Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Ghoul Archipelago by Stephen Kozeniewski

After ravenous corpses topple society and consume most of the world’s population, freighter captain Henk Martigan is shocked to receive a distress call. Eighty survivors beg him to whisk them away to the relative safety of the South Pacific. Martigan wants to help, but to rescue anyone he must first pass through the nightmare backwater of the Curien island chain.

A power struggle is brewing in the Curiens. On one side, the billionaire inventor of the mind-control collar seeks to squeeze all the profit he can out of the apocalypse. Opposing him is the charismatic leader of a ghoul-worshipping cargo cult. When a lunatic warlord berths an aircraft carrier off the coast and stakes his own claim on the islands, the stage is set for a bloody showdown.

To save the remnants of humanity (and himself), Captain Martigan must defeat all three of his ruthless new foes and brave the gruesome horrors of...THE GHOUL ARCHIPELAGO.

First, above all else, the one thing that really sticks out about this book is the flip in the time-space continuum.  It took me a week of human time to read it.  In book time, I think it took me a few years.  This is NOT a negative!  It's just one of those books that you get so lost in, that you lose all track of time and space. It doesn't move the same as it does in reality.  I would lay down with the book and be reading and so lost in it, then suddenly realize that I need to get back to reality.  That little voice in my brain would say 'Surely you've been in bookland for days now!  You must go back to reality to feed yourself and bathe!'  and then I would pop out of the book, and realize only a few hours of real time had gone by.  It's sort of like watching Star Wars.  You get so engrossed and so much happens that you feel you've lived for years since the beginning, yet at the end you find it's only been two hours.  Again, this is not a negative.  I find it rare when a book is able to pull me in so completely that I lose track of time.

After reading Braineater Jones, I was avidly looking forward to this one.  Admittedly, it's quite a bit different, but there were a few similarities.  Once again, we have these intriguing characters that you won't find anywhere else.  They're multi-faceted and multi-layered and you have no chance of figuring them out completely.  It sure is fun to try though!  Also, the plot is so layered that you really don't know exactly what it is.  One moment, you think something is the priority for your brain to be working at, and the next moment you realize you have 4 other subplots that are just as important to figure out.  It can be a little daunting if you're just looking for a quick read.  But, if you're looking for something with substance, real meat, then Kozeniewski's work is definitely for you.  It's worth every second that you invest in the reading because it will stay with you an eternity.

I should warn you, if you're squeamish, this may not be the book for you to pick up.  There are parts that are so gruesome that even other characters are vomiting and heaving from it. There were even a few parts where I found myself saying 'I can't believe I'm reading this.  I'm so going to get nightmares.  If I don't, there's something wrong with me.'  If you have a passion for the gore, you're going to devour this one. It isn't gratuitous, but sometimes you find yourself cheering on the ghouls and thankful someone has finally been 'disposed of'. 

Not sure if this is the book for you?  Imagine Pirates of the Caribbean and Walking Dead mixed together.  Then add in a healthy dose of technology and wit with strong characters of every type.  

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  Shawn

1 comment:

The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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