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This is Brad Proctor. Here is my review for A Thousand Miles to Nowhere by David Curfiss.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m not a huge fan of zombie fiction. The tropes have been played out a thousand times and the genre, to me anyway, has grown boring and stale. Now after having said all that I am going to have to eat those words because A Thousand Miles to Nowhere by David Curfiss has reanimated my perspective on what zombie fiction can be when done well, and this one was done oh so well.

There are zombies here, obviously. The world has gone to ruin and we find ourselves in a post-apocalyptic setting. Those who still roam around not seeking out human flesh for their next meal struggle to survive in this savage world. It all sounds familiar so far right? Well, strip all those things away and at its core, what makes this book shine, is its focus on the people. The relationships and bonds they have forged in the fires of hardship and survival. It is the human relationships, the comradery, the sacrifices that these people are willing to make for their family that sets this book crawling to the top of the corpse pile. This book isn’t about what caused the outbreak or trying to find a cure. We are thrown into the story fifteen years after the world fell apart. The focus here is smaller, it feels more intimate. The day to day, the hour by hour, the minute by minute survival of our characters as they hold onto all that is dear.

I’ll touch on the zombies for just a moment. They are important and do play a role, but they serve more as the backdrop and a plot device to propel the story forward at times rather than being the star of the show. I enjoyed Curfiss’ take on zombies, mixing the fast zombies (think 28 Days Later) known here as ragers with your more typical slow rambling zombie known as withered. Having different classes of zombies present in the story made for a more thrilling experience as you never knew what our characters might encounter just behind the next door.

Now let’s talk about the main attraction here, the characters. We follow Matt and a small group or survivors, no not group, a small family of survivors. Our characters are more than just a group of people thrown together by circumstance. They are a family. There is more to family than just blood. This is brotherhood and sisterhood. They have a trust and a love for one another. You as the reader get attached to the characters. You feel as if you are a part of this family. I don’t think it’s a spoiler to say that there is a body count here, being the type of book this is it is something you expect going in but that doesn’t lessen the blow when those deaths come.

Matt and his family are fleeing across the wastelands after their home, their community was recently destroyed from within by an infected stranger. As they traverse this dangerous landscape Matt is forced to make life and death decisions. Decisions that may save those he cares about most or put them directly in harm’s way. These decisions, this burden weighs heavily on Matt’s conscience. Being responsible for the lives of others is a tough cross to bear, especially when a wrong choice ends in death. Every tough decision he is forced to make is another crack in his psyche, and before long anyone under that kind of pressure is bound to shatter. We get to watch and see if Matt gives in or if he can pick up the pieces and put the jigsaw puzzle back together.

One last thing I wanted to mention is the human threat. The zombies are all well and good but the scariest monsters are those other humans. The depraved and the insane. Those who fell down the well of madness and have no hope of ever climbing out again. The scenes where humanity is pitted against itself were some of the most chilling moments in the book.

Full of love and loss. Fear and regret, A Thousand Miles to Nowhere by David Curfiss is overflowing with primal human emotions. An utterly bleak tale of survival and sheltering the last flickering flames of hope before they are snuffed out and the final shreds of humanity are plunged into darkness. I highly recommend checking this one out, even if you are not a huge zombie fan like myself. This one is more than just a zombie story. This book has a strong beating heart and the zombies just happen to be the backdrop. I don’t think you will be disappointed. 

Rating: 5 out of 5.

AUTHOR

David Curfiss is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. He served onboard the USS Kinkaid as a Gunner’s Mate before transferring to the Naval Special Warfare community as an armourer where he had the privilege to work with the elite Navy Seals and SWCC Operators. After eight years of honourable service, David transitioned to civilian life. David self-published his first story, Michael’s Home through Amazon as an eBook. His debut novel, A Thousand Miles to Nowhere, has made a big splash in the sci-fi genre after its release in November 2019. You can follow David on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Amazon.

REVIEWER

Book reviewer & Booktuber who focuses mostly on small press & indie horror, sci-fi, fantasy, & southern literature. you can follow Brad on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube.
Crafting the Apocolypse by David Curfiss

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