Monday, July 14, 2008

Lights Out - SHTF fiction

If you just showed up at Google and punched in SHTF fiction, you may have arrived here at the Prepare site. Let me save you some time, stop reading those half-baked, half-finished glory doom tales and put you on the page of probably the best, Internet-based SHFT fiction tale out there - Lights Out.

First, an update. Lights Out is not available at the link below any longer. The author has pulled free copies of the book online as he has published the book in traditional format. Here is the link from Amazon.

See the link here to download the whole story.

First, download the whole story in PDF format today. The story is good enough it may end up published and like "Patriots" (yes, by comma Rawles), it will be off limits gratis for the online crowd. Get it while you can, folks.

If you have read, Lights Out, good for you. You get it. If LO was not "gun porn" enough for you, or did not feature enough one-dimensional post-apocalypse convict, biker raiders, then to heck with ya.

Now, Lights Out is probably the best, realistic SHTF story out there, however, I have a few bones to pick with it.

Bur first the praise.

The story features mostly real people. Husbands and wives fight. Characters are flawed. Most of those facing the brave, scary world have little if any experience with the devil waiting in the dark. However, like Americans have always done, they step up to the plate and deal with it.

I like Lights Out and have read (in the process of reading a fifth time) several times already.

The problems:

1) Why did it take Mark Turner 9 freaking days to get to the darn grocery store? With a truck running, my butt would have been at Kroger, Costco or 7-11 everyday and loading up on everything I could get my mitts on!

2) Why didn't Mark and Jim tell the boss, Davis: "We have extended family and have no intention of leaving them to fend for themselves. Based upon your philosophy, you get where we are coming from. Thanks, but unless you open up the joint to our extended clans, you are on you own. You need us more than we need you. (New Age Ranch? Please... ).

3) Gunny was a cardboard cutout character. I love how he could not walk the Silver Hills neighborhood, but could do the quick step SWAT move with Mark at the Drew house.

4) They have one too many battle scenes - namely, the Jeep goes over the hill incident and the fight with the motorcycle gang in the culvert with the hand grenades. Again, a little over kill.

Reading Lights Out for the umpteenth time, I could be picky, but the bottom line is, it's a great story with very good characterization, a plausible story line and riveting action. Download it today.

Also good runner's up - Shattered and Deep Winter by T Sherry. The only problem with those stories is I kept hoping someone would punch Rick Drummond's nose once he made one too many smug responses and could not run to the Army or his pal the sheriff to protect him. Otherwise, another top story you can find on TB2K - if it has not been pulled for Lulu.


David said...

I've read only the first chapter of LO--wewnt from first part of your blogpost directly there--and will finish the book later this evening.

Another book suggestion: Dean Ing's "Pulling Through". Yeh, post nuclear. Ing takes an engineer's (and survivalist's) perspective an combines it with his considerable writing skills. Very readable, but I saved mine for the references and plans for a home made geiger counter and an air filtration system. :-) (From Wikipedia: "In addition to his fiction writing, Ing wrote nonfiction articles for the survivalist newsletter P.S. Letter, edited by Mel Tappan.")

John said...

David - Thanks for your comment.

Lights Out is a good story, but the best part is the author started and finished the tale completely. If you read TB2K or Arfcomm, most of the amateur writers jump into their story for four or five chapters, get bored and stop posting. I follwed LO over the course of two years when it first came out and Halffast kept posting regularly without fail.

What's more is the story is real. Well about as real as an EMP burst devastating American can be, none of us have any idea what would really happen.

Thanks for stopping by,


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