Saturday, January 14, 2012


I have watched a program on the supervolcano which is situated under Yellowstone and the idea of it erupting scared the you know what out of me! Also the fact that I visited Yellowstone a number of years ago, my goodness, it could have erupted while I was there (okay maybe that's a LITTLE too dramatic). Seriously, a supervolcano erupting is horrifying.

Well Mike Mullin has done an excellent job in scaring me silly. His description of the eruption as far away as Iowa and its aftermath are terrifying. The research he did in order to write what took place did the story justice. What people will likely have to face is horrifying and something for which no one will probably be prepared.

Alex is alone, his family has gone for visit, when the eruption takes place. It is explosions, fire. buildings collapsing, having no power and pure terror. When Alex regains consciousness, he is hurt and practically deaf. He has no idea what has happen and no way to find out what just went on. He is left wondering if his family is alive.

Alex is 16 and a little cocky. But he is still scared enough to try to find out if anyone else survived. For a short time he finds shelter with neighbors, but after they are viciously assaulted, Alex decides it is time to search for his family.

The majority of the book is the tale of how Alex manages to stay a live. He is badly injured, food, water and shelter are constant concerns. Alex's determination to survive and find his family is admirable. It is also interesting to see how much he changes and the level of maturity he masters in the aftermath of this disaster. The people he meets on his journey run the gamut of types, heroic to slimebags.

It was difficult reading the book, since there were few uplifting things that happened to Alex. I could only hope I would be creative enough to survive more than a few hours. This eruption is inevitable, however, it probably won't happen during our lifetime (we hope). Still we have had too many recent instances of natural catastrophes where people had to find ways to stay alive until help came. As you read, think about what you would do and how would you manage to stay alive.

The sequel will be coming out in October of this year. I am looking forward to seeing whether Alex will be able to keep himself and other survivors alive long enough to have a future. In the meantime, I will be stockpiling MREs, blankets, aspirin, my favorite books..........

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