Monday, July 16, 2012

Review - Blackout (Newsflesh, Book 3) by Mira Grant (4.5/5 stars)

Reading Level: Adult
Genre: Post-Apocalyptic/Zombie
Size: 665 pages
Publisher: Orbit
Release Date: June 1, 2012
ISBN-13: 978-0316081078
Stand Alone or Series: 3rd book in the Newsflesh Trilogy
Source: Bought
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

This is the third and final book in the Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant (aka Seanan McGuire). It ties up things well, if a bit too neatly. This has turned into more of a book about government conspiracy and cloning than about zombies.

Georgia has woken up in a medical facility only to learn that she has been cloned back into existence. Shaun and his fellow Bloggers at End of Times are in hiding trying to blow open the story about how the insect vector of the Kellis-Amberlee was created by the government in order to suppress other news. The story alternates between Georgia and Shaun until they both come together at the end.

Let me just say that this really isn’t a book about zombies. There are very few fights with zombies in this novel. Yeah there are a few, even a rather odd and uncalled for encounter with a zombie-bear, but this is not the nail-biting butt-kicking zombie read we started the series with. This is a book about the morality of cloning and about government conspiracy. I still loved it, but let’s not confuse what we are really reading about here.

Georgia’s story is focused on the cloning she went through, the conditioning they did to past clones of her, and how many clones they went through trying to get her right. There is a lot about the morality of cloning and what makes a person a person. Is it murder to kill a clone if you made them to begin with? How many people the government has in place are more cooperative clones of people who weren’t behaving the way the CDC wanted them too? It’s interesting stuff and food for thought but not really about zombies.

Shaun and crew are still bunking with the mad scientist. When she states a need to have a live mosquito in hopes of figuring out how these insects were created, Shaun with his immunity is the natural choice. Add this to the fact that Alric’s baby sister is trapped in FL and the team needs to figure out a way to break into the quarantined FL. So basically Shaun and crew spend most of the book trying to get into FL and trying to find out the truth about where the insect vector generated from.

Most of what Shaun and Georgia go through is in secret, so public opinion isn’t as involved in this book. The chapters do start with excerpts from blog posts; but almost all of them are labeled as unpublished.

------SPOILER START------
There is a supposed huge surprise about the relationship between Shaun and Georgia. All the characters in the book are like OMG we had no idea. I had kind of assumed right from the beginning of the series that these adopted siblings had a thing going on. I have read other reviewers that talk about the incestuous nature of the relationship and it leaves me scratching my head in confusion. I was surprised to find out that their buddies didn’t know Shaun and Georgia were involved; I guess I had already read between the lines that they had that kind of relationship going on. So this didn’t bother me; so uh yeah...I thought that part was not a surprise and pretty obvious from the very beginning of the series...but whatever.
------SPOILER END---------

The book is incredibly well written; it’s easy to read and there is humor thrown in that had me laughing out loud a number of times. The switch of viewpoint between Georgia and Shaun is well done, but does make for a lengthy read. The blog entries at the beginning of chapters give an outside perspective that really adds to the story as well.

So does it all end well? Well you will have to read to find out. Let’s just say all the big issues are addressed. Things come together a little too neatly and felt a little too convenient, but I still enjoyed how everything wrapped up.

Overall an excellent conclusion to this series. If you have read and enjoyed the first two books then you need to read this one as well. Is this a zombie book? Not really it is more about government conspiracy and the morality of cloning. There aren’t a ton of zombie fights. It is still really well written and a really good read. I enjoyed it a lot. The whole series is highly recommended to fans of zombie reads, especially if you like the whole government conspiracy angle.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- Zombie Reading Challenge
- Horror and Urban Fantasy Challenge
- 150+ Books Reading Challenge

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