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Undead with Benefits

Undead with Benefits

3.0 1
by Jeff Hart

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With its heartwarming blend of guts, romance, and humor, this road trip–ready sequel to Eat, Brains, Love is The Walking Dead meets John Hughes.

Jake and Amanda are in love, on the run—and undead. They've picked up a new psychic friend, ex-government-zombie-hunter Cass, and are making a break for Iowa, where a cure for the


With its heartwarming blend of guts, romance, and humor, this road trip–ready sequel to Eat, Brains, Love is The Walking Dead meets John Hughes.

Jake and Amanda are in love, on the run—and undead. They've picked up a new psychic friend, ex-government-zombie-hunter Cass, and are making a break for Iowa, where a cure for the rapidly spreading zombie virus is rumored to be waiting. But in order to find it, they have to contend with an unlikely undead warlord, ghoul-infested cornfields, a psycho psychic out for blood, and their own super-awkward love triangle—all before Iowa goes up in flames.

Every reader with a pulse (or without one) will devour Jeff Hart's surprisingly romantic and laugh-out-loud funny take on friendship, love, and finding the meaning of (un)life in an eat-or-be-eaten world.

Editorial Reviews

“Features characters shambling toward personal identity in sweet, funny, and incisive ways. Zombie fans will find this debut full of (undead) heart.”
VOYA, December 2014 (Vol. 37, No. 5) - Lisa Hazlet
Beginning where Eat, Brains, Love (HarperTeen, 2013/Voya December 2013) ended, zombie teens Jake and Amanda are in love and running to Iowa, where a cure to their zombie virus supposedly exists. Cass, a psychic ex-government zombie hunter, accompanies them, bringing along a supply of guinea pigs for snacks. Cass has her own problems; after learning she was only the government’s pawn in their partnership with a pharmaceutical company whose zombie experiments had gone terribly awry, her angry resignation caused her former boss to hold her mother for ransom: she must produce the vaccine for which Jake and Amanda are also searching. Entering Iowa means surviving zombies galore, roadblocks obstructing all state entrances, zombie hunters eager to bag more trophies, and edible food (much harder for Cass than Jake and Amanda’s virtual buffets). Iowa is worse than the trip to get there, as the government’s decision to torch the state impedes the dangerous vaccine hunt along with forcing each character to make unexpected choices and decisions. Alternately narrated by Jake, Amanda, and Cass, males and females will find their commentary witty, often hilarious, and enjoy the story’s array of gore, suspense, action, and surprising twists. The sobering messages of adult corruption and exploitation of the zombie situation for power and money are recognized by the teens, and add needed seriousness and depth as the purpose for its many, and somewhat repetitive, traveling scenes. While the subplot concerning Cass’s mother is sparse, it connects to the story’s surprising, poignant ending, which possibly hints of a sequel. Reviewer: Lisa Hazlet; Ages 11 to 15.
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Jake Stephens and Amanda Blake have been on the run since they unexpectedly "necrotized" in their school cafeteria and consumed half of the senior class in Eat, Brains, Love (HarperCollins, 2013). Being tracked by Cass, a teen psychic, they narrowly escaped from the Necrotic Control Division, a top-secret military unit that unsuccessfully tried to control and conceal the zombie threat. Now the dynamic duo has an ally in Cass who has abandoned the misguided NCD in order to travel to Iowa where there are rumors of a zombie cure. But the obsessed Dr. Alastaire is not willing to let Cass just walk away. He also wants the cure and will do whatever it takes to get it. What ensues is a haphazard mission where the unlikely trio must learn to maneuver among the rational undead, the zombiefied undead, a zombie warlord and his minions, ex-NCD army dudes, and a truly psycho doctor. Hart's action-packed story unfolds through the alternating narratives of Cass, Amanda, and Jake. It is witty and full of plots twists and turns, suspense, and intrigue. Faced with difficult decisions, the protagonists must do some soul-searching while struggling to survive in an undead world. Readers will be anxiously awaiting the next installment of this out-of-control adventure.—Donna Rosenblum, Floral Park Memorial High School, NY
Kirkus Reviews
Zombies Jake and Amanda head to Iowa for a hoped-for cure, psychic ex–government agent Cass in tow.As in the first book (Eat, Brains, Love, 2012), the narration alternates between underachiever Jake, kicking himself at his good fortune to have become beloved of the superhot Amanda, and insecure, maladjusted Cass, reluctantly acknowledging that her psychic attraction to Jake is both insane and hopeless. Iowa is something of a new Wild West, all access points barricaded to keep zombies (and the dwindling human population) in and humans out. Once on the other side, a series of misadventures separates the teens, forcing Cass and Amanda into an uneasy truce and sending Jake on his own into Des Moines, shambling after the mythic cure. Des Moines, under the control of zombie overlord Lord Wesley, consciously recalls the horrors of such catastrophically lawless zones as Mogadishu, though with a better soundtrack. Hart balances humor and heartbreak with expert precision, Jake’s slacker voice lending itself to some pretty funny reflections: “What if [Amanda and Cass had] been eaten? Or, well, what if one of them had eaten the other? And the noneaten one was all mad at me?” But Hart never lets readers forget that this is the zombie apocalypse, man, with all the spilling entrails that entails, and the emotions ring true.These zombies are so touchingly human it’s impossible not to love them. (Horror. 14-18)

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
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Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.80(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
13 Years

Meet the Author

Jeff Hart is originally from Rochester, New York, and now lives in Brooklyn. He is also the author of Eat, Brains, Love.

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Undead with Benefits 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The plot is interesting and the character development is good, but it feels like the author is dragging things out to make at least 3 books out of the story. It's a decent book but not everything has to be a series and I'm getting a little impatient.