Thursday, June 7, 2012
Blackout by Mira Grant
If you like: the truth * virology * zombies
Blackout is the final book in the Newsflesh trilogy by Mira Grant. Unlike books Feed and Deadline, Blackout is less about discovering the truth, and more about finding a credible way to expose it. Understanding the virus and its evolution–in both natural and directed paths–becomes the primary goal of the After the End Times team. Reporting takes a backseat to their fieldwork, since staying off the grid is their main goal. That does not mean their primary mission is lost, but that the process of completing it has changed.
The dynamic between the team changes in Blackout. Previously, Shaun and Georgia did all of the decision making. In Blackout, Maggie, Becks, Alaric, and Mahir feel like equal partners. This adds to the gravity of the situation, and the intensity of the action. Having the team expand to include the Dr. Abbey’s team and the EIS for more of the story also provides more substance–this is no longer a group of young bloggers accidentally stumbling on a conspiracy. Though the team is the linchpin in exposing the facade, it is far more believable that they are not the only ones who have stumbled across the cover-up. The underground network of scientists working in secret on the multifaceted mystery of mutations and spread of Kellis-Amberlee vaults the team into a more powerful, and more dangerous, position.
Everything comes together to conclude this trilogy in a satisfying way. Lingering questions about the virus and the motivations of those in power are finally answered. Characters mentioned throughout the series are brought together, and loose ends are tied up. The weight of Shaun and Georiga’s relationship is fully realized. So many series feel the need to wrap up everything in a neat bow at the end, but Blackout doesn’t do that. Our protagonists may live to fight another day, but they are still living with a virus that could kill them at any time. There are no miracles in the Newsflesh trilogy–just science and investigation.
If you are worried that mosquitoes might be carrying more than West Nile, read Blackout.
Grant, Mira. Blackout. New York: Orbit, 2012. Kindle Edition.