Dead reckoning by Mercedes Lackey and Rosemary Edghill
Bloomsbury, 2012. ISBN 9781599906843.
(Age 12+) Recommended for fans of Westerns, steampunk and zombies. Yes - this is a Wild West ride, with our two feisty heroines, Jett a girl disguised as a boy, and Honoria who drives an early steam driven wagon, taking on a zombie invasion. Joined by the handsome White Fox, a freelance scout for the Army, the trio track down the mystery of why the dead are rising from the grave and who is controlling this undead army.
I'm fond of all three escapist genres, Westerns, steampunk and Zombie, so I was keen to sample this book. I was lured in by the cover which features a black clad Jett striding forth with gun at her side, flanked by a very gorgeous White Fox and a blond Honoria and followed by zombies. Once into the book I found myself really enjoying the antics and problem solving of two very unusual young women as they go about trying to stop the zombie invasion. In between I learnt bits of history, the advent of the railways and the role of scouts.
This is great escapist fiction. As one would expect from well-known authors like Lackey and Edghill, it is well written with a fast pace and great characters. It is easier and less scary than the Rot and ruin zombie series by Jonathan Maberry or The Forest of hands and teeth by Carrie Ryan and I think young teens would enjoy both the plot and the action. Although the books end in a very satisfying manner, there is scope for more stories about this intrepid trio.