Vampire Apocalypse: A World Torn Asunder
Published 2006 215 pages
The drying up of the world’s oil resources and a brief but deadly nuclear war in the Middle East have left the world with a shortage of fossil fuel. A Chinese / Russian alliance has invaded Europe, and America is crippled by a lack of fuel. Technology has stagnated and communities have grown isolated and insular as travel and communication ceased.
Against this apocalyptic End of Days background the vampires rise from the shadows where they have hidden for centuries and use their superior powers to enslave humanity. The vampires quickly take over the world, killing anyone who stands against them, while drugging the human masses and keeping them like cattle in walled cities to breed and use for food.
The vampires are all powerful at night but they must sleep during the day. To keep the humans under control during the daytime the vampires created an army of Thralls, humans that have been bitten by a vampire but who have not been turned. With superior reflexes and strength, and completely under the mind control of their vampire masters, the Thralls are almost as formidable an enemy as the vampires themselves.
A small group of humans have managed to evade being drugged and plot to overthrow the vampire rule. John Harris is one of the members of this group. He is just an ordinary young man, an engineering student in his previous life before the vampires, but he will stop at nothing to be free.
In a daring raid, John and his group manage to liberate some more humans from the control of the vampires. Leaving their hiding places in the city behind they take the rescued people and head out to an abandoned military compound where they can hide but with the food and medical supplies running out they soon realise that they cannot hide forever. John and his fellow rebels return to the city and in one last daring raid plan to kill Nero (the master vampire of the city) but Nero is old and cunning - making this the most dangerous raid yet for the rebels.
Vampire Apocalypse: A World Torn Asunder is Derek Gunn’s debut vampire novel. As the title of the book implies he has chosen to set his novel in an apocalyptic America where society and order has broken down but with vampires playing the part of the evil tyrant government.
This book will not be for all vampire genre fiction fans. There is no vampire angst here. The vampires are not velvet suited fops, sitting around feeling sad because nobody realises how terrible it is to be a vampire and live for centuries while all that they love dies. There is no vampire romance here. These vampires are not irresistible seducers promising great sex for eternity.
No, these vampires are the oppressors of humanity, destroying free will while they control people like cattle. They are not attractive. They smell so revolting that being close to a vampire makes people gag (gagging is probably the last thing that they do before being torn to pieces by the vampire.) They use their vampire powers to terrify and subdue their food chain and if they have any finer feelings, as readers of the book, we are not aware of it.
Vampire Apocalypse is a fast paced, action packed adventure novel, peopled with realistic and believable characters. The characters are not fully developed in the story but this is probably because the novel is fairly short and the author has concentrated on keeping the high octane action going throughout the story. Which was probably a good choice on his part because the book races from one high point to another and effectively sucks the reader into the story and pulls them along for the ride.
I hugely enjoyed reading this book. I think that if you like reading about ordinary people fighting against overwhelming odds for their freedom you will enjoy reading this book too, regardless or not of whether you like vampire genre fiction. I would have given this book 5 stars but I felt that it was let down by poor proof reading and the typos that appear throughout the book become irritating after a while. Don’t let my punctuation prejudices put you off reading this book however - it is definitely worth checking out.
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Visit Derek Gunn’s website to read an excerpt from Vampire Apocalypse and find out more information on his work.