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Publisher's Summary

In a small North Carolina town, one man struggles to save his family after America loses a war that will send it back to the Dark Ages.

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.

Critic Reviews

"[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)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    10,089
  • 4 Stars
    4,274
  • 3 Stars
    1,444
  • 2 Stars
    491
  • 1 Stars
    376

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    8,774
  • 4 Stars
    3,557
  • 3 Stars
    1,091
  • 2 Stars
    232
  • 1 Stars
    146

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    8,876
  • 4 Stars
    3,089
  • 3 Stars
    1,143
  • 2 Stars
    390
  • 1 Stars
    328
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

excellent book!

Excellent book. Really gives an insight into how an EMP attack would affect the country. Great story, good characters, and good prepper information.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Impactful and scary

This was probably one of the most fascinating and impactful books I've ever read. Though I definitely had nightmares and it was hard to stomach at times. I felt the story was engaging, and generally the characters relatable. If anything, it got me to thinking what I would in case of an emergency of any size. Well worth the listen!

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Okkin
  • California
  • 08-05-16

Nothing happens...

What would have made One Second After better?

Anything exciting happening.

Any additional comments?

Book starts; power goes out... Nothings happening... nothings happening... nothings happening... Something starts to happen near the end - the author skips over it and fills the reader in on the main points after the event. The book was a huge letdown. A shame, because its a great idea for a story, it was just so poorly executed. Certain things didn't add up either, for example (I'll edit for spoilers) if 80% of something disappears, you would expect only 2 out of every 10 of that thing to be left - which doesn't seem to be the case for the main character.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Ollie
  • Westbury, NY, United States
  • 08-05-16

Very Realistic

If you could sum up One Second After in three words, what would they be?

terrifying , realistic, thought provoking

Who was your favorite character and why?

John Matherson

What does Joe Barrett bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

John Barrett's narration is suburb. He takes the listener on a journey into how you would react in the event of a real EMT (electromagnetic pulse) event.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Cry

Any additional comments?

This book made me think about how I would survive in such a disaster, and made me grateful for time to prepare for this inevitable event.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent!

I was truly immersed in the story. I even cried for the main character's losses.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Read!

Makes you wonder how you would survive (or if you'd want to) in the wake of an EMP attack.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Sobering

This sobering book is definitely worth reading. The consequences of an EMP attack could be truly catastrophic as this book so vividly details.

The book starts slow but quickly picks up. Give it a chance.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Ethosian
  • Earthquake Zone, California
  • 07-30-16

Polemical theater - convincing in some ways

First, let me say this "FARADAY CAGE".

The book is about the impact of an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) attack that fries all the electronics in America. It makes a strong enough case that I'm buying or building a Faraday cage, which I will use to protect some of the electronic devices I have in our earthquake emergency bags. The threat is made very real in the story and the forward by Dick Cheney and the afterward by a military man make the threat very credible.

The problem with the book is that the underlying motivation seems to be to stimulate Americans to spend more on "defense." There are lots of references to the political resistance to spending the "necessary" hundreds of billions of dollars that it would take to harden American electronics to prevent this nightmare.

The story itself is also pretty pedestrian. It's ok, but not that well written. It's hard for me to see why its rating is so high.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Required Reading

There are many books we all know or have heard of thanks to public school's English or literature classes. This book should be required reading in our public schools.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Interesting insight into a possible threat.

Good bare bones insight of this possible real life scenario. Makes one think if anything has been done to prepare for an actual event such as this.