Destroying the world

For some reason that I can’t quite pinpoint, I love a disaster. The greater the disaster the more I like it. The greater the threat to earth and its inhabitants, the better. I am typically kind and optimistic, at least that is how I view myself. I certainly don’t relish the idea of real life disasters. I find no pleasure in reading about the horror and disruption of real life disasters such as Katrina, tsunamis, plagues, earthquakes or any other real life disaster that ruins the lives of real, living men and women. I especially feel sorrow for the children caught up in such disasters.
But when it comes to reading, there are times that I just want to dive into a plot riddled with a little mayhem. No, make that a lot of mayhem. And not car crash types of mayhem, but the impending doom of the world and everyone on it.
When I was young I read the classic “When Worlds Collide” and its sequel “After Worlds Collide.” I loved them. I reread them recently and didn’t quite like them as much the second time around. However, my enjoyment of earth ending disaster books remains unabated.
It is fun to see the creative ways in which the disasters play out: earthquakes, asteroids, plagues, man’s inability to see the consequences of his actions, to name just a few.
Perhaps my favorite disaster book is “Dust” by Charles Pellegrino. With out giving too much away, nature is out of control and Earth is plunging into chaos. By the time we learn what is happening, the destruction is widespread. I love the mixture of science and fantasy (there is a memorable scene in which the real life Edward O. Wilson meets his unfortunate demise). I read this book every couple of years. I then go and scour the bookstores looking for another disaster book to read. Eventually, I get it out of my system and I can go back to enjoying the classics, mysteries and more civilized fare, at least for a while.
If any of you have read a good disaster book please let me know. Better yet, write your own review on this website to share with all of us. In the meantime, it looks like I’ll be on Amazon trying to find the latest threat to civilization as we know it.

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