You know that thing dystopian authors do? Like, where they just casually drop the names of landmarks, and then wait for you to be like, "heh. I know where that is." Usually, they'll completely drop all the things in the story and pause just so they can mention the Golden Gate Bridge. ("This used to be such a beautiful place. But then the Super Evil Regime bombed it with Super Evil Plague.")
I've read three books this year alone that feature San Francisco somehow. (Looking at you, Altered, World After, and Eve.) And it's funny, because they've all hinted at the skyline and cable-cars and the golden gate bridge. I find it quite ironic that the authors of these books expect us to all immediately know what any of these things are. Imagine if you did that with Laughlin, Nevada. (Knockoff Las Vegas if Las Vegas were tiny and on a river.)
We walk through a broken town. A small brook crosses right near a pathetic boardwalk with dried-out palm trees and completely pointless piers. As I stare up at a building barely standing to its former height, I can make out an odd word: Edgewater.
Yeah, I'll be damned if you know what that place looks like. I barely remember it and I'm only a forty-five minute drive away from being FROM THERE.
I don't necessarily have a problem with it, I just wish their Destroyed City choices were a bit more inclusive. There are basically two options for any kind of fictional adventure story and those options are either 1) A completely invented new world (I mean, come on, you just know the only reason writers invent a new world for their story is so they don't have to do research) or 2) New York or San Francisco. (Or, if it's set somewhere outside the U.S, it's Paris. The day a Young Adult contemporary is set in Singapore or Vienna is the day I write a blog post that doesn't have run-on sentences.)
Since I live in Vegas, I've been aching to see the city I live in featured in a book. Specifically a Young Adult or Children's book, because if I keep those past their due date at the library, there's no late fee. Think of the possibilities. A heroine protagonist could gag at tipped over NAKED LADIES ads. Some dude could make fun of the Drumpf Tower. There could be an epic battle on the UNLV campus that wasn't over which bagel place to go to. ("BUT BARISTA CAFE ISN'T EVEN FOR BAGELS, LYNN!")
There are some twists you can make to this kind of thing that make San Francisco less cliché, but I will not rest until Dubuque, Iowa is the setting of the apocalypse.