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REALJimBob

Fortysomething, photographer slacker, working in IT, living in Greenwich; failed polymath; drinks and eats too much, reads too little...

How Green This Land, How Blue This Sea

How Green This Land, How Blue This Sea - Mira Grant

Zombies in Australia clearly means zombie kangaroos and wombats, silly accents and heavy on the cultural stereotypes. An American writing about a Brit in Australia always risks annoying any reader who fits into either category. Mahir is the Brit, visiting two new Australian journalists at End Times who think that the great Australian rabbit-proof fence would make a great story, and yes, as a fellow Brit he's starting to grate (I'll leave the Australian readers to moan about the Australian stuff). It's not just that he's sounding a lot less English each story, but he insists on narrating with American spellings, and I have never heard a Brit refer to sausages as links.

 

But to be honest, the cultural annoyances and Grant's check-list like need to have a non-heteronormative relationship appear in each book – incest, lesbians and now a polyamorous relationship – aren't really the problem. It's starting to feel like Grant is turning these out for the wrong reasons. Whether it's the cool idea (Zombie Kangaroos!) without a story, or just overwhelming pressure from publishers and fans to keep the universe going, the short stories are seeming to fall short of the original novels. Rather than developing the vestigial thriller that she teases, Grant spends way too much time getting over excited about the zombie kangaroos and talking in great detail about the rabbit-proof fence.

 

Set after the events of the trilogy, there are a few spoiler references littered throughout. Luckily, I wouldn't really recommend this for anybody other than completists anyway. With Grant branching out into her new Parasite series, maybe this is the end of the road for her Newsflesh series. This feels like the time to walk away before she really is just turning them out for the money, or possibly consider opening the universe up for other authors or fanfic.