Twilight. With zombies.
Eighteen-year-old Katie Allred is socially awkward and unpopular at school. The only child of parents who had her right out of high school, Katie is herself about to leave the nest, even though she hardly feels ready.
Katie’s new after-school job at the Zimble Box Corporation draws her into the complex social strata of high school cliques and backstabbing friends in ways she never imagined. Katie soon discovers there’s something very strange about the “in” crowd at school—and about her employer, too. Shortly after starting her new job, the Contagion breaks out, plunging her town and the entire nation into chaos as zombie shadow forces come out into the open, ravaging the streets. Katie goes into hiding and her parents disappear, along with almost everyone else she knows…
REVIEWED BY A.D WAYY
Not all zombies are bad, Katie…
The first chapter dawns with the seemingly semi-pathetic life of lower middle-class teenager named Katie Allred who gets hired at Zimble Inc, a “box” making company. The company is run by a midget–ahem–little person named, you got it—Mr. Zimble, who mind you, claims to be third generation owner. Katie suspects a weird vibe from everyone working at the Corporation even her old codgery uncle, but just can’t seem to put her finger on it. As the pages stretched ahead, I became intrigued by the world Hughes was building. Between Katie’s distant mother and out-of-touch father, the poor girl really needs some love and warm-blooded attention in a bad way.
Katie is given a small carved figurine by Mr. Zimble named Harutso whom she has conversations with in her head and sometimes out loud. Katie lovingly named him ‘Fred’. He talks more like a Japanese Yoda and acts like a carved Jiminy Cricket pointing her toward the moral straight-and-narrow. He’s pretty handy and even Jedi-mind tricks a few would-be zombie attacks from happening—all from his perch in her pocket.
All walking dead-hell breaks loose and we find Katie running for her life. After the contagion is supposedly contained, Mr. Zimble sends Katie on a fast track up the corporate ladder without Katie doing anything at all. In comes the hero, a special-op agent of the underground United States government trying to take the country back from the Zombie-Apocover. He saves her from the clutches of the Corporation and informs her she has a long family history of pheromone genetics that make every living dead want to mate with her. (I want to know what that smells like. Seriously.)
You see a bit of sparks fly in spite of finding out her savior is a zombie himself who informs her, “Not all zombies are bad, Katie.” Is it love at first brain-eater sighting?
I can honestly say the end of the book held my attention far past my allotted time for reading before my manic-dash-to-get-to-work-on-time began. I was sorry to see the story end and will definitely read the next book when it comes out. Hughes has a Dead Like Me attitude and I liked it very much. The snark was rich, the depression—teenage appropriate, and the zombie corporation creepy enough to make you want more. In the words of the juggernaut conglomerate – “We want more, we want more.”
– A.D. Wayy
Title: Zombie, Incorporated ~ A Katie Allred Novel
Author: Jill Elaine Hughes
Publisher: Hackberry Books
Pub Date: 25 March 2013