Friday, 5 June 2015

The Ghoul Archipelago by Stephen Kozeniewski

Yo Guys!
Joe here with a new Review!

Today I’m going to be reviewing Stephen Kozeniewski’s book ‘The Ghoul Archipelago’.
Here’s a little bit of the blurb to get you intrigued:
After ravenous corpses topple society and consume most of the world’s population, freighter captain Henk Martigan is shocked to receive a distress call. Eighty survivors beg him to whisk them away to the relative safety of the South Pacific. Martigan wants to help, but to rescue anyone he must first pass through the nightmare backwater of the Curien island chain. 
The author sent me a copy of this e-book for an honest review.

I wish I didn’t read this book as quickly as I did in the space I read it in because it was so immersive and very - very enjoyable!

The book itself was a heavy read with multiple locations, settings, characters and plot-points which all filed into one major plot that was quite substantial and was held together very comfortably by the sub-plots.

The only reason I say ‘quite substantial’ is because after having pirates, zombies, Religious psycho’s, virtual sex and more pushed into your brain everything starts to slightly over-lap and I found myself sometimes doubting characters or re-reading certain chapters due to forgetting what had happened to a character or what happened in a setting.
Though the over-all notion, of the main plot, was something I grasped quite quickly: Zombies have risen, Earth’s gone to shit and everyone who is alive is fending for themselves in unprecedented ways or at-least in ways they think is right. This was all we really needed to understand; the rest was just an allocation for the horror and the gore to kick in.

Which it did, it did very much.

After reading ‘BrainEater Jones’ I generally didn’t think S.K’s horror writing could get any more gruesome. (How wrong I was)
There were points in this book were I would generally flinch, cringe or actually vocalize my thoughts of a few monstrous things certain characters did or things that happened to certain characters.

I really enjoyed that though as I am a huge Horror fan and to actually read something and be creeped the hell out by it is a huge plus in my opinion.
Horror is supposed to make you feel creeped out or generally scared, which I feel a-lot of Horror movies/shows/books/etc don’t actually capture the idea of anymore, it’s mostly more ‘Shock-value’ and less Goosebump creating moments which make you terrified to walk a few steps into a dark room without running to turn on the light.
(Thinking back to Psycho and its very distinctive and recognisable Shower Scene/Music… Goosebumps galore! Or even the Jaws sound track... that still gives me nightmares)

The story in my opinion was very good and very immersive. The writing was awesome (something I didn’t doubt for a second it would be any less though) and the creativity for it was off the scale!
The only downside was that there was so much going on, it felt quite hard to connect some points and actually get a grasp of where some people were in this world.

Onto the characters!
There was a-lot. There were so many characters that I thought I would have trouble when it came to writing them all out so I won’t go into detail about each character, as the review would be many-many-many words, I don’t think my fingers are quite up to that challenge!
Instead I’m going to sum up all of them in a few paragraphs!

They were all so unique and created so specifically that no two characters we’re the same, there were no identical similarities between any two characters, and that’s what I really enjoyed when I begun reading this book.
Each character had their own goal, their own reason for surviving; some wanted a more peaceful approach whereas others became too greedy to understand the importance of their fellow humans.

We see all types of people floating around in this book; from sex-driven Billionaires, Religious psychopaths thinking the zombies are God’s gift and even more that the story becomes so intricately woven around types of characters it’s impossible to see them become something else. But that’s exactly what happens (to some characters) we see them change their demeanour, their attitude becomes either more lax or more resilient to certain occurrences and that’s what adds another level of suspense to this book.

Overall the characters in this book were really well developed, created and plotted out when it comes to personalities, stereotypes, etc.
I liked practically 98% of the characters (not Sonntag, but that’s for many other reasons)
My two favourite characters in this book were Butch and Jim. Why two you ask? I couldn’t decide between them so both seems a fairer option. :)

So in conclusion this book has an awesome story which is a handful of comfortably woven sub-plots which all mash together to make a heavy but yet strong Major-Plot.  At some points it does get confusing but it all re-circles and makes sense in the end. The characters are awesome and designed very well and the Horror is at a crazy level which is VERY good! :D
All in All I really enjoyed this book!

Big thank you to Stephen for sending me an E-copy of this book! (Sorry it took a little while to read!)

Thank you all for reading this review!
See ya on the flip side!

Joe :)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for taking a look, Joe! Butch and Jim are very good choices. :)