(read my review of Enclave here).
(this review is spoiler free, which, you know, isn't easy).
I have a problem with Outpost. The main character's name is Deuce. Which, you know, means two. Ann Aguirre does not utilize this clever name to her full ability. Not once does Deuce say "Deuces!" or "Looks like double trouble!" after stabbing a zombie to death.* Puns she does not. This is like watching a movie where a character doesn't say the title in it.
How am I supposed to know what the name of the movie is if they don't say the title in it? This is madness. There's also a love interest named Fade. These two are out there fighting and killing zombies in a post-apocalyptic wasteland (all the while trying to save a town called Salvation). And yes, not once--after slaying what they call "freaks"--does he pun "And fade to black."
They use giant knives to kill stuff! There's so much pun opportunity--punortunity--it's ridiculous.
I also have no idea what the hell is going on. Like, why is the world the way it is? Why is everyone super religious and what are these "freaks" really? Ann keeps revealing these little tidbits one by one. It's maddening to me. This kind of slow world building builds a lot of suspense, and I had to watch seven years of Lost, so I know about slow building suspense.
I, of course, really appreciate all of these characters and settings and things. And I, of course, really recommend reading the first book, Enclave. (pronounced on-clave, not in-clave). And I, of course, don't mind the amount of gore or mature themes running through the book.
And gore there is.* Copious amounts of gore and a whole new future world to splatter it with. There's also a girl main character who's handy with the big knives (but not with puns) that's discovering her humanity. She's not your typical YA heroine ala Anna and the French Kiss, she's more like that chick from BLOOD RED ROAD.
This is a zombie novel that is not a zombie novel. This is a teen novel that's not really a teen novel. It contains--like an HBO show--mature themes. But that's the way this world is going these days, and Ann Aguirre is one of the writers taking us there.
Four Out of Five Fucks Given
Full Disclosure: I purchased this book in Cincinatti, OH after meeting the lovely Ann Aguirre.
Notes: I got to meet Ann Aguirre a few months ago. She said that in order to really write a fight scene she has to listen to Let The Bodies Hit the Floor by Drowning Pool. It shows. It really shows.
Extra Note: I love the Sirantha Jax series.
*Can a zombie be stabbed to death if it's already dead?
**Not this Gore.