Recollections: Reviews by a Book Lover

Zombies Oh, My! Dearly, Departed Review


Edited with PicMonkey

Dearly, Departed

By Lia Habel


So we have seen humans have vampire romances, werewolf romances, even ghost romances…so why not a zombie romance?  Well the wait for a zombie/human romance is now over.  If Stephanie Meyer showed us vampires can sparkle and drink animal blood, then Habel showed us some of the living dead can retain their humanity.

What it’s about: 

“The year is 2195. The place is New Victoria—a high-tech nation modeled on the manners, mores, and fashions of an antique era. A teenager in high society, Nora Dearly is far more interested in military history and her country’s political unrest than in tea parties and debutante balls. But after her beloved parents die, Nora is left at the mercy of her domineering aunt. For Nora, no fate could be more horrible—until she’s nearly kidnapped by an army of walking corpses.

Catapulted from her world of drawing-room civility, she’s suddenly gunning down ravenous zombies alongside mysterious black-clad commandos and confronting “The Laz,” a fatal virus that raises the dead—and hell along with them.  Then Nora meets Bram Griswold, a young soldier who is brave, handsome, noble . . . and dead. But as is the case with the rest of his special undead unit, luck and modern science have enabled Bram to hold on to his mind, his manners, and his body parts. And when his bond of trust with Nora turns to tenderness, there’s no turning back.”   (Summary from

What I thought: 

I recently got hooked on zombie novels when I read Ashes (review here).  So when I saw Dearly, Departed was in at the library I couldn’t pass it up.  Steam punk, zombies, and a love story? Yes, please!

At first I was a little weary about this book.   I thought the premise sounded interesting, but when I first started reading I thought it was going to be a slow read.  However, it soon grabbed me and kept me hooked.  However it never did get as fast paced as some books, but it did keep me turning the pages long after bedtime.

One aspect I loved à  each chapter is from a different person’s point of view: sometimes Bram, sometimes Nora, sometimes her best friend Pam, and various other characters.  This technique really let the reader see the story from various angles so you knew what was going on in all the different places, which I appreciated.

I do wonder what Bram looks like.  The longer a zombie is dead before reanimation the less human they are, but that doesn’t mean the zombies’ bodies aren’t all decomposing.  Scientists have worked on ways to keep their bodies from decaying too fast, but based on some of the descriptions I wonder.   I suppose it takes the personality before looks aspect to a new level.  You’d also have to be careful your loved one doesn’t try to bite you!  Despite being more human, the zombies do have to fight off the urges the Laz causes in them.

According to there are going to be other books (Gone with the Respiration series). Book 2: Dearly, Beloved is expected to be published in September.  I personally look forward to it.

If you’re looking for a zombie book with a twist then I recommend picking up Habel’s Dearly, Departed!


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