We Are Unprepared

We Are Unprepared

by Meg Little Reilly

Paperback(Original ed.)

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Meg Little Reilly places a young couple in harm’s way—both literally and emotionally—as they face a cataclysmic storm that threatens to decimate their Vermont town, and the Eastern Seaboard in her penetrating debut novel, WE ARE UNPREPARED.

Ash and Pia move from hipster Brooklyn to rustic Vermont in search of a more authentic life. But just months after settling in, the forecast of a superstorm disrupts their dream. Fear of an impending disaster splits their tight-knit community and exposes the cracks in their marriage. Where Isole was once a place of old farm families, rednecks and transplants, it now divides into paranoid preppers, religious fanatics and government tools, each at odds about what course to take.

WE ARE UNPREPARED is an emotional journey, a terrifying glimpse into the human costs of our changing earth and, ultimately, a cautionary tale of survival and the human

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780778319436
Publisher: MIRA Books
Publication date: 08/30/2016
Edition description: Original ed.
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 753,126
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Meg Little Reilly is the author of the novels EVERYTHING THAT FOLLOWS and WE ARE UNPREPARED. She is a writer at Bennington College, an essayist, public radio commentator, and outdoor enthusiast. Prior to writing novels, Meg worked in national politics and the White House. She holds a B.A. from the University of Vermont and an M.A. from the George Washington University. These days, she lives in rural Vermont with her husband and two daughters.

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We Are Unprepared 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
SheTreadsSoftly More than 1 year ago
We Are Unprepared by Meg Little Reilly is a story set in Vermont about a broken relationship and an impending superstorm. It's either so-so or recommended, depending upon what you can personally tolerate in a disaster/climate change/politically preachy/bad relationship/needy neighborhood child/debut novel. Ash and Pia have moved from Brooklyn to Isole, Vermont, a town of 6,481 people. Their desire is to live a simpler life, sort of return to the land and rely on themselves. After being there for 3 months, the forecast of the impending disastrous superstorm is predicted, with as many as 30 hurricanes along with heatwaves, blizzards, drought, and fronts of various kinds. It's a climate change believer's dream, or er, natural expected outcome based on scientifically proven measurements. Pia is a neurotic mess and teams up with local preppers, which Ash didn't know until after the fact. Ash wants to team up with local authorities. The novel covers the current action, with Ash reflecting upon the past and his relationship with Pia. Ash admits at over half way through the drawn-out-too-long narrative that: "The truth is that Pia had always been impulsive. I worked hard to see her as a passionate free spirit, but I knew she had a tenuous grasp on sanity most of the time." Well, Ash, I had that figured out pretty much at the first few pages. As the narrative follows the extremely slowly arriving storm (predicted in Early October, hits in the Spring, and doesn't happen in the novel until chapter 19), the marriage falls apart. To be honest, they were never really together from the beginning and the only reason they had some semblance of a relationship is due to Ash's denial of Pia's mental problems and his desire to smooth things over, explain behavior away, and keep it together. Ash's relationship and desire to help neglected 7 yr. old neighborhood boy, August, is one redeeming quality to We Are Unprepared, which could have used some more redeeming story lines and characters. Other than that this is one you'll read for the disaster. You can skim ahead for that because it happens late in the book. I appreciate what Kirkus reviews said: "By that point, 19 chapters into the book, the reader is eager for the damn storm to occur." Yup, that pretty much summarized my thoughts. The writing is okay, nothing spectacular. Ash is the only character you get to know, but he and Pia are both formulaic stereotypes of a certain segment of the population. So, read this if you just want to read a disaster novel with blizzards, snow, and flooding. It's akin to a sci-fi channel disaster movie (or at least those I noticed back when I actually had cable). In fact, you could just watch a disaster movie and do just as well. Those of you who have experienced huge snowfalls and then floods from Spring melting might just see this as an "eh" book because you've lived it with less fanfare and hand wringing. Disclosure: My advanced reading copy was courtesy of the publisher for review purposes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An engrossing and thought-provoking debut.
LacrYmosa_Wolford More than 1 year ago
This book was very emotional a little terrifyingly possible and pretty edge of your seat page turning good. It is definitely a must read and a bit of a cautionary tale maybe? I also love how the author was able to capture so much of humanity in just a small town. Especially with Pia and Ash, these two will either make you love them or hate them. Definitely a must read.
Jasmyn9 More than 1 year ago
A book based on the storm of the century, a story that has been in the making for months, a storm that is set to change the very geography of the East Coast. I really wanted to see what this storm had in store and how our characters and their small town would weather the storm. I love survival stories, and this one seemed like it would be especially good. Unfortunately, the storm never seemed to arrive. Well, it did eventually, but it took far longer than I expected. Instead we had a story about a couple that really shouldn't have been together, and the way they come together and then fall apart all over again. I found it difficult to like Ash or Pia, so relating to their struggle. But we still had the storm (the anticipation of which was doing a number on everyone). But it kept taking so long for it to get here! Only the last third of the book was about the storm itself and its aftermath. Once we get to this part, I started to enjoy the story much more. There was excitement, some coming together, and some tearing apart. It really was the story of the century, with a perfect combo of devastation. It seemed to last forever, and the recovery was still ongoing. I loved this part, I really needed it to come sooner though.
Holly More than 1 year ago
We Are Unprepared is the story of how just one major storm can change everything about your life. Ash & Pia's move to Vermont from Brooklyn was supposed to be a fresh start for them to reconnect with each other but not all is what it seems for this couple. It takes the news of an impending superstorm for Pia and Ash to realize how different they have become and what they truly want out of life. When the storm does finally arrive, everything will fall apart for everyone but only to fall back in place in a totally unexpected way for Ash and Pia. This book had me hooked from the time I started it and even now, I keep thinking about the whole theme of this book. I do have to honest here and say that, Pia wasn't my favorite character at all for how she acted even when the storm had them scrambling for higher ground, it just goes to show how selfish she truly was. I wasn't expecting how it all ended but it was perfect for Ash and how his happy ending finally came true. For being a debut novel, this was a pretty great book but I don't know how Mrs. Reilly is gonna top it! Thank You to Meg Little Reilly for writing a fantastic debut novel that will have everyone talking!! I received this book from BookSparks : Fall Reading Challenge 2016 in exchange for a honest review.
Dianne57 More than 1 year ago
I'm finished and thank goodness for that. If I had had to read anymore of this writing I would have plucked out my eyeballs. I'm not sure why this book is getting so many rave reviews...all I can think is that the reviewers connect more with these protagonist's the style of writing and maybe I am just too old to understand, empathize with, or connect with protagonist's like this. (selfish, silly, stupid, whinny, possibly suffering a variety of mental illnesses, entitled, bratty and did I already say stupid? etc ) Since the first third or more of the book was back-story and very boring except to lay the foundation of the Ash and Pias' flaws. This was a good thing, because it explains so much later on in the book. The back-story also explains that this couple had just been playing at being Vermonter's, and nearly deserved what they got. Yes, they were THAT unlikable. The next third of the book just---I don't even know if I could explain it ---just bogs down. Slow and clumsily written. The sad thing is that the concept was such a good one, but in my opinion the author tried to be too literary (fancy-shmansy)with it. To much introspection on the male protagonists part, not enough battening down the hatches preparing and waiting for THE STORM! I'm from New England and this book was insulting to me. *ARC supplied by publisher