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Positive: A Novel

Positive: A Novel

4.2 6
by David Wellington

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In the bestselling vein of Guillermo Del Toro and Justin Cronin, the acclaimed author of Chimera and The Hydra Protocol delivers his spectacular breakout novel—an entertaining page-turning zombie epic that is sure to become a classic.

Anyone can be positive . . .

The tattooed plus sign on Finnegan's hand marks him as a Positive.


In the bestselling vein of Guillermo Del Toro and Justin Cronin, the acclaimed author of Chimera and The Hydra Protocol delivers his spectacular breakout novel—an entertaining page-turning zombie epic that is sure to become a classic.

Anyone can be positive . . .

The tattooed plus sign on Finnegan's hand marks him as a Positive. At any time, the zombie virus could explode in his body, turning him from a rational human into a ravenous monster. His only chance of a normal life is to survive the last two years of the potential incubation period. If he reaches his twenty-first birthday without an incident, he'll be cleared.

Until then, Finn must go to a special facility for positives, segregated from society to keep the healthy population safe. But when the military caravan transporting him is attacked, Finn becomes separated. To make it to safety, he must embark on a perilous cross-country journey across an America transformed—a dark and dangerous land populated with heroes, villains, madmen, and hordes of zombies. And though the zombies are everywhere, Finn discovers that the real danger may be his fellow humans.

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome meets World War Z and I Am Legend in this thrilling tale that has it all: a compelling story, great characters, and explosive action, making Positive the ultimate zombie novel of our time.

Editorial Reviews

Jonathan Maberry
“Wow! What a great book. I absolutely devoured it. With POSITIVE, horror master David Wellington has given us a true zombie epic. Sweeping, nuanced, brutal and compelling. It’s David’s best, which is saying a lot.”
Jay Bonansinga
“A tantalizing and terrifying new take on the zombie mythos, David Wellington’s POSITIVE buzzes with dark, malignant energy. But just beneath the surface of the young protagonist’s journey hums a powerful subtext essaying … the brutal rites of coming-of-age. Wow! Highly recommended.”
New York Times bestselling author Seanan McGuire on POSITIVE
“One of the best zombie novels I’ve read in years. The heart of the zombie story has always been humanity. Positive is a harrowing, brutal, brilliant look at that heart...and it’s still beating.”
Booklist on POSITIVE
“Wellington’s most ambitious book is also his best, written with a maturity and compassion indicative of a writer who’s found the story he was made to tell. Zombie groupies will eat this one up, but it should also be recommended to readers of all epic-scale fantasy.”
New York Journal of Books on POSITIVE
“Positive is an excellent novel for those just starting to explore the post-apocalyptic genre while also a satisfying read for the diehard fans out there that are well versed in the worlds of zombies and the end of the world as we know it.”
Publishers Weekly
If John Wyndham had written a zombie novel, it might very well have resembled Wellington’s clever apocalyptic thriller, which has a number of parallels to Wyndham’s classic The Day of the Triffids (1951). Nineteen-year-old Finn is part of the so-called second generation, born after a zombie outbreak claimed 99% of the U.S. population. He lives in a Manhattan whose 50,000 inhabitants have been zombie-free for the past 15 years. When his mother’s latent zombie-virus infection is triggered, Finn is tattooed with the symbol indicating that he is a potential carrier. That status exiles him from the city, but the expected next step—transport to a government medical center for “positives”—is thwarted when his escort is murdered. Finn struggles to survive in a world where humans are as much a threat as the walking dead. Finn’s personal growth is plausible as he grapples with the ethics of survival, and the story displays an imagination familiar to fans of Wellington’s Chimera. Agent: Russell Galen, Scovil Galen Ghosh. (May)
Library Journal
In a world set years after an epidemic wiped out the population and turned millions into zombies, 19-year-old Finn is suspected of carrying the virus. Exiled from his community, he is tattooed as a "Positive" and must make his way in a hostile landscape. His fellow humans are far more dangerous than the zombies in this dark tale that shows there are still interesting stories to tell in the zombie genre.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
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Product dimensions:
4.24(w) x 7.52(h) x 1.54(d)

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Meet the Author

David Wellington lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. He is the author of the Monster Island trilogy of zombie novels; the Thirteen Bullets vampire series; the epic post-apocalyptic novel Positive; and the Jim Chapel missions, including the digital shorts “Minotaur” and “Myrmidon,” and the novels Chimera and The Hydra Protocol.

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Positive 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
tpolen More than 1 year ago
If you're saying to yourself, "Oh, it's a zombie book, I don't like them because they're stupid and gory and I don't want to read about people getting eaten," just hang on a minute. Yes, this book has zombies and yes, they eat some people here and there, but are they the primary focus? Absolutely not. This book is so much more. Finn has lived his whole life behind a wall, only knowing safety and never having seen a zombie, but when it's discovered he may be infected, he's tossed out of the only home he's ever known and forced to learn how to survive. During this process, he learns his biggest threat may be other humans, not zombies. He picks up survival skills along the way from various characters - some who survive and some who don't. In writing fiction, a general guideline is that your MC must undergo a change of some kind from the beginning of the story to the end and honestly, Finn could be the poster child for that rule. Seeing his transformation from a teenager who probably wouldn't survive the night into what he became was part of what kept me so riveted. Besides Finn's character development, the story line was so engrossing I couldn't wait to see what happened next and I honestly didn't know how it would end. There were a few hokey lines toward the end and occasional repetitive phases, but I chose to overlook those and focus on what was happening instead. I highly recommend this to any horror/post-apocalyptic/zombie fans because it offers a new angle, but also to those of you who just enjoy a good story - because that's definitely what Positive is. Give it a try. This review is based on a digital ARC from the publisher through Edelweiss.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wellington's prose carries the reader througan engagng and fast read about people who are exiled as a result of being possible carriers of a zombie virus. The main character's trip to a sanctuary for those who might be positive to ride out the incubation period is interrupted. As a result he falls in with and afoul of bandits and later finds himself in a rebellion and in a town trying to rebuild. Good read and interesting angle.
lousquared 13 days ago
LOVE THIS BOOK! I'm waiting for the sequel.
Cherylkochbooks More than 1 year ago
As far as post-apocalyptic books go this is a good book. I found the world really believable. It takes place twenty years after most of the population has been decimated. So I could understand the rest of the human race's need to loot and fight each other. If you are living day by day just trying to survive and it is a dog eat world than you may have to kill just to survive as only the strongest and smartest survive. In this book it really is the humans that are the strongest presence and not the zombies. So if you are a zombie fan than you may be disappointed with the lack of zombies. Also, I found that this book could have been shortened at about 150 pages to even 200 pages and it would have been fine. It takes a while to build up the pacing of the story. However the ending does make up for some of the lack of action.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Balvarez143 More than 1 year ago
This is not your average zombie book. It's really about the struggles that people have when there is a virus outbreak. It is really hard to describe because there are so many things happening. It is written in a way that flows so well that it is hard to put down. You get to really know the characters and want to keep reading to see what happens next. I read this book in a day and a half!