Tag: survivalist fiction

The Last-Book Review

The Last by Hanna Jameson has a mix of mystery combined with the psychological aspects of a nuclear war. The protagonist is Dr. Jon Keller and the premise of The Last is that these events are captured in his journal. Keller, a historian, believes he is describing the end of the world. This writing ploy utilized by the author works.

Mystery of The Last

During the process of survival, the small group of humans stranded high in the Alps comes across a dead body of a small child. Cause of death is unknown, but time of death approximates the nuclear attacks across the globe. Keller is determined to find the truth.

His obsession with the mystery combined with the stress of surviving the nuclear blast create a study in psychology. Keller and other survivors handle the events in a variety of ways. Hanna Jameson has written a book that straddles genre lines. The survivalist theme focuses more on mental health and less on day-to-day needs. She accomplishes this with her setting, a high end Switzerland resort.

Thus, The Last offers much to readers not focused on end of the world scenarios. The cast of characters is diverse. Keller interviews each for his journal. Again an excellent format by author Jameson. The reader connects with the characters. The mystery slowly unravels as the individual back stories are revealed.

Realism

For the most part the book is plausible. The fears of the characters, including those with visions of ghosts, ring true. Communication after the blast continues via social networks. It seems even a series of nuclear attacks cannot defeat the Internet.

However, there were a few points requiring a suspension of belief. This includes the end scenario. A functioning city is not far from the hotel. Here the murderer is himself murdered. The journal entries may be used to justify the actions. But Keller does not write the final entry. His refusal to address a rotten tooth has endangered his life.

The Last by Hanna Jameson is entertaining. The book would be great read for a beach or mountain vacation. The psychological components are intriguing. While there are some violent scenes, much of the book focuses on the mental challenges individuals face after a world changing event.

 

Day After Disaster Book Review

Day After Disaster

My reading level dropped off a bit this week due to concerns over Hurricane Irma, but I did manage to squeeze in an online book, Day After Disaster, by Sara F. Hathaway. In the old days the genre this novel represents would have been called futuristic. But the book world is constantly evolving so I would categorize it as survivalist, a genre I do not have much experience with.

Day After Disaster also falls into the self-published category. My previous experience with books produced in this manner has been through a personal connection with the author. This is not the case with Sara F. Hathaway. Not only did I not know her, but I had not even heard of her before reading Day After Disaster.

Plot

A natural disaster which triggers an environmental disaster opens the book. Hathaway tackles the tough approach of a single character present for the early chapters. The lead character, Erika is trapped in a wine cellar for an undetermined length of time. As with many authors new to me, I had a tough time absorbing the writing style at first. However, I kept reading and I started bonding with the character by Chapter 5 when other characters physically appear in the story.

The plot is well paced to the point where I could see Day After Disaster as an action adventure movie. Erika is determined to reach home and family. She encounters friend and foe on the journey. The book does tilt in favor of those who not only support themselves but add value to the Earth. For example, the first humans she has contact with after the disaster are a farm family. They are supportive.

Throughout the story, the good vs. evil theme is evident. Hathaway does a good job introducing gray areas into that age-old conflict. The characters are forced to make life or death decisions on a different level than we find in our current society.
The social dynamics presented in this book are appealing. Families make up quite a few of the characters and their interactions add to the story. Stewardship of land and people underscore the theme.

Self-Publishing

As I stated earlier Day After Disaster is a self-published novel. This means an author pays a company to print the book. I am not very familiar with this process so I did a bit of research. Hathaway originally used Tate Publishing to produce her product. Another company is Dog Ear. Amazon also has a self-publish company, Kindle Direct Publishing. The company does not charge to load manuscripts onto Kindle.

Self-publishing can range from a simple service fee where the company just prints the book, to full service including editing. The books can be sold online through Amazon as well as traditional bookstores such as Barnes and Noble. E-books sometimes are utilized to get the author public at no or a low-cost to the reader. Often the authors have their own website which also sells the books. You can reach Sara F. Hathaway’s site by clicking here.

Thus, modern technology allows individuals the ability to create and sell many products including stories without large start-up costs. Today’s technology allows us to accomplish much, but at what cost? Unfortunately, we do not know what the ramifications will be. Authors such as Hathaway make us pause and think. Will our use (and misuse) of the land lead to a scenario such as the one presented in Day After Disaster.
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