Title: This is Not a Test
Author: Courtney Summers
Published: June 19th, 2012 by St. Martin's Griffin
Book rating: 5 beautiful stars!!
Cover rating: 5 blood splattered stars, heck yes.
It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually wantto live. But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside. When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?
Courtney Summers shows that authors can take a zombie book and make it beautiful. Yup, I said beautiful. All the blood, gore, fear, and brains that come along with zombies? She managed to make all of that beautiful and unforgettable. This is Not a Test was my first zombie book but it was so much more. It inspired me to try my hardest in life because we only get one. Courtney is seriously talented and had me in happy tears and breathless by the end of this book. She managed to not only nail the zombie parts of this book but go even further than that and really show the emotions that might come along with a zombie apocalypse or tragic life events in general.
The story follows a group of teens. The main character and POV being Sloane, a girl who has a bad home life and was abandoned by her sister to be left at home with her crappy dad. Going into the zombie apocalypse she is suicidal and just wants her life to end. She's tired of all of her problems, she's tired of her home life, she's tired of being alone in life, she's just tired of life in general. I know she kind of sounds depressing, probably because she is depressed (which is understandable) but I LOVED HER!! She was such a well developed character and soo easy to fall in love with! I quickly developed feelings for her and the rest of the characters, hoping they'd all be okay. The book was fast paced and easy to follow, it started out right away with action and I really loved that! I can't say there was a dull moment anywhere in this book.
I had a feeling this book would be brilliant but I didn't know that it was going to blow my mind like it did. It affected me personally a lot more than I thought it would but in a good way. This book is dark and very deep in emotions that not all people like to talk/read/write about but I do. I tend to like the daring, emotional books a lot more than the light hearted silly reads because it takes a lot of nerve to write about touchy topics like why you shouldn't give up on life. Don't let me lead you to believe the zombie aspect of this story isn't important or just as awesome as the inspiring part, it ties into the why should we continue living even when life is complete shit at times. The zombie scenes had me on the edge of my seat reading as fast as I could just to see if everyone survived. I was rooting for Sloane along with all the other characters hoping they'd be awesome zombie killers and make it through. I wasn't expecting this book to be what it was. This is Not a Test is a breath of fresh air in the YA genre, it's like nothing you expect. You open up to find emotions exploding out at you and by the end you'll find yourself saying WHAT JUST HAPPENED in amazement. I can't say enough good things about this book, it's a must read. You need to read this book! Literally, right now.
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