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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

With Love For Horror Books - Devour by R.L. Blalock - Book Review, Interview & Giveaway

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Review by Anniek

Liv is in her car with her 18 month-old daughter Ellie when the world falls apart. Liv heard the disturbing news of riots on the radio and saw it on TV, but never expected it to be this bad. When the infected are closing in fast, Liv has no other choice but to flee from her car with Ellie. She has to find a safe place and she has to find it fast. Her husband went to work, but Liv has no way of getting to him since he works in the city. The city is filled with infected and Liv not only has to make sure she's safe herself, she has to protect Ellie as well. Will she be able to keep herself and her daughter alive?

In the early days Liv had a few opportunities to contact her family and her husband. They agreed on trying to get to a secluded farm, which hopefully will still be safe. Liv has to be very careful if she wants to reach that farm. The infected are doubling their number each minute. They're everywhere and Liv also needs to protect her daughter. Luckily Liv is not entirely alone and finds help along the way. Did her husband make it out of the city in time? How many of her loved ones will make it to safety?

Liv is a true heroine. The world is falling apart and she has to fight or die. Liv is a mom first and I loved how incredibly resourceful she is when it comes to protecting her daughter. She's smart and thinks things through. This made me genuinely believe in the possibility of her and Ellie staying alive. Liv is so strong and has to make some difficult decisions. I'm in awe of her as a person and I hope that if the apocalypse would ever happen I'll be just as strong as she is.

Devour is a zombie story that kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Being a mom of two young children myself I instantly connected with Liv. I know that I'll probably be on the losing side if a zombie outbreak would happen. Getting to safety with one small child is a challenge, but maybe doable, however, with a baby and a three-year-old I don't stand a fighting chance. The only way I could keep everybody safe is to protect my house and keep the zombies outside. When I was reading about the challenges that Liv and Ellie had to face I could easily picture their journey and the story kept making me think about my own situation and what I would do if a zombie attack would ever happen. The fantastic ending had me close to tears. Devour is everything I wish for in a zombie story and I can't wait to start reading Divided, the next book in the Death & Decay series.


If you're a lover of the zombie genre then Devour is an absolute must-read. I highly recommend this gripping story that chilled me to the bone.

Free book

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The Darkest Days is free on Amazon. The Darkest Days is a short story which can be read alongside the series.

About R.L. Blalock

R. L. Blalock’s love of reading started young, but her love of zombies started later in life. In 2008, when R. L. Blalock first watched the remake of Dawn of the Dead she instantly fell in love with the genre.

Born and raised in Sacramento, California, R. L. Blalock now lives in St. Louis, Missouri with her loving husband, precocious three-year-old daughter, two dogs, and a bird.

Author links



1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I grew up in northern California. My family moved out to St. Louis, Missouri when I was in high school. I joined the military and moved around a lot more. As I started my own family, I moved back to Missouri to be closer to my parents.

I have always loved to read. As a little girl, my father would read stories to me every night before bed. In middle school, I bonded with my best friend (still best friends to this day) over reading and our love of Tamora Pierce. We started writing together. It was terrible at first! But everyone has to start somewhere and we loved it. As life continued on, writing drifted to the back burner. In recent years we've both picked it back up, she did a little sooner than me, and now we're living our childhood dreams of being authors together.

2. What makes your heart beat faster?

I'm not afraid of much. Spiders, snakes, the dark. None of those things are a big deal. But heights is definitely my kryptonite. Once I'm above the third rung on a ladder I get totally freaked out.

3. Which horror monster do you fear the most?

Zombies are actually my most feared horror monster. They are your friends and family, your brothers and sisters, your mom and dad. They aren't just straight black and white monsters. They are people. What would you do if you had to face your mother as a zombie? The person who raised you, who loved you, who has always been there for you. But they aren't themselves anymore. They're a monster. You can't cure them. (I don't believe in cures for the zombie virus. A vaccine maybe, but for many reasons, I think a cure would be impossible.) But could you kill them to save yourself? Would you tie them up and cling to a "maybe someday" hope? Would it shatter your soul? Would you be able to go on if you had to kill those you loved most? These are the questions that make me love and fear zombies.

4. If the zombie apocalypse would happen today, what would you do?

A lot of my zombie apocalypse plan is pretty similar to Devour. Devour started when I began to think about what would happen to me in the zombie apocalypse. The more I thought about it, the more it took on a life of its own. The difference is, that in reality, I think my chances of surviving would be pretty low to nonexistent. Parents with small children aren't going to last long. Children will be a liability, especially younger children. In trying to protect them, I think most parents are going to die.

5. What's your favorite horror movie?

This is like asking me to pick my favorite book. I think right now it would have to be Train to Busan. I was skeptical about how action packed a zombie movie that takes place on a train could be, but it was one of the best movies I've seen in a long time! The zombies are what anyone would recognize with just a little twist. The story is intense, action packed, and gut wrenching. And the ending is amazing! It's definitely a must watch.

6. What's your worst nightmare?

My real life worst nightmare would be something happening to my daughter. She is such a big part of my life and a huge driving force to do better, I don't know what I would do if she was suddenly gone.

7. If your book was made into a movie, who would play the lead characters and why?

 I think it would be interesting to see Natalie Portman play Liv. She is such a strong female lead and has a good range to develop Liv from an everyday mother to a zombie killing badass. Alyson Hannigan would make a great Jen. I always think of her as Willow in Buffy and that's pretty much how I always pictured Jen. Cute, bubbly, and a little stubborn sometimes. Anton Yelchin would have made an excellent Corey. I loved his acting in Odd Thomas and Star Trek but his character's personality in Odd Thomas would be more in line with Corey. Corey is rough around the edges, a little socially awkward and a bit reclusive, but strong and capable.

8. What inspired you to write horror stories?

My dreams have always been predominantly nightmares. I've always gravitated towards darker books and movies. I think it's interesting to explore our fears and the dark side of humanity. Books and movies that had gut-wrenching and dramatic endings always stuck with me the most. The first time I remember this was back in middle school I was reading a book called The Sight by David Clement-Davies (not horror), but the ending stuck with me. It was unexpectedly dark but totally appropriate. It made the hero's journey all the more epic. From there I started venturing into darker territory.

9. What do you like the most about the horror genre?

Horror is a lot of things. There is always something to be afraid of. Demons, monsters, and ghosts. But even more than that, it's a dark twist on other genres. There is no limit. Anything can be twisted to fit the horror genre.

10. What can we expect from you in the future?

I have at least two more books planned for the Death & Decay series. I'm also in the process of writing an anthology of short stories set in the Death & Decay world. It's a lot of different characters who provide a unique experience in the zombie apocalypse. After that, I want to delve into the depths of space. Alien invasions and colonization of new planets, all with a dark twist of course. I also have some horror standalones planned. A nightmare hopping demigod that distorts reality and another about demon possession.


Three very lucky readers of With Love For Books will win a digital copy of Devour, a dog tag, bookmark and magnet.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.


  1. The book review sounds intriguing. Thanks for sharing. Love the cover and interview too.

  2. What an intriguing book! I enjoy reading about strong resourceful heroines like Liv. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I'm a huge fan of zombie books and always looking for a new series. These could fill my craving. LOL And I really like those covers.

    1. I'm such a huge fan of the zombie genre myself Laura! I loved Devour!

  4. OOOH this sounds a great read. I was drawn in first by the name and then the cover, finally reading the story it lives up to both. :) Always on the lookout for new authors and haven't read many of this type of book yet.

  5. Hello R.L.! Your books sound great! Thank you

  6. Horror is one of my favorite genre's to read!

  7. Both zombies and horror!?!!?!I'm in!

  8. Cool cover and it sounds great!

  9. I do love a good horror, and the cover has much promise!

  10. interesting inspiration

  11. Thanks for the giveaway.


  12. This book sounds super awesome. I really hope to read it.

  13. This sounds like something I love to read! Thank you

  14. I agree, facing a zombie sounds definitely un-fun, at least in real life, but facing your fears by writing or reading about them is pretty neat.

  15. Perfect! This is going on my 'books-to-suggest/buy-for-my-niece's-birthday' list!