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Last Light (Last Light #1)

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  1,339 Ratings  ·  139 Reviews
“Very few people saw it coming, everyone seemed to busy to care…

It’s just a temporary halt in oil production – but within days, the implications are devastating. Andy Sutherland, a civilian engineer, is stranded in Iraq, determined to find a way home to his family. His wife, Jenny, never took Andy’s warnings about a potential oil crisis seriously but now, as she tries to r
Paperback, 483 pages
Published 2008 by Orion (first published 2007)
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(showing 1-30)
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Chris Horsefield
Mar 08, 2016 Chris Horsefield rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as good as I expected it to be.
I took two things away from this read. First cut off the oil supply and civilization collapses awfully fast (nobrainer on that). Second ..thank god for the second amendment.
Kiera Healy
This is a mad book about peak oil, so a good one for the conspiracy nutjob in your life. As the world's oil supplies are abruptly cut off, one somewhat ordinary family struggles to cope. Dad, an oil engineer, is trapped in Iraq whereupon he quickly goes into fight mode with a group of soldiers who use the word "smeg" in place of "fuck" (???). Mum's fate is worse, though: she's trapped in Manchester. Meanwhile, daughter is at uni and son is at school, and soon all their lives are thrown into dang ...more
Dec 15, 2009 Penelope rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This book made me really think and also kept me awake worrying about stockpiling tinned food! It's an excellent thriller that keeps you turning the pages long into the night. Nice short chapters and fast paced writing an excellent choice for those who are wondering what might happen when the oil runs out. I believe the author is working on a sequel so I look forward to that.
Nov 10, 2010 F.R. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This apocalyptic novel has a fascinating premise. One day the supply from the planet’s oil fields and the oil pipelines shuts down and as a result the world collapses into chaos. (In true H.G. Wells fashion, the book says ‘The World’ while concentrating on Britain and London – and a bit of Iraq). The roads are closed to conserve fuel, because there are no flights there is no more imported food which soon leads to riots in supermarkets and then on the streets, and man regresses and gives in to al ...more
Paulo "paper books always" Carvalho
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andy Gibb
Jul 11, 2012 Andy Gibb rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a bloody good read in that it ticks all the thriller boxes. In particular it rattles on at pace, introduces twists and keeps you guessing to the end. On the downside the production of the book seems rather rushed (maybe to beat real life?) with some untidy writing but it's all perfectly readable.

My focus is on whether it's believable, especially in the light of my own researches into peak oil and collapse. For that is the “what if” here and my answer is a qualified yes, despite a touch o

Jun 16, 2015 Fiona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't put this down. And when I wasn't reading it, I was worrying about what "was happening" and if the various characters "would be ok". In other words, total suspension of disbelief as I spent a few days tied to the story.

Scarrow writes with an immediacy that had me gripping the book in a tight hot hold, hardly daring to breath. I had this book for a long time and was put off by the 1-star reviews but once I started I was hooked. I liked the main characters, I liked the way Scarrow wasn't
When it comes to post-apocalyptic novels, the ones I find I enjoy the most are the ones that are very real scenarios. Not that zombies or alien invasions aren't realistic scenarios (yep, I had to say that!), but natural disasters or man-made disasters such as the storyline of Last Light are the ones that scare me the most.

I first read Last Light in 2009 or 2010, but I've always wanted to go back and revisit it again, because as well as being entertaining, it's a book that carries a message - the
Sep 26, 2012 Keith rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
The premise is a well thought out exposition of the implications of the Peak Oil theory, that modern society survives solely by the plentiful supply of oil. The drama occurs when this supply is suddenly cut off. The Middle East, South American and Nigerian supplies are stopped and it's a matter of days before civilisation starts to fall apart.
The story follows the Sutherland family, Andy, a Peak Oil bore currently working in Iraq, Jenny, stuck in Manchester and their children, Leona and Jacob, a
Robin Carter
May 07, 2012 Robin Carter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action-thriller
This book WILL be the thriller of the year, its a cover to cover gripping what if that will suck you in and leave you thinking, wondering and probably a hell of a lot scared about just how fragile our modern lifestyle really is.
I dare any of you to read this book and finish it with a clear concience about your carbon footprint, to not check the cupboards to see what food you have in and to wonder if leaving the city might be an ideas...those programmes about a better life in the country will not
Mar 22, 2008 Juliet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008
Mar 20 - I just finished reading a few chapters and I already want to stock my pantry with canned goods and barricade my door!

Mar 22 - I really enjoyed reading this book and I had nightmares the night I started reading it - I kept waking up and trying to remember how to survive if ever this situation happened. And I think at some point in our lives, maybe, it will.... And the catastrophic conditions that Scarrow described in his novel would be all too real.
Dan Jenkins
May 12, 2012 Dan Jenkins rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a book all of us should read. We all know the truth, but will not face up to it. We know it's going to happen and do nothing. I guess this is one of those instances where we know we probably won't be around to see it, but our children most likely will. It's a very important book, well written and difficult to put down. Read it and the next time you "gas up", think of Andy.
Jacob Salinas
Jul 12, 2015 Jacob Salinas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
A very sobering but (and this is hard to do) completely entertaining book that paints a very possible picture of the complete societal breakdown that would occur if oil production was suddenly and permanently disrupted across the globe. The characters are identifiable and the story is absolutely gripping. This book scared the crap out of me!
Jun 30, 2014 Penny rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was bad, and it should feel bad. This terrible book reads like a conspiracy theorists craziest fantasies. It reeks of a lonely man SO SURE of his theories. So many times in the book the wife thought "if only I had listened to my crazy husband!"
Just in case... A frighteningly plausible apocalytic scenario that I find myself revisiting on a regular basis. Books like this make me think I should stock up on tinned goods and bottled water and maybe do some combat never know!
Jul 07, 2011 1brotherbill rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book will make you think about going to the store and get some canned food. Maybe by a gun at the local sporting goods store. Maybe make you want to learn how to make soap or a pair of shoes. Honestly this book kind of scared me.
Cory Saint-Esprit
Dec 24, 2016 Cory Saint-Esprit rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic read - but can't figure out why all measurements are metric except for distance when they use miles.
Dave Farmer
Jan 06, 2013 Dave Farmer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: apocalypse, thriller
Reviews can be very handy when thinking about a purchase. Aside from the interesting subject matter on the cover blurb, it was the reviews on Amazon than prompted me to read this book. In particular many reviewers said the same thing: "...couldn't put it down..." which to me is usually a good sign I'll also enjoy reading it.

The story moves at a decent pace and keeps you wanting to know what happens next. Characters are well presented, just enough information to let your imagination do the rest.
David Magera
Interesting story and idea, but it's way too long. Meh!
I usually like the apocalyptic genre and I liked one of Alex Scarrow’s books, A Thousand Suns, and that’s why I chose this one, but, sadly, it turned out to be a total disaster in the end. The ending of it destroyed absolutely everything, thanks to which I had no other option than to give just 1*. And now I really doubt that I’ll read the second part. I wanted to, but after this...

Anyway, the beginning of it was quite Ok, though I thought it’d pick up some “speed”. Which it didn’t of course, but
Jul 19, 2016 Nettle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Took me about 5 hours with a physical book I guess? Almost a bad as the other Last Light book I read by accident, Terri Blackstock was it? At least that one was mildly entertaining.

Read it if you like the genre and you can get a cheap copy, otherwise, it's nothing special.

It was ok, I liked it eventually, but it wasn't overly memorable and the end was a bit disappointing. I'd also like to think that we'd cope a bit better than that. We've been through rationing before without society breaking do
Sandra Danby
I’m sure that you, like me, watch end-of-the-world scenarios in films and wonder ’what would I do?’ That’s the thought I had reading ‘Last Light’. Oil consultant Andy Sutherland writes an investigate report for a client about what would happen if the world’s oil suppliers were cut off. Ten years later, the trigger points he identified start to happen.
Within hours, society breaks down. Andy is in Iraq, his wife Jenny has packed her stuff ready to move out of the family home and has gone to Manch
Sep 24, 2012 Kevin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Was a good read, evidenced by the fact it only took me 2 days to get it done with - the plot moves quickly and the subject matter is not only entertaining, but hits scarily close to home - it gets the reader thinking, and hopefully thats exactly what he was going for.

There are some poor points to the book -

SPOILER (sorry folks - need it for the examples)

(view spoiler)
Constance Fastré
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Vote: 3,50
Class: L-B1 (FP)

(First book of a duology; it can be read as a stand alone)

This book is conspiracy apocalyptic thriller; it has a well presented and credible scenario (a global oil supply cut off with its catastrophic consequencies) and a well told and fast pacing story. It reminded me of Marc Elsberg Blackout.
The only weak point maybe is that to many of the characters is given too little characterization amid the action packed story.

The world (3,50) is well described and the various w
Linda  Branham Greenwell
Being a believer in Peak Oil, I found this book extremely interesting.
In this book there are a group of men who have a conspiracy to cut the worlds oil supplies as a way to reduce population and gain control of the world - martial law
The story revolves around a family that is split up in 3 directions (three of the family members centered in the UK and 1 in the Middle East trying to get home to the UK), the aforementioned "shadowy group" and a "Hit Man" employed by the "shadowy group".

The effect
Joe Stamber
The world's oil running dry is a fascinating premise for a novel, and having mistakenly read the sequel Afterlight first, I was looking forward to filling in some blanks. Scarrow makes a reasonable fist of telling the story of how the crisis began, but I was left feeling that so much more could have grown from the seed he had.

Throughout the book I never really rooted for any of the characters, usually a sign that their development was somewhat lacking. There was nothing wrong with the idea of th
Jun 10, 2014 Hanane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: apocalyptic
Last Light is a page-turner. It had a gripping storyline, and I became so involved with the characters I had to find out what happened to them. The concept was interesting. It seemed an extremely realistic scenario (making the storyline all the more gripping) until the whole conspiracy thing. I just thought it was unnecessary - why can't it be apocalyptic without conspiracy?

I also had a hard time with the male-centric voice. The females seemed always to be damsels-in-distress disguised as hero
May 22, 2011 Jenny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: couldn-t-finish, 2011
This really is very good on a number of levels, but due (I think) to the epileptic viewpoint, I found I really didn't care enough about the characters' fate to read every word. Once upon a time, story was all that mattered to me - and this is an excellent and all too chilling story - but nowadays, in my older age, I find I really do need to connect completely with at least one character, otherwise my attention wanders.

Last Light is about the end of the world as we know it, a scenario that could
Feb 23, 2013 Katia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
J'ai trouvé ce roman riche et complet, cette fin du monde simulée est vraisemblable et troublante jusque dans les petits détails. Les chapitres correspondent aux sept jours d'une semaine. Elle commence par Lundi, un choc pétrolier. Bien sûr tout va crescendo, pour aboutir à une situation apocalyptique. Cependant j'ai abordé ce roman avec un lassement dès le départ, par surdose de polars. Malgré tout j'ai trouvé ce roman bien écrit, intéressant. En outre j'ai aimé que l'auteur s'attache à suivre ...more
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I live a nomadic existence with my wife Frances, and son Jacob. For now we're living in Norwich. I spent the first 10 years out of college in the music business chasing record deals and the next 12 years in the computer games business as a graphic artist and eventually a games designer. For those of you who like their computer games, here's some of the titles I've worked on:
Waterworld, Evolva, The
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Other Books in the Series

Last Light (2 books)
  • Afterlight (Last Light, #2)

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