You’ve never read a story like this: The Mesmerized by @RhiannonFrater – @PermutedPress
This book hit me right between the eyes and kept smacking me around till I became it’s bitch. Because of my experience reading a few of her other books, I knew it was going to be well written, dark, and full of incredibly painted characters, but I did not expect to be sitting here at the end of it all with my mouth hanging open and my mind officially blown away. Rhiannon Frater presents The Mesmerized, a genre bundt cake of dark post-apocalyptic horror with a rich frosting of science fiction.
As with her other books, this one features a strong female protagonist. Minji is a wife and mother who will do anything it takes to protect her family. Where each person seems to lose their civility bit by bit, Minji maintains her cool while still being realistic about her fear. She is smart, both street and book.
You’ve never read a story like this before. It may remind you of mysterious pandemic style books such as Under the Dome, or even Robert R. McCammon’s Swan Song, but after you read Rhiannon Fraser’s books, you will recognize her talent as an author solidly standing on her own. Her style is unique and her ability to weave us all into her world is top notch. Her zombie reads had me stumbling and struggling to stay on top of the panic and tension. This book, well… it had me..ummm… sigh… yes I believe I’ll go there…
Groan if you want, but I am not going to apologize for it. I have been extremely busy as of late. Been kind of dealing with my own craptastic thing, and needed escape. The Mesmerized ended up being the perfect choice. With the nights long here in Alaska, the mood was already set. Dark and alone was how I read most of the book and I suggest for you to find a corner in your house to do the same.
Our protagonist is Minji, she is a character of diversity being half Korean. I mention this because it’s a very important aspect of the story. During all of this, as with many books which explore the psychological deconstruction of society such as this one does, race becomes important, as well as class, and judging those by their appearance alone. Even after you see her in action and being the recipient of her compassion, there are those (cough… I wanted to bitch slap Author, cough) who continue to judge her. Even when she is the key to saving not only themselves, but possibly the world. Her dreads & ink soon become the easier thing to accept after the otherness she has takes over.
As mentioned earlier, this is not my first read of Rhiannon’s, but I have not reviewed her other series on the blog yet. I read her zombie series and fell in love with her style of writing. Along with writing clean and all encompassing prose, she also includes strong female characters, real ones. She knows how to write real fear, compassion, realistic progression as well as believable situations into the story, despite being about something … otherwise. 😉
I could not escape the intensity that grew with each turn of the page. The characters are rich, the horror is intangible for the characters as well as myself. Don’t laugh, again, but there was one point I checked to see if I left the stove on or something near the burner because I could smell a hint of smoke. Yet, there is a message here, just as there is in her other reads, it is subtle. You kind of sit there thinking… until your mouth forms a silent “ohhhh” and you smile at her sneakiness.
Those of you who have been waiting to read this, letting it archive onto your Kindle, set aside some time for a date with it because you will want to have a nice chunk of time for the immersion. Horror fans, post-apocalyptic fans, readers who like smart writing and original story telling, you will love this book. Take the time to grab it and fall into line… you will become one of us and you won’t be sorry.
by Rhiannon Frater
Published by Permuted Press
on September 2, 2014
Genres: Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic, Horror, Post Apocalyptic, Science Fiction
Amazon • Kobo • • • Goodreads •
It is silence, not screams of terror, which proclaims the end of the world…
Minji Nordim is vacationing in Las Vegas with her small family when she witnesses the beginning of a terrifying apocalypse. When humanity is transformed into mindless drones by a terrifying supernatural event only Minji appears to be immune.
Thousands die instantly, but the other affected people are drawn to the Nevada desert. Nothing stands in the way of the mesmerized. Not fire, not heights, not rubble. As the bodies pile in the streets and the relentless wave of the mesmerized plods into the deadly desert, Minji is trapped in a burning city attempting to rescue her family.
When Minji encounters other unaffected survivors, they band together to survive in a city that is crumbling all around them. With no hope of rescue and the event slowly spreading across the world, Minji and the others must decide who to save among the mesmerized and where to go before the city is in ashes.
Even more unsettling is that Minji senses that the force behind the event is observing them…
Can one woman save her family and the world?
I received this book from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The book has been put on sale by the publisher. Now is the time to grab it while you can!
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“Okay, the tigers are at The Mirage. So that’s our first stop,” Jake decided. “Then we can head to the Hard Rock. I want a t-shirt from there.”
Minji looped the end of the leash a few times around her wrist before taking Ava’s hand. “Perfect. Let’s get this show on the road.”
“It’s really crowded right now, so everyone stay close. I’m looking at you, Ava.”
Ava gave her father a plaintive look while tugging on her leash. “I can’t run away!”
“Good! I’d like my little girl to not go splat in the road.”
Minji winced at the memory of her daughter dodging into the road to greet Jake when he’d returned from an evening run. Luckily their neighbor had seen her in time and jerked her car onto someone else’s lawn, avoiding Ava completely. The mere idea of losing any of her family was enough to make Minji sick to her stomach.
Shoving negative thoughts away, Minji kept in her husband’s wake as he threaded through the crowd toward the escalators that descended from either side of the waterfall. The atrium loomed ahead filled with bright sunlight that reflected off the creamy walls and pillars.
The first sign that something was wrong came when her brain was assailed with what felt like millions of cold needles burrowing into the gray matter. With a whimper, Minji pressed her fingertips to her temples in a futile attempt to stave off the pain. Then the sensation intensified.
Screams echoed through the vast resort in a horrifying chorus. All around her, people flailed about, or gripped their heads in their hands. Jake grunted and stumbled as Bailey let out a shrill cry. Woozy, Minji reached for her screaming baby just as another stab of unbearable agony tore through her brain, blinding her. Rapidly blinking her eyes, she desperately attempted to restore her sight.
“Mommy! Mommy!” Ava wailed. “Mommy, my head hurts! I can’t see!”
Howls of agony reverberated through the mall corridors. Minji tugged on the child leash, dragging Ava into her arms. Unable to see, she clutched her daughter close. Paralyzing fear churned in her gut. The pain diminished, but the blindness remained.
“I’m right here.” A familiar, warm hand floundered against her back then found her shoulder. “I’m right here, hon. I got you.”
Again there was a flash of icy discomfort, then the world returned to sharp focus. To Minji’s horror, blood streamed down the faces of some of the shoppers close to her. Bubbles of the rich liquid formed in their eyes, noses, and ran from their lips. Swaying slightly, the bleeders stared blankly past the faces of their frightened companions. Minji swiftly checked Ava, Bailey and Jake. None of them were bleeding. Lifting Ava onto her hip, Minji pressed against Jake’s side.
“Jake, are you okay?”
“My head is killing me,” he answered. “Check the baby.”
“She’s not bleeding, just crying. What the hell is happening?”
“I don’t know. Keep Ava close!” Jake wrapped his arms around his wife, pulling her toward the far wall.
On top of the giveaway here, those who are interested in winning a mobi copy of the book, leave a comment and tell me your favorite (in your opinion) post-apocalyptic, pandemic etc read out there or leave a suggestion for an author for me. I am always on the look out for a good read in this genre.
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