I have Thunder and Ashes, along with the second in the Twilight of the Dead series. Both of the first books of these respective series were excellent. Adkins seemed to get a little more personal with his protagonist, whereas Plague of the Dead was a more 'epic' in feel.
Haven't read either yet, other books burning my midnight candle.
But yeah, you can tell the author of 'Plague of the Dead' is a total dick. I hope he dies in a car fire.