The Deathlands, Book 2

Red Holocaust (Deathlands, #2)Red Holocaust by James Axler
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

For most of the way through the book I was giving this one two stars, and only the ending bumped it up to three as it was fun action-adventure fare with huge explosions and the main antagonist, who I must admit was very well written, got it in the neck.

Directly on the heels of the previous book however, this was quite disappointing. The relationship between the two main characters continues to develop, as expected, however doesn’t feel organic or real, and veers at times towards a saccharine that is inappropriate to the rest of the character’s writing. It jarred enough for me to mention it, though part of that might simply be my gut eye-roll reaction to the fact that they begin calling each other “lover” half way through the book and refuse to stop.

The hard, grittiness of the environment continues well and continues to build a beautifully dark picture of a world torn to shreds, this time moving the action north to frozen Alaska, still deep in the grip of a nuclear winter. It is as action-packed, well-developed, dark, gritty and fun, though it is much shorter than I expected and feels only half the length of the previous novel.

In short then, it is still a good book worth reading, and its faults are likely rather minor, it is just that they glare all the more brightly in comparison to the first book in this series.

View all my reviews


About frater

Author, Software Architect, Husband and Father.
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