I, Jefferson Bascomb, the “Chosen One” who reigns over Alcatraz Island in Sanctuary in Steel, do believe that the main character in a work of fiction can be evil. Look at William Shakespeare’s play Othello. The play is named after the character Othello, who is ostensibly good, but the fact of the matter is, Iago steals the show. The most evil character in the play is Iago and he is the one who controls the action with his conniving subterfuges. The play should, in point of fact, be called Iago.
I, Jefferson Bascomb, am a character in Bryan Cassiday’s zombie apocalypse thriller Sanctuary in Steel. The good guy in this creepy book, and I cringe in disgust when I think of his goodness, is Chad Halverson. He wants to be the star of the show, but, in actuality, he is not. I am. I control the action. I control the entire island of Alcatraz and permit him to stay on my island. It turns out that was a mistake, but I did not know he was a troublemaker.
I am not as evil as people might think after they read Sanctuary in Steel. Would an evil man order fair trials to be held for infected zombies? I presided as judge over these trials, and if a zombie who committed crimes, such as murders and robberies, was found guilty, he was sentenced to do time or to pay for his crime with his life. If I’m so evil, why would I believe in equal rights for zombies?
Of course, I do admit I raped women on the island and tortured and mutilated defendants if they were found guilty of murder. But they deserved it. I also used the residents of the island as bait for the zombies when I tired to implement my escape from the island. Those sacrificed were burned alive in a fire that consumed Alcatraz prison. I had to escape, didn’t I? After all, which is more important? Hundreds of innocent residents or yours truly? That’s a no-brainer.
I must admit I always side with the zombies in zombie apocalypse books. Zombies are persecuted in these books by the so-called heroes, like CIA black ops agent Chad Halverson, who go around shooting zombies in the head. Who is the real hero in Sanctuary in Steel? Halverson, who shoots every zombie on sight, or me, who demands a fair trial for each and every zombie? So what if zombies tear people apart limb from limb and scarf down their brains? The zombies are infected with plague so they don’t know what they’re doing. It’s not their fault they got infected.
The way I see it, the truly evil character in Sanctuary in Steel is Chad Halverson. I know I rape, torture, and betray the residents of Alcatraz, but the only zombies I killed were ones that had committed crimes.
So, there you have it. I, the supposed villain of Sanctuary in Steel, am really the hero. We bad guys frequently get a bum rap, and, in that respect, I’m no different from my fellow villains, like Iago.
As for the scariest book I ever read, that would be David Moody’s Hater. In that book the good guys are really the bad guys, and vice versa. The reason that’s so scary is because it’s true.
Sanctuary in Steel
Black ops agent Chad Halerson of the CIA's National Clandestine Service escapes plague- and zombie-ravaged Santa Monica with dress designer Victoria Brady and sets sail up the smoldering California coast.
Along the way, Halverson and Brady rescue the idealistic Dr. Parnell, the cynical reporter Blake Reno, and the UCSB coed Brittany Pine, who is in a state of shock induced by the loss of her boyfriend to the walking dead.
Seeking sanctuary from the walking dead in Alcatraz prison, Halverson and his band of refugees discover that all is not as it seems on the island haven at the Rock.
In fact, they may have more to fear than the walking dead in the person of Alcatraz's reigning "Chose One," the charismatic proponent of law and order Jefferson Bascomb, who believes zombies have the right to a fair trial.
Bryan Cassiday writes horror books and thrillers. He wrote the Chad Halverson zombie apocalypse series, which includes "Zombie Maelstrom," "Zombie Necropolis," "Sanctuary in Steel," and "Kill Ratio."
The fifth Chad Halverson zombie thriller "Blast Shelter" is being released in November 2013. Bryan Cassiday lives in Southern California near the beach, because zombies can't swim.