Sea Sick Synopsis:
IT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE RELAXING…
Police Officer Jack Wardsley’s life ended the moment his partner died, stabbed to death by a deranged druggie. Now, years later, Jack is a changed man, with a head full of secrets driving him insane. His recent record of police brutality and a reputation for not following the rules has prompted his seniors to give him an ultimatum: take a few weeks off, relax, and find some way to let go of all the anger – or else find another job.
That’s why Jack is about to board The Spirit of Kirkpatrick, a cruise liner built for relaxation and fun. Pretty soon, however, Jack realises that a little R&R is the last thing he’s ever going to get aboard the cursed ship. There’s a virus onboard, making people insane and bleeding from the eyes. The whole ship is overrun with blood and death, and there is nowhere to escape.
Just when Jack thinks his number is up and his life is over, he wakes up. The day is exactly the same. In fact, everything is the same. Jack is forced to witness the viral outbreak again and again as it ravages the ship and its passengers over and over, day after day. Jack finds himself trapped in a repeating hell.
It won’t be long before Jack realises there are others onboard just like him – and that some of them know more than they’re letting on. – Goodreads
Sea Sick Review
If you can instantly tell how an infection spread, within the first 10 percent of a novel, is it worth going on? Are your expectations too high? I mean, Sea Sick is a zombie novel and few of them actually deal with how the infection spreads as any significant part of the story. So, I shrugged off my doubts and kept reading. At best, I’d be surprised, at worst….well, I’ve read a lot of so-so novels lately, what’s one more, right?
Sea Sick is, at 218 pages, the epitome of a quick and mindless read. A peculiar mix of basic zombie movie (though the zombies actually have little ‘screen time’), murder mystery, and Groundhog Day (albeit with a complete lack of obnoxiously semi-funny characters), it offers a few unexpected twists but unfortunately strikes too many points of predictability with both happenings and cardboard cut-out characters.
I did appreciate that the author took pains to try to keep things at least semi-realistic (as much as one can with the Groundhog Day plot), and provided natural limitations and consequences to the locations and actions that happen. That was pleasantly surprising. However, it doesn’t quite make up for the severe bog down of non-happenings in the middle of the read. Honestly, it’s already a small number of pages. Cutting twenty or so out of the middle would not have made reading time that much less and probably would have significantly strengthened the story. Then there’s the epilogue. C’mon, can we just stop with epilogues? Just stop. The story wasn’t bad, but it could have ended well enough without the epilogue. It took me from “eh, predictable but okay” to eye-rolling “Oh yay, look, how original” levels of inner snark.
Overall, Sea Sick isn’t bad and I can actually see myself picking up more of Iain Rob Wright’s books, but this story seems like it was pounded out for the sake of getting out a story rather than having any true drive or substance to it. Mind you, I don’t ask for much from my zombie novels, as they are my guilty pleasure, but I need just a touch more than what was delivered in Sea Sick.