Purchase from Amazon: Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane)
Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane) by Eva Gordon
Dr. Dora Adler’s life has been in disarray since the beginning of the zombie apocalypse, but when she gets bitten by one of the undead, her whole world is turned upside down. Held captive in a secret underground lab, the tall, muscular hunk in the next cell is her only hope for salvation. Unfortunately, he claims to be a werewolf. Yeah, and she’s supposedly a witch. Dirk Gunderson is an alpha Arbor pack werewolf. Captured and collared, he’s sold to the zombie lab in hopes his blood serum can create a vaccine. He needs to escape, but now without the hot little brunette witch. In the midst of enemy werewolves and the hordes of undead, Dirk and Dora’s sexual tension ignites a blaze hotter than the desert highway. Along their journey, they battle the inevitable: a werewolf must never take a witch as a mate.
Take a zombie apocalypse and weave in werewolves, shape-shifters, witches, unpredictable magic, and you have a fantastical and engaging story that surpasses the a typical paranormal novel!
The story begins in the midst of a zombie outbreak, also called the “Z-phage pandemic,” and four months later, there still isn’t a vaccine to neutralize the infection. Not only are law enforcement, scientists, and medical personnel working to control the zombie infestation, but werewolves are behind the scenes forming alliances with each other to ensure their survival.
The tone of this novel is unusual compared to some other zombie apocalyptic novels where seriousness and tension surround the characters who live daily in constant fear for their lives. Although Gordon certainly acknowledges the gravity of the situation, she has created characters who are trying their best to adapt to their new reality. The characters’ use of deadpan humor and sarcasm provides an element of relief in this chaotic world.
Dr. Dora Adler and Dirk Gunderson are the main characters narrating the events that unfold. Having dual first-person point-of-views help the reader connect with and care about what both characters are forced to endure. This POV also allows the reader to become immersed in this tumultuous world where Dora and Dirk form an unlikely alliance for survival.
Dora is a physician who screens new patients showing possible signs of the infection. While assessing a patient in the emergency room, Dora is attacked and bitten by a newly-turned zombie.
She knows the inevitable is about to happen. She has become infected from the bite and will soon turn into a zombie. Like other patients who are infected, she will be quarantined in a secure area located in the hospital basement, where she will never be seen again. All she will do is wait for a bullet to the head.
Surprisingly, Dora appears to be immune to the infection. Because she shows no signs of turning, she is quickly whisked away to a secretive, government operated underground facility called “Lab Zero” where scientists work tirelessly to learn more about effective methods for killing existing zombies and search for a cure.
Initially, Dora feels safe and secure in this safe haven, where she can positively contribute in developing a vaccine. However, she is kept in a bulletproof glass cell where she is constantly being poked with needles and continually tested to make sure she is still immune to the virus. Over time, realizes she has become a prisoner held against her will. Now, she just wants to escape the confines of this restrictive environment.
Hope for obtaining her freedom ignites when she meets the strong, handsome Dirk Gunderson with his flaming red hair and the “most intense eyes she’d ever seen. Light blue with tawny flecks of gold around his pupils. Feral eyes. Her skin prickled as if he was predator and she the prey.” Indeed, this look foreshadows the truth about Dirk. He is a sexy alpha werewolf who dresses in leather and rides a Harley when outside of his pack’s compound.
(Okay no red hair here, but you get the gist of sexy!)
Dirk is second in line to become leader of his pack, and to prepare for his future, his uncle wants him to find a shape-shifter mate. However, Dirk is “a confirmed player. Born to be wild and never bound to any female, at least for more than a night or two.”
While searching for the werewolf hunter who slaughtered most of his family years ago, Dirk finds himself captured by the very hunter he seeks. Instead of killing him, the hunter sells him to Lab Zero for testing, since wolves are immune to infection caused by zombie bites.
Although Dirk is surly and brooding in his captivity, he can’t help but notice the lovely, brunette, Dora, situated in the cell next to his. The two pass the time engaging in flirtatious banter where they begin to learn more about each other.
During their conversations, three relevant bits of information emerge. First, Dora learns to accept that werewolves do in fact exist, contrary to everything she has been taught.
Second, Dirk figures out Dora is a powerful Aradia witch, whose powers are slowly emerging. Dora is shocked at this discovery:“This can’t be happening. I’m sitting here, listening to a werewolf tell me I’m a witch.”Dora considers the possibility that she is losing her sanity.
Finally, because she is a witch, Dora is able to reach out with her mind and communicate telepathically with Dirk. Their combined abilities prove vital in their successful escape from Lab Zero.
When the opportunity presents itself for escape, Dora and Dirk must battle armed security guards
Fear of being attacked by zombies enables Dora to realize she does have magical abilities that she can call upon when put in dangerous situations. Although she has had no formal training in using her magic, rhyming seems to work for her some of the time. For example, when she gets trapped in a bathroom with zombies, she calls out “Abracadabra with so many zombies in sight, do let me escape by flight.” Her intention on escape along with the rhyme allows her to levitate to the ceiling until Dirk comes to her rescue. He tells her, “Good thing you have your witchmacallit going on.” The unpredictability of her magic definitely keeps the story interesting and unpredictable.
Once they manage to escape, Dora is determined to reunite with her brother and niece, while Dirk wants nothing more than to bring her back to the pack’s compound where she can stay safe and then look for her family. He knows his pack will be overjoyed to have Dora because of she is both a physician and a witch. However, it’s not just her abilities that keep Dirk from abandoning her; it’s their growing attraction to one another:
“Since meeting her, he thought of no one else. She made him feel an entire range of emotions from fierce protectiveness to utter joy. This couldn’t be right. He was supposed to take a werewolf or another shifter as a mate, not a human and definitely not a witch.”
The sexual tension between the two reaches its peak when they finally confront each other about their mutual attraction. I really appreciate how both are honest with each other, instead of playing games and denying their true feelings, for fear of rejection. They admit the truth, even though they know it’s wrong to take their relationship to a level beyond friendship.
Dirk: “We talk now Dora, how do you feel about me?”
Dora: “Lupine or not, you’re the hottest guy I’ve ever been with. My wolf in shining red fur armor. I know you need to find the right mate and I’m human and of the witchy variety which makes your life and mine complicated.”
Dirk: “Everybody has a complicated life. Without you, life is meaningless.”
After this admission, their passion for each other can no longer be denied. When they become intimate, Dirk impulsively sets into motion irrevocable changes that will change their lives forever.
Can Dirk and Dora find a way to be together in the midst of the overwhelming obstacles they face?
Besides killing zombies,
Dirk and Dora must deal with a kidnapping, enemy wolf attacks,
a jealous she-wolf who wants to be Dirk’s mate,
and the inevitable process of adapting to a changing world where nothing may ever be the same again.
Throughout the book, the author subtly addresses thought-provoking themes for consideration. Do our own self-interests create the potential for devastating consequences that impact the lives of others? How can we adapt in a world that we no longer recognize? Can we put aside our differences and unite for the greater good of humanity?
Apocalyptic Moon (After the Bane) is an action-packed adventure with plenty of drama and suspense for all of the paranormal adrenaline-junkies out there. Peppered with witty, dry humor to alleviate some of the most contentious moments, the novel will keep you spell-bound and clamoring for more. The good news, a sequel is in the works!
About the Author
REM “It’s The End of the World as We Know It” (Lyrics by Ted Agee)
Steppenwolf “Born to Be Wild” (Lyrics)
Eagles “Witchy Woman”
Guns N’ Roses “Paradise City”
Lenny Kravitz “American Woman”
Whitesnake “Is this Love”
Steve Miller Band “Abracadabra” (Lyrics)
Queen “Another One Bites the Dust”
The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks
My interest in zombie apocalyptic fiction is a result of my addiction to The Walking Dead (TV show on AMC)
Feel free to leave comments or contact me if your a Walking Dead fan as well!
Nifty Zombie Gadget:
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