Red Hill by Jamie McGuire

Red Hill by Jamie McGuire
Atria Books | Hardcover, 368 pages
Adult Fiction
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

On the day of the zombie apocalypse, three people will fight tooth and nail to give the people they love a chance at survival.
Scarlet will search hell and back for her two daughters who are with her ex-husband when the bedlam occurs. They will get separated; so, amidst the bloody and gory chaos of the day, she will drive, walk, and run to the end of the earth to get them back.
Miranda will drive over the walking dead just to get her sister and their boyfriends to the safety of their dad’s farm. Along the way, they will meet a soldier barely discharged from a tour in Afghanistan. This soldier will have no choice but to shoot the love of his life in the head to prevent her from reanimating.
Nathan will do whatever it takes to protect his daughter, the only person who means more to him than his own life. He will also find a note from his wife telling him that their marriage is over. 
Battling the hoards of undead while trying to stay alive, this group of people will face horrors unlike anything they’ve faced before to get to Red Hill  – a farm out of the way and hidden to most; a place where they could at least give themselves a chance to survive a changed world overrun by flesh-eating zombies. 
Rife with action, inexorable terror and stories of humanity’s endurance, Red Hill is McGuire’s announcement to the world that she can write outside of what her followers normally like. I saw courage in her writing; she killed off major and noteworthy secondary characters without flinching. And though this zombie apocalypse novel is far from original, it had just enough addictive quality that lent for a one-sitting read. 
Zombies have become mainstream in the last few years; and as such authors and film makers alike have begun recycling everything we’ve come to know about them.  Much like the vampires and werewolves lore, authors will have to find ways to make their stories stand out. I think McGuire was able to accomplish that in her latest book.  Even though I’ve seen glimpses of The Walking Dead (particularly, second season’s farm which incidentally, was owned by a doctor much like Red Hill was owned by one), it didn’t change the fact that I spent the entire night reading this book.
I was really curious as to how Ms. McGuire would pull off her venture to the Adult Fiction. I’ve read Beautiful Disaster years ago when it was an Indie release. Since then, I haven’t really read anything of hers. I think I gave a couple of her work a chance but didn’t really enjoy them as much. Ever since then, I’ve generally just steered clear.
Jamie McGuire’s latest endeavor was quite impressive. The plot is not fueled by romance or sex. It’s a nitty-gritty novel of survival of the smartest and those who desired the most to live. Forget the notion that this is just another book in the assembly line of zombie novels. This book just might surprise you, McGuire just might surprise you. 

  • Maybe I should elaborate a bit 🙂 I actually thought the writing was very captivating and I couldn't stop reading. Even though I hated where it was going and how they were behaving, I still finished it in pretty much one sitting. I was just really disappointed in the ending and message this story sent.

  • This is the second praising review that I have read for this book this week, I like how McGuire decided to step out of her comfort zone and try something new. I actually appreciate when authors do this especially when they end up delivering a memorable read. I definitely think that this will be the book I turn to when I want to try something out by McGuire! Great review Joy! 🙂

  • Oh! I had completely written this one off because I'd never had any interest in Jamie McGuire's other books, and now your review makes me think I should try this out. I don't think I'd even read a synopsis, but I'd like to see how she handles zombies. Great, great review!

  • Jamie McGuire's books have never worked for me either, so I'm actually happy to hear that she truly shows her talent with Red Hill. Judging by the cover, I never would have thought it was a zombie book. It sounds exciting and I like that she wasn't afraid to kill of important characters without flinching. I'll be adding this to my wish list.
    Thanks for the lovely review!

  • Definitely is, Melliane. I hope you'll be able to read it someday. 😉

  • Ah yes, Beautiful Disaster is an acquired taste. While I did enjoy that one, I didn't enjoy the fall out that came after. 😉 Oh well, I'm an equal opportunity reader.

  • Lol! No problem, Carina. 🙂

  • Sure is! I hope you'll give this book a go, Brandi. 🙂

  • I saw a lot of reviews about Beautiful Disaster, some wonderful and some a little less but I now that one day I'll have to try it. I didn't realize I confess that it was an adult novel. I don't know why but I was sure it was another YA. But I'm glad you liked it, it's intriguing.

  • Well, I'm certainly glad to hear that you enjoyed this one, Joy! I've seen mixed reviews – some loved it, some thought it was sh*t, me? Well, I've been steering clear of McGuire's books ever since I've read Beautiful Disaster and absolutely HATED it with burning passion. There's nothing that I hate more than characters behaving irrationally and abusive relationships glorified in fiction, so yeah, I have basically put a big red X on her books. I do like zombie stories tho, especially if the story itself is on the darker/more violent side, so I might consider giving this one a go after all. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  • Ahh, I do love reading about zombies 😀 This sounds like an awesome book. And I'm glad you enjoyed it so much 😀 I wouldn't be able to read it, though, since it's adult. I need to read about teenagers these days, lol (A) but hopefully some day. Thank you for sharing about it 😀

  • The survivalist mode sounds good