“Rise” – an emphatic disclaimer and a review

I’m going to be upfront and admit that I know Gareth. We are friends on Facebook, and we used to live in the same city and belong to the same history re-enactor circles.

This probably explains why it has taken me so many years (literally years) to get around to reading his first novel. Because there’s nothing so difficult in reading a friend’s book and thinking “Oh, dear FSM, what can they have been thinking?”

I mean, what do you say to them, after?

Still: I hang with a pretty articulate and literate crowd and they all seemed to like it. So I felt as if maybe I owed him a shot.

I was stupid to have held out for so long.

Gareth can write.

I don’t mean “put together grammatically reasonable sentences with no egregious spelling errors.” I don’t mean “can methodically plod from A to B of a formulaic series of tropes without unduly annoying the crap out of me.”

I mean, he can really write. His words are interesting, his voice is refreshingly unique, his premise is fascinating, and the way he uses the format of journal entries to slowly escalate the horrors his characters confront, and his gentle handling of the frailty of human relationships in a crisis is – well, it’s just amazing.

I’m now committed to the series. (I just need to know how this all works out!) and this is pretty shocking to me, because I don’t actually LIKE zombie novels.

You should totally buy this book. The world needs more Gareth Woods.




One thought on ““Rise” – an emphatic disclaimer and a review

  1. Great post, I really liked the end scenario where other writers are trying to fix a problem. I think that most feedback about writing should describe a problem (confusion, boredom, etc.) and not try to prescribe a solution.


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