Dead of Night by C.M. Saunders

Title: Dead of Night

By: C.M. Saunders

Publisher: Damnation Books

Genre: horror

Length: novella

Rating: 4 midnight screeches

Reviewer: Ash

Nick and Maggie are on their first trip together. It’s a new relationship, and Nick really wants it to work out right. They’re on their way to a nice little camping spot to a perfect little spot, where he hopes just maybe they can take their relationship one step further. But late at night, something moves in the bushes, and a battalion of rogue Civil War soldiers steps out into the moonlight. Only problem is, the war’s been over for 160 years…

I have this horrible OCD quirk. It’s doesn’t matter how boring a story is, I have to finish it. Fortunately, that didn’t kick in with Saunder’s Dead of Night. This is a fun, short read that carries on with the latest trend of zombie soldiers. While Saunders doesn’t really bring any new to the table, it’s a cool chapter in the great big scheme of zombie stories. The cover art by my buddy George Silliman adds to the enjoyment as well.

I had a few little nit-picky things, as usual. Saunders’ tries to write a story set in the US, but several times, he used European terms and references. It wasn’t a huge thing, but it was enough to jar me out of the story for a second. I liked his commentary on Michael Jackson, but thought the idea of “as independent the fairer sex liked to appear, deep down they all still wanted and needed a man willing to step up to the plate and take control occasionally. Every girl liked to be protected, it felt good” was really antiquated and pretty annoying. In the end, Maggie ended up stepping up to the plate, so it would have made the story a bit stronger emotionally if maybe Saunders had picked that up and used it as a theme in the story—girl wants to be protected and spoiled, but when she’s got to survive and protect herself and her man rather than vice-versa, her character goes through a development arc. 

Other than that, this is a great story. It’s quick read with great cover art, and I do have to say, MUCH better than Saunders’ first novella from Damnation Books (sorry, CM…this one really is a so much better).

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