The End: A Postapocalyptic Novel (The New World Series)
by G. Michael Hopf
by G. Michael Hopf
- File Size: 1901 KB
- Print Length: 408 pages
- Publisher: Plume (October 30, 2013)
- Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0
Publication Date: October 30, 2013
What would you do to survive?
Young Gordon Van Zandt valued duty and loyalty to country above all, so after 9/11, he dropped out of college and joined the Marine Corps. This idealism vanished one fateful day in a war-torn city in Iraq. Ten years later, he is still struggling with the ghosts of his past when a new reality is thrust upon him and his family: North America, Europe and the Far East have all suffered a devastating Super-EMP attack, which causes catastrophic damage to the nation’s power grid and essential infrastructures. Everything from cell phones to cars to computers cease to function, putting society at a standstill.
With civilization in chaos, Gordon must fight for the limited and fast dwindling resources. He knows survival requires action and cooperation with his neighbors, but as the days wear on, so does all sense of civility within his community—and so he must make some of the most difficult decisions of his life in order to ensure his family’s safety.
Gordon Van Zandt loved his country and served proudly as a Marine in Iraq until an unfortunate incident caused him to be attacked by the press and some political powers as being too zealous. They never followed up to announce when his actions were determined justified. Gordon left the service with a pretty harsh attitude towards terrorists, the media and his own government.
The US has been experiencing terrorist attacks on home soil and when power goes out in his own neighborhood, halting everything electrical, Gordon is quick to recognize this is more than a short-term black out. He immediately begins to forage for water, food, weapons and other survival supplies and allies to protect his family and other like-minded families. Some of the leaders in his community believe he is overreacting and take an opposing stance, dividing the neighbors. Gordon will do whatever is required to protect his wife, Samantha, their seven year old son, Hunter, and five year old daughter, Haley. It is not always pretty or 'civil' in a society without authority to keep order.
The story also shares views from two other groups as they cope with the chaos. Gordon’s brother, Sebastian, is a Marine sniper whose troop is pulled out of Afghanistan. They have been directed to Washington, DC to clean up after a nuclear bomb wiped out the capitol and most of the government’s political leaders. Several of the troops grumble about going on a wasted mission when they are worried about their own families. Their commander, Lieutenant Colonel Barone, decides they are right and he goes rogue with his troops and ships to head for their home base in California.
The Speaker of the House, Brad Conner, was away in Oklahoma City to see his son in the hospital. He steals an old truck, collects his aide and body guards and heads to Tinker Air Force base. There he discovers he is to be sworn in as the new President. He must assume the responsibilities of confronting the enemies who have wrought destruction as well as figuring out how to deal with a nation of people who have been dependent on government leadership, as they sink quickly into a brutal lack of civility as they seek to survive.
The story starts in the year 2066 in the Republic of Cascadia where a news journalist is interviewing Haley. The author then shares the events that occurred fifty-two years before, alternating between the three primary character settings, Gordon and his family, Sebastian as the ships travel home, and Brad Conner as he begins to deal with leadership issues. I really liked the three varying perspectives and I was impressed how the author portrays real examples of chaos such as the breakdown of government authority and control, hospital power failure, the lack of medicines for patients at home, the lack of general preparedness to survive when there are limited resources and no help coming.
There was some very rough language which was consistent with some of the situations. At times Gordon displays a terrible temper but I could see that (not excuse it) with his intensity and the extreme tensions surrounding him. It made his character 'humanly flawed'.
The story is written with good action, tension and pacing that kept me engaged waiting to learn what happens next. I was so engrossed that I was surprised when I hit the ending and knew I would want the next book right away. I recommend this to those who like action stories and especially to fans of the post-apocalyptic genre.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~An understated thought from Gordon:
He quickly thought to himself about how as a society we all had become dependent and interdependent on our system and the comforts of having easily available electricity. Location 701.
I received this title through NetGalley.