The Red

Aiden Riley
Author Essentials (2014)
ISBN 9781780038025
Reviewed by Sheri Bebee for Reader Views (10/14)

Article first published as Book Review: ‘The Red’ by Aiden Riley on Blogcritics.

“The Red” by Aiden Riley is a post-apocalyptic horror story set in England during the year 2020.  An agricultural break-through destined to end world hunger goes terribly wrong, devastating the entire planet.  Many of the Earth’s inhabitants have been infected with the virus, turning the infected people into flesh-eating monsters.  The story follows a group of survivors as they travel around the country in their never-ending quest for food, supplies and other survivors. 

The pace of the book promised to be fast and furious.  When I get a book like this I like to sink down in a comfortable chair, block out the world and all the distractions, and just read.  While I did enjoy the story, I have to say I was a bit disappointed because the distractions came from within the book itself in this case.  

I say this mainly because I think the author would benefit from a high quality editing job. There are many grammatical errors throughout the book including the synopsis, and I feel like these are things that could easily have been corrected during editing.  Many paragraphs throughout the book start with “he” or “she” with no clue as to which character or setting is being referenced.  As there are a significant number of characters throughout the book, I think clarification of who is speaking or who is being written about is necessary.   It would certainly help the flow of the story tremendously.

To highlight the great things about this book:  the characters are very well-developed. I particularly liked the way the author highlighted the individual pre-apocalyptic stories of each of the main characters.  Stories of how these people used to be before the world fell apart, and how they came to be survivors in the new world really helped me clearly see each person’s physical and emotional journey.  Riley is a very passionate writer - that is evident.  His detailed descriptions crisply defined the devastation and horrors of living in the new world.

Overall I think “The Red” by Aiden Riley is a good post-apocalyptic horror story that fans of this genre will enjoy.

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