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Synopses & Reviews
Love can never die.
Love conquers all, so they say. But can Cupid’s arrow pierce the hearts of the living and the dead—or rather, the undead? Can a proper young Victorian lady find true love in the arms of a dashing zombie?
The year is 2195. The place is New Victoria—a high-tech nation modeled on the manners, mores, and fashions of an antique era. A teenager in high society, Nora Dearly is far more interested in military history and her country’s political unrest than in tea parties and debutante balls. But after her beloved parents die, Nora is left at the mercy of her domineering aunt, a social-climbing spendthrift who has squandered the family fortune and now plans to marry her niece off for money. For Nora, no fate could be more horrible—until she’s nearly kidnapped by an army of walking corpses.
But fate is just getting started with Nora. Catapulted from her world of drawing-room civility, she’s suddenly gunning down ravenous zombies alongside mysterious black-clad commandos and confronting “The Laz,” a fatal virus that raises the dead—and hell along with them. Hardly ideal circumstances. Then Nora meets Bram Griswold, a young soldier who is brave, handsome, noble . . . and dead. But as is the case with the rest of his special undead unit, luck and modern science have enabled Bram to hold on to his mind, his manners, and his body parts. And when his bond of trust with Nora turns to tenderness, there’s no turning back. Eventually, they know, the disease will win, separating the star-crossed lovers forever. But until then, beating or not, their hearts will have what they desire.
In Dearly, Departed, romance meets walking-dead thriller, spawning a madly imaginative novel of rip-roaring adventure, spine-tingling suspense, and macabre comedy that forever redefines the concept of undying love.
"Centuries after a series of catastrophes destroys much of the planet, two human civilizations based on two loose 21st-century interpretations of Victorian England thrive in South America. When 16-year-old New Victorian Nora Dearly is kidnapped by zombies, she is rescued by a company of the undead, led by Bram Griswold, a Punk soldier suffering from a disease called the Lazarus syndrome that reanimated him after his death and will soon kill him for good. First-time author Habel shifts smoothly among the first-person perspectives of several characters, and as the attraction between Nora and Bram grows, they battle an outbreak of the virus and contend with a conspiracy that involves Nora's late father, who had devastating secrets of his own. Though weighed down in places by cluttered exposition and a meandering plot, Habel's debut is a heart-pounding and nontraditional take on the steampunk and zombie apocalypse genres. Nora and her friend Pamela are strong, capable heroines, and Nora and Bram's touching and tender relationship, with its emphasis on equality and living in the moment, feels particularly special. Ages 12 — up." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Lia Habel is in her twenties and lives in western New York State. She is fascinated by zombie movies and Victoriana, interests that eventually led her to write Dearly, Departed. When she first got an agent, she was literally opening envelopes for a living. By the time the auction for Dearly, Departed was held, she was considering food stamps. Now that she has a book contract, she is busy working on the follow-up to Dearly, Departed, entitled Dearly, Beloved. Lia Habel can be found on Facebook and Myspace, and she has a blog at liahabel.com.
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