Author: Courtney Summers.
Published: June 19th 2012.
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin.
It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live. But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside. When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?
Sloane ends up with five other teenagers in Cortege High, her school building. Trace, Rhys, Cary, Harrison and Grace, each of them has their own flaws and problems. I liked how I get to know all of them. The story is told from Sloane's POV, so I really connected with her. Her voice was beautiful. She was strong despite everything and I liked the development she went through.
What I also liked was the tension. It was always there, making them nervous and annoyed. Harrison is crying all the time, Trace and Cary are always fighting and Sloane is waiting for the moment she can give up. The idea that the zombies are all around them was intense, especially when they are trying to breach through the barricaded doors. The appearance of one of their teachers adds to the creepy situation and don’t get me started about their attempt to leave the building to find another safe haven. I can say that my heart pounded a couple of times.
Maybe the only way our story can end is varying degrees of sad. And that I miss her, that I need her, and this kind of missing, this kind of need, the kind of emptiness it leaves behind is worse than waking up one day and finding the whole world has collapsed in on itself, that I was over long before it was.
I never thought anything could feel like the morning I woke up and she was gone but this is what that feels like. It feels exactly like that. I stretch out on the floor and press my face against the cool tiles. I wait for my blood to turn to cement, for my heart to stop beating.