From the first line onward, Hollowland is a surefooted summer blockbuster that hits every mark. If I hadn’t known otherwise, I would have thought that Amanda Hocking was a professional screenwriter with 20 years of Hollywood experience, not a 26-year-old caregiver at an assisted living facility. It’s hard to believe that Hollowland and My Blood Approves were written by the same person. Hocking’s learning curve is something fierce.
The premise is very similar to 28 Days Later: An ultra-contagious pathogen transforms humans into rabid beasts, and the only hope is to quarantine the survivors until the zombies die off naturally. The story begins as a quarantine zone is being breached, and 19-year-old Remy goes off in search of her little brother. Along the way, she picks up some interesting companions on a roadtrip odyssey through the shattered United States.
This book is an action movie, and it is a perfect action movie. The pacing is fantastic, the setting is otherworldly, the characters pack authenticity into very little dialogue, and the fight scenes are awesome. Remy is one tough girl, and Hocking really gets the self-defense dictum that Everything is a weapon. If a zombie is after you, and all you have is a bunk bed, then a bunk bed will have to be your weapon. A can of olives might have to be your weapon. A chair…dude, it’s your lucky day if you have a chair to throw.
By the way, this book is free.