Audiobook Review: Domino Falls by Steven Barnes &Tananarive Due

Audiobook Review: Domino Falls by Steven Barnes &Tananarive DueDomino Falls by Steven Barnes, Tananarive Due
Narrator: Emily Bauer
Length: 10 hrs, 53 mins
Series: Devil's Wake #2
Published by Audible Frontiers on February 19, 2013
Genres: Horror, Paranormal, Post-Apocalyptic
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
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three-stars

It began on Freak Day - that day no one could explain, when strangers and family members alike went crazy and started biting one another. Some thought the outbreak was caused by a flu shot, others that it was a diet drug gone terribly wrong. All anyone knew is that once you were bitten and went to sleep, you woke up a freak.

Alright, well, I got to directly into Domino Falls upon finishing Devil’s Wake, which was a rare treat, since I’m usually reading series about a year apart these days, and that’s when I’m lucky. Domino Falls picks up right where the prior novel left off, with the group having reached a potential safe haven. Though I’m rating this one the same, I almost rated this one up, because I think it’s getting more original and there’s awesome cult-y business in Domino Falls.

The group has arrived in Domino Falls, which is also known as Threadville. Why does the town have two names, you might ask? Well, one was the town’s actual name pre-Freak Day and the other is its nickname now. The town itself is split between two camps: those who call it Threadville and those who call it Domino Falls. The Domino Falls folks, the townies, are pretty ordinary, nice folks. The Threadville people, well, they’re drinking the Kool-Aid.

Threadville is ruled over by this guy Joseph “Josey” Wales, who self-styles himself a Reverend. He’s the one who was always on the radio preaching during the first book. He’s got these guys in gold shirts who do his bidding and a big house and the threadies basically worship him and everything he does. Wales was a film star and made a cult hit about an alien attack, which is where the thread term came from. When the outbreak happened, Domino Falls survived both because they had a fencing factory and because Wales already had some weird survivalist things in place, thus the disconnect between the two groups.

When the group (Terry, Kendra, Dean, Darius, Piranha, Sonia, and Ursalina) arrives in Domino Falls, they think they’ve hit the jackpot. Dean and Darius are picked up by a hot woman immediately, and a number of them find good jobs to do right out of the gate, like Ursulina who wants to work in the nursery. Quickly, though, cultishness rears its head, when a man starts yelling about how Wales has taken his daughter. Kendra wants to investigate and Sonia’s showing serious signs of joining up with the threadies. Basically, I think cults are fascinating, so I really liked the turn the plot took here. There were some aspects that got a little bit paranormal, View Spoiler », but I’m reserving judgment until I see how it goes in the next book.

Oh, another factor I really liked in Domino Falls was Piranha’s search for contacts. A lot of things seem to go a bit too easily in survival stories, and I thought that added some nice authenticity. While they’ve never been hard-pressed for food or gas really, Piranha’s almost blind without contacts and his eyes are starting to freak out. This is one of many reasons I would not survive a zombie apocalypse.

The ending almost made me rate the book up, because on top of all of that fun stuff, it seems like Due and Barnes killed off one of the main characters, which would be good, since people die in zombie apocalypses. However, I’m holding off, because I have been tricked before. Unless that last breath happens ON THE PAGE, I’m not trusting it. If they bring that character back to any sort of life, I shall not be pleased. And I feel like it’s going to happen.

Even though that’s all positive, I’m still keeping this series at a 3, because, though fun, I don’t feel any sort of emotional connection and the plotting remains predictable. Partly, that’s the naming of the series; obviously, they’re not staying in Domino Falls, so clearly Wales is up to something evil. The characters are a great diverse group, but they could all be better characterized. Why do we not learn almost anything about their pasts for some more depth?

The Devil’s Wake series so far is a really fun read, if still not the most unique series out there. It’s kept me entertained and I do imagine I’ll be reading the next book, because I have to know if I was right about that character not actually being dead.

Tl;dr – Review in a GIFfy:

Shit, still not safe!

Shit, still not safe!

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