It’s Linz, and I read Deathless Divide, the sequel to Dread Nation (zombies ended the Civil War, but not — shocker — 1800s views on race and gender).
Thanks to Balzer + Bray, ALA, and Ireland for the advanced copy and chance to read. Deathless Divide came out February 4, and you can buy it on Amazon or at your local independent bookstore.
What I drank: My mortgage partner offered to drive myself and some friends around for wine tastings, so obviously, I drank, like, 30% of the wine in Loudon County.
Synopsis, from Goodreads (excerpted): After the fall of Summerland, Jane McKeene hoped her life would get simpler: Get out of town, stay alive, and head west to California to find her mother.
But nothing is easy when you’re a girl trained in putting down the restless dead, and a devastating loss on the road to a protected village called Nicodermus has Jane questioning everything she thought she knew about surviving in 1880’s America. …
Katherine Deveraux never expected to be allied with Jane McKeene. But after the hell she has endured, she knows friends are hard to come by – and that Jane needs her, too, whether Jane wants to admit it or not.
Watching Jane’s back, however, is more than she bargained for, and when they both reach a breaking point, it’s up to Katherine to keep hope alive – even as she begins to fear that there is no happily-ever-after for girls like her
My drunk thoughts: HOTTDAMN good job justina ireland. its been twoish years since Dread Nation came out adn i had that debate of ‘do i reread book 1 or do i just dive in oh god am i setting myself up fo failrue?’ALSO SICK COVER ART
Book 2 starts where book one left off – Summerland isdone and Jane and katherine are on the run with their merrt band of surbvivors, on their way toa sanctuary that – ahcoker – isnt what it seems. as our MCs cros s paths with some new and old cahraceters, jane and katherines paths takea real dickenisan during a major event. jane’s story gets real dark, and it may be more than katherine can ahndle.
- So mcuh action and drama from the first pages. theres a major death in the first chapters HOW DARE, but imean now youre mentally prepared fro everyhting coming your way,d ear reader
- i forgot how gd amstertful ireland is at voice. katehrine and jane have SUCH distinct foices and you’re never strugggling to remember whose head you’re in
- also the action scnes are so frickin good and well written and CLEAR
- i really love when gender nd ethinicty are woven into astory and not shoehorned in for tbe sake of diversity, and irelands clearly done her historical research in weaving thoe elements into this book (espeically int he latter half). there are so many minortiy groups that make up the story and history of americana nd are so overlooked, andshe does a remakable job bringing those stories to light.
- the cahracter arcs! the agency!
- THE VILLIAN IS SO HATEABLE THAT I AM MAD AND HAPP Y
- I didnt hate the ending, but when it came … like theres room for another book–theres a few loose ends both plotwise and tonally that arent major but i would lke resolution on. but i don’t KNOW if antoher book si coming so, like, if it ends on this note it’s *fine* but if it doesnt … i would be more than fine
not everoyne does althistory or reimaginings well, and zombies re going th way of vampires (thanks twilgith), but Deathless divide is a goddamn gem in a field of garbage.
Thisis definitely a different book from book1, (i mean hi jane and katherine DEVELOPED and CHANGED bc PEOPLE), but it’s an excellent companion and i am overjoyd i ws able to read it
What I gave it: 4.5/5 (if duology) or 5/5 (if trilogy)
What I’d pair it with: Even though they never go to Kentucky, a stiff smoky bourbon would be perf.