This week, I'll be reviewing Alone (Quarantine #3) by James Phelan. As far as I know this is the last book in the Alone series. Hopefully though this isn't the end, I'd hate for the story to go out on such a low note after coming so far with these characters over the course of the series.
Author: James Phelan
Genre: Horror, Zombies
Series: Alone #3
Publisher: Kensington Books
Publication Date: September 24, 2013
Links: Goodreads Amazon
It's now or maybe never sixteen year old Jesse has spent eighteen days in post-apocalyse New York, waiting for help that never comes. He owes it to his new friends, Rachel and Felicity, to go beyond their temporary refuge to find other survivors who may hold the key to escape. Could the collective at Chelsea Piers have the answers or prove to be just another distraction in his quest? Meanwhile, Jesse is burdened with guilt and sadness at the fate of his other friend, Caleb, who has fallen prey to the virus and become a Chaser. So when it emerges that a cure-all serum may be available, Jesse determines to secure it to save his friend. At any cost perhaps even his own future.
Despite taking a long time to pick up and read Quarantine, when I did, it was like I had never left the world or these characters. Thankfully, the story practically jumps right back in from where the previous book left off so that certainly helped.
Like the other books in this series, the story was fast paced, well written and action packed. James Phelan has told a great story and I really admire him for putting his own unique spin on the Zombie genre.
Now although I did like Quarantine, I was also disappointed in it as well. Had this not been dubbed as the conclusion, I probably would've rated it higher but for what it is, I was left wanting much more.
First off, I really felt Jesse lacked something in this story. I can't quite put my finger on it but his personality just felt very flat compared to the previous two books. Also his need to save Caleb while admirable, also bordered on obsession and it sort of overshadowed everything else going on like leaving and getting back home.
Secondly, while we do learn more about the Contagion and how it influences some people different than others, I wouldn't say that it was significant information, at least in the grand scheme of things. By series end, I expected to really have the science of the situation piled on but it remained throughout very minute (for me anyway).
Lastly, I really disliked the ending. After all the horrible things Jesse goes through I wanted to see him reunited with lost family, make it back to Australia, heck I'd even take riding off in the sunset with a girl at the this point. Instead the ending went all art film on me. I literally could imagine Jesse wearing a beret and smoking a fancy cigarette as he recounts his experiences. Actually, if I'm being honest, I'm not even sure if the character actually experienced everything or if he imagined it all as a coping mechanism for something else entirely. In short: While these types of endings aren't rare, they are my least favorite because they don't give the characters or story the closure I crave in a series and instead it leaves things up to interpretation of the reader.
Final ThoughtsWith that being said, I'll be rating Quarantine (Alone #3) by James Phelan ★★★.
Despite the less than satisfying conclusion, I'm happy that I finally managed to get around to reading Quarantine. I'm hoping this was not the last in the series, should it remain so, well, at least it was enjoyable for the majority of the ride.
*Copy reviewed provided by publisher. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated in an which way for providing them.
About the AuthorJames Phelan was born on the 21st of May, 1979, in Melbourne, Australia. His creative spirit was nurtured from a young age, and he credits his overactive imagination to being exposed to authors such as Roald Dahl and Paul Jennings, as well as such works as The Hobbit, Treasure Island, The Jungle Book, Tales of the Punjab, Siddhartha, and The Little Prince.
After high school James went on to study in Architecture, and then English Literature, eventually graduating with a PhD in Writing. It was during his masters degree and while working at The Age newspaper James developed the idea that would become his first published book, and would lead to seeing his novels in print.
Out of curiosity, Have you read Quarantine yet?
If yes, How did you interpret the ending?
In the story a Zookeeper named Rachel releases all the animals in the zoo,
Would you do the same or be heartless and kill some for food?
Leave me your answers in the comments below or feel free to tweet me them @Hermyoni
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