Written by Scotty
Becoming involved in intense situations is one thing that many of us do not have to do on a daily basis. Trying to prioritize what is of the upmost importance versus what can go on the way side during these situations can help determine if we will be successful in the outcome or if we will just ball up and hide in the corner. Not knowing when one of these situations will occur may be the scariest thing of all, but when it comes knocking on your door, will you be ready to answer and do what is needed? Or will you sit back and wait for the situation to hopefully resolve itself?
Isobel is alone when strange reports of an infection are starting to circulate around town. With nobody really paying attention to them, everyone seems to be going along with their normal everyday lives. Isobel recognizes that there is something strange about what is going on however as she witnesses someone coming back to life and attacking the person that is trying to save them. Understanding that this is much more than an infection that is taking over the outside world, the residents of the Willow Brook Apartments are staying indoors until they hear that the situation is resolved.
With lack of communication from anybody outside of the apartments with the loss of phone service, social media and television, the residents of Willow Brook are grouped together being led by Isobel and recently widowed Ben from across the hall. The two understand that this outbreak is going to be difficult to survive and try to get all of the residents in the building to band together and come up with a plan. Only meeting hesitation from Tom Vaughn who is the drunken pervert of the building, everyone works together and secures the bottom floor of the establishment and moves to the second floor. Gathering up all of the food they can find, the group encounters many obstacles as some of their neighbors have become the outside threat, Zombies.
With everything in place, Isobel and Ben try to keep the food on a rationing basis but find that one of their fellow survivors has an eating disorder and has exhausted a majority of the supply. Needing to make a supply run outside of the building, the group asks Vaughn if he could assist. Although he does not want to be part of the group on the lower levels of the building, he agrees and reveals that he has been out of the building many times on his own to take care of himself. Helping the group does not seem to be far out of his way, but he does not ask for anything from them for his help, only he does not have limits on where his hands may travel when he is around the women of the building. Isobel has heard these rumblings, but comes to the decision that any help he can provide will be better than none at all and trusts that when he is in the field, he will help and protect the scavenging party.
With more food being procured from the surrounding houses, the group is starting to feel like they will make it through this ordeal. New friendships are forged with the neighbors inside of Willow Brook and the only threat that they know of is clawing at the outside of the building. When being faced with the decision on whether or not to bring survivors into their happy refuge, the group is quickly pulled apart and start to hold grudges over each other making it more difficult to live inside. The group slowly separates from each other and every member starts to work on what is in their own best interest. Knowing that she is losing the group, Isobel tries everything in her power to keep them on the same page and not allow their tensions to get to high, but with what the world has become, she already has her hands full with just surviving.
When the Dead by Michelle Kilmer, is an inside look of what a band of survivors are going through when the Zombie Apocalypse hits their front doorstep. With each character being very dynamic, it is hard to only focus on the three as there is much more story to be told, these are just the three the resonated with me the most. This is a story not only about the killing of zombies, and there is plenty of that, but about how people can cope with the extreme situation just outside of their front door. As each character gets their story told, it is easy to get attached to them as they all have traits that make them very likeable. The story flows well and is hard to put down as you want to find out what happens next. If you are in a Zombie withdrawal from your favorite show being off the air for several months, this is a good book to help you get through it. Stay Scared.