What begins as a meteor shower sets off a massive volcanic explosion when a large meteor of dense material slams into Yellowstone's caldera. As the Supervolcano erupts, massive amounts of ash encircle the earth, beginning what is known as a Volcanic Winter. As if that wasn't bad enough, the ash carries with it some property that initially kills 20-30% of those exposed, who rise again as zombies. In the story, intial estimates for the volcanic winter are 3 to 5 years, though no expert on the subject is met by any of the main characters.


I make no attempt to explain how the ash turns people into zombies. Really there's no need for this sort of story. Since I like both types of zombies (fast and slow), I included both in the story. New to the second book of the Dead Too, Rights series are infected humans and zombie animals. Additional information on the zombies used in this story can be found here while further reading about the Infected, humans changed by consuming the flesh of zombie animals and humans, can be found here.


A small number of individuals react differently to either zombie bites or initial exposure to ash.These abnormal humans tend to display some aspect of the zombie infection, predominantly through the appearance of milky white eyes. Jaeger, the main character of the story, due to her infection after receiving stem cell treatments, initially manifests a heightened sense of smell and an amazing healing factor. Later exposure to bites by other abnormals seem to incorporate some aspects of their enhanced abilities, such as Maliqe's heighten reflexes, strength, and superb hand-to-eye coordination. These new-found abilities come with a price though; a zombie's hunger.

The story follows a group of characters in Connecticut, namely Jaeger, as they travel from place to place. The towns and roads mentioned are real, as are several of the locations in the story, though a few tweaks here and there have been added to make the story 'right'.

Thus far the book takes place in two main areas; Chapters 1 through 6, known as the Dead Too, Rights portion of the story, occur around Moodus while Chapters 6+, labeled Dead of Winter, occur to the northwest around Lake Pocotogaug, just north of East Hampton.

Setting: Chapters 1-6 (Dead Too, Rights)

The actual town of Moodus exists but I've changed it for the story. Moodus itself lies to the west of the Moodus Reservoir and Bashan Lake. I've increased the area's population and divided the town into West and East Moodus, with East Moodus (where the story eventually focuses) being nestled right up against the Moodus Reservoir in the area at the map's center above.

East Moodus
The dominant feature in East Moodus's history has been the Mill. A large structure built along a swift stream where the Moodus Lake, at its higher elevation, drains into Bashan Lake, the original brick building featured several water wheels for lumber milling. When more modern methods of manufacturing made water-driven mills obsolete, the Lockwood family converted the Mill into a luxury hotel and the town of East Moodus shifted into tourism mode.

At the time of the story, northern East Moodus can best be described as lower-middle class blue-collar while southern East Moodus is higher-end with shops and businesses that cater to the tourism base. The area saw an explosion of growth during the house market bubble and many residential developments cropped up around the town. Following the same trend, homes located to the north tended towards lower-middle class while the southern areas featured large McMansions.

A park divides the town into northern and southern areas as it runs lengthwise from east to west. Maliqe and Jaeger claim the northern half of town while the Lockwoods claim the southern half. 

Architecturally, most of the southern businesses are stucco and exposed timbers akin to the Tudor style with the exception of the Millhouse Hotel, which is a huge brick building. The northern part of town is mostly brick with small shops on the ground floor and apartments on the second floor. Northern buildings tend to be flat-roofed whereas the southern side feature more elaborate arched roof-lines and decorative gables.

The area around Moodus is a combination of rocky hills and dense woodlands. Numerous streams and small lakes fill lower elevations, many fed from natural springs. Moodus Lake and Bashan lake are the largest bodies of water in the area, both nestled into basins whose depths average 7-10 feet. Moodus Lake's basin lies approximately ten feet higher in elevation than Bashan Lake. East Moodus was established on an irregular peninsula that juts into the Moodus Lake. Residential and light manufacturing businesses are littered about in clumps surrounding East Moodus. West Moodus lies five miles to the west of East Moodus but if far less urban with commercial and residential establishments sprawling along a central highway that passes through town. Think of East Moodus as a very tiny New York City (minus the skyscrapers) and West Moodus more akin to a village.

Setting: Chapters 6+ (Dead of Winter)
Book Setting Within Connecticut - Click to Enlarge
Beginning with Chapter 6, the survivors find themselves fleeing Moodus and head northwest to the area around Lake Pocotogaug, just north of East Hampton. The population of East Hampton was 13,352 at the 2000 census with an additional 3,169 people living around the lake itself. As was the case with Moodus, I've increased the population of East Hampton to around 50,000 and gave it a more urban feel.

Main Story Locations - Click to Enlarge
There are two main locations mentioned frequently in Chapters 6+. The first is the Fort, a fictional textile factory converted into condominiums before Yellowstone's eruption. Solid construction, plenty of room, and a preexisting hydroelectric generator make the place ideal for post-apocalyptic survival.

The second area is Jaeger's Forest, a roughly triangular wedge of wooded land bordered on all sides by roads. Earthquakes have seen abrupt geological changes occur throughout the United States and several hot springs of varying size, previously unheard of in Connecticut, are mentioned in the story.

The land around Lake Pocotogaug and East Hampton is not too different than that of Moodus. Some areas are flat, particularly around East Hampton, and have been developed over the years. Rocky hills and numerous spring-fed lakes, ponds, rivers and streams served as passage routes for Native Americans and early European settlers. Rocky hills and dense forests covering uneven ground sit like islands, surrounded by roads carved through small valleys at lower elevations. Little in the way of farmland exists, though not due to inadequate soil. Most of the cleared land was simply used for the many small homes and businesses that have sprouted up over the years.