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Posted March 28, 2012
A romp, with ultraviolence
The ensemble cast of the damned populating Freedom are drawn with Shirley's characteristic eye for the precise details which define them as complex human beings. The insanity and entirely human horror of this classic situation is deepened by your ability to feel sympathy for everyone stuck in this dire (and preventable -- that's part of the horror) situation. The emotional satisfaction of the novel comes from the tragic flaws of heroes and villains alike. Recommended.
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Posted April 17, 2012
Posted April 11, 2012
When twenty-year-old Russ arrives in the northern California tow
When twenty-year-old Russ arrives in the northern California town of Freedom to visit his dad, he finds a town cut off from state and federal government. Thanks to the local mayor’s ideas of “decentralization,” Freedom enjoys minimal public services including medical care and law enforcement. Before Russ can get to know much about the town and its people – including an interesting young woman named Pendra – a massive tsunami strikes the West Coast, killing most of the town’s inhabitants and leaving Freedom helpless to combat the wave of human brutality that soon follows. A local gangster, Dickie Rockwell, has plans for Freedom and they include the town’s increasingly unhinged mayor and a whole lot of killing. Now, it’s up to Russ, his father, Pendra, and the other townsfolk to find the strength to survive and find real freedom.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I've heard this novel described as a “thriller and political allegory,” but it’s so much more than that. In just a few hundred pages, this book manages to shock, frighten, and enrage, all while making the reader think. What struck me most about this book was Shirley’s powerful use of imagery, both during the tsunami and in the aftermath. He has a unique ability to observe people, places, and events and then distill them down to their purest, most basic forms.
Bottom line: A different kind of disaster novel. One well worth reading.