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History is only the sum of its people and, as far as I know, we could be the last ones Historian Jon Keller was attending a conference at a hotel, L Hotel Sixieme, in Switzerland when nuclear bombs weapons hit various cities around the world Jon thought he had time to respond to his wife s text message, he was mulling over what to say and regrets how things were left between them Now he fears that his wife and daughters may be dead and what is worse is that he may never know While some left History is only the sum of its people and, as far as I know, we could be the last ones Historian Jon Keller was attending a conference at a hotel, L Hotel Sixieme, in Switzerland when nuclear bombs weapons hit various cities around the world Jon thought he had time to respond to his wife s text message, he was mulling over what to say and regrets how things were left between them Now he fears that his wife and daughters may be dead and what is worse is that he may never know While some left the hotel immediately upon hearing the news of the attacks, Jon remained with approximately twenty other survivors They are cut off from the outside world and with no internet or electricity, they have no news about survivors, what areas are safe, the amount of damage done, etc Are they the only survivors, or are there others Is it safe to leave the hotel or is it safer to stay How long must they stay Will anyone come looking for them Who dropped the bombs How long can the survive at the hotel When will their supplies run out When the body of a young girl is found, Jon decides to investigate fearing there may be a murderer at the hotel Jon also takes it upon himself, to document what is happening at the hotel and to give descriptions and background of the people who remain there he is a historian after all Through Jon s writings, readers get a glimpse into life at the hotel after the bombs hit He tells of suicides, survival, arguments, and how some take positions of leadership.This is a rather slow moving book with not a lot of action This isof a character study of how people live and survive after the world appears to end The hotel occupants do not know if anyone else survived, what happened to those you choose to leave the hotel, or if their loved ones are alive They are existing with very little too do to fill up their days Survival is key Through Jon s documentation of the hotel guests, the reader gets to know the hotel occupants to a small degree There is a lot for readers to ponder in this book What decisions would the reader make Would the reader choose to stay at the hotel or leave to try and go home or at least find others Would the reader assume a position of leadership Would the reader be able to make decisions between life and death etc This is definitely a thought provoking book The book also does have some political talk and debate with characters blaming others for voting for him and therefore being responsible for the bombings For me, this was a little frustrating as we never knowabout the political situation Who dropped the bombs Why Who is the him the characters voted for, etc.For me this book was good not great I didn t mind the pace so much that there were some frustrating parts subplots that really didn t go anywhere There were times I thought the book was going to get creepy, but it didn t This book is uniquely told through Jon s documentation, so the reader doesn t really get to see the other characters emotional reactions to things We are told things but don t really get to see their fear, anxiety, doubt, anger, etc unless Jon chooses to write about them This made the book feel a little flat for me This book is thought provoking and I believe that is its strength We live in a time when countries have nuclear weapons, so it is easy to place oneself in this situations and wonder what if this were me Fans of dystopian novels will most likely enjoy this one.Thank you to Atria books and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review The thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own A realistic type of dystopian novel, chilling, intriguing, and altogether believable Set in a Swiss forest in an isolated hotel, Jon, a historian attending a conference, is caught up when the world goes BOOM Nuclear war has broken out, most of the world s major cities are lost, communication is scratchy and transport non existent Jon takes it on himself to record what has happened, from his point of view, and we are reading his journal.The fear, the hardships, a sense of grieving are all well A realistic type of dystopian novel, chilling, intriguing, and altogether believable Set in a Swiss forest in an isolated hotel, Jon, a historian attending a conference, is caught up when the world goes BOOM Nuclear war has broken out, most of the world s major cities are lost, communication is scratchy and transport non existent Jon takes it on himself to record what has happened, from his point of view, and we are reading his journal.The fear, the hardships, a sense of grieving are all well recorded Not knowing whether his loved ones have survived, never mind if he will see them again, really starts to hit home for Jon And with winter coming on, food scarce, plus the real possibility of radiation poisoning, the survivors start getting cabin fever and turning on themselves and each other And in the background at all times is the thought of the murdered girl found in the water tank, and which of them put her thereI did really enjoy this book, the isolation and fear come over well Not knowing what is happening in the world, if you are all alone with a small pocket of people, or if others are around, would be terrifying The dog eat dog world as we know it is magnified and intense Yet the promise of small treats, like listening to a song, or eating chocolate, is an uplifting and joyous occasion It brings the world we take for granted into a clear perspective Recommended I was all set to close the book cough on 2018 I had finished up the Peter Grant series in a very satisfactory way, was finishing up a couple other books, and was hoping to actually complete reviews for the books read, all in the same year I know, I know Foolish Then I saw Robert s review and the words apocalypse and mystery instantly jumped out You could not have tempted mewith dark chocolate sea salt caramels And wouldn t you know it Last was just as satisfying, a great mix o I was all set to close the book cough on 2018 I had finished up the Peter Grant series in a very satisfactory way, was finishing up a couple other books, and was hoping to actually complete reviews for the books read, all in the same year I know, I know Foolish Then I saw Robert s review and the words apocalypse and mystery instantly jumped out You could not have tempted mewith dark chocolate sea salt caramels And wouldn t you know it Last was just as satisfying, a great mix of emotions and flavors.It starts off quickly no building of suspense, wondering when the end of the world will happen, letting our hapless characters wander around as we all get our bearings It has happened Jon, the narrator, begins the story three days after the news breaks An American tucked away in Switzerland for a conference, and he and his colleagues have been routed to a somewhat isolated hotel I hesitate to say muchsuffice to say that it unfolds quickly and seems very plausible It combines the best of the apocalypse a quick disaster, a prolonged sense of aftermath, the opportunity to explore self, meaning, and society, all done with solid writing A lot of people confuse movement with progress, Dylan said I knew it was a bad idea but what were we gonna do, barricade them in They weren t ready to face any kind of truth I leaned against the wall of the stairwell as Dylan got out his set of keys The air in here was too thick, full of dust and last breaths It stank I hated the stairwell but of course the elevators weren t working any hadn t worked for two months, not since that first day I can think of a handful of books that this would compare to, and it s no surprise that the publisher draws analogies to The Last Policeman andStation Eleven I think that for many, however, this will be an improvement on both of those Less bucolic and with a stronger narrative than Station Eleven, there is a definite atmosphere of fearfulness and psychological stress Will these survivors break down Like an inverse horror movie with the demons from within, how will they cope Similar to The Last Policeman, the narrator is struggling with his own reactions and trauma response though aware he is doing so, he s not exactly doing so with great success But he reflects and engages, and it provides interesting food for thought I figure I should keep writing things down The clouds are a strange color, but I m not sure if that s just me being in shock They could be normal clouds I will agree with Robert, one of the reviews that lead me to this book the ending did feel rushed Of course, for me, endings often feel rushed with suspense novels, as I m speed reading, trying to discover the resolution and relieve the tension I ll go so far as to say it s a little Tana French ish in that the story isabout the psychological journey of the characters and less about the mystery It is an intriguing ending, but yes it does try to do too much too quickly, given the pacing of the middle.Last but random note one of the few end of the world novels that integratesthan then an average white American in it.Still, it was a fabulous way to end my 2018 reads Definitely left me with a book hangover Many thanks to NetGalley and Atria Books for the advance reader copy The quotes, of course, are subject to change in the final writing, but I do think that Jameson s style is one of the aspects that sets this above your average mystery or end of the world, and should be appreciated Four and a half cloudy stars I ve stepped outside of my genre comfort zone with The Last, and I m so glad that I took the chance it paid off This is a dark, deeply disturbing tale of one man s account of what he deems to be the end of the world due to nuclear war One that is extremely unsettling and anxiety inducing due to the fact that it is completely possible This one actually took me longer than normal to read, I had to keep putting it down because I kept saying what if.Jon is an American historian who finds hi I ve stepped outside of my genre comfort zone with The Last, and I m so glad that I took the chance it paid off This is a dark, deeply disturbing tale of one man s account of what he deems to be the end of the world due to nuclear war One that is extremely unsettling and anxiety inducing due to the fact that it is completely possible This one actually took me longer than normal to read, I had to keep putting it down because I kept saying what if.Jon is an American historian who finds himself at a secluded Swiss hotel for a writing conference when nuclear war breaks out This is his story, told from his point of view, as he tries to record everything that happens for documentation purposes From complete blackout of the internet and news, to attempting to find food in order to survive you will find yourself questioning what you would do if you were in the same shoes It is a story of survival, mystery, and trying to find hope in the bleakness of atrocity This is super cinematic in its storytelling I could absolutely see it being picked up as a film or series Netflix get on board here, please A big thank you to my girl Chelsea for the invitation to read this book, and to Atria for my advance copy This book will be available in April 2019 3.5 stars NOW AVAILABLE i was offered an e ARC of this book and encouraged to go in blind i read the synopsis, obviously, to make sure it was within my admittedly very broad reading tastes, and from that, i gathered that it was a locked room mystery with a twist a young girl s body is found on the premises of a swiss hotel that is still standing in the aftermath of a nuclear war that has destroyed most of the world, leaving twenty people struggling to make sense of this altered global landscape and n NOW AVAILABLE i was offered an e ARC of this book and encouraged to go in blind i read the synopsis, obviously, to make sure it was within my admittedly very broad reading tastes, and from that, i gathered that it was a locked room mystery with a twist a young girl s body is found on the premises of a swiss hotel that is still standing in the aftermath of a nuclear war that has destroyed most of the world, leaving twenty people struggling to make sense of this altered global landscape and now also a murrrrderrrrrr the blurbs name dropped Stephen King, Agatha Christie, The Girl With All the Gifts, Annihilation, calling it nightmarish, a dystopian psychological thriller, haunting a combination that made me think this was going to be Clue The Shining The Road, and that s a big old ball of YES PLEASE for karen.do those blurbs accurately convey the tone and content of this book weeeeellllll again, i was encouraged to go in blind, and i don t want to make decisions for anyone else, but mother nature gave us spoiler tags, so imma use them not to talk about any actual plot spoilers, but to sharebroadly what this book feels like to read which expectations were met by the readalikes and which were not so, it will be tonal spoilers only to click or not to click think of it this way say you saw the trailer for The Cabin in the Woods and thought ooh a horror movie and then you watched The Cabin in the Woods and realized it was just pretending to be a horror movie did you feel A misled and crankyB delightedC what s The Cabin in the Woods if A, view spoiler if B, do not view spoiler if C, put down that book, ya nerd so view spoiler 1 this book is not scary not even a little bit i m not sure why it tries to set up a spooky vibe early on, and why the blurbs perpetuate this fallacy with their Stephen King co shenanigans it does take place in a hotel, like The Shining or like Security, for that matter , and the stress of isolation and the END OF THE WORLD does make some people behave erratically or act out of desperation, but it s not ghost twinsies and shriveled bathtub ladies, it s ordinary human panic because the end of the world is scary, especially when you re far from home you re stuck in a hotel with a bunch of strangers who don t even share a common language, you don t know who can be trusted, you can t contact your loved ones so you fear the worst, you have no idea what fresh hells are still to comelayering on a supernatural stressor on top of that would have been some excellent intense icing, and the seeds of mayyyyybe haaaauuunnted were certainly planted What interested you about the history of the hotel Well, you know this hotel has a pattern of suicides and unexplained deaths Even a couple of murders in the eighties and nineties The most recent owners are pretty shady, hard to pin down The place has been sold and resold a lot due to bad press Also because a famous serial killer stayed once My work, well what I was planning to spend my time in the hotel doing was mostly write biographies of the people who died here and I sometimes feel that there might bepeople in the hotel than we know about It is such a huge place It plays on my mind And it s a very noisy building, a lot of bangs and bumps in the night.i m not saying i begrudge the attempt ambiguity is always welcome here for a while i was enjoying the shiverylicious The Silent Land House of Leaves vibes from this, and the sheer number of times characters voiced the maybe we re all already dead idea was like a siren s song, but when nothing spooky ever actually developed, it was clutter without consequence 2 this book is not a mystery not really there is a dead body, there are suspicious people, there are secrets and red herrings and misdirection the protagonist investigates, in his own way, who killed the girl, but this is not the novel s primary concern, and the thread is dropped for a large chunk around the book s midsection.so what is this book thematically, it islike Station Eleven than anything mentioned above its focus is largely upon establishing connections and retaining humanity, or not, in the wake of a cataclysmic event it is very much about people not people as murder suspects, but what people feel and how they interact it s about regret, forgiveness, kindness, society, law, responsibility, making peace with the past, overcoming the barriers of language and culture, political ideologies, what we owe each other as members of the same species, etc, but also what happens when desperation incites violence.for me, the horror mystery detours didn t contribute anything except confusion once the book settled into itssociological track a book with this line The only meaning we might have left as a species indeed the only thing left that might matter, that might keep us motivated to get up in the morning is in the small acts of human kindness we show each other, and in my compulsion to be helpful, useful, to keep things moving forward, I ve mostly forgotten to be kind.ain t never going to be a horror novel.there s violence, yes many different kinds of it, but anything remotely supernatural feeling is redirected if anything, it s humanist horror, as one character claims An absence of meaning that would be the scariest of all things it also quotes Graham Greene, muses on individual freedoms and community responsibilities and argues whether suicide is an option for many it is, but not for our guide through this situation The thought had occurred to me once or twice would killing myself really be that bad, considering Did I want to see where we and humanity as a whole ended up Did I want to see how much worse things got before they if they ever got better But the idea always repelled me As long as I could continue to be useful, I d stay I wouldn t voluntarily throw my life away I d never think badly of those who decided it was too much, because it was It is too much But I could have been in San Francisco when those bombs fell, I could have been in Mississippi with my parents, and I was in neither I had ended up in one of the few places that escaped total devastation, and the idea of creatingby giving in to despair seemed ungrateful somehow the thing is, the end of the world doesn t need additional bells and whistles to keep a reader s interest the aftermath is enough the mystery plot resolves in a fine but too coincidental and certainly not fair play manner, but the spooky atmosphere was not needed, sez me hide spoiler so, that s what the book is and is not did i like it i did mostly it meanders a bit, as i ve mentioned to those of you who went to spoilertown, but for the most part, it achieves its goals of what iffing the apocalypse and showing how miscommunication, paranoia and sectional alliances can be pretty darn destructive and nukes also destructive the only other thing i struggled with is a completely personal gripe that i m mentioning strictly as a self reminder should i ever need to catalog my own aversions the world we live in is fucked and it s an especially embarrassing time to be an american but i have a personal squicky discomfort when contemporary political elements creep into my escapist entertainment there s something off putting to me about reading this book, whose end of world scenario was clearly brought about by our great orange shame, where a character who voted for him is berated by others as complicit to this end of world scenario and it basically turns into any day on twitter vitriolic, divisive, unproductive, issue laden it s completely me and my problem i had the same reaction to American Horror Story Cult, and even The Good Fight, although it was used in a muchorganic n humorous way there i think my problem is when what s already bad is made worse for entertainment an alarmist spear poking me in the place i m turning to as an escape we know it s bad trust me, we are all fully alarmed the news already feels like a horror movie, i don t want my horror to feel like the news but that s just me being feeling overwhelmed by how everything is falling apart quick raccoons three and a half stars, rounded up.come to my blog 4.5 stars Jon Keller is at the L Hotel Sixieme in Switzerland, attending an academic conference, on the day the bombs fall Nuclear war has broken out and cities all over the world have been decimated Through early news alerts, he learns hundreds of thousands of people have already been killed.Jon s wife and two children are home in San Francisco, but he can t really worry about that now, he needs to focus on keeping himself alive Jon, along with twenty other survivors, hunker down in the r 4.5 stars Jon Keller is at the L Hotel Sixieme in Switzerland, attending an academic conference, on the day the bombs fall Nuclear war has broken out and cities all over the world have been decimated Through early news alerts, he learns hundreds of thousands of people have already been killed.Jon s wife and two children are home in San Francisco, but he can t really worry about that now, he needs to focus on keeping himself alive Jon, along with twenty other survivors, hunker down in the relative safety of the hotel and that s truly where our story begins.A historian by trade, Jon takes it upon himself to begin writing the account of the survivors and that is how the narrative is told For me, this worked so well I loved the feel of it and how we were able to learn not just what was going on currently, but also a bit of the survivor s back stories, as well as some of the history of the hotel itself.While opening up the top of some water tanks in an effort to start catching rain water, they find the body of a dead girl It is clear she ended up in the tank by nefarious means and Jon becomes obsessed with finding out who killed her As in, he begins a full blown investigation into which he focuses most of his energy.Tensions are running high and the survivors begin to form alliances and develop a social system unto themselves With rations beginning to dwindle and winter approaching, the survivors start to send out mini expeditions in search of food and other supplies As you can imagine, these are dangerous undertakings and add quite a bit of tension to the plot.I had a great time reading this book I was absolutely entertained the whole time I felt there was just the right level of tension the whole way through to keep you on the edge of your seat I loved the exploration of people pushed to their limits and how they would organize themselves in order to function with some baseline of decency.The last little bit seemed a little rushed to me, but I wasn t disappointed with how it ultimately turned out I would recommend this one to anyone who likes post apocalyptic stories This is nice and modern and fitting for our times Very well done Thank you so much to the publisher, Atria Books, for providing me with a copy to read and review I appreciate the opportunity and look forward to readingby Jameson in the future 3.75 Stars rounded up Let s talk about HEART PALPITATIONS The ones that feel like they are going to BURST right out of your chest almost like the Alien from that movie with Ripley upon starting The Last by Hanna Jameson and seeing the words Nuclear Bomb and Nuclear Apocalypse well, my heart started beating so hard, I felt like it was going to explode Those are not words I want to see in my lifetime Thankfully this novel is fictional That said, what started out as a dystopian 3.75 Stars rounded up Let s talk about HEART PALPITATIONS The ones that feel like they are going to BURST right out of your chest almost like the Alien from that movie with Ripley upon starting The Last by Hanna Jameson and seeing the words Nuclear Bomb and Nuclear Apocalypse well, my heart started beating so hard, I felt like it was going to explode Those are not words I want to see in my lifetime Thankfully this novel is fictional That said, what started out as a dystopian novel about an apocalypse, quickly became something else entirely A mystery about a murdered young girl whose body is found in a tank Surprise, surprise Jon is an American at a Conference at the L Hotel Sixieme in Switzerland when DC and the rest of the world is attacked Jon loses the ability to contact his wife Nadia and their two children, Marion and Ruth His days are spent chronicling what happens then they find her The little girl and he begins hunting for answers Can he trust those he s with And let s not forget that he s in the middle of an Apocalypse Oh yeah, that The Last begs so many questions How does one survive an apocalypse Is this the end What would you do Run Kill or be killed This was a buddy read with Kaceey and we went back and forth asking a lot of questions note, for the record killing never came up it waslike, escaping the hotel to look for a bookstore or library note searching for the murdered girl never came up either, lol This was an intriguing end of the world scenario with some tabasco sauce thrown in that had us questioning and wondering The writing was top knotch I look forward to seeing watch Hanna Jameson comes up with next Thank you to NetGalley, David Brown at Atria Books and to Hanna Jameson for a complimentary copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.Published on Goodreads on 3.24.19.Will be published onand Twitter on 4.9.19 Hanna Jameson s dystopian, apocalyptic mystery novel embodies our worst fears and nightmares with the current US political situation It begins with the shocking details of nuclear war with weapons exploding in cities around the world, including Washington, Munich, London and Scotland This is a story of the impact and terrifying repercussions that follow for the survivors and a locked room murder mystery set in a remote and isolated hotel in Switzerland American historian, Jon Keller, is in a Hanna Jameson s dystopian, apocalyptic mystery novel embodies our worst fears and nightmares with the current US political situation It begins with the shocking details of nuclear war with weapons exploding in cities around the world, including Washington, Munich, London and Scotland This is a story of the impact and terrifying repercussions that follow for the survivors and a locked room murder mystery set in a remote and isolated hotel in Switzerland American historian, Jon Keller, is in a troubled marriage with Nadia that is heading towards separation, and has two daughters Jon has travelled to Switzerland for a convention when the news breaks about the disturbing global events taking place, with many people leaving for the airport and rail stations However, their journeys are pointless as transport links comes to a standstill and there is a communications blackout, with no internet access Amidst the panic, fear, paranoia, madness and mayhem, 20 strangers are left in the big hotel, a diverse mix of guests and staff, including the man with leadership qualities, Dylan, the hotel manager, Aussie barman, Nathan, a medical doctor, and an American history student that Jon finds himself getting close to Water problems lead to the discovery of the body of a young woman in the water tank Plagued by guilt for ignoring Nadia s last message, Jon finds salvation in investing his energies in investigating the murder despite others showing little interest They feel there are greater concerns that face them with the collapse of the world as they know it Jon documents what is happening, recording his experiences and events in his journal Tensions, conflict and suspicions of each other rise to unbearable levels between the survivors as supplies run low The survivors are also keen to ensure that their secrets do not emerge.This is an astonishingly thought provoking novel that provides opportunities to reflect on what might be a real possibility in our contemporary world Jameson s depiction of a strife ridden group of survivors feels desperately authentic, particularly as we are presented with aspects of the worst of humanity In this bleak and unsettling read, the author provides a philosophical and human exploration of life and death, with ethical and moral dilemmas in a post apocalyptic scenario With sincere hopes that the outlined nightmare in this novel never come to pass, I found the focus on a group of survivors fascinating and horrifying as they turn on each other, whilst the murder mystery elements are suspenseful and gripping A book guaranteed to make you think Many thanks to Penguin UK for an ARC This was a really unsettling read, especially because it felt so plausible based on current events That said, it was also a gripping, fast paced dystopian thriller with a side dish of murder mystery I don t want to say too much about this one yet, but I m really excited to see what other people think of The Last as they read review it While the plots are different, it gave me similar vibes to The Last One, another post apocalyptic dystopian that I adored I think fans of that book will love t This was a really unsettling read, especially because it felt so plausible based on current events That said, it was also a gripping, fast paced dystopian thriller with a side dish of murder mystery I don t want to say too much about this one yet, but I m really excited to see what other people think of The Last as they read review it While the plots are different, it gave me similar vibes to The Last One, another post apocalyptic dystopian that I adored I think fans of that book will love this as well More to come as I think on itI received a review copy via the publisher. `EBOOK ↠ The Last ☠ For fans of high concept thrillers such as Annihilation and The Girl with All the Gifts, this breathtaking dystopian psychological thriller follows an American academic stranded at a Swiss hotel as the world descends into nuclear war along with twenty other survivors who becomes obsessed with identifying a murderer in their midst after the body of a young girl is discovered in one of the hotel s water tanksJon thought he had all the time in the world to respond to his wife s text message I miss you so much I feel bad about how we left it Love you But as he s waiting in the lobby of the L Hotel Sixieme in Switzerland after an academic conference, still mulling over how to respond to his wife, he receives a string of horrifying push notifications Washington, DC has been hit with a nuclear bomb, then New York, then London, and finally Berlin That s all he knows before news outlets and social media goes black and before the clouds on the horizon turn orangeNow, two months later, there are twenty survivors holed up at the hotel, a place already tainted by its strange history of suicides and murders Those who can t bear to stay commit suicide or wander off into the woods Jon and the others try to maintain some semblance of civilization But when the water pressure disappears, and Jon and a crew of survivors investigate the hotel s water tanks, they are shocked to discover the body of a young girlAs supplies dwindle and tensions rise, Jon becomes obsessed with investigating the death of the little girl as a way to cling to his own humanity Yet the real question remains can he afford to lose his mind in this hotel, or should he take his chances in the outside world