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Reviewed by Lit Amri for Readers' Favorite
Chad Halverson, the CIA's National Clandestine Service Black ops agent, escapes zombie-infested Santa Monica and seeks refuge in Alcatraz prison, along with designer Victoria Brady, the idealistic Dr. Parnell, the university coed Brittany Pine, and the pessimistic reporter Blake Reno. Unfortunately, Jefferson Bascomb, the so called Chosen One, a delusional advocate of law and order may be more dangerous to the group than the walking dead. Sanctuary in Steel is the third installment of the Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse series by Bryan Cassiday.
Despite being the third book in the series, Sanctuary in Steel is a standalone story. The premise of the story is a familiar one in the zombie genre. Even so, as a horror fan, this is not an issue to me as long as the premise can be delivered in a great and entertaining way in terms of plot, characters, and dialogue. Author Bryan Cassiday did deliver. The page-turning momentum from Cassiday’s tightly structured plotting is never in doubt; the swift pace and well-written dialogue will have readers shooting through its 346 pages in hardly any time at all. The characters are fleshed out nicely and easily relatable. However, the beginning chapters of the book felt like a rough draft, although it got better as I kept reading – a more polished editing will improve some weak parts of the prose.
All in all, Sanctuary in Steel is up there with the best of the zombie stories in terms of plotting and pacing, propelled by great characters and unique twists.