Already cited on the floor of Congress and discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a book all Americans should read, One Second After is the story of a war scenario that could become all too terrifyingly real. Based upon a real weapon - the Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP) - which may already be in the hands of our enemies, it is a truly realistic look at the awesome power of a weapon that can destroy the entire United States, literally within one second.
This book, set in a typical American town, is a dire warning of what might be our future and our end.
©2009 William R. Forstchen; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
"[An] entertaining apocalyptic thriller....fans of such classics as Alas, Babylon and On the Beach will have a good time as Forstchen tackles the obvious and some not-so-obvious questions the apocalypse tends to raise." (Publishers Weekly)
This book is a "what if" nightmare but told in a very non-threatening way. Many doomsday books have an aura of scariness or horror as a backdrop. This book does not. It's a character and community study of what would happen to Society if all of our gadgets suddenly went off.
The story is one that is not only worth reading because it is so well-written and narrated, but because the idea of an electromagnetic pulse as a weapon is not really science fiction -- it's a real possibility. The lead character is a widowed father of two girls, retired military, living in a small Southern town and teaching at a local college. The point of view, although not first person, is through his eyes and his emotions. The human emotions and fear felt by the townspeople and others is real but not the star feature of the novel. Instead, the novel is in some ways a practical survival guide; how would food be organized, how would a town deal with non-townspeople, how would our old and our sick survive (or not). Despite the practicality aspects of the storytelling, the flow of the novel never fails to invite the reader (listener) to care about the people.
This is not a "how to survive the zombie apocalypse" guide -- far from it. It's a story about people, dealing with day-to-day details of a lifestyle that they never expected and for which they are unprepared. There is sadness and joy. Mostly, there is a real story to be told.
Not if it's like this. A slow lingering death of a novel. A great concept that gets bogged down by details, and explanations.
Most interesting? I could turn off the recording. Least? I'd have to listen to more.
He did fine, just a slow, tragic read.
Too many to remove. Get rid of the diatribe of wasted words, paragraphs. Less is more. In THIS case, a LOT less.
I cannot recommend this read. Well, if it's read this or get a root canal...no, get the root canal.
After 9/11 Americans have been made aware of the many different ways the United States could be attacked and how these attacks could disrupt our way of life. One Second After describes in chilling detail how one such method could be carried out and how in a blink of an eye our way life, culture and nation would change forever. What makes this book so frightening is how easy it would be for such an attack to occur and what the result would mean for my family's future. It is simply too scary to think about!
An eye opening, "page turner" listen about what could happen if Americans had to survive long term without electricity or technology, the impacts to our society and the horrible choices that might have to be made. It also illustrates the current vulnerability of our electrical grid and technology to electro magnetic pulse weapons.
It can be a real downer so I wouldn't recommend it if you are in a vulnerable place in your life.
At the end I wanted to run out and buy a pre-1980s car, build a home underground, buy a generator, and store away enough supplies for 5 years. Logic prevailed and I called my Senator/Congressman and asked them if they understood how vulnerable we are. If enough Americans start asking the question - we may collectively address the risk before it is too late. Although I wouldn't argue against buying extra canned food, fuel, bottled water and storing it away. If someone offered me a great deal on a pre-1980s Volvo 240................
This book scared me. I did my own research to see how plausible this kind of attack was. I found that it could be very easily accomplished. The story was compelling and I could not stop listening. It smacks the rose colored glasses off your face. I would highly recommend this book.
This book has left me haunted by the possibility that this could really happen to us and will leave you wondering how you would fare. I disagree with many of the previous reviews and think this is a must read. The narrator does a brilliant job with the different characters. In fact, there wasn't anything I didn't like about this book. Get it.
I found this audiobook absolutely riveting and terrifying. I couldn't stop listening to it, and lost lots of sleep as a result. The narrator absolutely brought this book to life, and did a great job conveying the emotions of the characters. Now that I have finished the audibook, I can't stop thinking of how horrific this potential scenario would be.
Dont let the narrarator ruin your listening to a good book! I read waaay to many "critics" who go on and on about a bad narrarater, so what!
excellent book on disaster preparedness set in a fictional near future, sort of red dawn, road warrior and the postman movies in one book, im sure this will be made into a movie, a realistic view of what will, not maybe, happen should our Great Country devolve into anarchy from war, or similar catastrophe and i dont mean global warming, but a real crisis
This was my FIRST audiobook. I found it interesting up to a point, but then the story just dragged on and on and on...
I think the author has, as other reviewers pointed out, a horribly Norman Rockwellesque view of ideal America. So much so that the story becomes totally unbelievable. Not from the breaking-down-of-social-order perspective, but from the this-is-every-middle-aged-cialis-chomping-toupee-wearing-white-dude's-wet-dream perspective.
I more than once expected Washington Parker to shout: 'Aw weeza gonna nee summoah souljaz, massa...I mean uh cullnul suh!" Really? Really???
According to the author, everyone thinks there is ample food up in them thar mountains. Otherwise he wouldnt have repeated it 3000 times.
Im going to now listen to Earth Abides. If it is anything like One Second After, Im going to dig up Ward Cleaver and punch him in the throat.
I really enjoyed this books concept however it did get bogged down in the details. It has so many characters that I often was lost thinking; wait a minute who was that again? It was very thought provoking and makes you wonder about this possible future. At least it made me think what if? Not necessarily go out and buy up a ton of can foods and bullets or anything but wow how would our world work if all our networks broke down? The book is good over all and is a nice long read for a long trip or something but it does get cumbersome in the middle and the end is just sad, no happy ending to tie everything up which I guess is realistic but it stinks! LOL Good read over all and I would recommend it.
"Not my genre, but it grabbed me"
I reached the end!
Can't think of anything. It's a very realistic, plausible, post-apocolyptic
Brilliant. Disconcerting. Thought provoking. Made my husband read it!
It's not great literature, but I did find it compelling.
Like is not really the word, but I appreciated the realism of what you would have to do if all modern facilities disappeared. For example, the fact that healthy adults can die from a scratch that becomes infected. Burying the bodies and rationing food. And the fact that you can't be sure anything will ever get better.
Excellent reading from Joe Barrett. Different voices and a beautiful delivery generally. I care very much about the narrator of audiobooks and he is top rate.
I thought the moment with the dog was slightly contrived.
I liked the actual writing more than I thought I would, as I was expecting something more didactic. However, I didn't care about the whole EMP idea, as I think the principle is the same whatever is the problem that derails modern civilisation - here it was a nuclear bomb, but it could just as well have been sunspots or a computer virus. So if there was a political message, I didn't care. Also, not being an American, I was unmoved by the whole appeal to US patriotism theme. Though I was pleased it was the British who came to their aid in the end!
"Assumptions and American Superpatriotism"
I'm afraid my opinion of this book differs greatly from so many of the other reviewers - I found myself annoyed throughout. The author obviously did his research on certain topics, but others he completely neglected and important parts of the story were based on weak assumptions. That added to the intense American nationalism and Deep South Republican attitude just left me shaking my head. I'll be taking Audible up on their lovely return policy and this is the first book I'll ever have returned based on pure dislike. The only good thing I can say for it is the narrator was fine.
"A gripping listen..."
This was my first EMP novel and a very enjoyable listen. Well written with 0 standout mistakes/issues/inconsistencies. Apparently there is a second novel in the pipeline and I will definitely be looking out for it!
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