Customer Reviews for

Alas, Babylon

Average Rating 4.5
( 160 )
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5 Star

(97)

4 Star

(41)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(10)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

One of the greatest books ever written

My father introduced me to this book about a year ago, and I have found it so engaging that I have already read it three times. After writing this review, however, I have a strong feeling that I will be tempted to start over again.

The book takes place in a very re...
My father introduced me to this book about a year ago, and I have found it so engaging that I have already read it three times. After writing this review, however, I have a strong feeling that I will be tempted to start over again.

The book takes place in a very realistic (especially now) post-nuclear war scenario, written amidst the paranoia associated with the peak of the cold war. It has a wide variety of well, rounded characters that fit their roles exquisitely. After the Russians bomb a small city in Florida, Randy Bragg, his neighbors, and his brothers wife and children must show that the human spirit is able to endure even the most horrible of atrocities, which can be the only thing used to describe the tragedy of nuclear war, a very realistic possibility, especially today.
It is obvious, from this book, that Mr. Frank was extremely politically active. The attention to detail that he gave to making the nuclear war scenario realistic is almost unparalleled. All elements were in concert with everything else, and the book meshed beautifully. As a side note, he made excellent use of the third-person omnipotent point of view by accurately, and effectively giving us a view in to the troubled minds of the protagonist, and even many side-characters. It's shockingly realistic, and shows many different interpretations of the human condition, exemplified by the characters reactions. The protagonist (Randy) shows leadership by enforcing Marshall Law and regulating the city, and bringing his small community of neighbors out of the rapidly spiraling chaos of the squalid, vile, main city, and in to a state of relative prosperity.

If I didn't know any better, I would have assumed this was fact. It was so epically written, well thought out, and realistic that to not have assumed it had really happened would be the act of a mad man. It's enthralling, so much so that every time I put it down, I would always leave my finger on the exact word I was on so that I could begin reading again as soon as I possibly could. "Alas, Babylon" is incredibly addictive, and realistic. It shows how the human spirit is able to overcome human error. Everyone who reads this book will undoubtedly have a greater understanding, if not, a greater appreciation, for the very real possibility on nuclear war, and the genuine effects it could have on indisputably real people.

Pat Frank is an extraordinary author, avid politician, and a prophet, in the true sense of the word (someone who tells uncomfortable truths or truths that are not easily accepted). His book, no, his gift to the world, is one of the best I have ever read, or recommended to anyone. An extremely wonderful book, a classic, and a must read. It has stood the test of time, and remains just as wonderful a book as it was when it was written decades ago. The reality of it may have even increased.

posted by TheUbermensch on April 17, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Do not buy this version!!!

This version is not the original book. Huge and VERY IMPORTANT sections of the original story have been removed. The rest is poor edited. Pat Frank would be rolling in his grave. Whoever it was who decided to offer this awful rendition has certainly done so only for th...
This version is not the original book. Huge and VERY IMPORTANT sections of the original story have been removed. The rest is poor edited. Pat Frank would be rolling in his grave. Whoever it was who decided to offer this awful rendition has certainly done so only for the money

posted by 17592845 on July 10, 2013

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Sort by: Showing 21 – 40 of 160 Customer Reviews
Page 2 of 8
  • Posted July 10, 2012

    very good, this book will make you analyze how you are living an

    very good, this book will make you analyze how you are living and ask yourself "am i prepared for a break-down of society and if so, how would i handle it"

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 12, 2012

    An excellent book!

    This is one book, that I have read and re-read many many times, and it seems that every time Ive read Alas Babylon, it is as though I have read it for the very first time.

    Im an avid fan of Human Survival / Apocalyptic books. So when a friend suggested this book to me when I was in High School, and the fact that the area is based on where I have lived my life and grew up in..Florida, I decided to read it.

    I read the book in one day. I could not seem to put it down. I like how the author blended in all of the chrs in this book, and how, and what they did to survive. He tells of their hardships without overkill. And showed us the softer points too.

    If your a Survivalist reader like I am, then I strongly suggest getting your copy of it. You won't regret it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 23, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Highly Recommended

    I just reread this book for the 3rd time. While the threat of Nuclear war is different today that it was back in the 60's and 70's, the story still resonants for me. The suddeness of the attack and how quickly basic services cease should be a message for us all. Threats still exist today and while I think an all out nuclear war isn't very likely today a biological attack by a determined enemy could have the same dramatic effect.

    If you had to read this as required reading in High School, it is just as good of a read today (maybe better with no homework).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 19, 2011

    Post-apocalyptic genre

    This book takes place right before and after an apocalypse. The premise of the story is to take you through that journey, from what's happening to cause an apocalypse, to what happens after.

    I personally love the post-apocalyptic genre, and if you do too, you'll love this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    good

    good

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2010

    A book that made you think, "what if.."

    this book was very easy to read, in fact it only took a minimal amount of time to complete it. kind of reminded me of a high school literature class reading assignment, but still worth the read. although it was fairly "basic" from a technical aspect, i still enjoyed it greatly. it made me wonder just how i would react in a situation similar to that which the book speaks of.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2010

    Over 30 years

    I've been re-reading this book for over 30 years. My father shared it with me and later put it in his "Keeper" category. For me, who grew up with the threat of nuclear war, i.e., bomb shelters, evacuation centers etc, it was a hopeful story.

    These wonderful characters were able to change, to modify their lives and live and enjoy life. What a wonderful concept.

    One of my grandsons had to read this book for a literature class and said (amazingly) that it was one of his favorites. I was terribly pleased.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    Humanity after the the bombs

    this is my favorite post apocalyptic novel. The characters are real people and in real danger it is easy to imagine the fallout like world in the book. Even tho it was written in the late fifties the story itself can easily be transplanted into a modern setting. its hard to describe would def reccomend

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    Alas, Babylon

    I was reqired to read this book by school. For some parts it interested me to find how they would survive under certain circumstances. It was poorly written, but do remember it was written a while ago. It was obvious and random if that makes sense. The book was a waste of my time and it's the type of book I don't like to read, armageddon. Unless you enjoy war stories, action, and depression for aspects of a book, then I advise you not to get it.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2008

    Wow

    This is one of the greatest books I've ever read. The plot keeps you on the edge of your seat, the characters are very well written, everything is great about this book. A MUST READ, any time you can get your hands on this books, you have to read it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 8, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    One of my favorite books of all-time.

    A must-read. I'll never thank my 9th-grade teacher enough for making us read this. Even more relevant in today's times. You will never put it down. One of my top five books!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2006

    HORRID!!!!

    This book was the worst book i have ever HAD to read! Seeing as though I was forced to read it because it was a class project...it was torture!!! i hate it, and didnt even make it past chapter 5... thank god for sparknotes!! i highly reccommend you not reading this book.. burn it!

    1 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2005

    Don't even read it.

    I had to read this book for school and it looked good, but it wasn't. The first 100 pages are soooooooooooooooooooooo boring! Then the bombs drop, which that part could of been better. There was no action in this book whatsoever! Just a lot of boring junk!

    1 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2014

    Not recommended at this time

    I'm sure the book was very good based on the summary page, but there were sooo many typos it was impossible to read. Wouldn't recommend buying until the script gets cleaned up...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 11, 2014

    A classic of the post-apocalypse genre

    Although dated in some regards, this tale of surviving post-apocalypse is compelling and very relatable. Frank forsaw some realities of the future with astonishing clarity.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 3, 2014

    I really enjoyed this book.

    I read this book the old fashion way. In paper form, outside throughout the beautiful summer, and it was an amazing experience. If you're thinking about purchasing it, it is definately worth it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2014

    Alas babylon

    Read first time 30years ago loved it then love it no .stirs the imagination

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2014

    Scary and Eye opening

    Amazing that something that was written in the 1950's could still ring true in today's times.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014

    Four stars for the writing but negative four stars for the editi

    Four stars for the writing but negative four stars for the editing and proofing on the Nook version. If typos, incorrect word placement and other grammatical errors bother you, then don't purchase the Nook version. Otherwise, great writing and plot. A must read for those who are into doomsday scenarios. I must agree with the other comments regarding a chunk of the book missing  but again, save youtself the aggravation and don't buy the Nook version; go old school and get the book. I made the mistake of not listening to the comments about that and ended up regretting spending my money on a version that was so poorly proofread. Seriously, there is a typo on every single page it's insane. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2013

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    0 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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