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Book Review

Book Cover

Zombies at Tiffany's


Author: Sam Stone
RRP: £9.99, US $15.95
ISBN: 978 1 84583 072 4
Available 30 September 2012

With the civil war consuming the south and the best part of the United States youth, unexpected opportunities arise for some of the young women left behind. So it is that Kat Lightfoot finds herself working the prestigious jewellers, Tiffany’s as a sales girl. This opportunity of a lifetime is doomed, as a darkness brought back by returning soldiers starts to consume the good citizens of New York, turning them into flesh eating zombies...

Zombies at Tiffany’s is a new horror novel from mutli-award winning Sam Stone. Stone has carved an impressive career as a writer of gothic horror and fantasy. Although structured like a novel, with chapters, Zombies at Tiffany's short pager count (185 pages) and the large type of text means the book feels more like a novella.

The novel is classically straight forward, in that it spends a little time introducing us to the main characters before introducing the horde of zombies which the group initially hold off in Tiffany’s, allowing Stone a little more time to explore the characters and have them blow chunks out of zombies for the audience’s amusement before their inevitable escape.

Fans of Stone’s excellent Vampire Gene series may be disappointed that her best creation, Lucrezia Borgia, does not appear in the story like she did in Zombies in New York & Other Bloody Jottings, but here Stone proves that she can turn her eye for gory detail and pulse pounding pacing to something other than vampire stories.

The main protagonist of the story, and from whose perspective we see the events unfold, is Kat. Recently employed by Tiffany’s and with a brother away at the war, she is a thoroughly modern young woman, interested in technology and not overly afraid of the unknown, who revels in the new found freedom a job offers her. When the sh*t really hits the fan she turns from demure shop girl to gun toting exterminator.

She is mainly helped by the ever inventive Martin, who works mainly with jewellery design, but thankfully for the survivors does a mean side-line in weapons manufacture, based on the properties of diamonds, including bullets and even a laser, though this has the drawback of not working at night, a real problem when dealing with zombies.

Although the book holds few surprises, the American Civil War setting follows a plethora of other cross genre novels which seem to be springing up, placing both vampires and zombies outside of their traditional settings. Although many of the books inject a much needed change of setting, Zombies at Tiffany's follows the traditions of early Zombie films, with the villainous creatures having little individual intelligence and a slow shuffling gait. I will not spoil your reading enjoyment, by giving an explanation, but I thought that if Stone had more of the cats it could have added that little bit more zing to the story, as it is the most intriguing aspect is almost relegated to a secondary role.

The writing and pacing is up to Stone's usual high quality and Kat is a character who carries the burden of the novel well, but next time more cats please.


Charles Packer

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