Publisher's Note:  

The fabric of American society has been torn asunder by an EMP attack on the United States. The enormity of what has happened is sinking in to the population. No area of the country has been spared. From the big cities to the rural countryside, all have been impacted. Loved ones are stranded far from home, their suffering families not knowing their fate. Food is in short supply, transportation has come to a halt, and a short trip across the county can become deadly. Law and order has fallen by the wayside. Desperation is setting in, and desperate people will do desperate things. The struggles and the fight to survive is real. The physical, mental, and emotional scars will last a lifetime. The time is now for individuals and communities to come together in order to survive. But will they? Will you? Those that survive will never be the same.

Once Upon an Apocalypse: Book 3 - Gathering Home

by Jeff Motes

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Overall Review:  

Book 3, Gathering Home, is the culmination of the trials and tribulations of a small group of people in the aftermath of an EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse).  The domino effect is in full swing, bad decisions and being unprepared have left their repercussions.  Faultless people get hurt and die because of those who aren't willing to learn and prepare.  Good people become great and bad people become absolutely evil.  It's good guys versus bad guys, but it's more than that.  If you've read the previous two books in the series, you might have realized they can be addictive. The author is quite good at suspense and keeps the reader needing to know what happens next.  You might find yourself cheering for the heroes and getting very mad at the bad guys--or the ones that are just plain dumb.  The author, Jeff Motes, understands how lives intertwine, and the repercussions of personal actions both in preparing and in reacting to the situations presented can be life sustaining or ending.  The main characters from each of the previous books are here and close a lot of loose ends.  They pray often but are not "preachy".  This is a realistic look at what can happen if an EMP occurs.  Ordinary people are thrown into extraordinary events and with a story like this, and a reader's imagination, there will always be bits and pieces the reader would like to see followed through to a conclusion.  However, the author leaves it to the reader to learn and educate themselves so they can write their own ending and learn something along the way.  This is truly a teaching book with a good story.  There are plenty of twists and turns in this final part that make it well worth asking the author for more books in this series.  Just remember, Jimmy is dumb--don't be a Jimmy.

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  22 Mild obscenities; 53 derogatory names; 8 anatomical terms. 

Violence/Gore:  Gang of 4 men attack 2 teens, some blood, death of some men; mob tries to catch man & woman; man runs over something purposefully almost hitting a boy; man shoots at man & woman; 5 men in camo come to a house, appears threatening; teen boy shoots deer, strips it and eats it; teen girl shoots deer; older teen boy abducts teen girl; man attacks teen boy, is beating him, has knife, man gets shot, blood; husband slaps wife and locks her up; man head butts a woman; teen boy shoots man with gun; 13-year-old girl found naked in house, physically and sexually abused; man shoots woman 2x in leg for information; implied that man killed 2 women who were supporting their men in imprisoning and raping women and kids; teen boy shoots man who is intent on raping a teen girl; teen boy is naked and on top of teen girl, teen boy tackles rapist and breaks his neck; man shoots teen boy just in case he wasn't already dead; after being tied to a bed, teen girl has rope burns on wrists and ankles; teen boy and teen girl are chained in a closet; locked up, teen boys dreams of hurting an adult; man shoots another man in the back, brief gory details; woman hit by a man, held across table, raped; woman is half naked and chained to a door; teen boy hits man in the face with the butt of his rifle; a flash-bang grenade thrown into a house; man shot several times; 2 teen girls are grabbed by the hair and drug by 2 women; teen boy is banged up as men toss him around; man has  a bullet through his head, not descriptive; teen girl's evil father takes her captive; teen girl's evil father threatens to rape her and her mother; man is shot; rude man gets backhanded.

Sex/Nudity:  Father keeps trying to push his teen girl on a teen boy, some descriptions of sleeping attire and skin showing; teen boy's chest touches teen girl's back causing a reaction between them; teen girl is thinking of teen boy when she takes a bath, no other details; teen girl is scantily clad and shows her body off to a teen boy, multiple times, brief details of body; teen girl crawls in bed with teen boy, no touching; father hopes his teen daughter and teen boy are having "fun" behind a closed door, implied sex; teen girl wants another teen girl to share her boyfriend; teen girl takes off her shirt to stop bleeding of a teen boy, teen boy sees bra, no description; woman is being tied up in a back room with intent to rape; 13 yr old teen girl is found naked, physical and sexual abuse strongly implied, no details other than bruises; teen girl is naked and tied to a bed; teen boy is on top of naked teen girl, screaming, implied rape, no details or descriptions; teen girl takes a bath, mention of scrubbing but no details of nudity; wife is raped in front of husband and said she will be raped by all the men if husband doesn't comply with demands; woman is half naked and chained to a door, no description of nudity; 2 women are "gang whores" wearing only fish net shirts on top; man orders his men to strip woman down so they can rape her and the 2 teen girls with her, clothes come off but no details of nudity; men have teen girl on ground and ripping her clothes off.

Mature Subject Matter:  

Rape, murder, gangs, death of parent, collapse of government, collapse of infrastructure, vigilatism, ethics.

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Reviewed By Beth
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