Sunday, May 31, 2015

Book Review: Disease by M. F. Wahl


Mankind is not doing well in the wake of the Rising. Casey and her young charge, the silent Alex, are barely making do when they're picked up by Daniel and a group of people who are from a secure society. There's just one problem. This society is run by the zealot Lot, who rules her followers with fear and manipulation. Her rules are strict, and her intentions are not always for the best. Daniel sees something in Lot's eyes he doesn't like, something that used to be turned on him. She has plans for Alex, and they're not good plans.

That's my summary. Here's the one I pulled from

Humanity’s war against the living dead has been lost. In the wake of the apocalypse, the living fight fiercely for what little they have.
In this hell-on-earth Casey, armed with a baseball bat, and joined by a mute boy named Alex, struggles to survive. When a man named Danny stumbles upon them, it’s mistrust at first sight – but times are desperate. Danny leads them to a thriving settlement where danger lurks beneath the guise of kindness.
It’s kill or be killed in a world where power is life, and the earth is overrun by walking dead.


Wahl has done a great job making it seem as though the outbreak just happened or is about to happen in our current timeline. It's been about three years since the dead began to rise, and it's easy to picture the "right now" being the setting, or it being three years from right now. I hope that makes sense. There's no definitive year given, but I can see Disease being present. There's a sort of timeless feeling to this novel, which I think gives it a good bit of read value for the future. Readers will be able to picture this little snippet of events happening pretty much anytime and anywhere.


This is where I did have a little trouble with Disease. Some of the stylistic choices Wahl made with the writing didn't jive with me, but that's okay. I have a feeling that Wahl's style is mostly an "I love it or I hate it" sort of thing. Personally, I wouldn't say I hated it, but some of the stylistic choices did keep me from really sinking into the narrative. It kept me disjointed from the action, so I did feel like I was being held at arm's length from the characters much of the time. I personally didn't care for that, but it wasn't a deal-breaker for me.

My Thoughts

Wahl has created a solid snapshot of the world after the dead return to life, and there are some great twists and plot points here that gripped me. Despite a little disconnect in Wahl's writing style and my reading preferences, I still like this book and definitely look forward to a sequel. I couldn't connect on a personal level with the book because of the style, but it's a great story with characters I want to see again.

I will say this: Wahl created an antagonist that you will love to hate. The plot kept me coming back, and it is an easy and quick read. If you don't feel a little slimy after the bulk of this novel, something's wrong. I liked that about Disease.

Would I Recommend This Book? Sure! While I'm not a fan of zombies (as regular readers of mine should know by now), Disease wasn't so much about the zombies as it was the issues in Lot's society. I give Disease a 100% maple 4 of 5 stars.

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