This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Entangled Teen
Released on April 3, 2018
Sheer curiosity had me picking up this book. It blends the popular Downton Abbey setting and characters with a zombie epidemic in a farce that dares the reader not to laugh.
Zombie Abbey offers an Upstairs-Downstairs look at life on an English estate shortly after WWI. An earl, his countess, his mother and her father along with their three daughters and their many servants and the local village welcome guests just as a mysterious and dreadful outbreak begins in the village. The family estate is entailed away from the female line so Kate must marry and marry well. Hence, the suitors coming to visit. If her eye strays toward the handsome stable boy… well, then. Once the zombie outbreak becomes known, the separation of class starts to fall apart because its an ‘everyone needs to stick together’ situation. And the highborns learn that class doesn’t preserve the distinction of intelligence and ability in a crisis.
Alright, so this was meant to be fun and I was amused at times, but I never really settled into this book. Moderately engaged at best, but definitely a story that kept me amused throughout.
I hoped it was just going to be one that started slow and picked up speed after the first introduction to world, characters, and the beginning to the plot. The pace picked up a little, but not much. My interest was spotty. Part of this was because I liked some characters and enjoyed when they got the narration or were involved in the story, but others just left me irritated. I skimmed a lot trying to get to parts that things were happening. Then, just when I thought that yes, we were getting some place, it was near the end and the ending was left open. Is there another book coming? I don’t know. If there is, then this ending works. If not, then I definitely feel disappointed.
My favorite storyline was Lady Grace and Daniel the Footman. Grace was the nicest of the earl’s three daughters and just quietly did the right thing and had a good attitude. She is called upon to be the real heroine of the three sisters at a crisis point. She catches Daniel’s eye when most people notice her older and younger sisters for their more vibrant and stronger looks and personalities. Daniel is more than he seems and it comes out when the zombie trouble comes knocking.
I had a soft spot for the poor duke who struggles with his shyer personality and looks. But, lord did I want to smack arrogant and self-absorbed Lady Kate the eldest daughter. She was written well as a class conscious snob who is spoiled so that she judges people on their looks and class. Lady Lizzy was still growing up, but had flashes of brilliance in her outspokenness. Will, the stable boy, was broody, but he did sustain some huge losses and had the misfortune to have a crush on Kate. Grandmother, the Dowager was hilarious. I thought she made scenes sparkle.
So, I liked it, but didn’t love it. I was off-pace from the book the entire time and I’ll take that as being on me rather than the book. It’s a good spot to start for those who want to dip their toe into a monster mash-up, but don’t want to get terrified out of their skull. I thought the strong Downton Abbey vibes will appeal to that fan group, but zombie lovers who might want to see them in a historical setting will get something, too.
My thanks to Entangled Teen for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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