Book Title: The Last Day
Author: Andrew Hunter Murray
Goodreads Link: Click here
Release Date: 2/4/20
Star Rating: – Climate change apocalyptic thriller
Disclaimer: I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
This book threw me for a loop when I first started it. The Covid-19 quarantine had just started in my state and I was feeling pretty shaky, then I start this novel. OMG! Am I reading about a pandemic post-apocalypse? I don’t think my heart can take it. Thankfully, the source of The Last Day’s troubles are climate related, which is far enough away from our present circumstances that I could continue reading without freaking myself out.
Funny how some people search out media that directly reflects the pandemic right now. I just don’t have the stomach for it at the moment.
Ok back to the book…
It is 2059, and the world has crashed. Forty years ago, a solar catastrophe began to slow the planet’s rotation to a stop. Now one half of the globe is permanently sunlit, the other half trapped in an endless night. The United States has colonized the southern half of Great Britain–lucky enough to find itself in the narrow habitable region left between frozen darkness and scorching sunlight–where both nations have managed to survive the ensuing chaos by isolating themselves from the rest of the world.
Ellen Hopper is a scientist living on a frostbitten rig in the cold Atlantic. She wants nothing more to do with her country after its slide into casual violence and brutal authoritarianism. Yet when two government officials arrive, demanding she return to London to see her dying college mentor, she accepts–and begins to unravel a secret that threatens not only the nation’s fragile balance, but the future of the whole human race. – Goodreads
I say it was far enough away from our present circumstances, but the truth is it’s pretty darn close when you step back to look at it. The thing that really stood out for me in this book was the vast difference in how people of various socio-economic backgrounds fared. I mean, let’s be real … I have watched/read enough dystopia to know that if the zombies came, or the world ended I’d be in the first group that died. Can’t run fast enough, and not enough money to secure my spot on the ARK (see John Cusack in 2012). In this book, the lower class are pretty much just left on their own. Weren’t born in a rich family? Oh well, there’s always indentured servitude to fall back on. Weren’t born on the right side of the world? Hope you’ve got enough money to buy passage on one of the last boats to Europe. Yes it’s depressing, but as far as novels go, so very interesting.
Ellen Hopper is an excellent character. She is an introvert, who wants desperately to run away from the tragedy unfolding around her, but there is something about her personality that just won’t let her give up. I like that about her. I like a character who although conflicted, can’t quite let go of the better parts of her humanity. Like the kinds of people I admire most as we are dealing with this crisis today.
All that to say, the book gave me a lot to think about, while also providing an excellent read. Once I got into it … couldn’t put it down. Excellent choice.
By the way, the song I picked for this book is an odd one, I admit. But I couldn’t stop hearing it while I was reading. It has a melancholy to it that I think fits. A woman singing to their child about their “own faithful land.”
Song for this book: A Mhaighdean Bhan Uasal (Noble Maiden Fair) – Brave Soundtrack