I went into Beyond Exile with slightly misleading information--its written journal style (its a guy, so I don't think we can call it a 'diary') and chock full of military terms, euphemisms and well...military stuff. Having grown up military this was both a godsend (because I understood what he was talking about) and a curse (because I understood too well what he wasn't saying). Also its fair to point out I read the first book (Day by Day Armageddon) after reading this book.
As a zombie book this is almost pitch perfect; the author's obvious military training (he's on active duty) gives a more realistic spin on how to deal with the threat. This doesn't mean its a clean cut fight, but there is a sense of order to some of the chaos. As this is about the narrator's first hand experiences anything that happens outside of his purvue, or anything he doesn't directly relate to us via his entries, may as well have not happened. In a way I was glad that the narrator wasn't in every single skirmish or battle, that would have seemed contrived. Sometimes though Bourne keeps the interesting action as a third hand accounting, which is irritating.
By its very nature a journal is an anti-info dump. Journals are personal things, how many people explain every little detail about something that is a) obvious to them and b) almost second nature? The occasional explanation of what a weapon or abbreviation means--that's understandable. It's nice to have reminders about important stuff.a full point-by-point breakdown of a big plot point in the third act just before the ending? Warning bells!
Not only that but abrupt what the heck are you talking about warning bells. At first I thought it was because I hadn't read the first book, but then I bought the first book. And it still made little sense to me. There is going to be a third one (I can't see how there won't be given that ending), so there is hope for this all to be explained. As is, read, enjoy and pick up some useful tips for surviving a zombie invasion.
Armies of undead have risen up across the U.S. and around the globe;there is no safe haven from the diseased corpses hungering for human flesh. But in the heat of a Texas wasteland, a small band of survivors attempt to counter the millions closing in around them.
Survivor,Day by day, the handwritten journal entries of one man caught in a worldwide cataclysm capturethe desperation—and the will to survive—as he joins forces with a handful of refugees to battlesoulless enemies both human and inhuman from inside an abandoned strategic missile facility.
But in the world of the undead, is mere survival enough?