Friday, August 3, 2012


By: Lia Habel
Published By: Random House Books, Doubleday
Released: Available Now
Details : Paperback from library, 451 Pages


Book Blurb : Goodreads

Love can never die.

Love conquers all, so they say. But can Cupid’s arrow pierce the hearts of the living and the dead—or rather, the undead? Can a proper young Victorian lady find true love in the arms of a dashing zombie?

The year is 2195. The place is New Victoria—a high-tech nation modeled on the manners, mores, and fashions of an antique era. A teenager in high society, Nora Dearly is far more interested in military history and her country’s political unrest than in tea parties and debutante balls. But after her beloved parents die, Nora is left at the mercy of her domineering aunt, a social-climbing spendthrift who has squandered the family fortune and now plans to marry her niece off for money. For Nora, no fate could be more horrible—until she’s nearly kidnapped by an army of walking corpses.

But fate is just getting started with Nora. Catapulted from her world of drawing-room civility, she’s suddenly gunning down ravenous zombies alongside mysterious black-clad commandos and confronting “The Laz,” a fatal virus that raises the dead—and hell along with them. Hardly ideal circumstances. Then Nora meets Bram Griswold, a young soldier who is brave, handsome, noble . . . and dead. But as is the case with the rest of his special undead unit, luck and modern science have enabled Bram to hold on to his mind, his manners, and his body parts. And when his bond of trust with Nora turns to tenderness, there’s no turning back. Eventually, they know, the disease will win, separating the star-crossed lovers forever. But until then, beating or not, their hearts will have what they desire.

In Dearly, Departed, romance meets walking-dead thriller, spawning a madly imaginative novel of rip-roaring adventure, spine-tingling suspense, and macabre comedy that forever redefines the concept of undying love.

BOOK REVIEW by Michelle :

Loved this book!

What an awesome original concept mixed with this kind of mild steampunk , (referencing automaton’s) , in a futuristic Victorian era.

The year is 2195. I know. Look at the book covers, I bet you didn’t think I was going to say 2195. That whole ‘Gone with the Wind’ cover look ( UK). The World has gone new Victorian. Yes, the etiquette of the days gone by, parasols, big dresses, gentlemanly manners, but ..... cell phones and digidiaries, computers, then.....dirigibles, airships powered by coal, and..........ZOMBIES!!!!

Oh the joy at reading Lia’s very imaginative writing. Yay for the undead, who are technically dead.... but not. They are ‘departed’. You will love the character’s of Company Z.

Lia explains her world very well. Within the first 50 pages I really had a handle on where I had found myself . She did a really cool job of letting the reader inhale her world without us being confused or needing answers.

Abraham R. Griswold. A gentleman, a soldier....a zombie, a departed, a spunk.... in a zombie way.

2193. Bram 16years old, bitten ,departed. 2 years later... a soldier.

Nora Dearly, a student at St. Cyprians. Her father is dead. She is an orphan. She is about to be abducted.

Company Z. Coalhouse Gates- sniper, Chas - Jill-of-all-trades, Tom Todd - Grenadier, Renfield Merriweather III - Engineer & Logistics, Captain Bram Griswold - errr ...their Captain. These are just some of the characters that make up Company Z. The soldiers the government uses that are dispensable. Send a zombie to fight the war on the lines. Who cares if they don’t come back?

Well, I do.

Captain James Wolfe, living, in charge, 7ft of man. Nutbag!

Pamela Roe. What a fierce girl. I loved Pammy. Nora and Pammy get separated due to circumstance. Pammy is a character girls will be proud of. Challenge accepted.

Pamela shines in her storyline. The girl is full of surprises.

We get many POV’s. Bram, Nora, Pamela, Victor and Wolfe. I enjoyed following all these characters about. Sometimes I just had to remember who I was following, whose eyes I was looking through.

There are a pile of subcharacter’s that really are fun to read. Dr Baldwin Samedi, aka Doc Sam, undead, no head. A little creepy when visualising what he does with his head. But, what a lovely guy, head or no head..... gives a whole new meaning to head and shoulders above the rest....hehe.

We spend a bit of this book with Nora getting used to this interesting group of characters. Put it this way, Bram is the best ‘held together’, looking, out the lot of them. I loved how patient Bram was with Nora. He has a wonderful bedside manner about him. Nora needs time finding trust in these characters and Bram gives her that time.

He popped his right eye in and wedged a thumbprint-sized piece of latex foam in with it for support. “Ey, cap,” he said. “What’s up?”

Awwww the teddy bear.

Taking a breath, I opened the door wide. With both hands, my eyes shut, I thrust the bear out into the hall. ‘Keep this in mind, though: one false move, and the teddy gets it!’

They were all once human before their luck ran out.

With war, and its impact on the departed’s bodies, it comes at a price. Loss of limbs , holes etc. The good doctors , living and undead, are there to help Company Z stay stitched up, their bodies  nourished . Bodies that are no longer living, bodies that only have five years approximately from reanimation to turning into the zombiefied, crazy for flesh.... turning into death shells.


Lia has such fun with her character’s but at the same time you really get to love the undead . They were all human once. They all have a sad story to tell of loss of family when they were bitten.

‘Hey , she’s hot. Literally. And circulation, I find that very, very attractive in a woman.’

Chas is the girl in Company Z. Poor love is falling apart a bit. I love her whole girlfriend attitude. She is so girlfriend around Nora you forget she is departed.

One of the zombies, a girl, gave a little squeal of excitement. ‘Yay, she’s not a loser! We are so having a sleepover!’ I recognized her voice from the hall.

‘Can I watch?’ quipped a boy zombie without a nose.

I found myself forgetting Company Z were not the best looking. It was their personalities that shine through. I’m already feeling sad for when their time is up. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

Book boy snapped his volume shut, and removed his glasses from his nose. ‘I speak the truth! in all of these books the girls are throwing themselves at the romantic heroes - romantic heroes who are dead, who drink human blood. Be of good cheer, my brothers, for I tell you, there is hope!’

One of the other guys, a large black boy, rolled his lone eye. ‘OK, you’re cut off. Someone get him a cook book or something?’

‘We’re weapons, Nora,’ Bram said. ‘Very expensive, fussed-over weapons, but to the larger government we’re nothing more. And like weapons, they figure in the budget that they’ll lose a few of us.’

‘Nobody in the army spends a great deal of time trying to fish a gun out of a river,’ Ren said, cracking open his book again. ‘Far easier to buy a new one.’

The pink one, I think, you have any dresses that are tight on you?’

Chas was losing patience. ‘Tight?’

‘Yeah, you know.....’ I rolled my eyes, but pointed to my chest. ‘Up here. She’s way smaller than you. Not that I’ve been looking, or anything.’

‘Are you complimenting my girl’s boobs?’ Tom muttered beneath the blanket.

I looked at the lump, and deadpanned, ‘Yes, I am.’

The lump shifted in a self-satisfied way. ‘Thank you, you’re very kind.’

Due For Release
25th September 2012
I was always a bit afraid of the zombie, Lia Habel will show you a deeper side. Her story, although humour is woven throughout, there is still a serious side with action and bad zombies wanting to have a num on you. There is a romance or two , that are very gentlemanly , well it is Victorian era/future. Couple of humourous twists that had me laugh out loud. Should be fun to see where that goes, in Dearly Beloved.

Funnily enough you won’t go ewwwwww when Bram kisses the girlJ

I kind of think Pamela’s character shone through a bit more in this first book. But, things are about to change, I think we will be seeing Nora in a new light.

I may have to beg the publisher for a copy of Dearly Beloved.



  1. Ooh, seems that Victorian era and zombies is going to be the next big thing perhaps!

    And I'd never have guessed this was set in the future either!

    1. Hey Mandee,

      2195! Who would have thunk looking at the covers. I really enjoyed this book. I let you know how Dearly Beloved went:D


  2. I loved Pam's character too-I think she had my favorite perspective and I'm excited to learn what she's up to in the sequel!

    1. Hi Bookworm1858,

      Pammy was fearless...Isambard...well...he needed to man up a bit:D

      Thanks for dropping by:D


  3. I like the cover with the soldier better. I have book two but I need to read book 1 first. I think I'll like this even if it's a zombie novel.

    1. Hey Miss B,

      I like the visual of Bram and that whole gone with the wind thing, very suitable to the storyline. The other cover makes me think more of Pammy's character , but Pamela is Indian, hehe! So not quite, lol!

      Great bunch of characters:D



We love hearing from you, your comments mean a lot to us.