Skip to main content

Orchid Island (Xavier Cecil), Apocalypse Doll 01

I want to start by stating that initially, I had a lot of concerns when reading this book. It took some getting used to the First Person Limited POV. Differentiating between what would normally have been standard description and the internal monologue of the POV was tough. But it fell into place after a while and I grew to like it. Others reading this may have similar experiences, but I would like to point out it is worth spending the time to get used to the POV.
With that stated, I really enjoyed this book.
Orchid Island is a hot-mess of plot line. It appears to be right in the middle of a severe societal upheaval tied to a mysterious infection (read: zombies). The novel’s namesake, Orchid, is pretty well versed in survival. She is trained in varied martial arts, and works in the general field of “Security”. More specifically, she has found niche employment preying on unsuspecting Billionaires, worming her way into their lives and manipulating them toward products/services she provides. This allows her cash flow while she searches out her next Billionaire victim/client. I wont go into details for risk of spoiler, but it is an interesting ploy.
A couple chapters in, Orchid wakes up on the beach of an undisclosed island. It becomes pretty clear the the island has few Billionaires, and a number of undead occupants which she will need to maneuver around in order to survive. The story slowly unfolds as to the nature of the zombified humans and how they came to be. This area of the book is a bit lacking, and you may find yourself wondering as to the details of the Zombies and why there is not much focus on them as more than a passing reference in some cases. From my read through, this was not intended to be more than a plot device to further the story. No matter what you read on Amazon (or other sites), this is not a zombie novel. More likely, the zombie aspect is touched on here in a limited manner where other books in the series will be more undead-centric. Having not read the other novels yet, this is obviously supposition.. This novel has very little to do with the undead. If that is what you are looking for, you will get a taste, but that is about it. In fact there is more explicit sexual encounters than individually zombies.. In fact, there is a lot of sex, thinking about sex, talking about sex, dreaming about sex.. Some of it is a bit heavy handed, but over all, sounded like a fun time for all involved.
One of the high points in Orchid Island is the plethora of back story. As chapters transition, the timing flips between present day and 4 months in the past. Because of this, the plot is broken out into smaller meals for easier digestion, not giving away anything in a large lump sum. This was excellent, and kept me on the hook till the end trying to learn what was really going on. There is a second POV included, of a mysterious infiltrating soldier, which was interesting. Some of it seemed extraneous to the story as anything but tying the back story to the apocalypse that the series pivots on.
The core back story that is the real book is tied to ‘Gynoids’. Humanity has found that Synthetic Humans can be used for various purposes, from serving drinks to indiscriminate sex in public. Some models will perform both actions among many others. They are pretty much the new slave class. The back story to the gynoids ranges from inception to manufacturing, the laws of Asimovian robotics, and the breaking of these laws, Court cases etc. All of this is great, and I would have been pleased with it by itself as a standalone.
I would also point out that after reading the novel I learned there is a prequel to it (titled Fleshware Requiem). I wish I had read in advance, as it would have likely cleared up a large amount of any plot confusion I may have had while reading. The story is neither the beginning of the Apocalypse Doll universe, nor the end; Instead, it is set in a transition period where a lot of global ‘unknowns” are only truly beginning to come to light.? Feel free to check out Fleshware Requiem on Amazon or Smashwords (for a free copy of the same novel).
This is a self published novel, it has a lot of the common issues that I report after reading self-published works. If you can work past occasional spelling errors and the odd stylization that sometimes comes with the territory, you should have no problem reading this book. The author has put an incredible amount of time into the work, and it definitely shows. There are a number of individual paragraphs and descriptions that frankly blew me away. Unfortunately, the same stylization sometimes left me with a campy/corny feel. In a comparison, it would be 85% awesome, 15% corn which is pretty decent ratio and something that can easily be grown out of as the plot line matures.
As with any self-published work, I feel that an additional editorial review would have been beneficial, but can recognize that an author needs to draw a line in the sand else risk perpetually editing, or even over editing. Perhaps additional 3rd party review would be a better option. Ultimately, this is one of the better self published I have read over the years, and definitely has the most promise for a long term plot line.
I would advise keeping an eye on this author and playing by ear if this sounds at all up your alley.
You may choose to snag the free Prequel from smashwords to give it a test drive.
If you do, stop in here and let me know what you thoughts. i would love to compare notes.
  • Pages: Approx 214
  • Publisher: Self Published (2011)
  • ASIN: B006IX7AOW

This review is based on a book kindly provided for free by the publisher or author. Please check my FTC Douche-claimer for details regarding this disclaimer’s existence.


Popular posts from this blog

AbyssRium (IDLE Idea Factory) + Strategy

Tap games are a dime a dozen in the mobile world. Most (as is AbyssRium) are free with ad-supported revenue and/or provide efficiency cheats in a store.

AbyssRium sets itself apart from other tap games by leveraging a unique concept. In a Synthetic ocean, you are the ever loving caretaker of a talking 'Coralite', which to the best of our perceptions is an underwater volcanic vent. The point of the game is to build strength and vitality for your volcano and its surrounding wild life; evolving animals and fortifying new types of coral. As each element of your world is enhanced, you elicit more vitality from the creatures for use in evolution.
It is easiest to think of your mobile device as the side of a giant fish tank, and you are going to be tapping on the glass. While you were told in life this was bad for an aquarium, in AbyssRium, your Coralite considers this loving attention. It smiles at you, gives on screen hints, and makes a slightly disturbing orgasm face every time y…

Anne of Green Gables: Hell to the graphic novel YEAH!

I grew up eating a lot of cheesy macaroni and hanging around women who obsessed over Anne of Green Gables. They watched the films, read the books, pretended to be the characters. I understood macaroni but failed to understand the pull people had for Avonlea.

As I got older, I gained an appreciation. My reading branched out to more than just Stephen King and Hardy Boys. I read the first book in the series and evolved into a big bearded dude who doesn't change the channel when some variation comes on the Hallmark channel. Netflix launched 'Anne with an E' and I holed up in the bedroom with my wife to consume it.

I nearly peed myself when I found out a new Graphic Novel was slated for release.

PREORDER! October 24th Release date.
Buying a copy through this link supports this site but cost you no extra money.
Put it in the closet for an awesome x-mas gift.
Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel (Brenna Thummler, Mariah Marsden)
232 pages
Andrews McMeel Publishing
ISBN-10: 1449479…

River Queens: Keeping good company with Huck and Hemingway

Pre-Release, publication set for 10/17/18
A boat is a hole in the water you throw money into,” is one of thousands of sayings that denies the truth which every sailor respects: a boat is conduct into a hostile environment. Water is a hostile environment. Seafarers are so afraid of it that we make jokes about running aground, catching fire, and blowing up; accidents happen. But that danger is the bond that holds together otherwise free-spirited individuals into one cohesive lot.
- River Queens
Based on a review copy of the book, I was pleased that my initial impressions were shallow. Initial thoughts (after reading the leaf notes alone) were a presented heavy handedness, calling hail to the great American novel as many small publications aspire every year. Determining what I was actually to be reading required cracking the first page and just taking it on directly. The title of the book, ‘River Queens: Saucy boat, stout mates, spotted dog, America’ supported a potential hyperbolic w…