Two years ago, I read the book One Second After by William Fortschen. The book detailed a potential scenario of what could happen to our country if we were to ever be attacked my an electromagnetic pulse weapon. An EMP attack could occur if a country or terrorist group were to launch a nuclear device and detonate it above the US. There would be no radioactive fallout to contend with, however the resulting EMP would fry our electrical grid and any sophisticated modern electronics.
The book was one that I thoroughly enjoyed, though I did think there were a few problems with it. I had such an impact on me that I wrote two blog posts on it here and here. A few weeks ago, when I heard that North Korea had attempted to launch a rocket into space, and knowing that they have nuclear weapons, got me thinking again about the possibility of an EMP attack. You can read that post here. It also prompted me to write to my Senators and Congressman.
At the same time that I had heard about the North Korean rocket launch, I found another book on Amazon.com that I downloaded for my Kindle. The book is called 77 Days in September written by Ray Gorham. I recently finished reading that book and I highly recommend it. It follows the lives of the Tait family from Montana.
Kyle Tait is the husband of Jennifer Tait and their three kids. He works for the local electrical company in Montana, and he has been working in Houston helping them recover from a hurricane. It is just prior to Labor Day weekend, and he is boarding a plane to head home to be reunited with his family. Just as the plane is about to take off, two boats off of each coast of the country launch missiles with nuclear warheads attached. One fails, but the other detonates 300 miles above the US shutting down power across the country.
Nearly all electrical devices stop working and Kyle Tait's plane crashes just before lift off. Thankfully for him, the plane had not taken off and he, along with several others are able to escape the plane before flames cause the plane to explode. The book then details his attempt to try to get back home to Montana to be with his family. Along his journey, he encounters several obstacles and dangers as the country and society deteriorates in the wake of the attack.
Meanwhile, Jennifer is left with not knowing what has happened to her husband. She knows that he was supposed to be in flight when the attack took place, but she has no way of knowing whether or not he survived. She is left to care for her three kids and try to find a way to survive. The book alternates between what each of them are going through as they struggle to survive and be reunited.
I won't spoil the book with too many details other than to say that I found myself relating to the characters and pulling for them. It is the story of the dedication and love that two people share for one another and their family and the determination to make it through a difficult situation that nobody was the least bit prepared for.