’s life-after-death offers her is an opportunity to reconsider her own worth. And the way in which Rowland writes about this struggle really shows that that’s exactly what it is – a struggle. Angel doesn’t just take off her glasses and reveal that she was actually beautiful all along (note: boy, I hope y’all get that reference). She works hard. She fails. She questions whether she’s actually worthy of a better life. And she does it all over again, in a way that really shows her development as a character. Her journey, which Rowland presents with a wry, self-detrimental sense of humour, is one I happily follow; through the good and bad times.

There’s enough interest in how zombies work in My Life as a White Trash Zombie to separate it from other zombie stories, without drawing the reader into a technical discussion about it. As Angel learns things about her new state of being, so does the reader. This takes a bit of getting used to, but I can’t say that it’s really a problem.

My Life as a White Trash Zombie is at its weakest at the point where it resolves it’s secondary story line (about the brainless bodies). There’s a lot of build-up to a final act that essentially snaps into place and then works itself out in the last 30 or so pages of the book. This is really rushed when compared to how everything else in the book unfolds, and fails to build up the necessary tension as a consequence. But, given that the main focus of the book really seems to be about Angel’s journey of self-discovery, which does seem to be handled much better, I guess I can let this slide.

At the end of the day, I might be zombied out – but I’m still looking forward to starting on the second book in the White Trash Zombie series.

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