5 Sept 2011

Outpost review

Outpost by Adam Baker
Available now

What's it about?
They took the job to escape the world.
They didn't expect the world to end.

Kasker Rampart: a derelict refinery platform moored in the Arctic Ocean. A skeleton crew of fifteen fight boredom and despair as they wait for a relief ship to take them home. But the world beyond their frozen wasteland has gone to hell. Cities lie ravaged by a global pandemic. One by one TV channels die, replaced by silent wavebands. The Rampart crew are marooned. They must survive the long Arctic winter, then make their way home alone. They battle starvation and hypothermia, unaware that the deadly contagion that has devastated the world is heading their way...

My review:
I have to be honest and say at first I had trouble getting into this book, it's written so differently to anything else I've read, there's not a whole lot of description, it's mostly dialogue, here's a little example:
'Eight men in the Zodiac. The boat rode low in the water.Overloaded. The outboard laboured. They weaved between pack ice.'
Had this not been a review book I might have given up on it but I can say I've never been more glad that I never gave up because by the end the book was amazing! I was still thinking about it all through the next day and the writing just adds to it's uniqueness.
The book is simply brilliant and the characters are great, we see the biggest transformation in Jane as she loses her faith and a lot of weight, falls for a great man and becomes a leader, I really liked her.
I really enjoyed the more realistic potrayal of people because in real life people don't always run into burning buildings to rescue their friends, I thought it was good that our little survival crew were divided and had their own ideas of how to keep going and how to get home. The book really makes you think and asks the questions 'What would you be willing to do to survive? Would you screw over your friends, or would you lay down your life to save them?' 'Would you be able to keep it together in a post apocalyptic world where everyone you knew back home is probably dead, or would you go crazy or be driven to suicide from despair?' All of these issues are tackled throughout the book making for an exciting read with some shocking twists and turns I genuinly didn't see coming.
It's the scariest book I've read sonce Kings IT, the zombies themselves are really creepy and I'm not ashamed to admit I couldn't turn out the light and go to sleep for about half an hour after staying up until 1:30am to finish it. They do have a difference to other zombies and an explainer as to how they're walking and talking when they're dead which is interesting and totally believeable, I can't wait to find out more about them and what happened in future books as this one is mostly speculation as it mostly about the crew on their fight to survive during the arctic winter.
The book is definitely dark and scary, not one I'd recommend giving to your kids! It's clever and honest and a welcome debut in the book world.
My thoughts on the cover:
This cover sums it up completely, the lone man standing in the snow, the darker colours represent the tones of the book and the trapped people at the top screaming shows how scary it is, I love it! I also like the bit of red at the top that adds a splash of colour to the rest of the monchrome setting.
Favourite quotes:
'A persons life is their own,' said Jane. 'It's not your job to save them.'

She lay waiting to see if the boat would shake itself to pieces. She waited to see if the bolts and welds would hold. She waited to see if she would live or die.

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