I read a book from my dad when I was younger and have been trying to figure out what it was for years. He has no idea what it was.

It was a post-apocalyptic book where, I believe, the apocalypse involved people snapping and going insane at random. If I remember correctly, the main character's girlfriend/wife goes insane and tries to kill him and he locks her in a bathroom, for example.

It might be set in like a small town trying to survive? And occasionally, members of the town will go insane and kill each other. I can't remember much honestly, it's been about 12 years since I read it.

I believe it's from the '80s, given that that's when my dad was growing up, but I could be wrong.

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    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Aug 31, 2022 at 23:15

2 Answers 2


Might this be Among Madmen by Jim Starlin and Daina Graziunas as per 70s or 80s Book. Post Catastrophe, Sheriff tries to hold town together, and keep his schizo wife from killing him?

From this review:

Easy read, fast-paced, violent, and gripping = highly recommended for fans of pulp action stories. Consider this similar to a zombie plague, only instead of fighting off the undead, the protagonists must battle “Berserkers” which are people who have contracted an incurable mental condition that drives them to sadistically murder anyone they can (consider a similarity in this to the movie, “28 Days Later”). Another level to this story, which makes the plot successful, is that anyone may contract the illness at anytime. So survivors are constantly suspicious of their friends, wondering if they’re about to turn berserker. The main character, Tom Laker, is an ex-vet and sheriff of a town of survivors. He’s a well-rounded hero with flaws and tragic circumstances. Most of the other characters are rather flat, however, and represent bland stereotypes. The author forces a great deal of emotion into the book, some of which is advantageous and some which is not. He cares for a wounded dog, which then runs away, leaving the audience to wonder at its purpose, or if it was an analogous device for Tom himself. Overall, if you’re not expecting too much, this is a great “read-something-fun” book. Also illustrated by the author’s wife, Daina, although I question the placement of the images, as they always came before a plot point, thus giving away what was going to happen.


Another option might be Heinlein's The Year of the Jackpot?

Potiphar Breen is a middle-aged bachelor with a settled, orderly life, and a rather unusual hobby. We meet him first at breakfast in a Los Angeles diner, where he orders his usual meal, takes notes of various apparently unrelated items in several newspapers, and carefully counts out his payment, adding an exactly calculated tip. He then walks out to a bus stop, where a young lady is removing all her clothes.

A pair of passing transvestites try to provoke a beat cop into arresting her, but the cop refrains for fear that the publicity will simply inspire more kooks to disrobe. Breen is unmoved. He waits for her to finish undressing, then wraps his coat around her just as the bus arrives. She promptly faints. He drives her to his house, lets her dress, and after explaining that he is not trying to take advantage of her, interviews her. She explains that she has no idea why she had the sudden urge to take her clothes off. He tells her why he was not surprised at what she did. Apparently women have been doing the same thing, all over the city, for some time. The news has been carefully hushed up, just as Breen himself called a friend at the newspaper and fed him a phony account of this incident.

  • Oh, hey, I wonder if that's where Gibson came up with the term "Jackpot?"
    – DavidW
    Commented Sep 1, 2022 at 14:10
  • This fits for the random insanity (for a certain definition of insanity, since it's mostly about getting nekkid), but seems to lack the homicidal aspect, although arguably, the war and the attempted hijacker might match up.
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Sep 1, 2022 at 15:33
  • The description isn't exactly right - the transvestites are trying to "protect" her from the cop, by stating her actions aren't illegal; additionally, it's not merely women disrobing, but odd, out-of-character actions taken by a large number of people all over the city. Different enough it just seems random, but statistically, spells out certain doom.
    – ArmanX
    Commented Sep 1, 2022 at 19:01

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