Friday, May 03, 2013
This Is Not A Test, by Courtney Summers
The central character, Sloane, is initially the most unstable. She's angry at her sister for running away from their abusive father six months before. Left on her own to face a hellish homelife, Sloane grew suicidal (even before people around her started getting killed). It is ironic then that, as the hopelessness of the situation grows, it is Sloane who develops survival instincts.
It's a decent book that suffers from trying to do too much. As a coming-of-age story about domestic abuse, sibling separation, and even interpersonal relations in the hallways of Cortege High, the novel works. Even as a zombie adventure story, it works pretty well (plenty of adventure and dramatic events). But combined together, the pace fluctuates too much. The dialogue seems whiny and drags on too long. The zombie action feels like a story from an entirely separate book. It is jarring mash-up.