An alternate earth, seen through 'the breach' created deep in the ground of the Appalachians. In the Coldbrook facility, decades of experimentation finally pays off. The Eradicator provides an instant death to anything that enters the breach, maintaining safety protocols. A bipedal form approaches the breach and passes through unscathed. After all, it can't kill something that's already dead. As alarms blare and the facility goes into lockdown to prevent anything from escaping to the surface, Vic Pearson thinks only of his family and breaks lockdown protocol. Vic's not the only thing to dig its way out of Coldbrook, and now the contagion is out.
'Coldbrook' is nothing short of incredible. Each character is well fleshed out and Lebbon has not only given readers some excellent characterization, but each person is struggling with their own demons. Jonah's story is enhanced by the complicated grief of losing his wife. An omnipresent being known as the Inquisitor beckons to him, showing him visions of the multiverse and urging him to take on a new form and follow him. Vic is caught in a love triangle with his wife and the woman he fell in love with years ago. With the fall of the world credited to his selfish actions, he must make the ultimate sacrifice to right his wrong.
The daunting task of finding a cure hangs on the fate of a sickly girl with immunity to the bites. Jayne is a captivating character who's inner strength comes across in Lebbon's writing. A welcome breath of fresh air, secondary character Chaney, is an intriguing addition to the book. An attorney and weekend warrior. The only thing that could have made this character better would have been to see more of him.
Coldbrook is a multifaceted work of fiction; spanning the horror, science fiction and fantasy genres. From the first page it will suck readers into another dimension and reward them with a fast paced, horrific break from reality. This is no average zombie tale.
The Inquisitor bits come off a bit disjointed and falls under the kitchen sink factor. Sometimes less is more, and this bit of plot comes out of left field and takes a turn for the weird. There is no debate that Tim Lebbon is a talented writer. His imagination paints the pages of Coldbrook like priceless art and his descriptive writing style delivers provocative characters, innovative settings and situational catastrophes in highly-detailed prose. Lebbon visualizes to his readers what he sees, hears, tastes, smells and feels in the Coldbrook facility and worlds beyond.
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