This is the blog of Samie Sands, author of Lockdown. There will be many great books and projects reviewed here. For more, check out thelockdown.co.uk.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Seize Another Day (Dangerous Days - Zombie Apocalypse Book 4) by Baileigh Higgins #SummerZombie

Seize Another Day (Dangerous Days - Zombie Apocalypse Book 4) by [Higgins, Baileigh]

Fate hangs in the balance...

Max fights a losing battle to keep the camp intact and his family safe. Faced with the specter of starvation and disease, he's forced to make a decision. One that could be their salvation, or cost them everything they have including their survival.
Enraged by the loss of Mpho, Michael sets off on a quest for revenge. One that will take him far from his friends, but even farther from himself. Can he regain his senses before it's too late, or will the darkness in his soul finally reign victorious?

All it takes is one mistake...

As night steals across the African veldt, danger stalks those who struggle to survive within its chill embrace.  With the coming of a new dawn, humanity's last hope rests in the hands of ordinary men and women called to do extraordinary things. 

Friday, 15 June 2018

The Splits: Personal Histories of Scott-Lapidot Disease from the Splits Archive by MV Clark #SummerZombie

The Splits: Personal Histories of Scott-Lapidot Disease from the Splits Archive by [Clark, MV]
Can one disturbed child send the whole world mad?

The Splits is the story of Michael, a very unusual boy growing up amidst a global zombie epidemic.

It’s also the story of the people around him. Claire, his worried mother, Anna, his aloof aunt, and Patrick, her stressed husband.

Then there’s Lupe, a disgraced scientist whose disquieting research may nonetheless hold the answer to defeating the infection.

Gradually these characters come to see how the world has been fractured irrevocably by one baby boy born in 1969 

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Moms Against Zombies by Alathia Paris Morgan #SummerZombie

Moms Against Zombies by [Morgan, Alathia Paris]
Emma Jackson is an army wife and new mom with all the uncertainties that come with it… until that fear is pushed in a different direction. Instead of worrying about diapers and feeding schedules, her only objective is to keep her child alive after being chased by a man who looks entirely too dead.

Trish Walsh thought her day was bad when she had to drag all four of her children on an errand, but she rethinks the meaning after what she can only hope was someone dressed up like a zombie beats on her car door. Yet, the bloody mess left behind is anything but reassuring.

Cooper Walsh’s job is top secret. When criminals break in to steal his company’s secrets, he overhears the conspiracy devised to create chaos as a cover-up. Knowing he must do everything in his power to right the wrong, he sets out on a mission.

Surviving long enough to reunite with their families is all that matters. That… and stopping the zombie apocalypse before it destroys them.

Monday, 11 June 2018

EVOLVED (The Flash Series Book 3) by Jessica Gomez #SummerZombie

EVOLVED (The Flash Series Book 3) by [Gomez, Jessica]

Ian’s heart shreds when the Infected drag Lillie into the darkness. Her screams echo off the hills, pinging her location, until they’re abruptly silenced. Streaks of blood are the only remnants of her trail, but the snow quickly covers all traces of their escape. Ian will stop at nothing to find her, almost losing his sanity to the brutal winter of the Blue Mountains. 

Lillie finds herself in an unpredictable situation when she regains consciousness. She’s held captive by the Infected, forced to live inside their confines. She discovers an unlikely alliance in her prison, causing tension within the pack.

Constant instability within their pecking order leaves Lillie vulnerable, triggering premonitions of freedom that provide her the strength to continue. Her visions begin to lead her down a confusing path, presenting an unthinkable outcome.

With the Infected evolving and regenerating forgotten traits, will Lillie have a chance to escape? Can Ian put the pieces of the puzzle together before it’s too late to save her? Or will the Infected outsmart them all at every turn?


Saturday, 9 June 2018

Not Dead Yet #SummerZombie

Not Yet Dead - High Resolution

 

Toronto


Dear Diary,
Why did we move to Canada, it’s so cold? I don’t know how I allowed Cheryl and Michael to talk me into this. It wasn’t always the warmest in Independence, but this is off the charts freezing. ‘Carol Hicks, you will love Canada’. Yeah, sure, it’s wonderful...!
Of course, it doesn’t help that I’m stuck in this hole in the ground, without any of the people I care about, heating, or any decent facilities to make me like it any better. Maybe if I was actually in the city, rather than below it, my opinion would be different.
Okay, so maybe it isn’t that bad down here, maybe I’m exaggerating on how dreadful it is, but I still hate it. It’s a real, genuinely designed for this sort of purpose, bunker, with very basic cooking equipment, a bathroom, beds for all of us...but the people I love most aren’t here, and that’s my main issue. 
I wish I never got dragged down here, if everything hadn’t been so panicked and messy during the outbreak, I never would’ve allowed Bobby to take me with him. He wanted to help me, he was being nice, and in sheer shock I went with it, and I’ve been stuck ever since. I never even got to see a lot of Toronto, I was only here for a day or so, when the virus wrecked everything.
I can’t connect with the seven other people down here, not really, because they aren’t who I want to be with. I don’t know where they are. Are they in one of these prisons like me? Did they end up suffering the virus in the first wave of infection? Are they out there somewhere looking for me? I keep trying to be let free, but Bobby and the others are so damn afraid of letting me experience the big wide world out there, whether it’s my choice or not. ‘We have supplies for the next three years,’ they keep telling me, ‘until then we stay put’.
Thee years. How the hell can I last for three whole years? Apparently it’s almost been one, but still...I’m going to go crazy. Maybe that’s why I suddenly feel inclined to document my experience, to prevent myself from going insane.
Carol.

Dear Diary,
Now I’m mad. I’m absolutely off the charts furious. I can’t go out, these people won’t let me out for ‘my own good’ however much I insist that’s what I want, but it’s okay to let someone in. What sort of logic is that? If they’re so scared of what’s going on ‘out there’, then why let it in?
Ross, is his name, and apparently him knocking on the door and begging to be let in before he’s killed, is enough for us to break all the stupid rules. He’s young, maybe nineteen-years-old, and very scruffy, dirty even. I mean, I guess that’s to be expected since he’s been out there living rough in the apocalypse, but still I don’t like him. He’s just...sketchy, and he won’t divulge anything about his life out there.
I want him out.
No, I don’t want him out, I don’t give a monkeys about him. I want to get out myself, to find my family. I need to find a way to get hold of the keys before I really do go mental. I can actually feel murder-y tendencies building up inside of me. Any minute now I might flip out and do some real damage.
Again, an exaggeration, but still...
Maybe I just need to calm down. Nothing ever got achieved with an angry mind. I’ll just take a read of one of my books to see if that helps to calm me down in any way.
Carol

Dear Diary,
I just had a little ‘chat’ with Bobby, which did nothing to make me feel any better. He seems to think he’s some sort of messiah, sent to save us all. He really thinks he’s doing a good thing, letting Ross in here. I can see his point of view, if he wants to believe the best in everyone, but even before the apocalypse hit not everyone was perfect. What’s to say the horror of this hasn’t brought out the worst in this stranger? What’s to say rescue is really what he’s after?
I’ve also tried to discover how everyone else feels, discretely, but that didn’t help me either. Emma will do anything Bobby wants, she absolutely idolizes him, and Robyn is just happy to be alive. Steve doesn’t seem to like me for some reason, and as for Helen, Frankie, and Jodie...well, I don’t really have time for them, they’re far too childish for my liking. They’re young, in mind as well as body.
Urgh, this place is hell. I need to get the keys from Bobby in any way possible. Maybe I’ll sneak them away from him at night somehow.
Carol

Dear Diary,
My heart is pounding as I write this, I almost screwed everything up just then. I tried to creep around in the dead of night, to get hold of the keys, but I ended up seeing something else entirely. Something that chilled me to the bone. Ross should not be here, I can’t believe that he is. He was just standing in the kitchen, swaying like the ghost thing from that horror movie...what’s it’s name? I don’t know, but it’s seriously freaky. I have to tell the others what I’ve seen then maybe they’ll see that Ross needs to go, and me with him.
Or just me. I’m still happy for that to be an option.
I don’t really know how I’ll survive out there to be honest, it all happened so quickly and I didn’t get to see too much of it, but I do know that I’m smart, I’ll go out well-equipped, and I’ll do whatever it takes to see my family again. I’m not keen on all the running and hiding that I’ll have to do to prevent myself from being infected, but it has to be better than this.
Anything is better than this.
Carol.

Dear Diary,
I won’t fail again. The next time I go for them keys, I’ll get them and I’ll make sure I get out. I’m the bad guy, me, just for telling them what I saw of Ross.
‘Maybe he’s traumatized.’
‘Are you just saying this because you want to leave?’
‘We’re all here for our own good.’
I should decide what my own good is, not Bobby.
Carol.

Dear Diary,
I have my bag packed; this book that’s become my lifeline, my way to vent, to keep sane, is the last thing to go in. I have no intention of doing anything to harm anyone else, as soon as I’m out I’ll drop the keys outside the door, and I’ll be on my way. Much as these guys wind me up, I don’t want them dead. Bobby did save me, after all. I just want to freedom to live out the end of the world how I want to. I want to be with my people, not strangers.
Tonight, I don’t care if Ross is performing circus tricks on his head, I’m getting those keys and I’m going. They can deal with whatever mess he is, he ain’t gonna be my problem.
Carol

Dear Diary,
Holy mother of...
Oh, my God.
This is bad, this is real bad.
I guess in one way, I was right. We never should’ve had Ross here. Bobby never should’ve opened that door and let him in. In all the things I assumed about him, being infected didn’t even come to mind, but God damn he was caught up with the virus real bad. And if I hadn’t gotten up on my one-woman mission to hot foot out of here, all of us would be in the same state by now.
I screamed, I actually yelled out in terror as he came after Bobby with a hungry look in his eyes. Even then, I didn’t recognise it as infection, I simply assumed that his shadiness was simply coming to life. It wasn’t until Helen flicked the lights on to see what was wrong with me that it all became glaringly clear. The greying skin, the all-white eyes, the growling. Eurgh, it was disgusting. If I’m totally honest, it might just have put me off going out there at all. If they’re all like that, if the world is covered with them like fleas, then what chance do any of us have of surviving?
Maybe we’ll be the only ones left.
I do hope there are others locked away like us, ready to restart the human race when all of this is over. I’m scared now, truly terrified that could be the end.
I can still see the dark blood all up the walls. We tried for hours to scrub it off, to get rid of any evidence, all of us in a horribly shocked silence. Bobby couldn’t help, he was sitting in the corner, rocking back-and-forth after having killed what I assume is his first ever person. He didn’t want to, none of us did, but there was no reasoning with Ross. There was no human left inside of him. One minute he was him...albeit a bit weird, but the next he was a monster. There’s absolutely no other way to describe him.
Anyway, he’s dead now. No reason to worry.
So, why can’t I sleep? Why can’t I get the image of his bashed in head from my mind? Why can I still see the lumps of flesh hanging from his face every time my eyelids shut?
This is one hell of a nightmare.
Carol

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Not Dead Yet #SummerZombie

Not Yet Dead - High Resolution
Venice

Life used to be so different, I used to be a whole other person, my existence was something else entirely. I don’t quite know what happened to me, I’m not really sure how I became this.
Actually, that’s not totally true, I do know, I know all too well what happened, the end of the damn world. Before this virus unleashed hell on everyone, before people starting changing into something totally inhuman, something cannibalistic...zombies, for want of a better term, that’s when I was me.
I lived in a nice house with my wonderful husband, John, I was enjoying my retirement, life was warm, comfortable, happy. Okay, maybe every now and again I would wish for some excitement to be injected into my existence, but I never expected this. I did assume that our trip to Italy would help spice things up, but I didn’t know quite how much.
When John suggested it, talking about some possible business opportunity that’d come his way, all I could see in my mind was the wonder of the Venetian canals, gondolas, art museums, I thought it’d be wonderful, I bragged to all my friends about it.
Now I wish we’d never come.
Even if this virus is a worldwide issue, rather than an Italian one, I’d much rather be at home where I know people, than here. If we’d been among friends and family, then we’d have been able to deal with it in a much calmer manner. We never would’ve ended up here.
Then maybe John would still be with me.
When the chaos exploded, we were at the Piazza San Marco, laughing and giggling like a couple of schoolkids as the pigeons landed on our arms. I was high on life, happier than I’d ever been before, maybe that should’ve been my first sign. Maybe I should’ve guessed then that life as I knew it was about to end.
All I can remember after that is blood. Screaming, yelling, fighting, and lots of blood. I don’t even really know what happened, especially not to John. One minute he was with me, holding onto me for dear life, the next he was gone. If he hadn’t vanished, then maybe we could’ve escaped together, but I couldn’t leave without him. I needed to know that he was safe.
I waited, I hid and I waited. During that whole time, I had no clue what was really happening, but I didn’t care. John was out there looking for me somewhere, I just knew it. All I had to do was wait for him.
“Hey, are you okay?” When a warm and comforting voice finally came to my rescue, I was totally gutted to realize that it wasn’t him.
“Oh, thank you, I’m fine, just waiting for my husband.” My initial instinct was to act standoffish, which maybe I should’ve stuck to. “He’ll be here in a minute.”
“Well actually I’m rounding up the rest of the survivors of the attack, we’ve got a little group of people not too far from here. Maybe your husband is there, waiting for you?”
As I glanced at him, drinking in his piercing hazel eyes and dark features, I realized that he was probably right. John was sensible, if there was a smart option available to him he would take it.
If only I’d been smarter.
“Okay, take me to him.”
I followed the man, who I would later learn was called Dave Suscheck—or, at least that’s what he told me—far much further than I should’ve. The warning signs were there for a long time, but I chose to ignore them out of sheer desperation. I was so keen to see my husband that I would’ve gone anywhere.
That’s how I ended up here.
As I glance my eyes around the cold, dirty, small cell that I’ve been stuck in for God knows how long my heart sinks once more. Remembering John has helped me to survive this far, but it never lasts because he’s out there somewhere—hopefully still alive—and I’m in here with no hope of escaping.
As it turns out, this situation has brought the absolute worst in Dave, he’s become an utterly insane person. Maybe he always was, and this just helped him to unleash that, I guess that’s just something that I’ll never know. He’s the sort of person that I can’t fight off either, even if I wanted to escape. He’s tall and muscular, incredibly strong.
And now he has a bunch of sicko helpers on his side, making it even more challenging.
“Time for The Games!” I hear someone yell out in a singsong tone of voice. “You verses the morti che camminano. Who will it be today?”
An icy cold terror splashes over my face and waves through my body, but I don’t allow myself to react visibly. I’ve learned the hard way that nothing works; if I cower into a corner, I get chosen, if I sit proudly with my head held high, I get chosen, if I do nothing, I get chosen, so the latter is preferable. At least that gives me the false sense that I have some dignity left. As the first of many women brought here, I need to at least have that.
The Games are the worst thing about this place because they can literally be anything. I’ve suffered one-on-one fights with the infected, with pitiful weapons to help get me through, degrading, embarrassing act designed purely for our humiliation and their amusement, and fights to the death. Okay, so I was only involved in one of those and I somehow managed to get away without doing any fighting, but I still had to witness it.
The girl who killed the other person has died since...suicide, or so I heard from the whispers of one of the guards. I don’t blame her, I know she had to do it, I know that it could’ve so easily been me, but I guess she just couldn’t live with herself afterwards. I’ve considered opting out myself a few times in all honesty, only I’m just too much of a wimp. I just can’t seem to actually go through with it. I guess that’s also because a small part of me still holds on to the silly, naïve dream that I’ll be able to find my way out of here and back to John again.  Maybe he isn’t alive anymore, maybe even if he is neither of us will be the same and it’ll be a bittersweet reunion, but I have to dream about something.  It’s the only way that I stand a chance in hell of surviving.
“You,” I hear, and my heart thunders in my chest. I clasp my hands together and fiddle anxiously with my fingers. Maybe today will be different, maybe they’ll give me a break, maybe I’ll get a bit of luck for once. “You and you.”
I don’t even have to spin my head to know that I’ve been included, his voice is too near to me to be pointing at anyone else. It’s me again, I’m being dragged up, my life thrown into danger, and all to keep these vile animals smiling. How the hell is that fair?
Why, oh why did I have to follow that horrible man into this nightmare? Why didn’t I just stay where I was the whole time? I might not have survived but it’d be better than this.
I take in a deep, ragged breath and force myself up onto my unsteady feet. I want to flip out, to finally lose it, to take some damn action, but I won’t. I’m too afraid to do anything other than I’m told. I’m the perfect little prisoner.
“Well, come on, hurry up.” The man grabs my arm and yanks me violently from my cell, throwing me against two bodies who look just as frail and scared as me. “Dave won’t wait around forever.”
Dave, the man who stole me away and brought me here, the man who created this sick, twisted place, the one who haunts every single one of my nightmares. He’s the one I want to kill the most. I want to take a knife and drive it right into his heart. Then I want to laugh at him as he dies, just so he knows what it feels like. I didn’t used to be such a sick, twisted person, but the constant humiliation has made me feel that way.
We follow behind, as we walk I keep shooting anxious glances at the other girls, but clearly, they aren’t feeling as rebellious as me because their eyes are fixed on their shoes, right where they’re supposed to be. People have been killed for much less than glancing at someone else. I probably should be behaving too, but for some reason, I don’t want to anymore. I want to rebel...I just wish I didn’t have to do it alone.
This is a nightmare! I want to scream and yell as the idiots, to make them see some serious sense. We should all be working together, trying to rid the world of infection, not wasting time doing this, this is madness!
“Well, in you go.” The man shoves us all forwards, and we find ourselves in the room smack bang in the middle of the prison, that they’ve specifically designed for this exact, sick and twisted purpose. “Let The Games begin.”
I can’t take this anymore, I just can’t do it. The fear, the sickness, the horror of it all. It’s absolute hell. My eyes flick from side-to-side, my heart pumps hot, violent blood around my body, I shake so hard I fear my bones might snap. I just cannot keep on going through with this, I need it to end before it absolutely kills me.
The first zombie staggers through the door, snarling, snapping, clawing the air. It wants us, it wants to bite us badly, and if we don’t find something to take it down soon, at least one of us will be claimed. I wish I could yell out, to get some help from the others, but we can’t talk to each other. The last thing they want is for us to make friends, that could lead to a rebellion or an escape. This whole thing is very carefully crafted so that can never happen. If I was caught even trying it, I dread to think what’d happen to me.
A fate a whole lot worse than death.
I stagger backwards instantly, my survival instinct kicking in. I’m not sure that feature of me is useful really, it won’t let sacrifice myself even when I think it’s the best idea. It keeps me going, even though I would be better off dead.
I need to find something to defend myself quickly, especially as I can hear the door clicking open and another dead one falling through it. These guys must have a cage full of them somewhere, like pets, ready to be unleashed upon us whenever they’re bored.
As I spot the second one it makes me feel sick to my stomach, it’s in a terrible state. Black blood dripping noisily to the ground, chunks of flesh falling as it moves, so my bodily damage that I’m not even sure if it’s male or female...what the hell happened to this zombie?
I hate to remember that these creatures used to be human, that they once had lives, loves, joys, anguish, families themselves, because it makes it that much harder to kill them when the time comes. It makes me want to weep for what they’ve lost, and also out of sheer jealousy because they don’t have to endure this hell. Their brains are switched off whereas mine is still way too active.
My back hits the cage wall and in an instant, someone shoves me back in. I spin around, ready to send a pointless glare, but before I get the chance to something connects with my skin and everything jolts with shock inside of me.
“Help me,” I hear a hiss. “Save me.” It’s a girl, another one of the ones who was shoved in here with me, and she’d giving me an intense panic-stricken look. I’m so shocked to have someone speaking to me that it takes me a while to answer. “I’m bleeding.”
I glance down at her arm to see blood pumping rapidly from her, cascading down her body. Instantly I’m transported back to a time when none of this was real, when I was in my surgery fixing the bleeding limbs of animals. I can almost hear the new wave music playing lightly in the background to calm me down.
“Tie it up,” I whisper quietly back, almost forgetting that I might get caught. “Tie it above the wound to stop the bleeding.”
“With what?” There’s a sheer terror in her eyes, one that’s making her act way out of character.
“Material...your tee shirt, or maybe you can find something in here.” I flick my eyes from side-to-side, rapidly spotting danger coming at me from every angle. All I want to do is help, but if I do I risk myself. Again, I want to do the right thing, I’d love to be able to sacrifice myself to help someone else, but the icy cold fear was telling me to run. “Maybe you should hide for a while until all of this is over.”
“But what if they kill me...”
I run, needing to find something to look after myself with. Her too, since she can’t fight. I hope she takes my advice because from the looks of that gash if she doesn’t, the blood loss will slow her down and she’ll be killed for sure.
Oh God, there are infected everywhere now, coming at me from every single angle. Everywhere I look my eyes are bombarded with the image of death, which causes an unbridled panic to overwhelm and consume me. I can’t do this, not this time, this is the time that I’m going to die...
US: https://amzn.to/2Eh2SRa
UK: https://amzn.to/2JhduDs
AU: https://goo.gl/NbFSem
CA: http://a.co/iFgGBgL

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

#SummerZombie

Not Yet Dead - High Resolution
Jay Wilburn walked through the laboratory where they studied the AM 13 zombie virus trying not to touch anything. He spotted Samie Sands in the breakroom having a snack.*
Jay Wilburn: Pardon me. Is this a good time to conduct the interview?
Samie Sands: Sure. You’ll need to make it quick. I have a thing later.
Wilburn: State your name, please.
Sands: Samie Sands.
Wilburn: And what is the latest book in your AM 13 Outbreak series?
Sands: Not Dead Yet.
Wilburn: Could you tell me a little about it?
Sands: The AM13 Outbreak series has focused on the zombie outbreak in the UK so far, but book 4, Not Dead Yet, sees what’s happening in the rest of the world. Is the virus destroying everywhere or have some countries managed to escape it?
Wilburn: I know the answer … but we’ll let everyone else read it for themselves. Tell me how this fourth book fits into the rest of the series.
Sands: All the books in the AM13 Outbreak Series are slightly different. They can be read as a series or each book can be read as a standalone, and they all have a unique format:
  • Lockdown focuses on Leah, a girl-next-door type who really doesn’t have the skills to survive the zombie outbreak.
  • Forgotten has three central characters, all trying to get by in their own way. Ethan, the obsessive-compulsive sufferer who found the world hard before the outbreak, Alyssa, the overly confident teen who has been preparing for this forever, and Dr. Jones who has been given the challenge of solving this mess.
  • Extinct is from Georgie Blake’s point of view. She’s a zombie author, so really should know how to deal with all of this.
  • Then comes Not Dead Yet. In this book, there are lots of stories from all around the world being told in their own way. Diary entries, movie scripts, and letters are also included in the stories. An interesting thing about this book is it includes a lot of real people. I ran a competition for people to be featured…can you guess who’s real and who isn’t?
Wilburn: What do you see for the future of zombie fiction?
Sands: There is so much that can be done with zombie fiction and there are so many authors doing incredible things. It’s one of those horrific ‘what if’ situations which I’m sure everyone would deal with in a very different way. Maybe humanity would all pull apart and the worst would be brought out in people, but there’s a chance that we’d all pull together … right? It’s the same with the virus, there are so many ways in which it can manifest and for those reasons I’m sure we still have millions of fantastic zombie-themed books to come.

Wilburn: Thank you. I think I have everything I need. Everyone, check out the AM 13 Outbreak series by Samie Sands now at the links above and below.
Website: http://samiesands.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SamieSandsLockdown
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/SamieSands
Wattpad: http://www.wattpad.com/SamieSands
AM13 Outbreak Series: https://amzn.to/2qoxLy7
Not Dead Yet:
US: https://amzn.to/2Eh2SRa
UK: https://amzn.to/2JhduDs
AU: https://goo.gl/NbFSem
CA: http://a.co/iFgGBgL
*Samie looked up at the ceiling of the breakroom and then under the table.*
Sands: Above and below where? Who are you talking to?
Wilburn: Um, I’ve been traveling pretty far on my own. I’ve started talking to myself and sharing links so I can feel connected.
*Samie cleaned up the table and left the breakroom without another word. Jay checked the coin returns on the vending machines for any extra change.*