Friday, April 20, 2012

Review | Tomorrow Land by Mani Mancusi

Tomorrow Land
Mani Mancusi
Published March 8, 2012 by NLA Digital
YA dystopian/post-apocalyptic romance
Review copy from NetGalley

Bite-Sized Review
Tomorrow Land was much more of a YA romance than anything else, which basically means that it wasn't my kind of thing. I found the characters extremely angsty and numerous elements of the plot absurd.

King-Sized Review
Tomorrow Land takes place in alternating timelines, sometime in the future, where technology has advanced and an AIDS vaccine has been developed, and four years after the End of Days, when the Super Flu killed off much of the adult population and left behind isolated people, kids, and a whole lot of zombies.

When the Super Flu first emerged, Chris and Peyton's relationship was just beginning. They planned to leave together, along with a few other kids from their school, and hide in the mountains until the disease passed. But Peyton never showed up. Four years later, she emerged from the bomb shelter her father modified for her and her mother, and the first person she met was none other than Chris, now called Chase. After some convincing, she agreed to take Chase and the kids he and his brother rescued as she traveled to Disney World to find her father, who might be able to fix the world – and Peyton herself.

I think zombies are a cool concept that is rarely as brilliantly executed. Tomorrow Land was definitely another underwhelming zombie book. It was very heavily romance-oriented, and the romance itself was extraordinarily angsty, neither of which particularly appeal to me. Possibly I should have realized this from reading the blurb, but I pretty much just glanced at the book and said, "Zombies! Awesome razor hands! Want!" and requested it. Unfortunately, the zombies' main role was to provide romantic tension in various ways, which seemed wrong somehow. I need a "misuse of zombies" stamp.

As far as the writing itself goes, it wasn't bad. If you do like romances, possibly with a side of zombies, I imagine you might enjoy this book. Just keep in mind, the characters are pretty self-absorbed and can be absolute idiots about keeping secrets from each other for no reason other than to please the Romantic Tension Gods, whom I believe deserve better sacrifices. There were numerous times when I wanted to shake Peyton or Chase or both during the book, because their complete lack of communication created so many more problems than they actually had.

For a four hundred mile trip on horses with a bunch of kids in tow (I don't actually remember how many; they weren't very important) their journey was laughably hitch-less. There were, of course, a couple of zombie-related Incidents to move the plot along (and pay heed to the Romantic Tension Gods), but the kids hardly ever complained and never misbehaved or ran off and did something stupid. (That was left to our heroic protagonists.) I don't even have kids and I don't believe this.

Personally, I would have preferred a book with a little less romance and a little more dystopian/post-apocalyptic. but I think this book would appeal to people who enjoy romance more and don't mind a little angst. It just wasn't at all for me.

Quality: Fair
Enjoyability: Poor

In the same aisle
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan


  1. Misuse of Zombies stamp - that is hilarious! I have a feeling it woudl get used frequently :-/

  2. I finished this a couple of days ago and I agree about the whole sacrificing Romantic Tension Gods thing. It wasn't the angsty romance that frustrated me most about the book though, it was all those references to our current pop culture when the book is set 25+ years from now... and no references to any books, films, songs, whatever that came between now and then. Why not just set it now then?! Plus I didn't find the sex being illegal angle at all believable.


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