Autumn – David Moody

Originally posted on Blog-City in 2005….You can download/purchase this series at the following link; http://www.djmoody.co.uk/

I just finished reading an online novel. What’s really funny is that it was actually an OFFLINE online novel. What I did was download the novel in it’s entirety and then broke it up into 5-chapter-increments, saving each as a plain-text file. I then emailed them to myself (Gmail offers POP3 access, and my phone handles POP3…see where I’m going with this?) as attachments and enjoyed reading this novel when I was in an area that has no network accessibility (my in-laws house for instance).

I was actually told about this novel awhile back by several folks. The only one that I can remember off the top of my head is Jane from Coffee and Varnish. I actually was a bit leery about an online novel. What might be construed as literary snobbery results in me actually wanting to hold a book in my hands when I’m reading it. Good books seem to be one of the few things left that haven’t been affected by technology. Reading a good book is a timeless activity and it just seemed wrong to read it in a web browser or in an electronic format. Although it felt a bit odd reading this 46 chapter novel on my phone’s little screen (the Sidekick II’s monitor is roughly 2 inches wide) I enjoyed it immensely. I couldn’t put it down and am eager to purchase the sequels to this fine story. Damn those marketing campaigns!

The story begins with a strange plague that leaves millions of people in England clutching their throats. These poor souls are clutching their throats and coughing up blood. Within minutes, they are dead. It’s a pretty violent introduction to what ends up becoming a tale of a trio of survivors (Michael, Emma, and Carl) who realize that they have been spared this horrible death. Michael, Emma, and Carl come from three different directions, stumbling over corpses in the street. After meeting up with a handful of other survivors, they attempt to organize what little provisions they have and look for the next step forward. Tired, hungry, and frustrated, they begin talking amongst themselves. They spend some time arguing, some time crying, and some time fighting. Then the bodies lying in the streets get up and start walking.

The book does a terrific job of showing how the zombies move from benign, absurd obstacles to disease-ridden, malice-filled killing machines. It’s a very scary transformation and the author gets the blood flowing of his readers (hope I wasn’t the ONLY one!). There is abundant bloodshed but it seems to be less about the blood and gore and more about getting to know these three characters. Michael, Emma, and Carl are all individuals with their own issues to deal with and the author really seems to have given care and thought into developing each character.

I would definitely recommend this one to any of my fellow zombie-philes out there. However you’ve got to get it, GET IT.

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