Friday, 16 July 2021



Title: Erupting Chaos
Series: EMP Catastrophe
Author: Grace Hamilton
Publisher: Relay Publishing
Genre: Post Apocalyptic, Sci-Fi, EMP
Release Date: 9th June 2021

BLURB from Goodreads
A dire situation keeps getting worse…

When Matthew Riley’s father collapses with a possible heart attack, it drives home just how bad the situation in Galena, IL has become after an EMP knocked out the power around the world. David needs medication and the group needs a doctor if everyone is going to survive in the long term. But hostile forces have their eyes on the River Rock Hotel, and keeping the family safe may be impossible.

Things aren’t going back to normal…

Kathleen Riley knows it, even if her husband hasn’t admitted it yet. With new allies at their side, the Riley family has a chance to fortify their hotel and start rebuilding a life in the new world. But with Matthew rushing to make things seem normal again, they’re at risk of exposing themselves to hostile forces.

An old enemy returns…

Life is already difficult enough even before the family receives news that Samuel West is back in town. He’s brought friends and he’s ready to fight to take control of the Red Rock Hotel and the remnants of Galena. The Rileys will do anything to keep their land, but after another tragedy strikes they may not be able to win. After all, what is survival worth if everything you’re surviving for is never coming back?

Goodreads Link

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After reading the first two books in this trilogy and especially the cliff hanger at the end of book two I was certainly eager to read more as soon as it was available. This time on the book cover I think it could be Matthew and his wife Kathleen or perhaps even Matthew with Jade. Looking at the cover, the area the two figures are standing still looks quite bleak. I couldn’t wait to read more and find out how things would develop for the characters, particularly the Riley family and their new friends that they are trying to recreate a community with.

The action picks right up where it ended in book two. Jade though injured herself runs for Nikki, the person needed from the gun club with some medical knowledge to help David. David being seriously ill really highlights how much, and how many people rely on the medical services. Nikki ends up making a list of medications and supplies that will quickly become scarce and would be incredibly useful to have. There’s a bit of verbal tussling to decide who will go on what will probably be a hazardous mission. Eventually it is decided Nikki should go as she knows what medical supplies are needed and if they come across anything they are unsure about she can say what it is and what it’s used for. Wyatt goes as a protector and searcher for supplies. The other protector/gun handler is Jade, and finally Max is coerced into going as he can identify the cartel members that got away during the gun battle. Initially Matthew tries to insist on going but he is talked into staying with his sick, bed bound father, but soon wanders off to see if anyone else other than Wyatt at the gun have any idea where the well is on the Riley property. Then when the well is found in a rather dilapidated state Matthew recklessly insists on going down into it to see what repairs are needed. He wants to start work on the well straight away but the gun club members want and eventually insist on waiting for Wyatt’s opinion on the well.

When Kathleen tries to encourage her husband to visit with his father, he is too restless and is more interested in getting the well in working order. He can’t bear to just sit helplessly by his father’s bedside. He isn’t the only one concentrating on actually physically doing something, to help David. David’s granddaughter Allison takes her grandmothers place working in the garden, whilst Ruth sits with her increasingly ill husband. Despite been told to wait to be taught some more about handling a gun Patton is determined to continue learning how to shoot, as he wants to bring home some rabbit for his grandad to eat when he hears it is a good meat source for David to eat.

Just when you think everything is going to work out well, it’s discovered that Samuel has teamed up with the fleeing cartel members, Matthew and Wyatt decide to pre-empt any trouble and offer to help Samuel and his people, who seem to be living in an old scrap yard and look like they need all the help they can get. Matthew generously allows them access to the well. . . . . but should he trust them? Then there’s the mystery of who is sabotaging the Riley family & friends attempts to become self-sufficient, surely, it’s not someone in their close group? Who would want them to suffer?

The characters really go through a lot more in this last book, in addition to what has already happened to them previously. Just when you think nothing else can go wrong it does! I felt sorry for Matthew and could kind of understand the fact he didn’t want to face up to the possibility of his father dying. Rather than sit at his bedside he wants to be anywhere else but there and uses the jobs on the land, especially the fixing of the well to keep himself busy and to not think about his father’s mortality.
Ruth really ages in this book, once the strong lead in the family at her husband Davids side, his ill health and the new, more selfish, violent way people have interacted with her have really changed her. Without David fit, well and by her side she is lost and unsure how to continue.
Allison has her fears to overcome in this book when she is faced with having to use a gun. I loved the interaction between Allison and her younger brother Patton who is desperate to help anyone in any way he can. Sadly, everyone seems to brush him away as being too young right now. However, when things take a seriously bad turn at the River Rock Hotel his sneaking around and insistence on knowing how to handle a gun turn out to have been a very positive skill.
Even the characters that did things I disliked or maybe considered as ”bad” were so well written and there were explanations of how and why they had become the way they were, such as Samuel, Nikki and Max.
As readers we follow the younger characters “growing up” and learning to adapt, some of them much quicker and easier than the older characters. I enjoyed reading as Max finally seemed to turn his life round to who his sister Kathleen saw him as in the beginning, a caring, honest man. Jade has some of her rough edges rounded off within this book, though is still great with a gun and can still work as hard as any male.

My immediate thoughts upon finishing reading this book were, “Wow, is it really that time!” I ended up reading this one late into the night, I hated having to put it down. In fact, I finished it in the early hours of the morning!!

Summing up, this book was a great end to another amazing series by Grace Hamilton. Fantastic world building & destroying by the EMP. Really believable and wide range of characters. At least one character to love and one to hate for everyone!!


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