Book Review: The Road Home by Andrew Baze

March 2, 2012

Book Reviews

Disaster in the Pacific NorthwestA massive earthquake strikes at the heart of the Pacific Northwest leaving the authorities and emergency systems completely overwhelmed in its aftermath. Roads are destroyed, families are separated, and criminals are on the prowl.

If you think that has become fairly typical story line for the ever growing TEOTWAWKI genre of books, you’re right. There’s nothing unique about that backdrop for a book. But that doesn’t mean that a book is not worth reading or that it’s not unique in its approach.

Such is the case with The Road Home by Andrew Baze.

A Trip Interupted

The Road HomeIn the story a father and his teenage son embark on a much anticipated backpacking trip into the nearby mountains. Hours after they donned their gear and began their assent up the mountain, a massive earthquake cuts their outing short.

The pair spend the rest of the book trying to get back to their suburban home where they left their family, the man’s wife and daughter. Roads are damaged and nearly impassible, an injury hampers their progress, and unbeknownst to them danger looms nearby at home.

A Novel and a Reference Guide

Baze, an avid Ham Radio operator himself, set out to not only tell a compelling story but to also educate the reader. In the prologue, he acknowledges as much. The book is full of footnotes that point to a Bonus Content section where he defines survival and outdoor terms and expands on their meaning.

As with Rawles’ Patriots, the book has survival strategies interwoven into the storyline. But that’s where the similarities stop. This is not a book about military gear and protocol. It’s more about common sense techniques to prepare for uncertain events.

Although he doesn’t suggest this himself, I suspect that Baze wrote The Road Home for young people, probably early teens. His choice of words and descriptions and consistent with a younger reader’s vocabulary and perception. But I found that actually refreshing since the author didn’t stray into vulgar or indecent material. There’s nothing in this book that I wouldn’t want my kids to read.

Many readers may find the book lacks depth in some areas such as character development or descriptions that really draw you into the story and keeps the pages turning. I’d have to agree if you compare the book to a more polished book intended for a more mature audience. However, if you approach the book for what it is, I’d certainly recommend it. Especially if you have kids, and you can convince them to read and discuss it with you.

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7 Comments on “Book Review: The Road Home by Andrew Baze”

  1. Andrew Says:

    Thanks for the review! You are correct – I did write it with young adults in mind, and one of my goals in addition to adding emergency preparedness info was to show people how important and easy it is to incorporate amateur radio in disaster preparations. I wanted to make sure young people, boy scouts, soccer moms or whoever could read the book without being too offended.

    I also have a blog where I discuss emergency communications in more detail:

    Andrew Baze, AB8L


  2. Andrew Says:

    By the way, I have a non-fiction book on emergency communications in editing now, and I’m actively working on the sequel to The Road Home. What easier backdrop for disaster preparedness fiction than a big city a an earthquake? 🙂



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