Dead Tropics by Sue Edge is the first zombie story I’ve read that is strictly from a mother’s POV, and has children present throughout the story as main characters, rather than just passing plot devices. Lori is a mom in Australia who drops her kids off at various places before she goes to work at the local hospital as an ER nurse. On her way to work, the radio reports an accident involving one of the mines. The original victims are taken to the hospital where Lori works, and it’s not long before Lori finds herself in the middle of zombie outbreak. She doesn’t have much trouble getting to her children, but getting them to safety is an absolute nightmare.
I thought this was a pretty good attempt, but it wasn’t quite the story I was hoping for. Lori came off as too perfect…some of the scenarios were just too convenient. I had trouble believing that a character who struggled with hiking up a steep hill could run for hours on end with no sleep and no food. I didn’t think that an ER nurse could pull off a limb amputation, outside of a hospital setting with only paramedic supplies. Her sister just happens to live in a giant “tree house.” How completely fortunate for Lori – we should all be so lucky in an apocalypse. I also felt like the author was afraid to kill off her characters. But, hey – at least she was a better mother than that OTHER Lori…ahem.
I will say that I read this book in one sitting, and despite my criticisms, I look forward to reading more from this author…I’d just like to see her take more risks with her characters in the future. I think many people will enjoy the action; I appreciated that author included the range of ages you would expect in an average community, and I thought one of the best scenes was when Lori was struggling to warn a school principal about an approaching zombie horde.
If nothing else, I think it was worth reading a story about a mom fighting zombies in Australia, just for something different.