Unfed – Kirsty McKay
Publisher: Chicken House
Release Date: 2nd August 2012
Edition: UK paperback, review copy
Other Titles by this Author: Undead
They’re back...and this time they’re hungry.
The good news: Bobby survived her unreal school trip. The bad news: her best bud Smitty is missing. There are undead everywhere and they’re getting hungrier...
It’s a no brainer. Somehow she must find some living friends – and the antidote – before everyone’s toast.
Undead was one of my favourite books from last year so I was really looking forward to the same non-stop action, humour and brilliant characterisation in Unfed. I wasn’t at all disappointed.
There’s an element Unfed that I enjoyed in Undead, loved in the beginning of this and then by the end I was in awe of it: Kirsty McKay’s skill in characterisation. Bobby, Smitty, Alice, Pete and Russ are all so themselves. Each has such a distinct voice that I could tell who was speaking before I was even told and they all had such real idiosyncrasies that they leaped off of the page as fully formed people. A development in Bobby’s character that I wasn’t completely expecting was her connection to the missing Smitty when she got into dangerous situations throughout the novel; it was surprising, but it really worked.
Although there was a distinct lack of Smitty in Unfed, when he was there, I fell in love with him again. Even though he is undoubtedly a nutjob... He had the most madcap, and strangely effective, plans and I loved the way he dealt with newcomer Russ and the tension between him and Bobby. Speaking of Russ, I just couldn’t make my mind up about him. I wanted to trust him, I really did, but he was just so sure of everything. He did surprise me though; that was a twist I definitely wasn’t expecting.
The amazing characters are supported by writing that sparkles with wit, comedy and some seriously tense situations involving decaying Undead. It has life and personality that comes through firmly and strongly in a novel so fast-paced that I couldn’t imagine myself being able keeping up such a style throughout.
Unfed goes back to traditional zombies with a modern cause: a drug that causes people to turn into brain-hungry, slobbering shells of humans with missing limbs and slabs of missing flesh. Brilliantly. There’s a nice dose of the gross and vom-inducing as Bobby and the others are chased through Scotland.
I thoroughly enjoyed Unfed and I really hope there will be another instalment of Bobby’s adventures.
A big thank you to Chicken House for providing me with a review copy.