Almost Invisible by Sherri Dixon
‘Almost Invisible- a Different Kind of Survival Story’ is a quiet and unassuming counter-strike to all the ‘guns blazing, terrorist menace, shit hitting the fan, Mad Max, zombie survivalist’ stories that are littering the minds of America like so many mutant leaves falling twisted and tattered from otherwise healthy trees. While those folks watch the sky for bombs, frantically hoard supplies against an EMP or governmental collapse, and almost eagerly await the coming apocalypse, the world literally ends silently and without fanfare or fireworks every single day for people right in front of them. People like them, losing employment and home- “Lately there was a whole different brand of newcomers at the shelter- those who were trying with all their might to wake from this nightmare- they couldn’t believe that this venue, this crowd, was their new reality. This type of misfortune only happened to ‘other people’. Surely those who were ‘one paycheck away from disaster’ could never be…them. And they looked shell-shocked, dazed from pinching themselves, shaking themselves, frantically trying to wake, to turn to their spouse lying in their comfortable bed in their familiar home, to chuckle at the silly dream they’d had. And they became numb with the great weight of the truth that they’d never wake up in that place again. Not physically. Not mentally. Never.” People like them, returning from war- “His name was Mike and he’d come home from war physically intact but mentally vaporized. Not recognizing who their son had become, and feeding off of the alien fear that flashed from his eyes, the atmosphere in their home had gone from joyful homecoming to dismayed confusion when he didn’t bounce back into his former life but sank deeper and deeper into the nightmares in his mind. The images that were plastered onto the backs of his retinas and never ever went away tangled up with the echoes of war and the reek of violence and it became all too clear that although he was home, he’d never be there again. The nights were the worst- without the careful waking attention to keep the demons at bay they exploded into life as soon as he slept, and he screamed and swore and beseeched a god who never listened to make it stop. To just make it stop. So they’d had him hospitalized, and drugged, and kissed him goodbye and went home to mourn him as if he were dead. When he’d had all the treatment and care that was allowed for such things, and had been sufficiently subdued by the medications, he was asked if he wanted to call his family to come get him. He told them calmly, “No thank you, Sir- no need to trouble them. I know the way home”. When he shuffled into the shelter six months later, hungry and dirty, un-medicated and twitchy, the social worker found his ID in his wallet and was able to track down his family, who’d fallen on their own hard times, wished him the best, declared their love for him, but declined to come get him.” People like them, people like us, invisible and real, unseen behind the blinding sparkle of the romantic fantasy End of the World
This is a great book for life lessons everyone should give it a read. So timely for the day we live in. Thought provoking. Nice to see a end of the world as we know it that does not resort to violence and the survival of the fittest . I would hope that there would be a coming together of at least some people to make the world a little bit better. The characters are well developed and entertaining. Anyone looking for an enjoyable short read should check it out. I gave this book 5 stars.