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Home spun post apocolypse survival!

  • Mar 3, 2008
I am a sucker for a good post apocolypse novel, and this more than satisfied my need for a story of survival against the odds. This is not a new novel as such - the author tells us in the introduction that it was written in the 80s, at the tail end of the cold war, when perhaps global nuclear anihilation was possible (and we do have to ask ourselves has this threat passed us by?), but it is still a fresh and intelligent novel nonetheless.

The plot is simple enough - a family who has decided to return to their farming roots are relatively untouched by the problems of global destruction, and are well placed to continue with the sort of down-to-earth pragmatism that you would expect from such practical folk. They form a small community with other locals they have rescued, particularly the elderly and the young - with the former providing many useful skills and knowledge that had been for the most part lost to the modern world. They survive very nicely, fighting off the occasional violent raids of a group of people who had lived ostracised from society prior to the bombs, and who raid causing indiscriminate death and destruction.

This is an entertaining and engaging novel for the genre; if I give it 4 stars instead of 5, it is because the "home spun" style of storytelling means that we don't get any insight into what has happened outside of the small community, nor any into what is driving the evil doers who rampage without seeming thought or logic.

However, it is very entertaining and well written, and I recommend it not just for fans of the genre, but for those who enjoy a tale which celebrates skills and community perhaps now gone.

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Lesley West ()
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About this book


When the bombs fell and Western civilization ended, the residents of Hickory Hollow, Texas, scarcely noticed the difference. They were already used to fending for themselves--growing their own food, helping their neighbors survive, keeping their rural life going, much as before.

But when the Ungers--a band of renegade thieves, murderers, and ne'er-do-wells--began raiding the nearby plots, looting and killing everyone in sight, it was time to take action!

"I was reminded constantly of George R. Stewart's classic post-holocaust novel, Earth Abides. The gentle rhythms of country existence, the sense that the world will continue (with or without us), the joy of living close to the earth, the nature of community itself, all combine for a poignant tale celebrating the best of what it means to be human. In Mayhar's perceptive eyes, the World Begins in Hickory Hollow." --Robert Reginald.

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ISBN-10: 1434400247
ISBN-13: 978-1434400246
Author: Ardath Mayhar
Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: Wildside Press
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