In this white-knuckled and high-stakes thriller, set in the expansive world of Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead series, three different people in China—a rural farmer, an urban military veteran, and a Chinese American grad student—are caught in the typhoon of undead walkers as the virus sweeps over the most populous country in Asia.
In the aftermath of a horrifying virus outbreak, what remains of the Chinese government has estimated that one billion walkers (called jiangshi) are currently roaming the country. Across this desolate landscape, large groups of survivors have clustered together for safety in settlements that have been built vertically as a means of protection against the unceasing wave of jiangshi.
In one of these settlements, scavengers of vastly different backgrounds struggle to provide supplies for the survival of thousands. Before this devastation, Zhu was one of millions of poor farmers who left their rural roots for the promise of consistent employment in one of China’s booming factory towns. Ella was a Chinese American grad student who was studying abroad for the semester. Hengyen was a grizzled military officer of some renown, and a passionate believer in his nation’s ability to surmount any obstacle.
Zhu, as the leader of the team Ella is a part of, reports to Hengyen. But with the settlement’s 5,000 mouths to feed and the scavengers having to travel further and further in search of food, Zhu ends up at his home village, where he is shocked to find survivors. Does he force them to join the settlement or keep their existence a secret?
Meanwhile, a veritable typhoon of walkers is headed towards the settlement. Hengyen knows that fortifying the settlement is an impossible task but he will stand with his compatriots to the very last. Zhu intends to flee for the mountain ranges of China before it’s too late but Hengyen intends to stop him and any other defectors. With time running out and the stakes higher than anyone can imagine, these three survivors must figure out how to live with the overwhelming odds against them.
Wesley Chu won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. His debut novel, The Lives of Tao, earned him a Young Adult Library Services Association Alex Award and a Science Fiction Goodreads Choice Award Top 10 slot. He is also the coauthor of The Eldest Curses series with Cassandra Clare.
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