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Darkness Reigns: Fight for Survival Kindle Edition
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A lot of things bothered me about the book such as the attitude of the main characters. If you are accustomed to reading technical manuals, you will probably be comfortable with this book since it reads like a technical manual trying to be a novel. Mr. Franck obviously knows his subjects and is obviously an expert in many areas, however in my opinion a novel works best when I learn something by "accident" rather than having it explained to me in detail if I have no interest in it.
There are only two reasons this book would be classified fiction. First the event hasn't happened yet. Second there is a small story line complete with settings, characters, and climax points. Everything else reads like a technical manual.
I am the co-founder of a Prepping website, and focus most of my free time towards prepping. I too try to share as much knowledge as Mr. Donald Franck with the Preparedness community. The truth is, is that it is hard to tell someone everything they need to know. It is also difficult to relate with everyone's financial and regional situations. What is most complicated, and what I feel Mr. Franck did an excellent job at doing, was covering a wide range of topics in an easily digestible manner (Google: Prepping Matrix). What I really like about this book is that it makes you think about all of the necessities that you would need if this type of event would occur. Too often, authors and websites tout the Bug Out Bag concept and cool gun accessories, so that they can hook new Preppers into purchasing camping gear and gadgets that they plan on using during a grid-down scenario. Mr. Franck instead demonstrates what is needed for a true retreat; the countless amount of supplies that would really be needed, and the need for alternative energy and/or large fuel reserves.
For instance, open up any prepping guide and you will find the Bug Out Bag as the central focus of the text. Instead, Mr. Franck focuses on the tools and the hardware (chainsaws, sawmills, nuts, bolts, screws, nails, PVC, metal, etc.) that would be very difficult to come by if something ever happened. Most of which could be put into a Bug Out Bag; really how many of us have 100's of feet of PVC and plastic sheeting to erect an impromptu greenhouse? A very close second, is the need for batteries and alternative energy systems. Most of the Preppers I know do not have the basic supplies (food and water collection/filtration), let alone what would be required to provide a basic amount of power needed, or the tools and supplies required to manufacture and fix things.
The development of the characters is also unique, but maybe presented in a way only true Preppers can understand. I too enjoyed the story line of the two families getting to their Bug Out location. It is a wake up call for those that live in cities, such as myself. But what I found most interesting was the development of the characters at the retreat, especially once they started introducing non-core members to the group. Specifically, how the new parties did not always agree with the rules of the retreat, and how they were dealt with.
What I liked most about the book was the repeated references to the "Takers," which I feel will be the majority of Americans. While the Preparedness movement is growing, too many people will be dependent upon the government and handouts from those of us that have prepared. The simple truth, and what Mr. Franck came back to time and time again, is that most of you will be turned back; nothing is given for free.
To the author: Thanks for the book. I look forward to the continuation of this story. I can deal with the grammatical errors; I just want a new outlook on something that I have dedicated my life to.
Being somewhat a firearms enthusiast, and opinionated critic, I found it a little humorous that a Mr. Frank pointed out several times that the AK-47 or SKS 7.62x39 round is such a devastating combat round. In my opinion, It's a good basic man stopper under 300 yards, but would never penetrate a log fortification of more than 4-6 inches in diameter...unless we are speaking of a very soft wood, and steel core bullets. A properly filled sandbag stops a standard 123 gr. lead core bullet dead at fairly close range. Most cheap rounds being marketed in bulk of this caliber are often hollow point bullets of this caliber, which limits penetration greatly at any range.
The Franck's however do a good job in their character development on lead characters, and they do provide many valuable basic survival tips, to the novice outdoorsman.
In the second book of the series, I kept wondering why the main character, while trying to make his way home after the chopper crash, did not try to ambush the vengeful father character who tracked him for weeks.
However, This is an interesting series and I am still looking forward to reading the rest of them.
Again I like the storyline but it almost seems like the author never read back through his own work, reading the words, structure and punctuation as written. Please have someone proofread and suggest edits.
I'll likely get the sequel and just hope it has had some kind of clean-up already done.