Wednesday, June 24, 2015

*Book Review* The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter (YA Paranormal)

Series: White Rabbit Chronicles # 3
Publisher: Harlequin Teen'
Release Date: September 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover, 464 pages
Source: Library
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal

I have a plan.

We'll either destroy them for good, or they'll destroy us.

Either way, only one of us is walking away.

In the stunning conclusion to the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, Alice "Ali" Bell thinks the worst is behind her. She's ready to take the next step with boyfriend Cole Holland, the leader of the zombie slayers…until Anima Industries, the agency controlling the zombies, launches a sneak attack, killing four of her friends. It's then she realizes that humans can be more dangerous than monsters…and the worst has only begun.

As the surviving slayers prepare for war, Ali discovers she, too, can control the zombies…and she isn't the girl she thought she was. She's connected to the woman responsible for killing—and turning—Cole's mother. How can their relationship endure? As secrets come to light, and more slayers are taken or killed, Ali will fight harder than ever to bring down Anima—even sacrificing her own life for those she loves.

Roses are Red. Violets are Blue. Be Very Afraid, We're Coming For You.

16-year old Alice "Ali" Bell has had a trying year. She's lost her entire family in a car crash. She's come face to face with zombies that were once humans, and defeated them with abilities no one else seems to have. She's joined with a group of slayers who she now calls friends. They are led by Ali's current heart throb, the dark and broody Cole Holland. Ali has really stepped up as one of the leaders of the Slayers with her unique abilities. She's angry, protective, and wants to put an end to Anima once and for-all. 

Cole, Ali, and her slayer friends find themselves being individually targeted from almost the very beginning of this story. Anima can no longer wait around and watch all their hard work slowly go down the drain thanks to the slayers. They want the slayers out of the way, and they don't care who they hurt, as long as Cole and the others are gone. To top things off, because of her uniqueness, Ali has become the primary target for the Anima Industries who wants to use the zombies to try and cheat death.

You must be prepared for anything to happen to anyone, and it does. Showalter doesn't waste a whole lot of time with happy romantic interludes, even though Ali and Cole seem to be in a whole lot better place than usual. Every single slayer finds themselves fighting for their lives, along with their families and friends. Anima is definitely in a pissy mood, and not one single slayer is going to escape unscathed. There will be plenty of action, betrayal, devastating losses of beloved characters, new characters who become allies, and a shocking revelation about Ali that will explain a whole lot about who she really is.

Cole's group of slayers includes Ali, Frosty, Bronx, Jaclyn, Veronica, Gavin, Lucas, Trina, Cruz, Collins, and MacKenzie. They make up the core of the group, but there is yet another group out there as well who we eventually meet as things go sideways quickly for our group. These slayers are a bit different from other novels. Each of the slayers are able to not only see the spirit zombies, but can also leave their own bodies in order to kill them.  

The Queen of the Zombie Hearts, White Rabbit Chronicles # 3, was previously advertised to be the wrap-up story for the series. Apparently, the author and Harlequin Teen have decided to release a FOURTH book in this series called A Mad Zombie Party. You can look for the book coming September 2015. Apparently the fourth novel will feature two secondary characters in Frosty and Camilla Marks who is introduced in this book.

“Ali.” His voice, so husky and deep, was temptation and silk, stroking over me. “Did I ever tell you all the reasons I love you?”
“No.” I licked my lips and shook my head, gathering the courage to face him. His eyes were heavy-lidded, smoldering.
He liked the tattoo.
“Tell me now,” I commanded softly.
“I’ll tell you the top ten. One,” he said and kissed my forehead. “You are brutally honest. It’s such a rare and precious trait.”
Major points for my man: he’d led with personality rather than appearance.
“Two.” He kissed my eye. “You have the perfect sense of humor…perfect for me. It’s a little warped, and a lot twisted, and you can make me laugh when no one else can.”
I almost melted. Almost. I had to hear the rest. “Go on or I’ll hurt you.” Had I sounded as breathless to him as I had to myself?
He chuckled. “Three.” He kissed my other eye, gentle, so gentle. “You’re smart. I want to see your brain naked.”
“Four. You are freaking hot.”
“Obviously.” And okay, yeah, he got points for that, too.
Maybe because I so very rarely felt hot. Or maybe because I so desperately wanted another kiss. A harder one. On my lips. With tongue and teeth. And roaming hands. Or maybe because I wanted him to want all of me.
“Five.” He kissed my cheek, and I moaned. More. “You are unbelievably kind.” He kissed my other cheek. “Six. You love with your whole heart, nothing held back.”
“Come on. Kiss me for real.” Did he want me to beg? Because I would…after I made him beg a little, too.
“Seven.” He pressed his lips against one side of my jaw, skipping my lips, dang him. “You are such a good fighter, I could stand back and watch you do all the hard work, and I wouldn’t feel like a wuss. I’d feel like a genius.”
“I’ll believe that when I see it.”
“Eight.” He kissed his way to the other side of my jaw. “The way you sometimes look at me… It’s as if I’m the sweetest dessert in the bakery and you are desperate for a bite.”
Yes, yes. A big, delicious bite. “At one time,” I said, the huskiness of my tone surprising me. I wrapped my arms around his neck. “That look of mine scared you.” With good reason. I’d been loaded with zombie toxin and had literally wanted to eat him. Well, not me but my zombie twin. Z.A.
“Nine,” he went on and nibbled on my ear. “You’re like the world’s most perfect drug. One hundred percent pure, guaranteed to addict after the first taste. I can’t imagine my life without you in it—don’t want to.”
My skin tingled, and my blood flashed white-hot. “Cole,” I said on another moan. I tangled my hands in his hair, angled his head, trying to take over. “Please. Stop talking, and start acting.”
“Ten,” he said and finally—blessedly—pressed his lips against mine. Only it was soft, far too soft. “You would die for me, the same way I would die for you.”

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