Review: Peter Clines – Ex-Communication

Review: Peter Clines – Ex-Communication

After reading Ex-Patriots, I was looking forward to read the third instalment of the Ex-Heroes series. In Ex-Communication, the superheroes are up for another challenge during the zombocalypse. Where the previous book introduced new characters and new enemies, this instalment focuses more on the existing heroes. At the meantime some new characters are introduced. Like I already said, the series is great and reads quickly. Here’s my review of Ex-Communication.

Brief Recap

Since the events of Ex-Patriots, the superheroes are facing more and more difficulties in withstanding the attacks of Legion. This new villain’s superpowers let him control the ex-humans. Not that his attacks are complicated, most of them involve the ex-humans wearing armour or helmets. But his attacks are improving.

During one of the attacks, Saint George‘s friend Jarvis is bitten and infected with the ex-virus. When Zzzap proposes to use the body of the not-yet dead Jarvis for an experiment, Saint George is furious. But Zzzap convinces him that it is for the better. They will save someone’s life with it. And that’s how Maxwell Hale is introduced back into the series.

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But Max brings a dark secret with him. Cairax Murrain, the demon that once helped the superheroes and whose body was destroyed in Ex-Heroes, is back for revenge. On his own, the demon does not pose such a great risk. Like Max said: he’ll probably be bored in a week or two. But then the unimaginable happens. When one superhero gone crazy escapes The Mount, he turns out to be the perfect tool for Cairax. For the first time in their lives, the superheroes of Los Angeles are going to save the world!

Characters to Keep an Eye on

Here’s a list of characters you’ll follow throughout the book.

  • Saint George, the main protagonist of the series, is shown to live up to his name. People look up to him and he always wants to do the right thing. The last remains of The Mighty Dragon, his former superhero identity, only appear when he gets furious enough to breathe fire.
  • Barry Burke is a cripple man who can turn into energy. Really! Just energy. When in his energy form, he goes around by the name Zzzap. Zzzap returns in this book, scaring his friends by making them think he is becoming crazy. His pop culture references make him the perfect pain in the ass for all the superheroes. And that’s why they love him.
  • Stealth shows more humanity in this instalment, as it is shown that she has finally fallen for Saint George. The two are dating and have even shared this secret with their best friends.
  • The Corpse Girl, a dead seventeen year old girl, is introduced in this story. Even though she is dead, she is conscious and not infected by the ex-virus. She is of great importance to the superheroes of Los Angeles as she can help them in unseen ways.
  • Being one of the supervillains in the series, Legion was introduced in Ex-Patriots and plays a huge role in this book. While not being the big enemy they have to face – Cairax fills in that role perfectly – Legion does make himself known. And in my opinion, he’s quite funny too.

I’m not going to name my favourite characters, as they are always returning in the series. And I cannot explain why new characters would be my favourites because then I’d be spoiling the story. So therefore, I’ve only listed some of the major characters. Find them all out in the books! They’re great!

My Two Cents

I liked Ex-Heroes because there was a lot going on. There were background stories about the zombocalypse and there was a fun plot for the present superheroes. Then there was Ex-Patriots which focused a lot more on the present timeline. Both stories were about superheroes fighting off a threat, at the same time explaining most of the events.

And then there is Ex-Communication. The flashbacks have an Ex-Heroes feel while the characters show the importance of the second book as well. The third instalment of the Ex-Heroes series is mostly build-up to an epic battle of a group of superheroes versus a giant demon. The first half of the book can be confusing as there’s multiple storylines going on at the same time. This is in contrast with the other half. Here, the story feels like the end of a video game: the boss battle.

What made this book stand out from the series was that it introduces magic into the series. While this has a lot of benefits for the storyline – as magic introduces more ways to continue the series – there are also downsides. It is a concept that is a lot harder to explain, which might leave you with questions.

Conclusion

For me, this book consists of three parts. There’s the first part which introduces some characters. It is a perfect encore of the previous two books in the series. Then there’s the middle part, which builds up to the the boss battle I spoke of earlier. I felt less content with this part. And then there’s the boss battle. Which is awesome. Like: “you won’t believe me till you read it” awesome. That’s why I rate it 4 stars, just like the previous books in the series. And now, I’m going to immediately jump into Ex-Purgatory. Can’t wait to read it!

What are your thoughts on this book or the series? Let’s get this discussion started!

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