Friday, August 27, 2010

Kiss of Life

Kiss of Life
by Daniel Waters
Generation Dead, book two

The phenomenon that’s been sweeping the country seems to be here to stay. Not only are the teenagers who have come back from their graves still here, but newlydeads are being unearthed all the time. While scientists look for answers and politicians take their stands, the undead population of Oakville have banded together in a group they’re calling the Sons of Romero, hoping to find solidarity in segregation.

Phoebe Kendall may be alive, but she feels just as lost and alone as her dead friends. Just when she reconciled herself to having feelings for a zombie -- her Homecoming date Tommy Williams -- her friend Adam is murdered taking a bullet that was meant for her. Things get even more confusing when Adam comes back from the grave. Now she has romantic interest in two dead boys; one who saved her life, and one she can't seem to live without.
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This series really blows me away. With both Generation Dead and its sequel Kiss of Life I have picked up the book just expecting an exciting zombie story. You get so much more out of Waters' books, though. There are astonishing depths that I smile to think the teen readers will pick up on and contemplate once they are done reading.

After the zombie phenomenon is set up in Generation Dead, you truly get to see the repercussions in this book. There are huge metaphors here for discrimination and segregation. Waters story made me think of Japanese interment camps in California, segregation in the historical south, and much more. These things are all layered into a story that somehow does not manage at all to lecture, even while it teaches!

Through all of this there is also the story of Phoebe and her two potential love interests. One, Tommy, she met and loved as a zombie. The other, Adam, gave his life trying to save hers and she comes to love him as a zombie. Either way, Waters deals with the way that society views "mixed" relationships, and I love how Phoebe explores her feelings, never once feeling as if she shouldn't love either boy because of their "biotic" status.

I cannot wait to see what other themes Waters explores in Passing well as seeing what happens next! (They do have really great plots beyond the themes, I swear!! :) )

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