Once you read this review and get excited about reading all of G. Michael Hopf’s dystopian “The New World Series” – Sanctuary is the newest book – put the books in your Amazon cart or on your wishlist, enter our contest to win the entire series (at the end of this review), then sit back and wait. If you’re the winner, empty out that cart and start reading! If not, well you still have an excellent series waiting for you!
The author is a former Marine and has researched what the effects of an EMP would be on America. According to Penguin Press, these books are his way of bringing “awareness to this real threat.”
If you’d like to listen to his explanation of how he developed this book series, listen to Lisa Bedford’s interview with author G. Michael Hopf here.
Would you survive a living nightmare?
A time travel machine has been invented, and I hope that no one ever uses it because there is a living nightmare on the other side, and that nightmare is the setting of G. Michael Hopf’s New World Series. That time machine is an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) that could send us all back to the lifestyle of the 1800’s and a life without electricity by destroying (overloading) all our electronics so they no longer work. This includes the electrical grid itself.
As the book series begins, Washington, D.C. is destroyed by a nuclear attack. At the same time, a Super EMP detonates over the Midwest, leaving only Alaska and Hawaii with power in the entire U.S. At first, most people sit around just thinking the power has gone out and will come back on shortly. A few people wonder why their phones and cars aren’t working either. (Older model cars work, but cars built from roughly 1980 on are increasingly chock full of electronics that an EMP would destroy.)
People who see planes fall from the skies realize something bigger has happened. One of those people is Gordon Van Zandt, a former Marine who was out for a morning run in San Diego. While other people wait for the power to return, Gordon has his family start filling up containers with water and grabs a bike and trailer too get supplies, knowing they will disappear fast. His quick decisions set his family up for a good chance of survival.
Gordon’s brother, Sebastian, is a deployed Marine when the attacks happen. Orders are sent out to recall all military back to the U.S. to help with the recovery on the East coast. However, his unit commander, Lt. Col. Barone, decides to take over the ship and go back to California so the servicemen can help their families survive.
The orders had been given by the only person left alive in the government chain of command, Speaker of the House Brad Conner. He had left Washington because his son was in a car accident in Oklahoma. The ventilator his son is on in the hospital stops working after the EMP and yet, after this loss, Conner realizes that something big has happened. He makes his way to Tinker Air Force Base in an old truck and is sworn in as President.
Down in Mexico, there is one final player who makes an impact in this series, Pablo Juarez. He is the son of a drug lord who sees America’s demise as a chance for restoring Mexico’s glory as his own empire.
These four worlds collide as people try to survive and America tries to get back on its feet. Neighbors turn into enemies over food. People barter with ammo, food, and anything else available. Starvation and disease become the norm. Violence and murder can be viewed from your front porch. Anything that can go wrong, does.
And that’s just in the first few weeks after the attacks.
In the most recently released book of the series, Sanctuary, Gordon finds himself seeking revenge against a leader of a cult who held him captive while his family travels to their land in Idaho. They get there just as winter sets in and are forced to seek shelter amidst strangers, just shy of their goal.
Juarez continues his attack on the former America using any means necessary. The country divides into sections and people like Lt. Col. Barone seize the opportunities to control parts of the country. Even Sebastian finds himself seeking sanctuary as his new marriage divides the family. Without giving too much away, the end will have you wishing book 4 was already released!
It Makes You Really Think
I recommend this series for anyone who wants to explore what an EMP could do to our way of life but enjoys good fiction. It is also a great series to lend to people who do not understand or feel the need to prepare for emergency situations. This is one of the most devastating scenarios of what could happen, but it does cause you to think about how and if you could survive a true disaster.
This book is not appropriate for anyone under 18 because there is a lot of descriptive violence, which would be a reality in a post-EMP world.
As a newbie to the postapocalyptic (dystopian) genre, this series was riveting and caused me to think a lot about different scenarios that could happen with an EMP attack. I have re-examined what things we need to have on hand, such as coffee. “The lack of caffeine in this new world had more than once proven to be a problem for him,” Gordon thinks in Sanctuary.
I honestly don’t know how long my family and I would survive after an EMP attack, and I hope we never have to find out. However, it is something that we all should think about when preparing for emergencies.