If you are interested in scientific thrillers, Marc Elsberg’s books are always a brilliant choice. It doesn’t matter if you choose Blackout, Zero or Helix – they’re all interesting, exciting and teach you a lot. This is why I like his work and why I always enjoy reading any book he wrote.
He was born in 1967 in Vienna, grew up in the surroundings of Baden in Lower Austria and studied Industrial Design at the University for Art in Vienna. Later on, he worked in the marketing business as a creative director while he was starting to write his first book, a satirical novel called “Saubermann”. After three more books, he landed a big breakthrough with the thriller “Blackout – Tomorrow will be too late”. It turned out to be a global million-copy bestseller and was translated in over 15 languages. This is also the book I want to tell you more about.
The 21st-century high-concept disaster thriller starts with a total blackout – there is no electricity all over Europe. Through the book, Marc Elsberg shows us the consequences of such a blackout, first beginning with simple traffic lights, then there are no heating, food and water supplies dry up, the death toll soars. One of the main characters and also a prime suspect is a former hacker and activist Piero Manzano, who happens to be the only one capable of finding the real attackers. The big question you have as a reader throughout the whole story: Will he be able to bring down a major terrorist network before it’s too late?
Marc Elsberg describes a scenario that you may have never thought about before, but for which you hope to never happen.
Text written in April 2019.
I’m Jana Berchtold, a 19-year-old volunteer from Austria who enjoys being in nature and likes to travel – even if it’s sometimes just between the pages of a book.
Erasmus+ is a programme of the European Commission embracing the fields of education, training, youth, and sports during the period 2014-2020. One of the major aspects is the cooperation between the different fields where the programme acts, hence contributing to a diverse and rich Europe.
Amongst the several goals of the programme, the following are prioritised: the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, including the headline education target; the aims of the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020), including the corresponding benchmarks; the sustainable development of Partner Countries in the field of higher education; the overall goals of the renewed framework for European cooperation in the youth field (2010-2018); the objective of developing the European dimension in sport, in particular grassroots sport, in line with the EU work plan for sport and the promotion of European values in accordance with Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union.
In order to achieve these goals, the Erasmus+ has several action policies. The Key Action 1 (KA1) is directed towards the mobility of people; Key Action 2 (KA2) for the cooperation for innovation and the interchange of good experiences; and Key Action 3 (KA3) which is for the support of reformation policies.
Since 1991 the University of Madeira Students’ Union has developed a wide incentive policy for voluntary work. In 2013 the Students’ Union started the process to receive, send and coordinate Erasmus+ projects of the European Voluntary Service, in order to have a larger influence in the volunteering field. The Union received its first volunteer withing the ambit of a KA1 project in 2014. Many efforts have been done to allow young people from Madeira to take part in several initiatives in Europe, as well as propose several projects allowing young people from several countries to work in the projects of the Students’ Union of the University of Madeira. The main goal of the voluntary work is the contribution of the volunteers to the communities and places they will be staying, being their work not rewarded with payment.
We believe that the European Voluntary Service is a mechanism full of experiences, allowing the approved candidates to have the privilege of taking part in these projects and benefit the places and communities where these volunteers will be staying.
Since 2013, the University of Madeira Students’ Union has received volunteers that have collaborated in several activities and initiatives. Besides being able to enjoy a wonderful experience which will contribute to their personal and professional growth, they are able to contribute in a unique way to the community in which they are inserted and to join dozens of volunteers from the University of Madeira.