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Without Warning Hardcover – February 3, 2009
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
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A great twist on the "End of the World" theme! Label it under Thriller, Action, Suspense, Alternative History (Takes place right as we are about to enter the Gulf war) and a little science fiction.
Makes me want to read Birminghams other series involving alternative history.
The worst and best of human nature is shown, from greed and cruelty to compassion and heroism.
This is sometimes a depressing read but the book finishes with a glimmer of hope for the human race. If the right people can lead the masses of people who want to return to an organised and civilised society then the darker side of humanity can be controlled. Survival at all costs becomes a rebuild of democracy and dignity.
Told from the perspectives,of several survivors as they all try to reach some where normal or to complete their last mission.
The action sequences,are well done.
I plan on buying the second book to see how things develope.
The technique used is one much used by Harry Turtledove:
(a) Invoke a premise that stands the world as we know it on its head; and
(b) Tell stories - lots of different (and completely unrelated) ones from different people in different places - about its consequences.
In this case, an energy wave of unknown origin and bordered by a vast curtain stopping just short of Seattle on the one hand and Guantanamo Bay on the other, wipes out all of life in those parts of the USA, Canada and Mexico that are behind it. (In some ways it reminded me of the change in physical laws in S.J. Stirling's "Dies the fire"). This happens just prior to the planned invasion of Iraq, which, as can be imagined, spoils somewhat the preparations for that particular affair. And, as can also be imagined, the sudden removal from the scene of the world's major heavyweight causes all sorts of other nasty things to crawl out of the woodwork to exploit the vacuum.
The idea is no more preposterous than that of the transport of a 21st century battle fleet to the WW2 Pacific theatre, but somehow I found the story-telling more pedestrian and the characters and events less engaging than those of "Axis of Time". Indeed, I found myself reading it at least partially out of determination to try to get something more approaching my money's worth. As a result, I'll buy the other two books only if offered at a price I can't refuse.
Half way through, I plunked down the money for the second and third books, have started the second, and not been disappointed.
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