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A History of the Future (World Made By Hand #3)
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A History of the Future (World Made by Hand #3)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  833 Ratings  ·  113 Reviews
A History of the Future is the third thrilling novel in Kunstler’s "World Made By Hand" series, an exploration of family and morality as played out in the small town of Union Grove.

Following the catastrophes of the twenty-first century—the pandemics, the environmental disaster, the end of oil, the ensuing chaos—people are doing whatever they can to get by and pursuing a si
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published August 5th 2014 by Atlantic Monthly Press
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Joanne Regina Yes you will have to read the beginning of the series to meet the characters and get the most of out the story. Like most series the author tries to…moreYes you will have to read the beginning of the series to meet the characters and get the most of out the story. Like most series the author tries to explain some of the details from the previous events, but it's not a substitute for reading the novels. They are all great reads.

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John Norman
Jul 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a fun read. I've given it five stars, and it is important that you understand that rating in the context of what the author is trying to do: This is an entertainment, a fable, a cautionary tale, a ripping yarn. It the novel was positioned as high literature, I'd give it a different rating. There are a couple of negatives but on the whole if you care about what life will be like when the fossil fuels are gone: read this and its predecessors in its series.

This is the third book in a series
Although I have stopped reading Kunstler's blog because of his tiresome tirades against tattoos and black Americans, I still think his overall thesis about the "long emergency" is an accurate one. Plus I really enjoy the world he has made (by hand!) in these novels. A History of the Future, the third in this series, was as enjoyable a read as the first two novels. It also (finally) provided a look at what happened to the world outside of upstate New York, as recounted by a prodigal son who barel ...more
Aug 10, 2014 rated it it was ok
Certainly not the best of the World Made by Hand series... the writing seemed overly simplistic and repetitive, even for Kunstler. This is the first time I actually didn't get pulled in head over heels into Union Grove and I finished the book feeling disappointed.
Jul 05, 2016 rated it it was ok
It is hard for for me to admit that I was disappointed by this book. I really wanted to like it. I really expected to like it. It was not a bad book, but it was not nearly what it could or should have been, considering how good the previous volumes were. I give it 2 stars, which according to GoodReads means I find it ok. And that's accurate. I didn't dislike it, but it didn't blow my skirt up.

Almost all of my gripes about the book come from believability--or the lack thereof. I enjoy James Kuns
Lori L (She Treads Softly)
Jul 29, 2014 rated it really liked it
A History of the Future by James Howard Kunstler is the highly recommended third book in the World Made by Hand series. These books are set in a future America after a complete economic, political, and cultural collapse has occurred. Epidemics have swept the land and the population has been decimated. In this world, those who are going to survive are forced to live literally by what they can do with their own hands and labor. It is sort of a dystopian pioneer setting - the simple life but in a c ...more
Kathryn Bashaar
Mar 14, 2015 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed World Made by Hand but hadn't realized Kunstler had turned it into a series until I came across this third in the series at the library.
The premise of this series is that in the near future the world has undergone a series of catastrophes - a disastrous Middle East war, annihilation of LA and DC, a series of epidemics - that have caused the collapse of consumerist, central-government-managed, fossil-fuel-driven civilization. Humanity is back to the 19th century - at best.
I don'
Mike Johnson
Oct 11, 2015 rated it liked it
A rather thought provoking book about a future US post two major bombings of DC and LA. In the current US environment of unbridled American exceptionalism, it's hard to even think about the US not continuing to dominate world politics forever - this possibility is what makes this book so fascinating.

I couldn't help but be continually reminded of the 1960's Whole Earth Catalog environment when many of us baby boomers were planning for the worst and figuring how to live with no electricity, plast
Bryan Winchell
Aug 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is another interesting addition to this series, which takes place in post-collapse America maybe 20-30 years in the future. The previous two in the series were probably better as stories in and of themselves, but I enjoyed how Kunstler used this one to show the changes to the broader world outside of upstate New York. I also think he has done a nice job laying the groundwork for the fourth and final book in the series, which I heard him say in a podcast interview would likely be out in 2015 ...more
May 04, 2015 rated it liked it
It's the third novel in his A World Made By Hand series, which is a great take on the post-apocalytpic future. I like his style and like the world, but the plot isn't quite there. It follows a bunch of mostly disconnected stories that overlap occasionally and none of them come to a very satisfying conclusion. It feels kind of lackluster. It's worth reading if you like the series, but it's not a great chapter.
Jul 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is the 3rd book in the World Made by Hand series and I have loved them all. This one ended in such a way that I know a 4th is coming. I'm already looking forward to it!
Ted Stark
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
I enjoy this series. A different take on the post-apocalypse world.
Sep 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
A couple of years have passed since we last hung out the residents of Union Grove, New York. In many ways not that much has changed. There's progress being made in the construction of a community laundry and a new tavern has opened providing a focal point for socialization. You'll still bump into Robert Earle and his friend Loren Holder. Those who have survived the collapse of the government and all its subsequent illnesses are still scratching out a living out of what remains by their newly emb ...more
Oct 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I’m really enjoying this series of books. It’s an interesting thought experiment on topics that have occurred to me many times - what happens if we have no more electricity or oil? How is climate change going to affect our lives? Why do we build cities the way we have been doing?
The author has a way with words, and has clearly had some of the same thoughts I have had, about community and city planning and education. The only think that’s starting to annoy me is that so far there are only white
Joel Sanda
Hell of a page turner - like the first two in this series. Brother Jobe is rapidly becoming my favorite character - his southern sensibilities, practical mind, and empathy are admirable qualities. At this point I'm not sure if those inform his religiousity or if it's the other way around. It may be he is so likable precisely because he's not your run-of-the-mill evangelist. The supernatural abilities are sparse, and I think this is real craftmanship on the part of Kunstler. Nowhere do these abil ...more
Carolyn McBride
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Couldn't Put it Down

Not quite as impactful as the first in the series, but gripping and engaging all the same. I couldn't put it down, and ended up reading it in two sessions. Very pleased with Brother Jobe, whom I wasn't quite sure I liked initially.
I do hope there is, or will be, another volume in this series. The characters all grow on you and the reader is left with hope at the end. Very glad I bought this and the ones before it.
Jun 15, 2017 rated it liked it
I thought this was the weakest thus far in the series. It was sort of interesting to hear about Daniel's adventures with the New Foxfire Republic, but everyone involved with that group seemed very one-dimensional. And the whole side story of the mother who kills her husband and infant son just didn't make any sense to me, nor did it add to the development of the novel. This doesn't mean I won't read the fourth in the series, just a bit disappointed.
Victoria Laskowski
This is book 3 if the World Made by Hand series, and I really enjoyed it. The story centers around life in a small upstate New York’s town 10-15 years from now after the collapse of ...pretty much everything. This volume tells a few stories of the people in the town and recounts the adventures of a young resident who has just returned after a two-year absence. I recommend it. It’s a fast read, and I was really drawn into the lives of characters I have gotten to know throughout the series.
Stephen Heiner
Sep 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fun
I am interested in these characters. I'm interested in this alternative dystopian reality that has nothing to do with aliens and everything to do with our own choices. This is the third in this series and is not a weak link, but introduces new characters while really developing characters we've known since the very first book in the series. Looking forward to the conclusion.
Brad Engborg
May 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
The story in book 3 seemed to slow down a lot for me...seemed like more of the same with a bit more violence. The overall story is good but it took a turn enough in a not so great direction I decided not to share it with my son to read.
Marie Connor
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book, third in the series. I think this is the best one so far yet.
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
so far this is the best of the 3. good series.
Lydia Wren
Dec 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this disaster porn. I think maybe it doesn't present the world as quite as difficult as it would actually be under these circumstances but a fun read, nevertheless.
Oct 14, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a good read and I was sucked back in the characters pretty quickly, but the ending was a bit abrupt and confusing...
Ken Cartisano
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is the third book in the series. See my review of 'World Made by Hand' #1. Excellent book, series, author and story.
Patty Gallagher
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Third book in a cool futuristic trilogy.
Jan 15, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
Couldn’t get into it, too strange for me.
Karen Nelson
Jul 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am really enjoying this series. Although it is secular based, what comes to my mind is what life could be like in America with those who are left behind after the second coming of Christ.
Susan Arra
Mar 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this interesting perspective on the future....and will contemplate its possibility for some time.
Steven Lee
Oct 23, 2016 rated it liked it
I debated between 3 and 4 stars. I liked this a little less than the Witch of Hebron so opted for 3.

It was a pleasure to re-enter the world of Union Grove and the World Made by Hand universe. For the first time in the series Kunstler pulls back the curtain and shows what is going on in the wider world of the old United States and returns to the topic of criminal justice.

The story takes place over Christmastime and New Year's. Winter has settled in to upstate New York making it a joyful season
Lynn Vannucci
Jun 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A History of the Future
Kunstler, James Howard (Author)
Aug 2014. 352 p. Atlantic Monthly, hardcover, $24. (9780802122520).

Kunstler’s post-economic-collapse and postdigital A World Made by Hand series continues with increasing literary finesse in the third installment, following The Witch of Hebron (2010). In the slowly recovering upstate New York town of Union Grove, people relearn old skills as they produce their own food and libations, make music, restore old buildings, and use candles and woo
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James Howard Kunstler (born 1948) is an American author, social critic, and blogger who is perhaps best known for his book The Geography of Nowhere, a history of suburbia and urban development in the United States. He is prominently featured in the peak oil documentary, The End of Suburbia, widely circulated on the internet. In his most recent non-fiction book, The Long Emergency (2005), he argues ...more
More about James Howard Kunstler

Other books in the series

World Made by Hand (4 books)
  • World Made by Hand (World Made by Hand #1)
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“The world tilted, but he had anticipated and prepared for it and the tilt affected him favorably, especially his internal demeanor, which was one of a cheerful engagement with reality.” 0 likes
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