With the many types of books asked of me to review, it can sometimes be draining to read of stories that require much mental exertion and contemplation of underlying themes and commentaries. This is precisely why when I read Joseph Tatner’s “Floyd & Mikki: Zombie Hunters,” I was over the moon with its deft humor and wry dialogue.
Not knowing that “Floyd and Mikki” was the first in a trilogy, I was pleasantly surprised when I learned that there are more journeys in store for these two hilarious characters. The novel itself finds Floyd on a life-mission to reach the only safe, zombie-free Mecca left on earth – New California Haven. Upon his long and arduous journey, Floyd provides observations and descriptions of a post apocalyptic world of sorts with intelligence and depth. It is on this solo journey, and in a small town where a light is emanating, that he finds Mikki, the soon to be other half of this duo. Uniting their efforts in reaching their safe haven, Floyd and Mikki rid the world of zombies one at a time along their pilgrimage. Encountering other survivors on their expedition, Floyd and Mikki find themselves learning about each other through these sometimes terse interactions with the others. Their mutual hardened passion for survival fuels their ambition to reach their goal of safety and survival.
One does not necessarily equate the popular zombie genre with cerebral activity. However, Tatner manages to take the sometimes staid genre and injects new life (pun intended) into it with a colorful (another pun!) array of supporting characters and plot points that allows the story to be progressive and unique. A zombie kitten? I’ll take it. Just don’t give me another hero who meets a former loved one along the way and is torn of what actions to take.
Reading is a solitary activity for us book reviewers. We tend to not talk about the book we happen to be currently reading with others because it is those other opinions that sometimes hamper and affect our ultimate reviews. This is what makes reading other reviews once our own is published so enjoyable. I loved that others laughed out loud while poring over the pages of Floyd and Mikki. With its sheer momentum and inventive take on the primal need for survival, Joseph Tatner succeeds in sharing his invigorating voice as a new author. Unafraid to take risks in portraying characters that can be sometimes unlikable and who sometimes make the wrong decisions, Tatner’s novel is relatable and realistic, despite being set in a world that this reviewer never wishes to experience and endure.