At times, I found myself slightly frustrated with Generation Dead because I did feel that Phoebe could have been developed further. For a young woman who writes poetry and seems quite sensitive and introspective, I couldn’t quite understand why she was so confused and unable to understand her feelings for Tommy and Adam. I found myself actually preferring to hear the male point of view (from Adam and Pete) as they were more interesting - Adam is an easily likeable and relatable character – even if at times I wanted him to ‘man up’ and ask Phoebe out already. Though Pete is quite an unlikeable character, I liked getting into his head, as it allowed for a better-rounded novel. Kiss of Life also featured more Karen (my favourite and a far more intriguing female character – sorry Phoebe!), and as a result, I have high hopes for the third book, Passing Strange.
I do feel like Generation Dead is a bit to get through (there is a lot of set-up and back-story to fully comprehend the whole ‘differently biotic’ thing) and you don’t really get a sense of closure from the novel (the whole time I was reading, I just knew this story wasn’t going to be finished within the one book). As I mentioned above, I enjoyed the sequel, Kiss of Life more as most of the set-up is out of the way, allowing Waters to spend more time on the plotlines and characters I found to be the most interesting (Karen, Pete, Adam, Margi and the rising tensions between the living and the undead).
Overall, I really enjoyed Generation Dead and felt like it was an innovative take on a paranormal romance plotline. Whilst Phoebe fell a bit flat for me (and I found Tommy to be kind of boring in this), the books are rounded out by a well-developed and engaging cast of supporting characters. Waters puts a creative spin on the zombie genre, and successfully addresses a range of important issues. I would recommend committing to the series if you do read Generation Dead, as the sequel reaches greater depth with character and thematic exploration in this very contemporary zombie drama.