The Walking Dead, Volume 3: Safety Behind Bars – Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard and Cliff Rathburn

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This volume blew the previous one out of the water. I only finished the second volume a few days ago and I thought it was amazing but I was so hooked on this one that I read the entire thing in one sitting and was not for moving until it was done. As mentioned in previous posts if you are watching the TV show or reading the novels approach with caution as I do talk about some of the plot below although I try to avoid the main action.

As with previous volumes we got some new characters but this time they had a questionable past and brought a lot more action to the plot than expected. Having stumbled across an abandoned jail, the group realises this place could have a massive food store and as it is gated, it could be a safe place to live. The only issue they have is the crowds of zombies walking across the yard and the unknown amount already inside the building.

As Rick and Tyreese move in to try and clear the compound they realise more danger than expected lies ahead and not all in the form of the undead. This volume is a real plot twister and especially with how it ends on a cliff-hanger, I desperately want to move onto the fourth volume to see what happens but unfortunately I don’t have it yet. A piece of advice for anyone wanting to read this volume, don’t do it until you have the next volume because it will leave you with questions wondering what’s about to happen.

As I said I really enjoyed this volume, the only issue I had was that is jumped from sub-plot to sub-plot, different stories about other characters but so quickly that it actually had me wondering if I had missed a few pages. There were no clean cuts between each section or a final stopping point, it just kept ending abruptly. Now this doesn’t happen continuously but it is a common trait in this volume so much so that I began to wonder at one point if this volume was written by a different author. Apart from the questionable breaks I enjoyed the individual stories as it allowed the reader to learn a little bit more about each character and what they were thinking at this point in the plot. With the characters hungry and many of them sleep deprived, it was interesting to see those that were stronger than other, those that were losing it a little and those that were losing hope.

As the group learns more about the zombies and how they turn, it becomes even more interesting as I’m starting to wonder now what’s causing it and how it started. Although I know it’ll be a long time before I find out with there being over twenty volumes now. I’m also starting to wonder if it is possible for the group to live a semi-normal life with what looks like the end of the world and if living will be an option.

I gave this volume a 4 out of 5 stars on goodreads, I really enjoyed the plot, the stories and the characters however the unusual breaks and jumping back and forth between stories made me drop my rating from 5 stars to 4 stars. I don’t know whether this style is something I should be expecting in the rest of the volumes but I found it just a tad too abrupt and rushed with no finality to the individual stories. Still I highly recommend it for graphic novel readers or fans of The Walking Dead.

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