Jagged Scars Series Book 1
by Jo Schneider
Just Add Peril Publishing
YA Dystopian/Science Fiction
Sixteen year old Wendy never knew the world before the Starvation. She’s learned to put her trust in her knives, and her confidence in her fighting ability. When the Skinnies attack her compound, she's the lone survivor.
Injured and near death, Wendy is rescued and nursed back to health by mysterious strangers. Her saviors offer her a place among them, but trust has never been one of Wendy's strengths, and suspicion soon leads to evidence that these people might be the group who killed her family.
The decision to get her revenge, and take the settlement down from the inside out is easy. Keeping her distance from those she must befriend in order to make it happen proves to be much more difficult.
First, I have to admit that I'm not a zombie story fan, and although this isn't really marked as a zombie story, the 'monster's definitely lean toward that category. Still, I enjoyed it.
The first chapter (or prologue in this case) threw me for a little loop--the information was vital, but a lot happened too quickly and I had to read it twice to get a real hold what was going on. But after those first chapters, the story took off and I couldn't put it down until the last page.
The main character, sixteen-year-old Wendy, is a girl I could really root for. She's grown up under harsh circumstances making her critical, but once her trust is won, she's true to the end. She's fair. She's got a heart of gold. She's an awesome fighter. Summed up, I really liked her and had no trouble understanding her and the reasons she did things.
To say this is a fast-paced book is an under-statement. Wendy is a great fighter, and she has tons of battles to lunge into. The fight descriptions are well done, making even the 'training' sessions a delight to read. But then the whole world was well described. It was easy to picture her compound and the base she later found herself at as well as the forest and world around her. I could almost taste the fear as the Skinnies appeared and wanted to punch them in the noses myself.
There's a great line-up of characters and each one comes to life with their very own personality, giving the story a lot of depth and dimension. Even the good vs. evil lines are blurred enough to make it difficult to know what side some of the characters are on...something which makes Wendy's viewpoint totally understandable.
Summed up, I really enjoyed reading this. It has a nice twist of zombie meets science fiction with a douse of dystopian throw in. The main character is a kick-butt girl but with enough soft spots that she's easy to like. In other words, I can't wait to get my hands on the rest of the series.