Thursday, June 13, 2013

The End Games by T. Michael Martin

Series: Standalone?

Genera: Post-Apocalyptic Sci-fi Thriller/Dystopian

Subjects: zombies, survival, brothers, West Virginia

Age/Grade Level: Teens 13+

Length: 369 pgs.

HC/PB: Hardcover

List Price: $17.99

Publisher: HarperCollinsChildrens: Balzer & Bray

Summary/ product description: “It happened on Halloween.
The world ended.
And a dangerous Game brought it back to life.

Seventeen-year-old Michael and his five-year-old brother, Patrick, have been battling monsters in The Game for weeks.
In the rural mountains of West Virginia, armed with only their rifle and their love for each other, the brothers follow Instructions from the mysterious Game Master. They spend their days searching for survivors, their nights fighting endless hordes of “Bellows”—creatures that roam the dark, roaring for flesh. And at this Game, Michael and Patrick are very good.
But The Game is changing.
The Bellows are evolving.
The Game Master is leading Michael and Patrick to other survivors—survivors who don’t play by the rules.
And the brothers will never be the same.
T. Michael Martin’s debut novel is a transcendent thriller filled with electrifying action, searing emotional insight, and unexpected romance.”

My Rating: êêê1/2

My Review: This book, despite the strange and confusing writing style, was good. Maybe it’s because the character’s from West Virginia, or maybe because the author just wanted to write different. I just didn’t like the 3rd person narration that much.

What I did like was the relationship between the characters and the dialogue. And of course the zombies they call Bellows. It made for a fun, action packed story. And in the whole “Game” that Michael made up to keep Patrick from freaking out, you got yourself a really interesting, unique story. Some things could have been done better, but it was okay, good overall.

I really enjoyed the setting. I’ve been to West Virginia, but only the northern parts. This story was set mostly in the capitol, and in some coal mining towns (like District 12 of the Hunger Games). There the Appalachian Mountains out there. It’s beautiful and roughed. I love picturing it.

Much of this book made me think of my brothers. They’re obsessed with video games, Modern Warfare and Call of Duty, and all kinds of 1st person shooter stuff, X-box live and everything. A lot of what Michael says or think, I hear my brothers say. There was a lot of slang that was over-done, and thankfully not as much swearing as I hear. This book is totally for video gamers and zombie fans. I like zombie movies and book, but I’m not a gamer.

There was a theme of lies and betrayal throughout the books. Being the game master and being manipulated. Michael lied a lot, but he did it to protect Patrick. Other characters lied for power. There’s this character, Jopeck, who lied for his own gain and fan. I did not like that guy. He seemed like a psychopath. And then characters that lied to themselves and others, like the Priest who though sacrifice could bring his son back. Games of deception and betrayal, that’s what this book is about. I’m glad I understood the deeper meaning in the story.

After reading this book, I’m kind of hoping I can get my little brother to read it. He doesn’t like reading, but if he liked reading, he’d like this. So, I recommend this to people who like video games about shooting zombies, or video games and zombies in general. And also if you like Rot & Ruin, the Forest of Hands and Teeth or Enclave by Ann Arguirre.

Cover Art Review: I love the cover. Jon Smith must be an awesome illustrator because it looks very graphic-novel-ish. It reminds me of the Walking Dead, except with 2 brothers. I love the tree with Bellow rising out of them. The red sky it creepy. It’s so cool. And the cover has a rough texture!


~Haley G

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