Book Review - Survival: How a Culture of Preparedness Can Save You and Your Family from Disasters by Lt. Gen. Russel L. Honore and Ron Martz
Through the Amazon Vine program, I received a copy of the book Survival: How a Culture of Preparedness Can Save You and Your Family from Disasters by Lt. Gen. Russel L. Honore and Ron Martz for reviewing. I'll admit that the title had me expecting something far different than what was delivered. As such, I found it only marginally applicable to what the general premise seemed to indicate. Someone going into the book with a proper understanding of what it was actually about might fare better than I did.
Honore was the main person placed in charge of the government response to Hurricane Katrina. Hailing from that area himself, he was immediately seen as "one of us" by the people who were affected by the aftermath of the storm and the cleanup efforts afterwards. In Survival, he presents a first person account of how he came up through the military, the preparation that placed him in the position to lead the storm response, and a blow-by-blow description of what happened behind closed doors as turf wars and personalities warred to get attention and exposure from the crisis. Rather sad that so many in charge had so many ulterior motives beyond the service to those they were sworn to serve and protect. At the end of each chapter, there is a list of "lessons learned" in terms of what came out of the Katrina disaster, as well as things that need to change in order for America to better prepare and handle these events in the future.
Now, had this been titled something like Katrina, or Surviving Katrina, I would have been in a much different mindset when I placed the order. What I expected was a book that talked about how you can prepare your family and yourself for local disasters, and how you can be ready for a disruption in your normal routine. And to be fair, one of the appendixes does cover preparedness kits you should have on hand. But the rest of the book read like an autobiography of Honore, a defense of his decisions, and a storytelling of what it was like to be on the ground after the storm passed. All fine if that's what you were expecting, but far from satisfactory if you were looking to improve your chances of getting through a local crisis.
The best I can do here is give this a three star review, knowing that others might like it better based on their interest in Katrina. Personally, I probably would have been reading something else had I known then what I know now.