Review: Dearly, Departed (Gone With The Respiration #1) by Lia Habel

Book: Dearly, Departed (Gone With The Respiration #1)
Author: Lia Habel
Publisher: Del Rey
Date Published:October 18th, 2011
ISBN: 0345523318
4 out of 5 Stars
Love can never die.
Love conquers all, so they say. But can Cupid’s arrow pierce the hearts of the living and the dead—or rather, the undead? Can a proper young Victorian lady find true love in the arms of a dashing zombie?

The year is 2195. The place is New Victoria—a high-tech nation modeled on the manners, mores, and fashions of an antique era. A teenager in high society, Nora Dearly is far more interested in military history and her country’s political unrest than in tea parties and debutante balls. But after her beloved parents die, Nora is left at the mercy of her domineering aunt, a social-climbing spendthrift who has squandered the family fortune and now plans to marry her niece off for money. For Nora, no fate could be more horrible—until she’s nearly kidnapped by an army of walking corpses.

But fate is just getting started with Nora. Catapulted from her world of drawing-room civility, she’s suddenly gunning down ravenous zombies alongside mysterious black-clad commandos and confronting “The Laz,” a fatal virus that raises the dead—and hell along with them. Hardly ideal circumstances. Then Nora meets Bram Griswold, a young soldier who is brave, handsome, noble . . . and dead. But as is the case with the rest of his special undead unit, luck and modern science have enabled Bram to hold on to his mind, his manners, and his body parts. And when his bond of trust with Nora turns to tenderness, there’s no turning back. Eventually, they know, the disease will win, separating the star-crossed lovers forever. But until then, beating or not, their hearts will have what they desire.
In Dearly, Departed, romance meets walking-dead thriller, spawning a madly imaginative novel of rip-roaring adventure, spine-tingling suspense, and macabre comedy that forever redefines the concept of undying love.
Well Jess suggested we read this book, but the cover along with the blurb would have had me hooked anyway. I mean the cover is very pretty, it really grabbed my attention and then I read zombies and thought "Wow. Something I haven't read before." This was the first book that I've personally read that used zombies in a story as a potential love interest.

Although I felt like it took a little while to really get started, it ended up being a pretty good read. The slow start was the only Real issue that I had with the book. I heard a lot of people complain about the switching of point-of-view from one character to another, but I liked knowing what the other characters were thinking, so this didn't bother me at all.

With this story what swayed my rating was that it is a really good story and it's very unique. The characters are mostly well written, and Bram especially was unforgettable.

Anyway, I really did like the book and I will definitely be reading the next one. Amazon has 'Dearly, Beloved' (Down with the Respiration #2) listed as a pre-order with a release date of September 25th, 2012, just in case you're interested in reading the 2nd one too.
Reviewed by Chrystina

SAHM to four rowdy kids. Avid reader and blogger.


  1. I have tried to read this book at least 5 times. It's one of those books, for me, where I find myself reading the first page or two and putting it down. Then I go back to it and start again. Then eventually some other YA book I start reading consumes my attention and this gets put to the side. Until someone mentions it and I remember I bought it and try again. I haven't tried in several months, but after reading your review I think I'll try again. I'll just have to force myself to get through the first part- at least I know it will get better. Great review- knowing you had the exact same problem I did and ended up liking the book makes me want dig it out. Well, search for it on the ereader.

  2. Yeah, I really didn't think I was going to like it because it started kind of slow but I did really enjoy it. I think Bram really made the book :) I really want to read the 2nd one to find out what happens next, and usually the author gets better with each book so I'm excited about it.


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