Book Review: The Fall by S.T. Campitelli

Okay – hold on a minute! Why has this excellent piece of literature been unknown to me for however long it’s existed? Why was I not told? Why were there not flyers nailed to a post in the nearby village, reading: “LOOK OUT FOR GREAT BOOK!”

I’m sorry if I spoil more of this than usual. But I have to talk about The Fall.

The plot: Australia, ca. 2050. The world’s gone tits up. People live in a walled bunker (imagine an american football stadium – that’s what I did), and zombie-vampire-people are out to get them.

The longer version: People are trying their best to survive this new existance they find themselves in. Some people are just trying to live. Some cultivate the land, some are engineers. Some are doctors and some are military. Then there’s the R’n’R – the people who are dedicated to go out of their walled bunker in Melbourne, to scavenge for food, metal, bits of cable, dirt bikes, a deck of card – You know! Whatever’s left out there that’s still usable.

But then out there is also the home of the Jacks. The Infected. “Survivors” of the Jackson Virus so to speak. White skin, black eyes. Fangs you could dice a steak with. Patches of hair remind the living of what or even who these things once where. And that reminder is scary as all hell.

Of course there are living humans as well outside the walled ‘Wallcoms’. People who either didn’t qualify to get into these sanctuaries, or for some reasons might have been thrown out of them.

So everyone’s living life, people are planting vegetables, playing rock music, and going out into the wasteland to find goods. Preeeeetty normal – (isn’t that what Australia is like anyway?)

Then someone has the bright idea that there’s a supermall – off in the distance, that probably has some nice stash. Let’s round up the R’n’R and a military convoy, get out there, and go shopping. But do you think this plan goes unnoticed by the wasteland-humans? Of course not.

The Fall

I’m a big fan of Justin Cronin – and if you aren’t you should go check him out instantly. I don’t know why I love post-apocalyptic settings, because I hate zombie flicks, and could never get into liking The Walking Dead, but when it comes to people living off a broken world in the future, I just can’t get enough. The Fallout games have been played a lot around my house.

Anyways – The Fall is very much like Cronin’s the passage, and I was soooo happy when I came across a book (The Fall) that looked like it could take me back to a similiar experience.

And it was an absolutely amazing experience. The characters, the plot, the world – it nothing was wrong with this. Every person was distinct, everyone had their voice, every little smidge of plot was there for a reason, and the world it was set in was gripping, powerful and brutal. I’d love to go there (Australia that is).

And the writing was beautifully done. It’s starts you off pretty much right away, and throws you into this new exciting world with lots of tech, lots of things, places and people you know nothing about. But it’s written so well, so assertively, that you just understand it right away, you know what’s going on, you feel what people are feeling, and emphatize with their… life. I don’t even know. See – this book makes you crazy-poetic-rambly.

For the life of me I can’t think of nothing wrong with this. It’s so great. If there’s anything, it’s that it’s a bloody series, and I have to wait for the next book.

For the love of everything that’s pure and holy, go check out Campitelli and go buy his book!

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