by Lisa Acerbo
Genre: Horror, paranormal romance, Urban fiction
Publisher: Eternal Press
Cover Artist: Dawne Dominique
Jenna should be having the time of her life at college. Instead, her only desire is survival. She lives in a world gone insane after a virus kills most of the population. Being alive after the apocalypse is bad, but when the undead return, hungry for humans, times turn darker. For Jenna and a small group of survivors, the goal is to reach the High Point Inn. At the inn, Jenna develops feelings for Caleb, who, while exotic and intoxicating, is not quite human. Will this new utopia last?
Apocalipstick is about Jenna who recently graduated from high school when a virus broke out is a killing most of the world and producing flesh-eating zombies. So instead of making post high school plans she has to fight along with a few survivors to stay alive. They watch out for each other and share what supplies they find, on their way to a safe place.
The virus created 2 different products, one a flesh eating zombie and the other, conveniently called “Others” who have improved strength, speed, heal quickly and have superb senses. But also they have somewhat of a “vampire” diet and are very sensitive to light. They are a huge help to Jenna and the group of survivors she is traveling with.
After reading the first few pages, I was drawn into this post apocalyptic world where Caleb, an Other and Quentin, a human, were both pining for Jenna’s attention. I absolutely loved the characters they were very relatable and the world building was so vivid that I could picture it all as though I was there. I was rooting for both males who wanted Jenna's attention. Will she choose Caleb or Quentin? After the last page, I wanted more. Hopefully there will be another. I recommend this book to all anyone who loves paranormal romance, suspense, and zombies.
5 HOOTS for Apocalipstick
“By the pricking of my thumbs, Something wicked this way comes…” ran through Jenna’s mind, another remnant of her former life. Now the graveyard was the safest place. Evil openly roamed the streets and it was coming for her.
Jenna blinked the sweat out of her eyes and took a deep breath. She swayed with exhaustion. Angels, symbols of all things God and good, adornments of the dead, swam in and out of Jenna’s clouded vision. She placed a scarred hand on the peaceful, cold stone markers, embellished with the names of forgotten loved ones. Nowadays, loved ones wanted to come back from the grave and claw your face off, devour your insides.
Jenna wanted to lie down and give up. She was tired and had lost everyone she knew. Hair lank and greasy, mud splattered clothing, old and mismatched. Instead of admitting defeat, she forced herself to stay alert, pushing matted, raven hair out of her eyes with a dirty hand. Jenna could not remember a time in her recent history where she felt clean or had a moment in which she was not fighting to stay alive. Looking around the darkened landscape, she wanted to live. She shoved to her feet once again.
Gingerly, with a limp, she started walking deeper into the cemetery. She had twisted her ankle during the jump from the gate. The last sprint had been hell. Her stomach ached where the scar stretched from side to side, but her ankle worried her most. If she could not run, Jenna would be food for the dead. Hopefully, she’d find shelter soon.
A noise echoed through what should have been deserted gravestones. Jenna froze for a second, panicked, but then instinct kicked in. She pivoted on her good foot, grabbing for the knife in her pocket. It was all she had left, after losing the gun during her escape yesterday.
Jenna ran back into the oldest part of the graveyard, until she came up to a small mausoleum. It looked more like a shack, a collage of tumbling stone and wood. She pulled on the door, but it stuck, even as everything around it decayed. She felt her way around the side. Her hand slithered across the remains of what once was a delicate, stained glass window. Shards of color caught her coat. Using her elbow, shielded by her jacket, she knocked out the remaining pieces and then painfully pulled herself inside.
Crouched on the ground, she was tempted to give herself over to tears, but instead searched for anything useful. A sturdy casket dominated the tiny interior of the room. The dilapidated mausoleum housed little of use, but someone must have been there before her. Rusty tools, wrenches, hoes, and a beat up shovel lay scattered across the floor, abandoned. They might make good weapons, but were heavy to haul. The handle to the shovel would be usable if she could dislodge it from the base.
She’d try. In addition to the mostly useless tools, Jenna found a box of matches near the charred remains of a former fire which littered the corner. Maybe, if she ever felt safe, she could light a fire and feel warm. For once. Jenna hunkered down, shovel in hand, and began to ply the handle apart from the base. She had to hurry. They would soon be upon her.
Lisa Acerbo is a high school teacher and adjunct faculty at the University of Phoenix. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, daughters, three cats, and two horses. When not writing, she mountain bikes, hikes, and tries to pursue some type of further education--she's working towards an EdD.
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