Monday, July 11, 2016
The End of the World Running Club - A Must Read Review and Excerpt
I am wrenched by the ending. I am not saying the ending was horrid and sorrowful, but you feel it deep in your heart and soul.
This is one of those books that you shut after the last page and just stare at it for a few minutes.... thinking. In some spots I know I read too fast, missing things in my need to know what happens next. This book was so damned good that I may very well simply open to page one and read it again, immediately.
Remember a few weeks ago I told you that I had just read THE book of the year for me? Well now I have two of those books. Both equal in brilliance and character build - but totally diverse from each other. So far it's been a banner summer for my reading. How often do you find The Book? I have found more than one.
This is not an apocalyptic book with a survival need to run as advertised on the front cover, but instead a book about retaining your humanity, keeping what is most important to you safe and whole, finding just what you are truly made of and what is the most important thing to you. This is about taking your stand against what life throws your way and striving for more than just surviving. It is not a typical apocalypse book.
Adrian's writing has a wonderful flow and phrasing to it, the descriptives flow into your mind and you can clearly picture the thoughts and emotions occurring in each scene. Quite a few sentences invite you to back up a paragraph or two and reread, which I did willingly.
Edgar is a man who is unhappy with life. He is 35 with 2 young children, stuck in the middle class suburban rut that so many of us fear. He is slightly overweight and drinks a bit too much each evening. His marriage is "okay". Then an apocalyptic event does happens, one that could easily be based on reality. Suddenly Edgar is not simply providing for his family, he has to protect them and help them actually SURVIVE. His reality changes in an instant, and he finds sources of strength and determination he didn't know existed in him. He becomes a hero to them without thought, almost against his will.
When his family is suddenly wrenched away from him and he finds himself left behind he looks to the others also left and they take on a journey to reunite and find a safe spot in the world. They form the End of the World Running Club to travel 500 odd miles to the safety zone. They form bonds and friendships and competitions. They retain their humanity with each other, sometimes filling their nights with petty sniping, but always staying together as a team.... a family made from need.
The characters in this novel are living, breathing beings, simply trapped on paper. They are fully alive. No cardboard characters in this novel. The conditions they travel over and the other survivalists they meet are at times truly horrific, but through it all the light of humanity shines. They fight to have it shine.
I cannot say enough about this book. It is truly a MUST READ. Please note that this is through a UK publisher and cannot be purchased as an eBook here in the US. But I found a UK book site - bookdepository.com that will send a print copy with free shipping to the US. This book is so worth the wait and lack of instant gratification that an eBook would bring. Pus, I feel it's one you will want to have on your bookshelf.
No one ask to borrow my copy, you don't have a chance of getting your hands on it.
Click HERE for an excerpt.
Del Rey UK
Penguin Random House UK