Dread Nation: Rise Up

  • Type: Books
  • By: Justina Ireland
  • Age Category: Teens
  • Genre: Sci Fi/Fantasy/Horror
  • Recommended by: Morgan D.
  • ISBN/UPC: 9780062570604
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Racially-conscious alternate history of the Civil War...with zombies

Zombies aren't dead yet. I mean, they are. That's the point. But they remain popular, in spite of the odds. Even if you're very very tired of the trend, Justina Ireland has made the undead rise again in a new and exciting way.
 
In Dread Nation, the American Civil War was upended by the rising of the dead from the battlefield, forcing the conflict to end in a very different way. The institution of slavery has ended, but Native Americans and formerly enslaved African Americans are drafted into training camps to cull the zombie hordes. Our heroine is an elite teenage fighter being prepared for service to a white debutante, who discovers her world is even more dangerous than it seems.
 
If this were written by a less talented writer (or a white writer, to be honest), it could easily fall apart into an exploitative, reductive mess. It isn't. Wright handles her world building beautifully, making a compelling, thrilling read that's more than an allegory.