Reviews for Flesh & Bone


Booklist Reviews 2012 September #1
Zombies have run amok in YA lit, but the standard bearer remains Maberry's straight-ahead, action-drama series that began with Rot & Ruin (2010) and Dust & Decay (2011). Number three mostly sets up the stakes for the fourth and final volume, but it does so with Maberry's usual deft mix of inhumane humans and zombie tweaks, including newly developed fast zoms, zombie animals, and the ability for some of the dead to resist zombification. Here our gang of teen samurai trainees are split up but all heading to the mysterious and ominous Sanctuary--and along the way encounter a fan-favorite character from one of Maberry's adult series. Waiting for the full reveal in volume four won't be easy. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Spring
Benny ([cf2]Rot & Ruin[cf1]; [cf2]Dust & Decay[cf1]) and friends continue their quest to find proof that humanity, as it was before the zombie apocalypse, still exists. Complicating their journey is the rise of a death cult that is preparing for war against the survivors. Maberry's third series entry is an epic tale of survival that is as thoughtful as it is gory.

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Kirkus Reviews 2012 August #1
The third time's the charm with even more adventure--and gore--as the series continues (Dust & Decay, 2011, etc.). With their beloved trainer Tom now dead, Benny, Nix, Chong, and Lilah carry on their search in the Rot and Ruin for the still-elusive jet. Just when the teens didn't think anything could be stranger in a zombie-infested world, they cross paths with Mother Rose and Saint John of the Knife, rival leaders of the Night Church, a death cult seeking the extinction of the human race. Separated from one another early on in the story, the teens battle nonstop with various factions of the Night Church and their zombie minions. As Mother Rose and Saint John secretly try to double-cross one another, the battles turn deadlier. The blood bath is tempered by each teen's personal struggle with grief and realization of his or her "Warrior Smart" training. Short chapters, punctuated by suspenseful, cliffhanger endings, heighten the tension throughout. Of course, zombies still play a large role, and Maberry keeps each zombie chase terrifying as more evolved and cross-species zombies enter this already dangerous environment. While the teens learn more about the genesis of the zombie plague and the history of the nation (or what's left of it) since First Night, many more questions remain unanswered. Good thing there will be another sequel. (Science fiction. 13 & up) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2012 October

Gr 8 Up--Benny Imura and his friends are back fighting their way through a postapocalyptic world. Still reeling from the tragic ending in Dust & Decay (S & S, 2011), Benny, Nix, Chong, and Lilah continue moving east from California's Sierra Nevadas, searching for the jet that Benny and Nix saw and, hopefully, for a better life. As in the previous volumes, the ever-present zombies threaten the teens but they are hardly the most hazardous or scariest things stalking the wilderness. The kids run headlong into the "Reapers," a death cult led by Saint John, a serial killer turned prophet. The Reapers' mission is to finish what the zombie plague started-the extinction of the human race. Even as the teens struggle to stay one step ahead of these murderous freaks and close in on their goal, they discover that the zombie virus is mutating, resulting in startling and even more dangerous changes. A few of the passages (especially between Benny and Nix) get a little tiresome, and the Reaper philosophy stretches credulity a bit, but lots of action and generous helpings of blood and gore keep the story moving briskly and will keep series fans turning pages. The ending leaves open the possibility of a fourth installment, though one of the main characters might not survive that long.--Anthony C. Doyle, Livingston High School Library, CA

[Page 142]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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VOYA Reviews 2012 October
Flesh and Bone is the third book in the Benny Imura series after Dust & Decay (Simon & Schuster, 2011/VOYA August 2011) and Rot & Ruin (Simon & Schuster, 2011). While the text makes reference to the earlier books in the series, it is still readable as a stand-alone novel. Teenager Benny Imura and his friends Nix, Lilah, and Chong are on their own in the vast Rot and Ruin, what remains of America after a zombie apocalypse. They have to survive not only the hordes of hungry zombies but also feral animals, disease, and most dangerous of all, other people. As if the four did not have enough trouble, they encounter a murderous cult led by a psychopathic serial killer and a manipulative priestess. And just when they thought they could predict how the zombies will behave, the "gray walkers" seem to be mutating, becoming faster, smarter, and more dangerous. The action starts from the first line and rarely lets up. This is not a book for the faint of heart, and both the body count and gore factor are pretty high. However, Maberry does find some quieter moments to explore the relationships between the characters and flesh out the details of the bleak world he has created. The idea of a death cult bent on clearing the earth of humanity is both chilling and eerily convincing, and Maberry ponders some weighty questions about human nature among the flying bullets and whirling knives. Horror fans will love this book; it is also a good choice to grab reluctant readers.--Jennifer Rosenstein 4Q 4P J S Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.

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