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Day by Day Armageddon by J. L. Bourne

Day by Day Armageddon

by J. L. Bourne

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This book was fantastic. It is told through the main protagonist's journal entries; we never find out his name. He's a naval officer who was just returning home to Texas from visiting his parents in Arkansas when the zombie apocalypse hits. The story follows him as he watches news coverage of what begins as a violent strain of influenza in China, to the quarantine of the US being breached, and the government breaking down. He starts off alone hold up in his fortified home afraid that he will lose his sanity long before the dead get to him, but eventually meets another survivor on his block.

The duo make a daring escape from their overrun area and travel from place to place, staying only as long as is safe, and having a few near death experiences along the way. John and Annabell, a miniature greyhound, become the protagonist's whole world and they all work together to survive, hoping to find some working form of government, or some place in civilization that hasn't fallen.

Without spoiling it for you, they meet some people along the way as they move from :safe-house" to "safe house".

The story grips you and reads almost like a movie. I was anxious for their safety and waiting for the jump-scare with every sentence I read. I've been come attached to the characters in this book and now I am committed to reading the entire series to see how their survival progresses. ( )
  Virago77 | Aug 2, 2017 |
Probably my favorite or on my top 5 list for best zombie book. ( )
  AtomicSpencer | Aug 1, 2016 |
Amazing read. Unlike most other zombie/apocalypse novels this one doesn't depend on cliche drama to move the plot along. If you are looking for a realistic account of life after the collapse of civilization this book is for you. ( )
  atticadayz | Jun 13, 2016 |
Found what I was looking for.

Was looking for a "light" read and found it here. In full disclosure I am a fan of this particular genre. The characters here are not fully drawn out but for some reason I find it more to the stories credit than otherwise
If you're looking for something without the commitment of The Stand or the emotional weight of The Road give Day by Day a try ( )
  Pattern8 | Mar 4, 2016 |
(Re-posted from http://theturnedbrain.blogspot.com)

Does exactly what it says on the box. A never named navy officer decides to keep a diary literally days before a zombie flavoured kind of hell breaks loose, and the book is a day by day chronicle of his efforts to survive.

There are a lot of things to like about this book. If we start at a purely aesthetic viewpoint, this is a book that makes me glad to have resisted the ebook wave. I don’t mean the cover (which isn’t terrible but I wouldn’t say I’m in love with it), I’m talking about the pages. They are adored with handwritten notes, pictures (both hand drawn and photographs), coffee rings and tears and what are possibly blood stains. There are also sections of texts that have been scribbled out and rendered unreadable, which brings to mind one of my all time favourite books, House of Leaves. It makes the book feel more immediate and authentic, and it makes you feel closer to our unnamed hero.

Of course no quirky design will turn rubbish prose into good, but thankfully J.L. Bourne's text doesn’t need any help being good. Bourne's take on the Zombie apocalypse is a pleasing mixture of familiar and new ideas. He pays due homage to the zombie tradition while still managing to offer his own ideas without going too crazy with it.

But the real shining point, for me, is the narrator. Our hero is a military man, and this shines through in every aspect of the text. It's sometimes obvious, such as the use of military terminology, which is a little confusing at first but the author skilfully supplies enough context for us to figure out what all the words mean. (What, an author who doesn’t treat his readers like idiots? Imagine!) But his military background is also clear in his short, efficient sentences and the methodical way he views the world.

This book is an exercise in reading between the lines. As I mentioned, Protagonist McNoname writes his journal in a very straight forward, no fuss kind of way. He doesn’t dwell overlong on his feelings or hopes, he concerns himself with what is needed to survive; lists of remaining rations, brainstorm ideas of zombie proof fortresses and the like. When he meets other suriviors he writes about them foremost in terms of what the skills they offer, and when he finds those skills lacking he outlines plans to teach them. (Not, you may note, abandon them).

But when we look closer a picture of him begins to emerge. We start to see that he has always been a loner (when shit starts to go down he deserts the military without hesitation), and pretty bad at relating with women. He mentions briefly using army equipment to spy on an ex-girlfiend, and his thoughts when a friend calls to say his wife had left are also very telling. He refers to his guns as females, and in the early days of the book he is at his most considerate when he is carefully cleaning and maintaining them.

It is pleasure to watch, as the book progresses, our hero start to trust and depend on the few other survivors he joins up with. It’s also a pleasure to be in the hands of a perfectly capable protagonist. Often zombie books, or all post-apocalyptic books, are told from the point of view of unremarkable people who have to quickly learn how to survive. Our hero already knows how to survive, he just needs to learn how to love. (Oh man, that did not sound so cheesy in my head I promise…)

My biggest complaint with the book is the ending, or rather lack thereof. We are left with some major plot threads dangling in the wind, and while there is a sequel it’s still annoying to have to wait to get my hands on it. But then again, if the worst thing you can say about a book is that you want to read more right now instead of later, then it’s probably a pretty good book! ( )
  MeganDawn | Jan 18, 2016 |
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Book description
Sporadic news reports indicate chaos and violence spreading through U.S. cities. An unknown evil is sweeping the planet. The dead are rising to claim the Earth as the new dominant species in the food chain.This is the handwritten journal depicting one man’s struggle for survival. Trapped in the midst of global disaster, he must make decisions; choices that ultimately mean life, or the eternal curse to walk as one of them. Enter if you will into his world. The world of the undead.
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An ongoing journal depicting one man's personal struggle for survival, dealing with the trials of an undead world unfolding around him. An unknown plague sweeps the planet. The dead rise to claim the Earth as the new dominant species. Trapped in the midst of a global tragedy, he must make decisions ... choices that ultimately mean life, or the eternal curse to walk as one of them.… (more)

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