While dated in some respects, if seen as the "period piece" that it essentially is, it holds up well. Much more enjoyable than the "mainstream" sci-fi that has been recommended to me.
As I was explaining to a colleague: the book leads you into thoughts of how you would cope with such calamities, which makes for interesting thoughts that last well beyond the reading of the book.
The audio is excellent, and just makes the wonderful words of Pat Frank come to life. I really enjoy Will Patton as a narrator and actor.
Needing salt, and remembering that his ancestor had the same problem.
This was a great book when it was published, and expressed so well the fears of the times. Here we are in 2013 and the same fears are facing us. We can learn valuable lessons from these characters.
It was the second time I have read this book. The first time to listen. So as you can imagine the third time is the charm. I enjoyed it because it allows you to imagine everyday people can survive almost anything. It showed that people need not break down into murderous hoards to do so. This book is about a different place and time, written in the 1950's, when nuclear bombs and WWWIII was the biggest fear. It also showed how many things we take for granted in our every day living. It centers on one family and one small town. Like any small town there is a large diversity of people and all handle the situation just a little bit differently.
You feel you actually are there with the characters as events unfold. There is an underlying optimism and absence of panic which I believe would dominate the emotions of people subjected to such a tragedy.
The isolation of Fort Repose. The romantic feelings of characters frequently referred to in the book.
Can't describe it. He's good.
Be more careful in buying dystopian books. I really liked 1984 but not this.
Don't get it if you want a gripping "can't put it down " read. It's so-so, that's all.
I have always loved to read, and now I really enjoy listening to my books as well!!
Alas, Babylon is a wonderful book. It is post-apocalyptic, but not horrific in any way. It is a simple story of survival, with the characters using wit, common sense and creativity to survive on their own. Will Patton was a perfect choice for the narrator, and he did a great job.
I was truly shocked to find that this book was published in 1959!! It seemed too modern and timely (minus the digital gadgets of today)!
I highly recommend this audiobook--you will not be disappointed!!
I had low expectations. Mostly because of the age of this novel. Cold war/nuclear attack so ancient history! But, it was FANTASTIC. All of what they went through we will go through with either economic meltdown/pandemic/name-your-event.
Also, got some great tips- like the importance of salt!
One Second After
Didn't get in the way at all, really liked it.
You will NOT be disappointed (well, unless you like blood and guts and lots of gratuitous violence). It's very professionally done. Well written.
This is not just a post-apocalyptic story taking place after the nuclear bombing of the United States, but also a bit of a pre-apocalyptic story, which is interesting....we actually follow the story of the characters as they discover that most of the country around them suddenly disappeared in the flash of light and sound. How suddenly a clerk must tell a customer trying to send a telegram that it can't be delivered because "Jacksonville doesn't seem to be there anymore".
In spite of some sexism and racially-insensitive language (this was written in 1959, so it is temporally appropriate), the story holds up exceedingly well over time. It takes place in a little town in Florida that somehow got spared the nuclear bombs and fall out, and how the surviving residents of the town manage to live through the loss of money, fuel, supplies, electricity, food, drugs, technology, and governance.......Using their combined resources (and information from the library) they were able to create their own management strategies,including trading, hunting, a militia, home schooling, home made soap and alcohol, and many more discoveries.
This was one of the few audiobooks I really didn't want to put down. I would have given 5 stars to the narration of Will Patton, except there were times he seemed sloppy in his reading to allow extraneous sounds; easily overlooked because the rest of the narration was so good - I was almost in tears sometimes - but enough that I gave it only 4 stars. This was recorded 3 years ago, and when I listen to newer narrations of his, he seems to have improved in that regard.
The overall view was from the 60 perspective obviously. The main character felt his life was ok, post nuc war, as long as there was a woman in the kitchen, life was bearable.
Wow. I loved this book, thought about it for weeks and many books later. The story just stayed with me (in a good way). Characters are well developed and Patton's narration is perfect. I had this book in my library for several months before I got around to it, wish I hadn't waited so long. The story detailed life after an apocalyptic event without getting bogged down in the details (nor was it lacking any depth). Many, many books and months later I still think to my self Alaaaas Babylon. Recommend.
Fantastic book, great narration! Inevitably, the book ends and you find yourself wanting more!
Will Patton never fails to bring the book to life. I am often hesitant to recommend books narrated by Patton because I'm not sure people will enjoy the book without Patton's superb ability to bring characters to life. However, in this case, I'm certain the book would hold up on its own. Without losing depth, Frank's precise descriptions and likable characters keep the story focused and prevent the book from lagging.
Being born in the 80s, I never really experienced the cold war, and am always amazed when I discover bomb shelters in houses and when my mom talks about doing drills when she was younger. This definitely made me understand the magnitude of the nuclear war threat back then and how easily it could have been to trigger disaster.
It is amazing how easily the topics relates to modern day life, especially after being in NYC without power during Sandy for three days before high tailing it to my parents generator-powered house. I learned some useful information and definitely updated my 'survival' pack to include some items I would have never thought of.