Posted in Children's Lit

Fallout by Todd Strasser

Todd Strasser
2013 Candlewick Press
ISBN – 9780763655341
Genre – Historical Fiction
Age – Middle School
4 Stars

Nuclear war seems imminent in the summer of 1962. Everyone is talking about it, but Scott’s dad goes one step further, he builds a bomb shelter for his family. His family soon becomes the joke of the neighborhood. Everyone is convinced that Scott’s family is paranoid. That is until a nuclear bomb is actually dropped. Scott’s dad has only stocked the shelter with supplies for his family for two weeks.  As the family races to their shelter in the middle of the night, they must fight off all of the neighbors that want in as well, but a few make through the doors. Now they must all fight to survive in a too small space, with not enough food, air, or water. People tend to show their true colors in the most stressful of situations, and this is no exception.

So I have been trying to gather my thoughts on this book for a while now, and I have written several reviews and deleted all of them. I really liked this book, and I can’t figure out why. It is not highly plot driven, it is not a book that you can’t put down, and it is not incredibly suspenseful or action packed. It is however, and incredibly personal account of an extremely frightening situation. The relationships and interactions that take place in the story, are honest, they are simple and complicated all at the same time. Parts of the book are difficult to read, in an emotional sense. The families in the story are faced with a very hard situation and are forced to make tough decisions, decisions that I would hope I would be strong enough to avoid. I think one of the important lessons in this book, is to not judge others that are in a situation that you know nothing about. This book is well written, emotional, and terrifying. I hope I never have to live through anything like it.


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