Growing up on a tiny island off the coast of a post-apocalyptic Ireland, Orpen’s life has revolved around physical training and necessity. After Mam died, it’s the only way she and her guardian Maeve have survived the ravenous skrake (zombies) who roam the wilds of the ravaged countryside, looking for prey.
When Maeve is bitten and infected, Orpen knows what she should do–sink a knife into her eye socket, and quickly. Instead, she tries to save Maeve, and following rumours of a distant city on the mainland, guarded by fierce banshees, she sets off, pushing Maeve in a wheelbarrow while accompanied by their little dog, Danger. During the journey, Orpen will need to draw on all of her training and instincts as she fights repeatedly for her life. In the course of it, she will learn more about the Emergency that destroyed her homeland, and the mythical Phoenix City–and discover a startling truth about her own identity.