Last Ones Left Alive

Last Ones Left Alive

Book - 2019 | First U.S. edition.
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"Combines the spare poetry of The Road with the dizzying pace of 28 Days Later. " -- Jennie Melamed, author Gather the Daughters
"A riveting novel." -- Eowyn Ivey, bestselling author of The Snow Child

Remember your just-in-cases. Beware tall buildings. Always have your knives.

Raised in isolation by her mother and Maeve on a small island off the coast of a post-apocalyptic Ireland, Orpen's life has revolved around training to fight a threat she's never seen. More and more she feels the call of the mainland, and the prospect of finding other survivors.

But that is where danger lies, too, in the form of the flesh-eating menace known as the skrake.

Then disaster strikes. Alone, pushing an unconscious Maeve in a wheelbarrow, Orpen decides her last hope is abandoning the safety of the island and journeying across the country to reach the legendary banshees, the rumored all-female fighting force that battles the skrake.

But the skrake are not the only threat...

Sarah Davis-Goff's Last Ones Left Alive is a brilliantly original imagining of a young woman's journey to discover her true identity.

Publisher: New York : Flatiron Books, 2019.
Edition: First U.S. edition.
ISBN: 9781250235220
Branch Call Number: FIC DAVIS
Characteristics: 280 pages


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PimaLib_JonM Sep 20, 2019

In the crowded genre of zombie stories, this one stands out for being both stark in a way sometimes reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy's The Road as well as having a hopefulness that overcomes that starkness because it shows trust and love in a world overrun by rotting corpses out to feed upon the living. Told as such things are using flashbacks to a life of isolation on an island off the coast of Ireland, flashbacks to recent events, as well as a narrative along a road to a fabled and accursed "Phoenix City", this novel follows a 15-year-old Orpen as she learns to train herself for combat with crazed zombies out for her, her regimen of starvation and privation and exercise and quiet movement and always looking out for danger. She of course meets it, confronts it, has to make difficult choices, and becomes both the survivor her parents wanted: the warrior one trained her to be and the loving and good person one taught her to be. The symbolism of the two parents, both women, and how they leave her is one of the chilling things absent from so many post-apocalyptic tales. End-Times Ireland is lush as nature takes over. This book is a fresh take on a genre that needs to run away from the rotting, mindless-horde of fellow tales. There are plenty of great books out there, but if you read only one zombie novel this decade, this would be a good pick.

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