By: Carrie Harris
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: July 2011
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: July 10, 2011
Kate Grable’s gift is being beyond intelligent. And she is counting the days until she graduates and enters the pre-med program next year. As Kate gets ready for her big medical career, she spends her time serving as the student trainer of the worst football team in existence - Bayview High.
Kate has had her own difficulties in the past. She is an epileptic but has been seizure-free for a year, and really devotes herself to taking care of sprains, bumps, and bruises, while always making sure Gatorade is available for the players. This is a team who keeps Kate very busy, seeing as the members actually give themselves bloody noses because they trip and fall on their own fists.
One day, after putting things away in the coach’s office after practice, Kate finds vials of medication with blank labels and…a needle. She knows something isn’t right, and is determined to find out what the medication is, and if the coach of Bayview High has actually resorted to steroids in order to get a win.
Kate is surrounded by many: Her friend, Kiki, who is a buxom blonde bombshell WITH a brain; her best friend, Rocky; her brother, Jonah, who is so into cheerleaders he can barely see straight when Kiki and others like her are in the room; and, a quarterback by the name of Aaron Kingsman who Kate has a serious crush on.
One night, Kate attends a party and brings her brother with her because he KNOWS the cheerleading squad will be there. Unfortunately, the party goes seriously wrong. One of the football team members is found on the floor completely contorted and absolutely dead. Even a ‘Pre-Med’ can spot when there’s no pulse or heartbeat. But, oddly enough, the boy sits up, grabs Kate’s butt, and goes right on partying.
Soon there are many members of the team who are getting extremely ill; their skin is turning gray and limbs are falling off all over the place. Kate is a very down-to-earth girl, but all of a sudden she has to deal with the fact that Bayview High students are turning into flesh-eating zombies. Kate not only has to figure out why but, who’s responsible, what was in those vials stashed in the coach’s office, and how she can stop the boy, the brother, and the friends she loves from joining the creepy crowd.
The writer has done a fantastic job of writing a truly funny - slightly, gross - book that covers the demon fascination that is so very popular in our world nowadays. It is a great deal of fun to follow along behind Kate and watch as she ‘takes on’ her very first medical virus…a virus that may just take her out before she ever becomes a full-fledged ‘medicine woman.’
Quill Says: A dark, entertaining story that will keep younger kids on the edge of their seats and older kids enthralled. They’ll probably even look at their school’s football team in a whole new light. Enjoy!