cover image The Loving Dead

The Loving Dead

Amelia Beamer, Night Shade (, $14.95 paper (256p) ISBN 978-1-59780-194-2

Blood, guts, and sex intermingle in this stylish debut from Locus editor Beamer. A California party turns bad when the spread of a brain-eating STD leaves roommates Kate and Michael struggling to deal with a houseful of zombies. Oblivious Oakland authorities ignore the escalating crisis as aggressively promiscuous and ravenous zombies keep popping up. Finally, the desperate friends make a plan to flee to a zombie-proof haven while fearing that some of their acquaintances may already be infected. Contemporary touches like a surprisingly useful iPhone app and overthe-top moments of frantically alternating sex and gore make for a sick, funny romp that only falters at the end, which mostly occurs offstage. The cleverness of the set pieces balances the unsatisfying resolution for an entertaining and original take on the zombie apocalypse. (July)