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Supervolcano: All Fall Down by Harry…

Supervolcano: All Fall Down (2012)

by Harry Turtledove

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Things haven't gotten much better in the good old US of A since we last saw Colin and his family. Gas prices are on the rise, food is scarce unless it is a food that can grow well in cold weather, and the folks of California are struggling to deal with their colder and wetter climates.

The crazy thing is that as the world gets tougher the characters, except for Vanessa, have gotten a little softer, more likable. Which is why I kept going with this book and got the last one to read.

There are still problems with the writing. There is a lot of repetition from the characters. And not just retelling the same story in almost the same exact words (not with a different perspective). The characters are actually beginning to think and speak the same. There were whole sections where I had to double check that I didn't skip a page and jump to a new character because the character I had been reading said the exact, word for word, thing that the character previous had said.

The repetition kills these books. It's painful. But I'm stuck. I have to find out if anything major happens in book 3. ( )
  wendithegray | May 1, 2017 |
I read this back-to-back with the first book in the series. I didn't like the first book either but thought it might get more interesting. It didn't. I don't have too much problem with the approach, an ordinary family caught up in a disaster trying to live their lives as best they can. OK, they are not well developed characters but I'd forgive that. The impacts on the country are interesting but are a distant back drop to the family story. I'd like to understand that better. The main problem is that the books are just badly written. I have two main complaints.

It is difficult to follow the passage of time. The story follows the extended Ferguson family who, at the time of the eruption are spread across the country from Los Angeles to Maine. There are 7 story lines and the author cycles among them. The individual stories aren't told concurrently but sequentially. So we might read about how Colin is at the murder scene of the latest victim of a serial killer and then we're reading about how his oldest son is getting along in Maine at some later point. It is almost impossible to tell how much time has passed between one episode and the next. At times this is just confusing and at times it is jarring.

The other problem, which is even worst, is that Turtledove insists on telling us stuff over and over, that we already know. For example, Colin's youngest son, Marshall, is in college in the beginning of the first book. He's been changing majors in an attempt to put off graduation as long as possible because he doesn't know what he wants to do with his life. But finally, he accumulates so many credits that the school has to graduate him. Nearly every time that the story cycles around to Marshall, Turtledove tells us again that Marshall had tried to avoid graduation by changing majors. OK, we got it, the first time. By the 10th or 15th repetition of this sad story, I was sick of hearing it.

I presume that Turtledove is planning on a third book in the series, since book 2 didn't come to a conclusion as much as just stop at some arbitrary point. I seriously doubt I'll be reading it. ( )
  capewood | Dec 8, 2014 |
Harry Turtledove is one of my favorite authors... but this series? Concept is interesting and the characters are as well. But the novel? It is horrible. Repetitive and poorly written. I can't believe that Turtledove wrote this. ( )
1 vote autumnturner76 | Sep 22, 2014 |
The follow up novel to [Harry Turtledove's] [Supervolcano: Eruption] was worth the read. The continuing story of the characters as they try in their own ways to survive was enjoyable.

[Supervolcano: All Fall Down] picked up right where [Eruption] left off. In the midst of this disaster the way [Turtledove] portrays his characters not as hero's out to save the world but as humans with all their faults makes the story more believable. It even has a serial killer mystery twist within the plot.

I definitely prefer my science fiction based on real science and not super natural. That is what [Turtledove] has produced so far with the two books from the [Supervolcano] series. I like my fantasy with a good does of reality in most cases. ( )
  MsHooker | Mar 8, 2014 |
Harry Turtledove is one of my favorite authors... but this series? Concept is interesting and the characters are as well. But the novel? It is horrible. Repetitive and poorly written. I can't believe that Turtledove wrote this. ( )
  AutumnTurner | Dec 29, 2013 |
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Colin Ferguson called upstairs to his wife: "You Ready?"
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In the aftermath of the supervolcano's eruption in Yellowstone Park, North America is covered in ash. Farmlands cannot produce food. Machinery has been rendered useless. Cities are no longer habitable. And the climate across the globe grows colder every day. Former police officer Colin Ferguson's family is spread across the United States, separated by the catastrophe, and struggling to survive as the nation attempts to recover and reestablish some measure of civilization...… (more)

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