Tell Me When I’m Dead

December 5, 2013 Book Reviews 1 ★★★½

Tell Me When I’m Dead three-half-stars
on 08/25/2013
Pages: 301
Format: eARC

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Amid the wreckage of Dave’s personal life, a contagion brings chaos to his hometown of Tres Marias. The condition, known as “the jimmies,” infects hundreds and kills quickly. But the dead find no rest. They rise as ravenous flesh-eaters.

Follow Dave, Holly and a small band of heavily armed soldiers and civilians as they fight to survive looters, paramilitary nut jobs and the zombie apocalypse.

If the zombies don’t kill them, the wackos surely will. Nowhere is safe.

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review by Travis Starnes

Tell Me When I’m Dead is a fairly straightforward zombie tale of a small down overrun by the undead.  I am both the perfect audience for this book and a somewhat biased reviewer because I read lot of zombie fiction and love the genre.  This book does several things right with the genre and a bunch of things wrong.

I will start by saying the book is competently written.  The zombie outbreak and how it works is all well-reasoned and the books pacing is solid.  Following the main character David through the various hurdles he faces in living in this world and keeping his family together is totally liner and not hard to follow.  I liked the addition of the military contractor akin to Black Water and the local opposition to them.  The one problem with zombie fiction is it tends to become a one track people against zombie type of story, so the b plot of people fighting over resources is a nice break from time to time.  I did find the story to be a bit formulaic and I felt like I had read it before.  While following the zombie fiction play book so closely ensures the story will be readable and fun, it also removes any sense of uniqueness or surprise.  Because this was so much like other zombie books I was ahead of the story every step of the way.

While most of the characters are very throw away and forgettable, so much so that it didn’t bother me how he cycled supporting characters several times, the main character is more well-rounded then you normally get.  The problem comes in how is well rounded.  For most of the story he is a fairly unlikable guy and for the entire book he makes one monumentally bad choice after another.  It is not that he is inept; it’s that he just always makes the opposite choice the hero of this type of book would normally make.  While that may seem interesting on paper it can be pretty frustrating to read.

Ramirez certainly knows the genre but it is unclear if that helped him or hurt him in writing this book.  If you want a light, easy zombie read then pick this up.  Just don’t expect it to rock your world.

three-half-stars
Rating Report
Plot
Characters
Writing
Pacing
Cover
Overall: 3.5

One Response to “Tell Me When I’m Dead”

  1. Peter

    I love reading books by Steven Ramires and this by far is one of my favorites. Love Zombie Books!

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