John Smith: Last Known Survivor of the Microsoft Wars by Roland Hughes, 274 pages, Logikal Solutions, 2012, ISBN-13: 978-1939732002. Genre: Dystopian. Warning: May Contain Spoilers.
Review by Leigh Holland.
*I was given a free copy of the e-book in exchange for my honest review.
This book was written in an interesting format. The last known survivor of the Microsoft Wars is John Smith, an elderly man who survived the cataclysm by hiding out in a bunker. Susan Krowley interviews him. The book is a back-and-forth interview between the two characters.
Susan Krowley is a young journalist, a profession she inherited from her father. In the future, after most of the world’s population was wiped out in the cataclysm, people inherit their jobs from their parents in a master and apprentice relationship. Because the cataclysm was so sudden, a vast amount of human knowledge was lost. Because so many lives were lost, entire skill sets disappeared from the species. She interviews John Smith.
John Smith is one of the oldest people on Earth and is a survivor of the war. He has a cache of books and a computer that works but due to not being able to get another one, doesn’t use it often. He has large amounts of valuable data on CD that humanity will likely not be able to build a machine to gain access to. Humanity has been taken back to the 1800’s after the cataclysm. He condescends to Susan much of the time, as he knows a lot and she knows so little of history. He explains that mankind’s history goes through cycles. During each cycle, we reach a technological apex, bring catastrophe on ourselves like Atlantis, and lose most technology and knowledge. Then we must begin anew anew. So the cycle goes on, ad infinitum. John presents a vast array of conspiracy theories and myth, mashed together as truth, leading to the inevitable conclusion at the end of each cycle: destruction of civilization by those human families who continue to try to control it.
The premise, myths, and theories presented were fascinating.The idea was original and thought-provoking. I would’ve enjoyed the story more had the information been presented in another format other than an interview. I’d recommend this to science fiction fans provided the reader doesn’t mind the interview style the book is written in.
This book can be found at John Smith: Last Known Survivor of the Microsoft Wars.