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Supervolcano: Eruption Mass Market Paperback – December 4, 2012

190 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Supervolcano Series

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Editorial Reviews


“Turtledove creates a whole intricate biosphere with a somehow breathable atmosphere.”—The New Yorker

“Well written and enjoyable…Fans of post-apocalyptic stories should enjoy this one.”—SF Revu

“Entertaining…Turtledove writes a fabulous near future survival tale.”—Genre Go Round Reviews

“A terrifying future of the United States that seems within the realm of possibility.”—Winnipeg Free Press

About the Author

Harry Turtledove, the New York Times bestselling author of numerous novels, has a PhD in Byzantine history. Nominated for the Nebula Award, he has won the Hugo, Sidewise, and John Esthen Cook Awards.

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Roc; Reprint edition (December 4, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451413660
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451413666
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (190 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #277,798 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Harry Turtledove is the award-winning author of the alternate-history works The Man with the Iron Heart; The Guns of the South; How Few Remain (winner of the Sidewise Award for Best Novel); the Worldwar saga: In the Balance, Tilting the Balance, Upsetting the Balance, and Striking the Balance; the Colonization books: Second Contact, Down to Earth, and Aftershocks; the Great War epics: American Front, Walk in Hell, and Breakthroughs; the American Empire novels: Blood & Iron, The Center Cannot Hold, and Victorious Opposition; and the Settling Accounts series: Return Engagement, Drive to the East, The Grapple, and In at the Death. Turtledove is married to fellow novelist Laura Frankos. They have three daughters: Alison, Rachel, and Rebecca.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

140 of 156 people found the following review helpful By DANIEL SHERMAN on December 8, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Allow me to preface this dour review by saying that I truly love Turtledove's writing - I have read several of his alt history books and he is amazing. I am also a die-hard fan of the post apocalypse genre. I figured that this was an easy win - high expectations.

It was like a seven year old finding out that Santa had murdered the Tooth fairy on his way to an Easter bunny dinner. To put it frankly - this book sucked.
You got to know the characters in turtledove fashion. Good build up, and then.....nothing. There it is - in what should be the end of civilization as we know it; the apocalypse takes back seat in the story to the characters personal lives. Getting married, having kids, deciding what to eat at the restraints in downtown LA. There is no real food shortage, little disruption of life in the largest cities. And no reason to buy this overpriced book.

If you have already purchased this book and cannot return it, hire a blind person to tear out the pages and set them on fire.
If Turtledove should return to alt history I would give the book a fair shot - if he attempts to climb onto the post-apocalypse bandwagon again I will save my money.
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62 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Yours truly, on December 9, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I wanted to like this book. It's been on my wish list for months. I thought I was in for a grand apocalyptic story with some interesting science.

My problem with the book was that a pretty big percentage of the people in the story were toxic to be around - selfish, small-minded, bitter and petty people that I'd avoid like the plague in real life. So, reading about them was no joy. I started to hope a few of them wouldn't survive. Colin, Kelly and Bryce were better than the others, but it was hard to care even about them.

The second problem was the science. I have a BS in geophysics (Geophysics involves remote sensing, so earthquakes, volcanoes and oil exploration is its territory, because you can't climb down into 100 mile deep faults or subduction zones). Everything I've learned tells me that volcanoes are extremely predictable, almost to the hour they'll erupt. That's why Mt. St. Helen's could be evacuated, well before it blew. There are indicators on the surface. Then there's the hype over relatively insignificant quakes. Yellow journalism paints even small earthquakes as sensational news. But, a group of geologists out in the wild would never panic over a 7.0 earthquake, much less a 5.0! Earthquakes, despite sensationalism, aren't people killers - they're property destroyers. Sometimes, in destruction of property, people are killed. Falling glass or power lines, liquifacting subdivisions, cardboard construction in third world countries? You betcha - people get killed in these situations. But, being out in a natural setting, away from property damage considerations, earthquakes just aren't very hazardous. A 7.
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44 of 50 people found the following review helpful By A reader VINE VOICE on December 9, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Harry Turtledove's Supervolcano: Eruption is a disappointment. Like most Turtledove books, it spends a lot of time keeping up to date on what the characters are doing. But unlike most Turtledove books there is almost no action, no Supervolcano: Eruption mayhem. The eruption happens in passing and then everyone just gets on with it. No one seems particularly bothered. The book is long winded and just not worth the time that it takes to read.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By John A. M. Darnell on February 16, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I started out utterly engrossed in this book. I couldn't get back to it soon enough when I had to put it down. I agree with a few reviewers who talk about the toxicity of the characters. I considered penning a letter to Turtledove asking him if there were any decent persons in his world view, nevertheless, I found myself liking some of these characters despite their massive flaws. (How does a cop's kids so easily fall into marijuana addiction anyway?)

(As an aside, I also got a kick out of the fact that Colin Ferguson, star of Eureka was also the cop in this book. A coincidence? Probably as likely as the character Dr. Janet Fraiser appearing in Stargate SG1, and then after her death on the show, appearing in a Dave Weber novel.)

And then the thing we were waiting for occurred; Yellowstone blew up (if anyone considers this a spoiler, then all I can say is "give me a break!"). The first few chapters after that were engrossing, but as the book moved ponderously away from that cataclysm, I found myself wanting to say, "c'mon Harry! Resolve some stuff!" He never really does. When the book ends (now here come some spoilers) someone is still pregnant, someone else is trapped in a refugee camp with no likelihood of getting out even though she's got family who would seem to care, someone else is trapped in Maine during the most ferocious winter the area has ever known, a serial strangler is still strangling, and the world is slowly going to Hell in a handbasket and no one seems to care. There's no attempt made to figure out solutions or act like one is coping. Life as usual goes on until the end of the book except for the loss of a few staples and a few luxuries.

Be advised, when Yellowstone really does blow its top, it will be bad! Very, very bad!
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