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State of Decay, like the other novels in the trilogy, follows four main characters: Nico Wachalowski, Faye Dasalia, Calliope Flax, and Zoe Ott, with each storyline told in first person POV. Their stories begin as separate threads that become woven together in the first novel, and become more tightly intertwined throughout the series.


The story opens with FBI Agent Nico Wachalowski about to execute an undercover sting operation. He has agreed to purchase a group of illegal revivors which have been smuggled into the country, and is in the process of making the purchase when he discovers that the seller not only has far more revivors that first suspected, he is also sitting on a cache of high-end weaponry worth a fortune. This all suggests that there is more to the operation than was first suspected, and Wachalowski is in the process of determining what when his cover is compromised. He is forced to fight for his life until the rest of the team can arrive, whereupon the sellers are arrested and the revivors are impounded. When they crack into the operation's files, they find evidence that the revivors have been brought in via the Palm Harbor shipyard where the latest shipment is still waiting. While the others process the scene, Nico heads to the shipyard to try and trace back the source.

Meanwhile, Zoe Ott awakens from a drunken blackout sitting in front of the television where she has a data miner looking up information about Nico. Zoe suffers from persistent hallucinations or visions, and has been seeing Nico with greater and greater frequency. As she looks through the gathered footage she is distracted by a racket from her downstairs neighbors, a young woman and her abusive boyfriend. She heads down to confront them, and we learn that she seems to have the ability to influence the minds of others. She is able to calm the boyfriend, and send him off to bed before returning to her apartment. There, she continues looking over any TV clips of Nico the miner managed to find, including footage from the sting that just recently took place.

The next morning, Detective Faye Dasalia is heading into work when she witnesses a huge truck fire at one of the stops and leaves the train to investigate. At the scene, she discovers an official FBI transport vehicle with something moving in the back. She manages to get the back doors open and a burning revivor jumps out before succumbing to the fire a few steps later. The back of the truck is filled with burned revivors, which turn out to be the same revivors the FBI just impounded. This prompts Faye to contact the FBI, and we learn that she and Nico had a relationship years back.

Calliope Flax, an amateur MMA fighter wins her latest fight, and then heads out to celebrate. At the bar, a group of college students who are slumming end up sparking a brawl that lands all of them in jail along with Calliope and a bunch of the fighters. In the holding cell, one of the students named Luis Valle catches her attention when he uses an app on a hidden smart phone to post his own bail. They hit it off, and when he is released he ends up posting her bail as well. In return, she drives him back to his posh apartment in the rich part of town.

As the story lines come together we learn that the Nico and Faye's cases are related, Zoe's visions (at least some of them) are true and she is driven to contact Nico in an attempt to stop some cataclysmic future event, and Calliope ends up dragged into the whole mess when Luis turns out to be involved as well.

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Page last modified on August 13, 2015, at 11:45 AM