The Rising

The Rising - Brian Keene There are too many things wrong with this book. Despite some original ideas and a few worthy tense moments, it is most of the time laughably bad, and embarrassingly badly written.

The amount of typos and the atrocious grammar was shocking. Someone needs to tell Keene, the copyeditors and publishers that the past tense of "to spit" is "spat" and that you don’t tell a person to "lay" but to "lie" down. Your prose can also benefit by not using the word "again" (or any word, really) again and again three times in a single sentence. With books like there it isn't surprising that western society is inadequately literate. But I digress.

The explanation of what is causing the zombie epidemic is absolutely ridiculous; I won’t spoil it though it’s revealed early on (no suspense here). The zombies are supposed to be intelligent yet act like hyper teenage boys who make absurd decisions that do little in advancing their cause. In fact, an integral aspect of becoming a zombie in Keene's world is to suddenly & intensely hate humanity, & to drop several notches on the IQ pole. (Kind of like some of our modern cults, I suppose.) Moreover, Keene appears uncertain as to the extent of the epidemic. He can’t seem to decide whether insects are infected or not, and changes his mind mid-text, or simply forgets. If you plan to read this book, keep your eyes out for this. Maybe he clears this up in its sequel? I won’t know since I won’t be reading it.

The characters are two-dimensional and Keene’s image of America is a white-washed suburbia where Hispanic and black people can only be preachers, drug dealers or prostitutes. And as mentioned in other reviews here, the dialogue is bad. And I mean effin’ bad, man. Holy mother-effin’ stinkin’ bad like.

Finally, I was troubled by the amount of emphasis on rape in the book. I don’t need the details. Maybe one brief instance to illustrate the morally decayed post-epidemic world, but not again and again. (That was only twice.) It is just inappropriate. I know I’m supposed to be angry with the "bad guys" but the constant exaggerated rape just has me angry at the author.

I can go on but won’t since really there’s no effin' need to...