White Rabbit Chronicles #3
Paranormal Young Adult
Available September 30th
Source: ARC from publisher for review
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
I have a plan.
We'll either destroy them for good, or they'll destroy us.
Either way, only one of us is walking away.
In the stunning conclusion to the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, Alice "Ali" Bell thinks the worst is behind her. She's ready to take the next step with boyfriend Cole Holland, the leader of the zombie slayers…until Anima Industries, the agency controlling the zombies, launches a sneak attack, killing four of her friends. It's then she realizes that humans can be more dangerous than monsters…and the worst has only begun.
As the surviving slayers prepare for war, Ali discovers she, too, can control the zombies…and she isn't the girl she thought she was. She's connected to the woman responsible for killing—and turning—Cole's mother. How can their relationship endure? As secrets come to light, and more slayers are taken or killed, Ali will fight harder than ever to bring down Anima—even sacrificing her own life for those she loves.
The Queen of Zombie Hearts is a series of battles–physical and emotional–from first page to last, Ali and company barely getting a moment’s rest before Death is chasing them down once again. As a result, the 450+ pages of this final installment absolutely fly by, depositing us on the last page with a damaged heart, a wobbly smile, and a deep sense of denial that our time with these characters is actually over. Ms. Showalter is not afraid to raise the body count of both friend and foe in the final showdown between Ali and Anima Industries, but her books are always a beautiful combination of gravity and humor, ensuring we're never without a little light to see us through the darkness.
Ali is as strong as ever, in possession of zombie-destroying abilities no other slayers seem to wield much to our continued puzzlement. We get all the answers to our questions in this last book however, revelation after revelation ratcheting up the intensity to such a degree we seriously contemplate calling in sick to work the next day just so we don’t have to set her story aside for the night and sleep. She’s the type of young woman who abhors lies, so she’s always the first one to blurt out whatever is on her mind whether it be personal or zombie-related in nature, and we can’t help but want to hug her every time she uses her words instead of keeping them locked up tight.
Cole is much the same as well, delighting us with his alpha badassery and possessiveness even as we sometimes simply have to shake our heads at his posturing. Were he to exist in real life, his growling, smoldering, you’ll-do-things-my-way attitude would likely be extremely irritating, but because Ms. Showalter saw fit to give him a woman who snaps her spine straight instead of going weak in the knees under the force of his personality, all his alpha male characteristics take on that beautiful romantic shine that can only exist in fiction. He’s that enormously fun blend of hard and soft, all his pointed edges suddenly rounding in Ali’s presence, shifting him from attractively distant to charmingly approachable, and we can’t help but fall as hard for him as Ali does.
One of Ms. Showalter’s extraordinary strengths, whether she’s writing adult or young adult, has always been her ability to craft large casts of hugely well-developed secondary characters. While Ali and Cole shine brightest in this series, the crew of people surrounding them are every bit as vital to its overall success, their personalities distinct and layered, and we can only hope that maybe one day Ms. Showalter will give us the gift of revisiting them a few years down the line. Overall, The Queen of Zombie Hearts is the perfect end to this series, old friends lost and new friends found, and through it all stands a lead couple who just bring a smile to our faces.
*If you haven't already, be sure to check out my interview with the charming and hilarious River and enter to win any book in the White Rabbit Chronicles!
This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review.
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.