We are Unprepared by Meg Little Reilly


“It was urgent, and living in a state of urgency can be invigorating. But the fear can be mistaken for purpose, which is even more dangerous than the threat itself.”

A superstorm is coming unlike anything the Northeast United States has seen before. The warm air of a hurricane is going to collide with two cold fronts and bring unprecedented amounts of snow, followed by warm air that will melt the snow onto already saturated ground. The world is told it’s coming. Now how do you prepare?

I enjoy survival and dystopian stories and the description of this book sounded promising. I saw it in the Bookpages magazine and added it to my hold list for e-books at the library. It took almost two months to get the book and I was excited to read it. However, the premise of the superstorm, I found out quickly, is based on believing in global warming.

“So, yes, this is a story about global warming and conservation, but no one wants to be lectured by their fiction; what I really wanted to do was explore just how tenuous our grasp on sanity and civility is in an uncertain world,” the author writes in the author’s note at the end of the book.

Ash and Pia’s marriage is rocky before the announcement of the storm. Instead of pulling together to prepare, they find different ways to cope. They recently moved from New York City to Vermont to live a simpler life. Ash wants to be told what to do and then just do it while Pia finds a group of “preppers” to join who are suspicious of any kind of government behavior. In the end, it doesn’t really matter how each person prepared for the storm – they each suffer victories and losses.

I honestly didn’t like the main character in this book or his wife. The relationship itself could have been fodder for an entire novel, but putting in in the midst of people dealing with a superstorm was a bit much. The book is also told from the first person point of view of Ash and his thought process gets distracting at times. It seems at times that he is forcing himself to love the idea of living a simpler life in Vermont, but would really rather be in NYC. He also seems to be waiting for someone or something to come along and save him rather than being proactive with his life.

This might make a good beach read, but I wouldn’t highly recommend it. It might help readers realize that preparing for what life can throw at you is a good idea, but that no one can ever be truly prepared for everything. Life happens.

Buy the book here (affiliate link).

About Sarah Anne Carter

Sarah Anne Carter is a writer and reader. She grew up all over the world as a military brat and is now putting down roots with her family in Ohio. Family life keeps her busy, but any spare moment is spent reading, writing or thinking about plots for novels.