Monday, November 28, 2011

Review: Dearly, Departed

Book: Dearly, Departed
Author: Lia Habel
Release Date: October 18, 2011
Publisher: Del Rey
Pages: 368
Source: publisher
Stars: 4/5
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.

(summary taken from Goodreads

I've actually never been the biggest fan of zombies before. But when I first found out that this wasn't just any zombie book but one that took place in a futuristic world with Victorian era elements I just had to check it out. And it was nothing short of awesome! :) 

The whole idea of mixing together so many cool elements was genius on Lia Habel's part! She incorporated cool futuristic technology with the walking dead and poofy dresses perfectly. There was something about how she built her world that made me want to live there but not at the same time.  

I'll admit that Dearly, Departed started off a little slow for me, but once the action picked up, I'm so glad I stuck with it! I adored Nora and Bram with all my heart, and how sweet and "awww!"-worthy their romance was. And even though five different first-person narratives seemed like too much at times, it helped to fill in the gaps and I really loved seeing Nora through Bram's eyes — so sweet!

PLUS: The zombies weren't all evil. Loved them!

Overall, Dearly, Departed was a great edition to the zombie, dystopian, and Victorian era genres! It was cool and original and had some absolutely HILARIOUS one-liners at the most surprising times. I can't wait to read the next book in the series! 

BUY or BORROW?: Gorgeous cover + original story + a kick-butt heroine with a gun = a book you totally want to have on your shelf! ;) 



  1. I'm not a biggest fan of Zombies too.They creep me out but Dearly Departed sound like an awesome book. Great review!

  2. Thanks for the heads up on the slow beginning. This one is on my tbr list.

  3. Look at us being on the same page again! I just posted my review for this yesterday :) Great review Mimi!

    Kelly @ Radiant Shadows

  4. We had such similar reactions! Not fans of zombies, slow beginning, FIVE POVs? but overall the book really does work, doesn't it? And that cover is soooo pretty!

  5. Normally zombies plus 5 different first person point of views would scare me away, but this one just sounds so interesting. I love when authors combine lots of different elements into something completely new. And I of course love saying "awwww" while reading romance:) Awesome review Mimi!

  6. *sighs* I don't know what is wrong with me. I LOVE watching zombie movies, but reading about zombies....not so much. I've tried! Believe me, I have, but nothing has worked for me so far.

    This book gives me hope. The good zombies you mentioned have already made an impression simply for being unexpected.

    Thanks Mimi

  7. I'm glad you enjoyed this one, Mimi! Didn't do the trick for me, but there were still some elements I really liked.

    Bram and Nora are very sweet, and the emphasis on a romance with an expiration date (vs. vamps who will live forever) was really refreshing.

  8. I've had this sitting on my Kindle for awhile, but keep putting it off for other things. Maybe I'll need to read it soon, now that I know it's good!

    Angie @ Pinkindle Reads & Reviews

  9. I really need to read this one, I keep hearing so great stuff. The world sounds so intriguing and original, I'm very curious about it. Now I can't wait.

  10. Totally original right? I thought this was wicked awesome too!!!

  11. I've heard mixed reviews about this one and I wasn't totally sure if I should pick it up because I'm not a big fan of zombies. Bram sounds totally squeal worthy!!!! I'm so glad you enjoyed it :)


  12. I'm so curious about this one--it's popping up everywhere, and I don't think I've read a single bad review.


  13. This one has a really interesting premise and one of the best covers I've seen so far. I'm not normally a big fan of zombies either and I can't see how a zombie romance could last but I'm def curious :)

  14. Oh Mimi! Im so gald you liked it. I started reading it but, as you said, it starts very slow. I kinda got sick on page 114 with Nora still inside the bedroom and olny talking to Bram through the door. I mean, c;mon! she spent in there like 50 pages!! XDD So I put it aside but I will get back to it in the next two weeks thanks to wonderful review!! I had on idea there were some dystopian elements either! kyaa!! love you my dear! muah! thanks you for this push you gave me!! muah!

  15. WHAT?? You are NOT a fan of zombies!? *faints*

    *unfaints* Great review! I really enjoyed this one too.

    *faints again*

    Xpresso Reads

  16. Ooo, I just read this one. I agree that the 5-person narration was a little much. But I really liked how the zombies were multi-dimensional characters--not just brain-eating creepiness. Great review!

  17. I'm reading this one right now, and it's surprisingly pretty good! I hope I end up loving it as much as you did though :))

    Anna @ Literary Exploration


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