Dylan J. Morgan “The Dead Lands” Review

Posted: May 31, 2014 in Reviews
Tags: , , , ,

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000039_00014]

Publisher: DJM Entertainment

Release Date: August 1, 2014

ARC provided by author for an honest review

The Dead Lands, Dylan J. Morgan’s latest novel, is the tale of two sister planets, Hemera and Erebus. Lane is a bounty hunter for the corrupt government of Erebus, tracking down criminals marked for death by the government after being kicked out of the military following a horrific accident. A botched assignment finds him charged with murder and he is given an ultimatum by his former commander Colonel Paden – rejoin the army for a covert mission to Hemera or be sentenced to death. Lane decides to buy himself some time by accepting Paden’s offer and is sent with 20 soldiers to Hemera on a top-secret mission. It seems fairly straight forward – locate the president and help him rebuild his world. There is expected to be little resistance, since all life on Hemera was said to be annihilated following a brutal nuclear civil war 100 years ago. However, when Lane and the other soldiers arrive on Hemera, they quickly discover that all the stories about the planet were wrong.

Life has survived on Hemera, a barren planet that is littered with the mangled debris of a once thriving society that has since devolved into a feudal state.  Roving gangs of bandits go to war against each other for control of the planets scarce resources in a struggle for survival, but the true horror lies within the depths of the planets capital city Magna. Rumors swirl amongst the people of Hemera about what lives within the walled-off city, but one thing is certain: all of the planet’s inhabitants refuse to go anywhere near Magna.

This was the first book I have read from Morgan and I was absolutely captivated by his addictive science fiction/horror hybrid. Not only was the plot riveting, Morgan creates a cast of characters that are well-developed. You will grow attached to some and absolutely loathe others and Morgan does an excellent job bringing them to life and giving each one a distinct personality. Lane has made plenty of mistakes, but that is part of what makes him such an intriguing protagonist. He has to deal with his past demons while trying to survive in a dangerous new world with a group of people that do not trust him, and you can’t help but root for him to redeem himself.

While The Dead Lands reads a lot like a traditional science fiction novel, there is plenty of action and some frightening antagonists that add plenty of horror. Morgan’s decision to have a bulk of the story take place on another planet was an excellent idea. The characters faced with unspeakable horrors once they enter Magna and the horror is amplified by the fact they are in an unfamiliar environment, millions of miles away from home with no way out.

I absolutely loved The Dead Lands and its outstanding character development, engaging plot and genuinely creepy monsters. The Dead Lands is a stand-alone novel, but there are plenty of details that could allow for more stories about Hemera and Erebus. I don’t know that any sequels are planned, but I really hope that there is more to come from The Dead Lands universe!

The Dead Lands will be released on August 1st and this is one you will want to buy as soon as it becomes available, it’s that good! The Dead Lands is definitely one of my favorite reads of 2014 thus far and I will definitely be checking out more of Morgan’s work.

Rating: 5/5


Dylan J. Morgan’s Official Website

Dylan J. Morgan’s Amazon page

  1. dylanjmorgan says:

    Reblogged this on DYLAN J. MORGAN and commented:
    A review by The Horror Bookshelf of my forthcoming post apocalyptic novel, The Dead Lands.

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