Monday, July 12, 2010

“Dog Blood” A Novel by David Moody (audio book review)

“Dog Blood” A Novel
by David Moody
Read by Gerard Doyle
Produced by Blackstone Audio
Approx 9 1/2 hours

David Moody has created a thrilling joyride through an apocalyptic world of zombies, but without an apocalypse or zombies. This may need some further explanation, so bear with me. First of all this novel, “Dog Blood” is the sequel to Moody’s previous novel, “Hater.” In “Hater” the world changed. Many people suddenly began killing other people, it was soon discovered that a percentage of the population was changing into what was being labeled as Haters.

The Haters would kill for no reason using only their bare hands in most cases. The book “Hater” followed Danny McCoyne as he tried everything he could to protect his family, but near the end of the book Danny, became a Hater. The change in him was sudden as if a switch was thrown. Once he had changed he immediately felt the urge to destroy the Unchanged. One of the Unchanged was his father-in-law. When his wife witnessed this she knew he had become a Hater. As she gathered the children to make their escape Danny looked into the eyes of his 5 year old daughter and knew she was like him, but by then he was incapacitated and could do nothing. This left the novel “Hater” with either the most thrilling ending ever or a serious hint at a sequel.

As it turns out David Moody has written this novel, “Dog Blood” and continues the story with such a a delivery that you get tired as if YOU are the one running around and trying to survive. The story creates such a unique insight into the world of Haters and Unchanged, that not only do you read about the battles, the survival, the lack of governmental control but Moody writes in such a fashion you feel as if you are part of the story. The reader, Gerard Doyle, does such a great job that he further presses that urgency and emotion that is within the story it is as if the story were written with him as the intended reader. Doyle at times when the story calls for it can be emotionless but within a splitsecond the story telling turns to a rage fueled story and Doyle makes those shifts perfectly clear with some very artistic voicework.

In “Dog Blood,” Danny McCoyne continues the bloody kills to destroy the Unchanged but this time he is also looking for his five year-old daughter, Ellis. Danny makes his way back to the city from which we was taken to where his wife and daughter could be hiding/surviving. Danny was taken to a camp where the Haters where being mass slaughtered not unlike the German concentration camps of World War II. After escaping Danny learns of the Haters, led by a former politician, grouping to form an army to destroy the Unchanged. The biggest obstacle in this is that as a Hater organization is hard to come by because all killing is done by instinct, not unlike a zombie horde. This is where the zombie aspect comes in, the Haters act as vicious as any zombie from any zombie movie or story, but they can think and they don’t eat their victims, well, not always.

Moody also takes us through the lives of the Unchanged by jumping into the story of Mark Tillotsen as he helps the military to scout for food and survivors in the area. Mark gets extra rations for this volunteer work, which he needs because he has recently taken in a family member and his wife is pregnant.

Survival, hordes of violent attackers, and the possible end of the world, “Dog Blood” takes up where “Hater” left off and I will warn you the ending keeps you questioning. I will warn you also to make sure you allow extra listening time when you approach the end of the book, the last few chapters are so exciting you CANNOT stop listening. Actually, you won’t want to stop the book at all once you start.

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