Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Humanity's Hope by Pembroke Sinclair

Title: Humanity's Hope
Author: Pembroke Sinclair
Publisher: Stitched Smile Publications

[I love the tagline, because in what YA novel does the fate of the world not rest in the hands of a teenager?]

What Goodreads has to say:

Caleb, a 17-year-old boy, survived the zombie uprising, but he didn’t come out of the ordeal unscathed. He’s been scarred—both mentally and physically. The rest of humanity is trying to rebuild, to make the world normal again. Caleb is trying to return to a normal life also, but after all he’s seen, after the loss of his family and friends, the transition is difficult. The darkness that led him down a path of self-doubt and self-harm keeps trying to creep back into his mind.

Things only become worse when he discovers he’s immune to whatever makes a zombie a zombie. Fighting zombies was predictable. He knew what to expect. Fighting humans is volatile. They are malicious and treacherous. They won’t stop to get what they want, and Caleb has to figure out exactly what that is.

*Trigger warning: attempted suicide

What I have to say:

There are A LOT of zombie novels out there (I even wrote one myself once). If you're a fan of the undead, you've probably picked up at least a few zombie books that turned out to be very disappointing.

Humanity's Hope is not one of those books.

This young adult zombie thriller is intense in exactly the right ways, keeps you on the edge of your seat all the way through, and is just what you're looking for in a zombie book.

Caleb, the protagonist, is an interesting, multi-layered character. He's competent (read: kick-butt) but also deeply unstable. The delving into Caleb's psychology makes the story that much more absorbing and gripping. I was just as eager to find out what happened in Caleb's past as I was to discover who's targeting him in the present day. 

The supporting characters are equally interesting. Each of them seemed to have their own backstory, and in some cases we didn't get the whole thing: just hints of it. I love that. It made them more compelling somehow, maybe because the reader is left to imagine the rest, and one of the first rules of storytelling is that events are usually more awesome in our imagination than they are when the author spells them out for us in great detail.

Sinclair is a good storyteller in more ways than one. The intensity in this book is real. At various points in the story, Caleb finds himself running from the police, eluding the government, hiding out in a zombie ghetto, and having an all out battle with - let's be honest - just about everyone, The plot moves fast and is not for the faint-hearted, as you're going to be holding your breath along with Caleb while he hides in plain sight and comes increasingly close to being discovered (or killed).

Can I talk about the ending now? Without giving anything away, the last few pages involve a pretty crazy twist - like flip your brain upside down and slam dunk it in a swimming pool of exploding lemons kind of crazy twist.

This image accurately sums up what the end of the book was like:

You're getting close to the end of the book - like so close there's approximately two pages left - and you're like "This can't possibly get resolved... noooooo!" And then it's just over.

At first I thought, "Well that was stupid."

Then I thought about it, and then I thought about it some more, and now I'm thinking, "That was awesome."

The ending felt abrupt at first, but then I realized it was the perfect note to end on. I don't know if there's going to be a sequel or not, but either way, it's kind of cool because the book has been this roller coaster and then it's just over all of a sudden. It worked.

Also, kudos to the author for getting zombies and pizza in the same book. I appreciate it.


Anyone out there have a favorite zombie book? Or a favorite pizza? Or a favorite zombie pizza? Comments?

Until tomorrow.


  1. Thank you for reading and reviewing my book! There is more on the way... ;)

  2. Oh good! I was hoping there was going to be a sequel. (: