I think so.
Then again, I'm the girl who hailed "Candyman" as "romantic", while one of my friends went catatonic in the movie theater.
Dearly, Departed is about Nora Dearly, an orphan living with her aunt in a society known as New Victoria. At first, I had some difficult envisioning this world of old traditions and new technologies, but Habel's world building was evocative enough to pull me in.
As for Nora: One minute she's coming home from boarding school to her insufferable Aunt Gene, and the next she's being pursued by zombies. To her shock, her rescuers turn out to be zombies as well. Soon she is drawn into the conflict that centers around the Laz - the illness that creates zombies. Her rescuers have been searching for a way to stop it, and with unexpected resources that will challenge everything Nora knew about her life.
Basically, you have a sort of "Alice in Wonderland" (actually referred to on page 146) meets superfreaky-world-of-steampunk/cyberpunk/military-horror story.
The one problem with Dearly, Departed is the narration. The character viewpoint switches from chapter to chapter, and none of the characters really have a distinct "voice". I *love* the dry, morbid humor throughout! I just wish that it wasn't used by every single character in their narrative, and wish it was confined to just one's personality.
Despite that, I am definitely giving this book 5 stars on Amazon, GoodReads, and Shelfari, because the story was fun and original, the world building was vivid without being heavy-handed, and the characters have a lot of potential. I like Nora and Bram, but I want very much to love them. Here's hoping Dearly, Beloved will be even better than Dearly, Departed.
Copyright (c) 2011 Wendy L. Callahan