Saturday, 12 October 2019

A Savage Generation Reviews Round-Up

A Savage Generation has been out for a couple of weeks now and has already gathered itself a smattering of reviews, so I thought I'd compile them here for anyone who's on the fence about grabbing a copy.  Fortunately, they mostly seem to be very positive, and a couple are seriously glowing, so clearly the consensus is that you should!

Given how far outside my usual wheelhouse this one is, it was reassuring to discover that a couple of people I know to be familiar with my wider work hadn't been put off.  Andy Angel, who blogs at Ebookwyrm's BlogCave, must have read just about everything I've written, as he himself says: "I'll admit I'm a big fan of Tallerman and his writing in various genres, I've been reading him for years."  So that he concluded, "I tell it as it is and this is one of his best" means a lot!  The same goes for Theresa Derwin's very thorough (and five star) review on Goodreads, which I'd recommend to anyone who wants to get a solid sense of what the book's about, since it does a great job of setting out the major characters, conflicts, and themes.  And she wraps up by saying that "It’s an excellent novel and there were genuinely tense moments throughout, as well as some great characters.  Another great book from Tallerman."

Of course, you can never be totally certain that people you've met aren't sparing your feelings ever so slightly, so it's reassuring to get a similar response from total strangers!  There's a nice, in-depth write-up at The Coy Caterpillar Reads which begins "The book world is rife with Post-Apocalyptic novels of zombies, disease and despair.  A Savage Generation cracks that mould and gives us something alarmingly real" and ends "Overall, this one of the best Post-Apocalyptic novels I have had the pleasure of reading."  But perhaps my favourite of the exceedingly positive reviews is the one from Bekah's Bookshelves, which states that "I read a lot of post apocalyptic fiction and I'd say this book is up there with the better ones."  While the reviewer struggled to start with - "Initially it was a little difficult to connect with the characters as the book switches POV quite frequently" - she urges that it's worth sticking with to "...see all these different characters come together in unexpected ways" and wraps up, "I highly recommend this book..."

Not quite so positive or detailed, but still definitely on the thumbs up side of things, there's the review at The Bookwormery, which notes, "...while this does feel like an episode of The Walking Dead, there is so much more to it. Yes the Sickers are out there and if they bite, scratch or spit on you, you will get infected, BUT, this is also about children, and how they are affected, left to pretty much fend for themselves while the adults plot and fight amongst themselves and the Sickers."  And Booker T's Farm awards 3 paws, which I think is a fairly good amount of paws, and says, "I found "A Savage Generation" to be a very action-packed, speedy read.  I was invested in what was happening to most of the characters," adding, "I felt an attachment to some while others I not-so-secretly wished would meet then demise."  Given how horrid a few of them are, that seems fair enough to me!

Inevitably, there were bound to be people who didn't dig A Savage Generation quite so much, and one of those was The Caffeinated Reader, though they're nice enough to point out that the only real reason was down to personal taste: "I would have enjoyed this SO much more if it hadn’t been in the present tense and I have to say because it was I found it a struggle to get through, just solely on that. Because the plot is interesting, the characters are stereotypical but I’m not looking for unique ones in a zombie story, they’re appropriately awesome and simultaneously scared sh**less when the time calls for it."  In fact, does that even count as a negative review?  They even add that "it’s not the book, it’s me" which seems awfully fair-minded.  So that only leaves Dark Reads, and even they didn't exactly hate it.  While they "...found the story slow moving and ... didn’t get the suspense and excitement I would usually get from this type of book" the reviewer does go on to say that "overall ... the premise, imagery and writing were good, this one just didn’t work for me on an emotional level."

So there we go!  A fair bit of love, a lot of liking, and a couple of folks who didn't get on with A Savage Generation but were nice enough to point out that maybe the book wasn't altogether at fault.  Given some of the bizarre reviews I've had before now - yes, person who gave the second Black River book one star based on the synopsis, I'm thinking of you! - I'm pretty happy with that.  And if you've been won over, you can find A Savage Generation at all the usual stockists, in e-book, audiobook, paperback and really lovely hardback edition.

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