An original take on the ‘end of the world’ concept!
I received an advanced copy of this from Hodder & Stoughton on Netgalley but I was also lucky enough to win a gorgeous proof copy over on Facebook too.
Last One At The Party by Bethany Clift
Published 4th February 2021
It’s December 2023 and the world as we know it has ended.
The human race has been wiped out by a virus called 6DM (‘Six Days Maximum’ – the longest you’ve got before your body destroys itself).
But somehow, in London, one woman is still alive. A woman who has spent her whole life compromising what she wants, hiding how she feels and desperately trying to fit in. A woman who is entirely unprepared to face a future on her own.
Now, with only an abandoned golden retriever for company, she must travel through burning cities, avoiding rotting corpses and ravenous rats on a final journey to discover if she really is the last surviving person on earth.
And with no one else to live for, who will she become now that she’s completely alone?
Last One At The Party is essentially a diary, written by possibly the last remaining woman on earth as she navigates her way through a completely different way of life.
Going into this I knew what to expect from the synopsis so was prepared to read about a deadly virus, however currently being in a pandemic ourselves and the author even making reference to it, it all felt a little too close to home and definitely upped the anxiety levels. The first few chapters detail how the ‘the end of the world’ started as the character begins to lose those closest to her and this was truly devastating to read. I could definitely sense the loneliness she must have been feeling and it really sets the scene for just how tough her life ahead of her is going to be.
Along her journey she also looks back at life before 6DM, during these parts you learn so much more about her, such as how she lived with depression and tried to be someone she wasn’t. These parts are so important to the story as they show just how much she develops, grows and learns to be happy again in a time when many would question ‘How can you be happy on your own?’.
I will warn you there are plenty of references to bodily fluids and not just with the decaying bodies! Aside from that, she also ends up in a number of funny situations, some that you may not think would happen if you were the last person on earth….how does a sightseeing tour around London sound?
This story is not just about the end of the world and the terrible things that ensue, instead it’s about hope and ultimately finding out who you really are!
Finally I couldn’t leave this review without mentioning the ending (no spoilers don’t worry), but the last few pages were just brilliant and possibly one of the first books where I’ve re read the ending multiple times. It will definitely make for some great book club discussions!
Overall this book is distressing at times, but once you are past that it is a fantastic story about life and what you choose to do with it!
Get your copy here: Amazon *
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