Rating: 5/5 ★★★★★
Genres: Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian, Young Adult, New Adult
An outbreak of The Fever has taken hold of Portland, Oregon, bringing the population to its knees. The Fever spreads and kills quickly, but the dead aren't staying dead.
When her neighbor, Jordan, saves her from one of the infected, Alissa joins him in his plan to escape the city, the disease and the threat of a quarantine that will lock the living in with the undead.
What she doesn't tell him is that she has an illness of her own, one that plays tricks with her mind and makes her a dangerous companion. But Jordan has a secret as well, one that compels him to keep Alissa, a veritable stranger, safe at all costs.
As they fight for their lives and race for their freedom, they'll discover that what they truly need in order to survive is to stay together until the end.
What happens whenever your roommate turns into a brains eating bitch? For Alissa, she's rescued just in time by a baseball bat wielding stranger named Jordan. The two then band together to escape the epicenter of the zombie outbreak. While trekking towards the safety of Alissa's uncle's house, the twosome face impossible odds, zombies, mental illness, and other survivors.
It goes without saying that I think Tracey is amazing at writing characters. Alissa is evidence of that. I love how Alissa's struggle with her past is written. It resonates throughout the entire book, and her inner monologue leaves you crossing your fingers for her. I genuinely grew to care for Alissa and her well-being. Jordan is seemingly a perfect match for Alissa, and it was enjoyable to watch their relationship grow throughout the book. A sprinkling of romance in the face of chaos is exactly what I need. And there is no insta-love! Bonus points.
The pacing of this book is fast and to the point. There's no filler material that needlessly draws out the story. As Alissa and Jordan get closer to their destination, you discover more and more about the reach of the infection. I feel like the zombie outbreak is portrayed in a plausible and realistic way. It isn't just boom! zombies. It spreads in a believable and frightening way.
One of the things that always draws me to Tracey's books are how well written they are. I always give Indie authors a bit of a pass because I know how exhausting and expensive editing can be. But Tracey doesn't need the pass. She always delivers books so flawlessly that I'm surprised she hasn't been snapped up by a publisher. She definitely stands out. I would recommend any of her books, this one included, to fans of YA/NA dystopian stories who enjoy their zombies served with a side of romance.