Monday, January 4, 2016

Amish Zombies from Space, by Kerry Nietz

A couple years ago, Kerry Nietz wrote Amish Vampires in Space.  It started out as a joke with his publisher but ended up as a really good space adventure.  So why not write a sequel?  Nietz has followed up AViS with Amish Zombies from Space.  This story, primarily based on a new Amish settlement planet, introduces a new peril to the Amishers: zombies.

AZfS takes place a few years after the events of AViS.  Some of the Amishers from Resolve have settled in on Miller's Crossing, reestablishing their community.  A mysterious ship lands, bringing with it a new threat that reminds them of the vampires they faced on the Raven.  But this time it's different.

As he did in AViS, Nietz takes familiar sci-fi/horror themes and shapes a fresh and original story.  Flesh-eating zombies?  Yawn.  But Nietz turns the zombie cliche on its head (in a way that I won't go into in the interest of not giving away spoilers. . . .).  Amish Zombies is solid sci-fi with well-written action scenes and a great story.  While not the focus of the book, Nietz also engages faithfulness to Amish values, challenges to living the Christian life, and the call to live as a witness to people around us.  I know, you don't often see that in a sci-fi novel!

Readers who liked AViS won't be disappointed with the follow-up.  Although it stands alone, there are enough ties to AViS that I would recommend reading AViS before reading Amish Zombies from Space. Nietz's voice is original and welcome.  Amish Zombies is listed as Book 2 in the "Peril in Plain Space" series.  I hope to see a book 3!

2016 Reading Challenge: A Christian novel

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