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Book Review: Undeadly By Michele Vail

Undeadly By Michele Vail: Teen Turned Necromancer

Title: Undeadly
Author: Michele Vail
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: 20th November 2012
Goodreads Summary: The day I turned 16, my boyfriend-to-be died. I brought him back to life. Then things got a little weird…

Molly Bartolucci wants to blend in, date hottie Rick and keep her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low. Then the god Anubis chooses her to become a reaper—and she accidentally undoes the work of another reaper, Rath. Within days, she’s shipped off to the Nekyia Academy, an elite boarding school that trains the best necromancers in the world. And her personal reaping tutor? Rath.

Life at Nekyia has its plusses. Molly has her own personal ghoul, for one. Rick follows her there out of the blue, for another…except, there’s something a little off about him. When students at the academy start to die and Rath disappears, Molly starts to wonder if anything is as it seems. Only one thing is certain—-Molly’s got an undeadly knack for finding trouble…

Book Review

I have a confession to make. I was actually supposed to post this review a couple of days ago as part of the Undeadly blog tour, but I got so caught up in uni crap that I forgot. Apologies to the author and the tour host for my delay, but I just couldn’t bear to post a review having only read half of this brilliant book.

I’ve never really been into zombie stories or anything to do with necromancy until I read Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard but when the opportunity to participate in the Undeadly tour arose, I jumped at the chance.

Undeadly is written from the perspective of the main character, Molly. It’s all in the first person and it feels as if Molly is directly addressing, you, the reader, which really draws you in and makes the whole book feel like one big conversation. Molly is a really down to earth character who’s really likeable. I have to admit that I didn’t like her that much at the beginning of the book, but after she moves to Nekyia Academy you see more of her personality.

There’s one main love interest in this story with the hint of another one that will develop later which made the story a lot simpler, and I liked that because when too many guys get involved a) it’s not realistic and b) I get far too confused. It’s quite obvious that something isn’t quite right with Rick which is a shame because for the first few chapters he seemed like the perfect guy – probably a little too perfect actually.

I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t more romance in this novel, but reading a paranormal young adult book that isn’t dominated by a teen romance was quite refreshing.

What I love about this book is that the zombies and necromancers weren’t a secret in this novel, they are simply things that are accepted as a natural part of human life so there’s no fear of exposure, a theme that dominates most paranormal novels. I don’t think I’ve ever come across a young adult book like this so I’d highly recommend this if you’re thoroughly bored of the Twilight craze and the subsequent paranormal series that followed.

I also love how there’s  a whole history behind this story involving the Egyptian Gods and Goddesses which are rarely used in books, but are absolutely fascinating. In addition, each chapter starts with a quote and whilst they are completely made up, they add a sense of reality to the book and foreboding for the coming chapter.

The only problem I have with this book is that I thought it took rather a long time for it to get started and I don’t think that a lot actually happens in this book until the very end. Nonetheless, this was a fantastic introduction to a new and unique world so I’m very excited for the sequels to Undeadly.

Buy Undeadly by Michele Vail:
Amazon | The Book Depository 

If you liked this post, check out these:
Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard
The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong
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Laura is a culture and travel blogger based in London. She studied French at Oxford University and now studies Law in London. She’s an avid reader and traveller and loves to combine the two with literary travel. Find her tips and reviews on the best reads, eats and destinations on whatshotblog.com.

Find me on: Web | Twitter



  1. Demitra & Anastasia
    23rd November 2012 / 7:18 PM

    Aghhh, I'm so jealous. I want this book so bad, I've read a lot of amazing reviews about it. But reading your review … I'm not sure I'd like it. I hate books that take a long time to start up. I mean, I don't expect it to start after the first chapter, but somewhere around chapter 6 I'm going to be expecting some "That did not just happen" comments to pop into my mind. Thanks for the review, I love your blog btw! (:

    ~Annie & (Demi) @ Characterized Book Reviews

  2. Cindy
    24th November 2012 / 2:17 PM

    This looks really good! I like how it's not one of those cliche romance novels haha

  3. Ashfa
    30th September 2013 / 10:54 AM

    I read a a lot of mixed reviews for this on on GR… Looks good though. Loved your review.

  4. Tania Potter
    10th October 2016 / 7:45 AM

    Interesting topic for a young adult book. It sounds well written and as long as the characters are likeable, I am willing to read almost anything!

  5. LaaLaa
    10th October 2016 / 8:23 AM

    Sounds interesting, the summary got me straight away, I like that it’s written in a first person, sounds more personal and allowing the reader to be even more involved x

  6. 10th October 2016 / 8:59 AM

    This sounds like a great read. I showed my 17yr old and he’s more than keen to read it

  7. 10th October 2016 / 11:54 AM

    It is a shame that it took so long to get started but glad you enjoyed the narrative nevertheless.

  8. 10th October 2016 / 1:12 PM

    This sounds like a grat book, will be adding it to my to read list x

  9. 10th October 2016 / 1:41 PM

    You had me at ‘her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low’!, this sounds brilliant!

  10. Marta Nightingale
    10th October 2016 / 1:56 PM

    not my thing but you make such a brilliant reviewer that I really want to read it!

  11. nicopuegher
    10th October 2016 / 5:43 PM

    I need to read more books I am not doing it too often these last months. Thanks a lot for sharing your review.

  12. 10th October 2016 / 8:15 PM

    Ooh, Molly’s magical story does sound pretty interesting. I’ve never read a story with a main character with that kind of power before.

  13. Nikki Hamilton
    10th October 2016 / 8:26 PM

    This sounds like a great read. I will be adding this to my wish list!

  14. Home and Horizon
    10th October 2016 / 9:10 PM

    I wish I had the time to read books but sadly I don’t! As I spend my day proofing copy, the last thing I feel like is reading – even though getting lost in a book is one of the best things ever.

  15. 10th October 2016 / 9:19 PM

    Oh I haven’t read a good book for far too long. Maybe I’ll give this a go.

  16. Kathryn
    10th October 2016 / 9:26 PM

    I love to read, but recently I haven’t had the time. But I am going on holiday next month so I may have to check this out xx

  17. Hannah Heartss ❄️⛄️
    10th October 2016 / 9:31 PM

    I love reading so might have to give this a read soon! Love books like this xx

  18. 10th October 2016 / 9:46 PM

    I love the idea that zombies are just a part of normal life in the book, sounds interesting x

  19. 10th October 2016 / 10:39 PM

    Oh zombie books. I’ve never really read many of them but they for sure look interesting.


  20. Melissa Zia
    10th October 2016 / 11:04 PM

    Sounds like a very interesting book! my sister likes zombies so I will recommend it to her 🙂

  21. Megan Ogden
    10th October 2016 / 11:55 PM

    This sounds like a great book! I can’t resist Zombie reads! lol

  22. Mai C.
    11th October 2016 / 7:24 AM

    That sounds like my kind of story. But I do like a book with plenty of action without having to drag the story until something actually happens.

  23. Hungry_Healthy_Happy
    11th October 2016 / 8:11 AM

    This sounds like a gripping read. Adding it to my wish list!

  24. 11th October 2016 / 9:15 AM

    Sounds like a great book, we love reading anything with a paranormal twist to it. A bit of romance isn’t a bad thing either.

  25. 11th October 2016 / 9:30 AM

    Sounds like a good book, I need a new book to read so I may pick this one up x

  26. Harriet @ Toby&Roo
    11th October 2016 / 11:52 AM

    This sounds like a great book, just a light read and fun!

  27. Beautyqueenuk
    11th October 2016 / 12:48 PM

    Whilst the story sounds pretty good, it would have to catch my interest within the first few chapters or I do get bored easy x

  28. Melanie Edjourian
    11th October 2016 / 6:27 PM

    This sounds like a really interesting read, I might need to get a copy as I need a book for bedtime.

  29. Tammilee Tips
    11th October 2016 / 8:02 PM

    I am always looking for new books to read!! This one sounds like a great read!

  30. Laura
    11th October 2016 / 9:06 PM

    Oh wow this sounds like a good read. I’ll have to check it out on Audible! xxx

  31. 11th October 2016 / 9:09 PM

    This sounds like a fab read. Love the cover. Will check it out.

  32. Susanna
    11th October 2016 / 9:25 PM

    You lost me at zombies… 🙁 It’s a thing I can’t get over on a personal note, but seems like an interesting read for those who do enjoy the undead! I love it when there’s new YA fiction that’s well written, as I don’t feel people read as much as they probably should. Books like these get kids reading again!

  33. Ayesha Farhad
    11th October 2016 / 10:01 PM

    Ive read this book and seriously speaking, this was my first zombie book and i loved it! Its so gripping i couldnt put it down! What a fab review xx

  34. 11th October 2016 / 11:50 PM

    when i saw the cover, it reminded me of a film poster. can’t put my finger on it. the story does sound interesting. it’s different

  35. 12th October 2016 / 12:08 AM

    I don’t read YA too often but this sounds a like a fabulous tale. Time for some guilty reads 🙂

  36. Amelia Larsen
    12th October 2016 / 8:51 AM

    I’ve never read a YA book with zombies before, this sounds really interesting!

  37. 12th October 2016 / 10:31 AM

    This sounds like a really interesting read, right up my street!

  38. Things Sarah Loves
    12th October 2016 / 2:34 PM

    This sounds really good and definitely like my sort of book. Need to hunt down a copy.

  39. 12th October 2016 / 7:00 PM

    I love zombies! I so have to read this book 🙂

  40. Annie Brooks
    12th October 2016 / 8:51 PM

    I dont do zombie …not sure I would really enjoy it. If I do decide to branch out and be daring I will give it a read!

  41. Carrie Chady Rundhaug
    13th October 2016 / 8:15 AM

    This sounds so good! I am definitely going to add this to my TBR list. Maybe my husband will get me this book for Christmas!

  42. Kira L Curtis
    13th October 2016 / 6:31 PM

    This books sounds very interesting and I love the idea of the beings being completely natural unlike most novels and story worlds! I need to look out for it!

  43. Amanda Love
    14th October 2016 / 2:54 AM

    I don’t read a lot of books like this, normally it would depend on my mood. I like fiction because it takes you to places you won’t even be able to go to in real life but I would like a story that excites me from the beginning!

  44. 14th October 2016 / 5:34 PM

    sounds like an interesting book, in a genre, i like, yet I have problems with books that do not get right into action in the beginning. Well, for a lazy Sunday afternoon, I am sure it will be okay – thanks for the review – blessings!

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