Half Past Dead

Zoe Archer, Author, Bianca D'Arc, Author
Zoe Archer, Author, Bianca D'Arc, Author . Brava $14 (309p) ISBN 978-0-7582-4697-4
Reviewed on: 11/16/2009
Release date: 01/01/2010

Two very different novellas combine themes of love and zombies. Vintage horror, high adventure, and soul-aching romance blend in Archer's compelling “The Undying Heart,” prequel to the upcoming Blades of the Rose trilogy. Cassandra Fielding, a young pistol-in-the-skirts hunter of magical artifacts, renews her childhood infatuation with Sam Reed, even though he's been turned into a cold, fierce, disillusioned, but still handsome zombie by his unscrupulous Crimean War commander. In D'Arc's more modern “Simon Says,” a prequel to Once Bitten, Twice Dead , special ops agent Simon Blackwell chases contagious zombie Marines in the woods by night and dallies with military nurse Mariana Daniels by day, but both pursuits come off as lukewarm and somewhat routine. Readers who love Archer's powerful, polished tale may be disappointed to find that D'Arc's doesn't measure up. (Jan.)