Nothing much happens in the sleepy town of Venus Cove. But everything changes when three angels, IvRead Review
They'll chase you. They'll rip you open. They'll feed on you . . .
When the sickness came, every parent, police officer, politician – every adult – fell ill. The lucky ones died. The others are crazed, confused and hungry.
Only children under fourteen remain, and they're fighting to survive.
Now there are rumours of a safe place to hide. And so a gang of children begin their quest across London, where all through the city – down alleyways, in deserted houses, underground – the grown-ups lie in wait.
But can they make it there – alive?
The Enemy buys into our current fascination with all the things that can go wrong in our world, with a particular focus on one of the favourite fictional topics for young men: ZOMBIES!!!!! And what this novel has in common with some other contemporary dystopic fictions (Gone comes to mind immediately here), is that in imaginary post-apocalyptic worlds that are of interest to teen readers, there are no adults! This idea is at once enticing and repulsive.
In the case of The Enemy, the reader enters a world that is already in disarray following some sort of event in which all adults died or succumbed to an illness that turned them into zombie-like creatures. The kids are left in a battle for survival. If you've ever read The Lord of the Flies, you'll no doubt know to expect that the kids become a bit feral. But they're all looking for someone to lead them and provide hope for their future. Yes, what they really want is a few adults around to give them some guidance and, let's be honest, a little bit of parental love and assurance.
With the tenacity typical of young people though, groups of kids have formed collectives and eked out a life for themselves, and quite frankly they did it without adult help! With the ever-present danger of hungry zombies forcing their hand, many also determine that they need some longer-term solutions, so they set out to find their Utopia (look it up). We get to follow them and marvel at their ingenuity, their survival instincts, their compassion in the face of danger, and their reserves of willpower.
The story is told skilfully, with very few breaks in the tension. You just know something bad is going to happen every few pages, and you really invest in the lead characters. Some of them make it to the end of the book, but some fall by the way. And it's not often very pretty. With one increasingly clever zombie leading the hordes against the kids, how could it be pretty? Oh, and I shouldn't forget to mention the cannibals inhabiting the London Underground; spine tingling!