New York Times bestseller * Six starred reviews
At once provocative, terrifying, and darkly subversive, Dread Nation is Justina Ireland's stunning vision of an America both foreign and familiar--a country on the brink, at the explosive crossroads where race, humanity, and survival meet.
Jane McKeene was born two days before the dead began to walk the battlefields of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania--derailing the War Between the States and changing the nation forever.
In this new America, safety for all depends on the work of a few, and laws like the Native and Negro Education Act require certain children attend combat schools to learn to put down the dead.
But there are also opportunities--and Jane is studying to become an Attendant, trained in both weaponry and etiquette to protect the well-to-do. It's a chance for a better life for Negro girls like Jane. After all, not even being the daughter of a wealthy white Southern woman could save her from society's expectations.
But that's not a life Jane wants. Almost finished with her education at Miss Preston's School of Combat in Baltimore, Jane is set on returning to her Kentucky home and doesn't pay much mind to the politics of the eastern cities, with their talk of returning America to the glory of its days before the dead rose.
But when families around Baltimore County begin to go missing, Jane is caught in the middle of a conspiracy, one that finds her in a desperate fight for her life against some powerful enemies.
And the restless dead, it would seem, are the least of her problems.
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About the Author
Dread Nation is everything I love-it's beautiful, unflinching, lyrical, tender, vividly imagined, and badass in the best way.-- "Ann Aguirre, New York Times bestselling author"
Biracial heroine Jane, supporting character Katherine, and the rest of the cast demonstrate the complexities of coming of age in a world that doesn't want them to feel like they belong. This one will take readers' breath away.-- "RT Book Reviews (4 1/2 stars, Top Pick!)"
Narrator Bahni Turpin brings to life the barely restrained sarcasm of Jane McKeene, the bold heroine of the first in this alt-history series...Turpin's rendition of Jane's first-person voice illuminates her pluck, resilience, and wit...Turpin moves easily between the emotions and accents of the many characters. She highlights the tension in the plot and clearly expresses the prejudices of some of the characters. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.-- "AudioFile"
Abundant action, thoughtful world-building, and a brave, smart, and skillfully drawn cast...Mounting peril creates a pulse-pounding pace, hurtling readers toward a nail-biting conclusion.-- "Publishers Weekly (starred review)"
Ireland delivers a necessary, subversive, and explosive novel with her fantasy-laced alternate history...Brilliant and gut-wrenching.-- "Booklist (starred review)"
This is a fictional exploration of the chattel slavery and American Indian boarding school systems. Ireland skillfully works in the different forms of enslavement, mental and physical, into a complex and engaging story. Verdict: A perfect blend of horrors real and imagined.-- "School Library Journal"
This novel is everything: a tightly plotted thriller, an undead actioner, a stinging historical critique, and the heartbreaking story of one indomitable young woman's fight for survival.-- "Laura Ruby, author of Bone Gap"
Dread Nation is the zombie novel I've been waiting for my whole life.-- "Kate Elliott, author of Court of Fives"