Midway: A Harvesting Series Novella (Book 1.5 in The Harvesting Series) is a tie-in novella that compliments The Harvesting, Book I in The Harvesting Series.
Step right up, ladies and gentlemen, for the beginning of the end.
Carnie. Ride jockey. Roustabout. White trash. Tilt girl. Gypsy. Cricket has been called a lot of things, but she never thought survivor of the zombie apocalypse would be one of them. One day she’s barking on the midway, and the next day, the world is eating itself alive.
Cricket, along with Vella, a tarot reader, and Puck, Cricket’s mangy mutt, find themselves running for their lives, but where can you hide when mankind has fallen? Cricket will need help if she hopes to survive. Luckily for her, we were never really alone, and apparently, magical forces want to keep this tilt girl alive.
Cricket earns a living working carnival rides along with her dog Puck and best friend Vella, who reads tarot cards. A terrible flu pandemic hits the US and the carnival workers start getting sick, causing everyone to pack up early. As they are getting ready to leave, the sick workers are now zombies and trying to kill the survivors who have to flee. Cricket and Vella find refuge with a small group of survivors but is it really safe from zombies and humans?
Having really enjoyed the first book in the series, I couldn't wait to grab this one. Our two female MCs are good characters that you instantly care about, which is vital for me to enjoy a story. If I don't care about the characters, then I don't fully engage with the book. So it was good to get characters I liked though I worried constantly about the safety of Puck! The side characters were all good too, especially the couple who opened up their premises to take in strangers in need of sanctuary. You do get to like them in a short period of time for the most part.
So what is good about the book other than the characters? It is well written with plenty of zombie action along the way, as well as tension filled moments that help you get to know the characters better. I liked the scenes revolving around the sanctuary and then the exciting plot when they take refuge in an abandoned carnival where they meet the mysterious Tristan. The story flows nicely and keeps you interested in what is going to happen next. There are no dull bits to slow things down. Carnivals and zombies do make for a nice combination! I also liked the way that Vella tried to use her tarot cards to guide their decisions but again, it is not a dominant thing in the story, just a nice addition to add more interest to the story.
My only niggle with this book in the instaluv carry on with Cricket and the boy she meets at the sanctuary. However it didn't actually affect the story as the main focus of the plot is finding somewhere safe to escape from the zombies and stay out of the way of dangerous humans. So if like me instaluv is a deal-breaker for you, take the plunge and try the book anyway as the romance is light and in the background compared to the zombies.
This is a really good zombie series but anyone who read the first book knows that it is so much more than that and I'm looking forward to the second book where I hope that both groups join together for the next part of the story. This author knows exactly how to mix action and tension with character development and I find myself pretty excited by this series!