The thrilling follow-up to the New York Times bestselling novel One Second AfterMonths before publication, William R. While I enjoyed the first book quite a bit more (and I encourage you to read it first if you've not yet done so), I do feel it a bit unfair to rate this book as inferior to the first, even if only slightly.They are different types of books, after all. After having blown through the book in about a day, I figure I'll bang out the review while the story is fresh in my mind. A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies.Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second. One Year After is the thrilling follow-up to that smash hit.The story picks up a year after One Second After ends, two years since the detonation of nuclear weapons above the United States brought America to its knees.

Yes, there's a strong message delivered, but this book is indeed successful based on the ride on which it takes the reader, and by the white knuckles it will give you as you reach the climactic scenes. After suffering starvation, war, and countless deaths, the survivors of Black Mountain, North Carolina, are beginning to piece back together the technologies they had once taken for granted: electricity, radio communications, and medications. It is a very realistic and gripping account of one community's desperate attempts to not only survive, but to rebuild and thrive.
Much, perhaps most, of the action happens "off screen," including the deaths of all but one of the major characters. Rather than showing us the hoards of refugees storming the city gates or the plague wiping hundreds out within a month, it's discussed in the past tense at a meeting of city leaders amid lengthy asides about the main character either thinking about smoking or lighting one up.

And having once begun to fight, by again focussing on trying to help our fellow man, we will make the fighting as brief as we can, and not lose our humanity.I recommend this book highly. The depth of the grimness is the only reason it doesn't get one star, but I could change my mind and lower it.

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