March 3, 2011
Population Zero by Wrath James White Review
By Scott Kenemore
Review posted 03/03/2011
Population Zero has Todd Hammerstein, a man who has gone through several things when he was young: the suicide of his father after he killed the man who had an affair with Todd's mother, his own mother who tried to give herself an abortion and died soon afterwords and his own ordeal with being alone, no friends and finding out what the population of humans compared to animals were. As he gets older he picks up the website 'Population Zero', a extreme activist group that believes in the stopping humans from populating more.
Later in life, Todd works at a welfare assistance department. He gets flustered when he watches people come in time and time again asking for assistance, having babies just to get that assistance, so he starts telling these people to have abortions, get themselves 'fixed' so to speak so no more babies will be born and then he will approve their checks and food stamps.
Then, people stop listening to him. One day a man comes into his cubicle to ask what everyone asks of Todd, assistance. Todd once again suggests the same thing, get 'fixed.' The man just laughs in Todd's face. Then Todd suggests he goes to this one address for job training. What the man doesn't know is that is Todd's address and he is about to help the guy get fixed. After Todd has finished cutting cords, he realizes too much blood has come out and he kills the man. This action though he felt was helping take care of the overpopulated Earth, makes Todd question what he has done.The murdering of the man is only the beginning for Todd as he takes on his quest to save the Earth from overpopulation.
I have read many books in my time, some really extreme in gore, horror ect. However, Population Zero threw me down and shook my inner core.
The story of Todd and his quest to make things right in his mind, though disturbing, made me think. What would someone do if they believed so strongly in something? Would they go to those extremes as Todd did?
My mouth remained on the floor the whole time reading this. Yet, as I read, it kept me wanting to see what happened to the character. He was sick in what society considers mentally ill, but wanting to help the Earth was a redeeming quality, and yet his way of pursuing these moral beliefs caught me extremely off guard.
There is nothing for the faint of heart with this book. I would recommend this book to those that want to feel fear, but not because some vampire or werewolf is what they are reading about, but someone who you never know could be your next door neighboor.