The Afterblight Chronicles: The Culled by Simon Spurrier
Before the publishers wrecked this series, it was good. This is book one and it begins five years after the Blight arose and swept across the world leaving civilization in ruins. A man is determined to fight his way from the ruins of London to a desolate New York in search of the only thing that has meaning to him in this devastated world. This was good full of blood, filth and horror. It also has the trope of a crazy religious cult which was rarely mentioned in later books.
“This was before the thing went airborne, before the mass graves and gasmasks, before they firebombed St Mary's and sent out the A-Vee body carts with the speakers and the flamethrower turrets.”
The Afterblight Chronicles: Kill or Cure by Rebecca Levene
In book two Jasmine has spent five years since the Blight trapped in a bunker. She is rescued by Queen M, a warlord in the broken plague-devastated world. Someone is spreading a new plague and Jasmine must stop him. This was okay, back-story and future plot arcs are set up. Most would be inexplicably dropped. But one thing seems clear: the Blight was deliberate. Shame that revelation was never resolved.
The Afterblight Chronicles: School’s Out by Scott Andrews
In book three the aftermath of the Blight led to a boy’s boarding school becoming a refuge. But school bully Sean has set himself up as a tin pot dictator and is picking fights with vigilante neighbours and a cannibal blood cult. Lee wants to take Sean down but has idea how. This was very, very good with black comedy and references to ’Eastenders’ and the 1970’s ’Survivors'. The ending sets up more plot arcs but the saga took a downturn with book four ‘Dawn Over Doomsday’. After that the only good later books in the saga were ‘Arrowhead’ and ‘Death Got No Mercy’. Sadly the publishers just seemed to have let the saga peter out and end with no resolution.
“He’d thrown in his lot with a bunch of tweed-clad fascists who probably thought The Cull was all the fault of immigrants.”
“On the whole I try to avoid picking fights with people, especially people who are clearly insane...but now I was doing exactly that, armed only with a detachable piece of flushing toilet.”