2 Book Lovers Reviews


By Mike Bockoven

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I think we all know what happened when William Golding left a group of schoolboys alone on a deserted island, but what if you took a group of recent high school graduates and left them in an abandoned theme park? Would the results be any different?

I love this premise postulated by Bockoven: give them plenty of food and water but take away authority and communication to the outside world. One would like to think that a group of young adults, with plenty of resources could behave and interact like reasonable adults, but with all that we have seen the past few years, we know people are the worst. Dogs, they are the best people!

I got FantasticLand a couple of years back, it sounded like a great story. But then life happened, and it sat on my Kindle with dozens – sorry hundreds – of other books. Then I saw it available with my Audible membership and thought, why not? I had forgotten the synopsis, no worries, I knew that I wanted to experience the book. In my opinion, the Audible is the way to go. The cast performed the story impeccably, the voice actors did a great job of immersing themselves into the personalities of the characters. I was amazed when I went back and saw that there are only two performers, I thought there was someone different for each one. Just! Wow!

The way that Bockoven presented FantasticLand was absolute perfection. It follows a series of interviews conducted with people stranded at the amusement park; each one moves the story forward, slowly revealing the horrors of humanity. The events of FantasticLand are presented as consequences of social media. Unfortunately, my faith in humanity isn’t that strong, this would have gone down the same way in 1984 (the year, not the story). We just do this shit to one another. Again, people suck!

*5 Stars