Book Review: Odium by Claire C Riley


They’re everywhere!

TV, movies, comic books….and, of course, novels!  In a world where one might think that monster books have been boiled down to just more of the same, it’s difficult to want to pick one up, at least without having someone vet it for you (says the guy working on a zombie story as we speak…).

But the reason there are so many of them is because we simply can’t get enough of them…or…maybe the fact that they just won’t die is a sign that zombie stories share a lot more with their subject matter than we think…

From the title alone (as defined on the book cover), one should have no misconceptions regarding the topic of the book titled Odium.  Described as an intense dislike or hatred for something, especially zombies, you immediately know what this book has in store for you.  And Riley doesn’t disappoint.  From the opening chapter we are introduced to a world completely ravaged by the walking undead, a world that even smells like death, a world that seems as though absolutely nothing left of any good is left.

Of course, in this same chapter, we are also introduced to Nina, a tortured soul who may just possibly be that one good thing that is left.  Following her gut and choosing to do the right thing leads Nina on an action-packed journey in which we are given plenty of splatter, but also insight into what caused this world to become what it is, and a healthy dosing of information behind what causes these people to act the way they do.  In other words, zombies aren’t the only danger in this post-apocalyptic world, and that becomes evident right away.

The beauty of this story, however, completely surrounds the main charact, Nina.  The story is told from her point of view, but we see that not even she fully realizes what makes her tick, what makes her the ultimate badass of a woman that she truly is.  Like an angered mother hen, she slices her way through foliage and animated corpses in order to keep her and her newly adopted family alive.  She is both what moves this story forward and what keeps this story interesting; a woman who at her heart seems to have once been more interested in shoes than the outdoors, now focuses on only one thing, survival.

This story will not let you stop.  It pulls you forward with every page, needing to see what happens to this intrepid band of survivors, as well as seeing who will inevitably bite the bullet (or have their bullet bitten) next.  Simply said, if you like zombies and/or survivalist fiction, you will love Odium.

I recommend you pick it up to read the first chance you get.  Of course, then you’ll see the same issue I see…that you can’t wait until Riley gets Odium II out on the marketplace. Lucky for us, she’s given us Odium Origins to tide us over.

Have fun out there!


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