Sunday, July 22, 2012

Review: This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers

This is Not a Test 
by Courtney Summers
Published: June 19, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Available: Amazon

It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self.

To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live.

But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside.

When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?

Zombies. Do I need to say more?? Probably not, but I will :)

Sloane is on the verge of death. Not just because there are zombies pounding at the doors, but because she has given up on living long before the dead arose. The only reason she's not dead is she didn't want to endanger the other survivors.

This is Not a Test goes beyond surviving zombies and looks at what it really means to be a survivor and to have the strength to live. Sloane's life fell apart bit by bit. Her mother died, her father became abusive, her sister deserted her, and just as she's about to end it all, zombies attack. Holed up in the local high school with five other teens, Sloane discovers that there are things worse than death, but that those things are often what makes life worth living.

For a zombie book, there's not a lot of blood and gore, although towards the end things become a little more detailed as Sloane wakes up to the realities of what is happening. Summers keep the atmosphere dark and somber by examining how these teens start to break down as they realize everyone they love is dead. She brought all six of the teens to life, giving them distinct personalities and survivor stories unique.

I read this straight through, long into the night, and when I went to bed, remembered why I shouldn't do zombies after 10! Absolutely amazing read! This may just beat out The Forest of Hands and Teeth series by Carrie Ryan as my favorite zombie book.


  1. oh great review...been dying to read this (no pun intended) ;) but seriously, everyone I know that has read it has loved it.

  2. Zombies? I'm there! But I do like that this is more than just a zombie story. That always makes it better!