Our Military Life Blog

One Second After – Week 1

Today we are all reliant on cell phones, computers, cars and more. Electronics surround every aspect of our daily lives. Televisions give us the news, our favorite shows and movies. Radio’s do not play a large portion of family life as they used to in the 1940s and 1950s. But what would happen if we lost it all? What would happen if all the sudden, everything we relied on was gone? William Forstchen deals with this scenario in his book, ONE SECOND AFTER.

John is a retired colonel from the US Army. He has lost his wife to breast cancer, but he cannot bring himself to leave their home in North Carolina. With his two daughters, Elizabeth and Jennifer, they have a good life. The town of Black Mountain is an ideal location, where the old charm is melded in with the new architecture. With the help of his mother-in-law, he has managed to hold it all together. Now he is a respected professor of history, living out his life in quiet Southern small town life. But all of that changes in the blink of an eye. Cell phones quit working, fans wont start, lights won’t turn on, and cars are halted on their journeys. The town sees an influx of “outsiders”, those who were stranded on the interstate when their cars stopped. Food is being ravaged from the stores, pharmacies are being looted, even nursing homes are not safe from the thieves.

John is convinced that an EMP has been detonated over the area, but how far it extends, no one knows. Is it just a portion of the United States, or has the entire country been affected? If it was an EMP, what is going on in the outer areas? Are others more prepared? With the unknown setting in and panic at a near boiling point, the perfect storm seems to have been created. With panic setting in, so has death. People are quickly dying, and there is nothing that they can do about it.

John, Charlie and a few others from the town are determined to find out what it is like in other parts of the state. Survival of the fittest is about to tested in more ways than they could have ever imagined.

This week we are reading Chapters 1-4


  1. How reliant are you on electronics?
  2. If an EMP was to detonate over the United States, do you think that you would survive past the first couple of days?
  3. As we look at the helpless feelings that John, Washington, and Charlie are feeling, do you think that you would feel the same?





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