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Last Day

3.27  ·  Rating details ·  476 ratings  ·  132 reviews
The fates of a cast of seemingly unconnected people converge during the celebration of an ancient holiday in a thought-provoking debut that brings to mind such novels as Station Eleven and The Age of Miracles.

In Domenica Ruta's profoundly original novel, the end of the world comes once a year. Every May 28, humanity gathers to anticipate the planet's demise--and to celebra
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 28th 2019 by Random House
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Average rating 3.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  476 ratings  ·  132 reviews

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Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)
Book:Sarah is a bookish teenager

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Kasa Cotugno
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, genre-dystopian
How clever to have publication of this book take place on what in this dystopian world is known as "last day." May 28. So will this be the final day on earth? The world depicted here, the people, are recognizable in today's reality, except that every year there is a worldwide "celebration" anticipating the end of the world on a certain date, and butterfly-effect like, Ruta lays out the interconnectivity of us all. Absorbing and readable.
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fresh and incisive slice of our world on the edge of its inevitable end, LAST DAY is an absorptive and compelling work from a brilliant voice in American fiction.
Feb 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Are you thinking…oh great, another female author another female centered end of the world? Well, don’t, this isn’t like that at all. Yes, it is a story of the last day on Earth, but it’s set in a world very much like our own with the major distinction being that Last Day is thing celebrated every May every year. It’s a day of atonement, amendments, forgiveness and so on. It’s actually fraught with meaning the way few celebratory occasions are anymore. But then again it also in a way trivializes ...more
Jul 02, 2019 rated it liked it
This is my second book in the last two days that had a blurb comparing it to “Station Eleven”. Blurb writers have no shame and neither book measured up to “Station Eleven” (and I didn’t agree that that book lived up to its hype). According to this book, the last day of life on Earth has been prophesied to occur on May 28th of an unspecified year. Various annual last day rituals have developed in different countries. Some people party, some apologize for past failings, some make new hookups. And ...more
Lana (Bibliomedico)
Aug 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Before I start with my New book Review , I would like to thank @PRHGlobal @prhinternational for Providing me with a free E-galley copy of this book for my Honest Review . Thanks a lot for giving me the opportunity to read this novel.


Book : Last Day .

Author : Domenica Ruta.

Genre : Fiction , Science Fiction .

Rate : 3.5/5

Review in one word : Interesting .


As always when I receive ARCs to review , I didn't read the blurb or know anything about the book , even
Feb 06, 2019 marked it as to-read
I loved the unique concept of Last Day when I read the synopsis. Every year in May people celebrate the end of the world or not. Imagine being happy about the apocalypse! It's odd yet fascinating. During this day, Last Day, the story follows numerous characters. Somehow, all of these characters intersect with one another in their lives. There are too many characters to keep track of here, but I think it's supposed to be that way. It's a busy day, a lot of people, noise, activity, drama, happines ...more
Ann (Inky)
Congratulations! It is well into June, and it appears that we have survived another year--dodged another bullet, or, another apocalypse--as we wave goodbye to May 28th, fading in our rearview window along with the first half of 2019.

Remember back in 2012, when lots of people were convinced that one day in December was the date the Mayan calendar stopped, deeming it to be the end of the world? Remember when nothing happened? Before that, it was the Y2K scare. (And those examples are only from my
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019, arc
(I received a free copy from Random House)

So I didn't love this one. It's about a fictional holiday called "Last Day," where every year humans celebrate what might be their last day on Earth (May 28th was once predicted to be the end of the world). Each year, though, the sun still rises and life carries on. But will it this year? We follow Sarah, a young girl fixated on a much older tattoo artist; Karen, a troubled woman who begins to hear voices; and Bear, an astronaut on the International Spac
DNF @ 25% - Could not connect with the characters and the story is a bit of a drag by that point...
Debi Hawkes
Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
The premise; an annual celebration, around the world of the impending apocalypse was intriguing. The various forms the celebrations take are shared through several main and secondary characters whose storylines occasionally remotely intertwine, was quite fascinating.

The author is quite gifted, able to succinctly convey so many themes, and carry so many storylines.

My only issue with the book is the multiple characters and storylines, my head felt over full remembering who was who, how they connec
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Domenica Ruta is an author to watch. Her debut With or Without You, a memoir, was so gripping I read it in a day. Last Day, her first novel, was one I had to warm up to but she left me impressed by the end.

We may be reaching saturation on the post-apocalyptic novel just as we may be reaching saturation on the climate change debate. Who among us can go through each and every day knowing that the long prophesied end of the world as we know it is quite probably coming in the next 50 to 100 years?
Brenda A
Aug 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: shelf-awareness
This book was so incredibly entertaining because the cast of characters were all wildly different from each other and so fun to read about.

Rosette was a hussy who decided to join the Jehovah’s Witnesses, which those two contrasting things aline make her fascinating. Sarah is a typical teenager who thinks herself way more intelligent and mature than she actually is. Kurt is a deadbeat tattoo artist. American Bear and Russian Svec are floating in space in the space station dealing with a weird Jap
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
This really just wasn't the book for me. I was loaned this book by a coworker who didn't have time to read it, and I probably should of just declined. Several times throughout the book, I found myself asking, what am I reading??

The concept of the book was interesting. Every year on May 28th is Last Day where it was predicted, obviously, that it would be the last day for Earth's inhabitants. Wild party ensues, people make amends for past trespasses and many MANY bonfires. It was like if a bunch
May 13, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
I received this ARC for free and this review is my unbiased opinion.

If I had a 50-page rule this would be a DNF review. Somewhere between page 50 and 100, I started to get interested in the characters and became curious as to how the book would end. Would this be a "Last Day" like all of the rest where people celebrated (?) what ultimately wasn't the last day on Earth? Or, would it be The "Last Day"? I'm not sure what happened but I lost interest again but since I had invested so much into the b
Mar 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
I won this in a Goodreads giveaway. It’s a decent book. Nothing like Station Eleven though. The theme and content are slightly different so I’m not sure comparing the two is a great idea. Additionally I didn’t connect to many of the characters. I liked Karen. I think less characters to follow would have been better. However it’s a decent book so if you like this sort of book give it a shot!
Shoshana Goldberg
Mar 08, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, netgalley
3.5 stars rounded down to 3, since the ending was so upsetting I had nightmares.

Last Day tells the story of multiple characters, connected by varying degrees of separation, as they celebrate the international holiday "Last Day,' which is an annual celebration of the anticipated end of the world. These characters range the gamut from an asexual adolescent on a journey of self-discovery, to a special needs woman trying to track down her family, to a tattoo artist attempting to make amends, to ast
Caitlin Tremblay
Feb 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book felt frantic, I assume to mimic the chaos of a last day on earth. It was maybe too frantic for how short it was, I loved a lot of the characters and wish we had more time with them, especially Karen who was one of the most complicated and heartbreaking characters I’ve encountered in a long time. Sarah and Kurt made me mad, Sarah the most. She was full of precocious teen angst that felt more like unchecked privilege than any actual metal health issue or “growing pains.” The crew on the ...more
Aug 15, 2019 rated it it was ok
A world that celebrates earth's last day. We follow the lives of four characters for a bit. They explore the present and the past. Wondering what if this were the year that it all ends.

Their lives never piqued my interest. Maybe Bear's but not the rest. Sarah was naive, Kurt disgusting, Karen weird. Their conversations were unnatural. The characters kept getting laid at random. And the only time things got interesting was the last 10 pages. And I am pretty disappointed to have followed the whole
Jul 26, 2019 rated it liked it
Despite not really being able to connect with the main characters (an astronaut on the international space station, a 40 ish tattoo artist, a teenager, and a bi-polar woman) I enjoyed the first 3/4 of this book. It centers on May 28, a day celebrated throughout the world as "Last Day", ie: the world will literally end. Despite the world going on, this day has been a holiday throughout different cultures for thousands of years, and Ruta does a nice job of exploring how different parts of the worl ...more
Feb 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc
2.5 stars rounded up to 3. I was drawn in by the premise (I love a good old apocalypse) and especially by the comparison to Station Eleven. While I did enjoy the prose, I never felt a connection to any of the characters, so most of the story felt like it was dragging on while I was just trying to find out what happened next. I didn't really care what happened to any of these people. Station Eleven this is not -- the comparison stops at the apocalyptic theme. That said, since I only finish about ...more
Aug 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Each of the characters in this book were so different from each other and well described, I could completely picture them going about their Last Day activities. I wasn't sure where the story was heading but the ending was perfect.
Ian Mond
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
My review of this novel is published in the July 2019 issue of Locus.
May 02, 2019 rated it liked it
On the night of May 27-May 28 on an alternate earth, people around the world celebrate Last Night. The holiday has ancient roots. On this night, people try to make amends to people they’ve wrong; make sacrifices; or just light bonfires, drink, and have a good time. Domenica Ruta’s Last Day jumps from character to character on one Last Night in an unknown year. All of the characters are isolated from their friends and families for a variety of reasons. All are seeking something—a sense of connect ...more
Apr 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e-arc
Last Day by Domenica Ruta describes how different people "celebrate" the Last Day, a yearly holiday in anticipating of the end of the world. Focusing on several characters, including a team on an international space station, a tattoo artist, a teen girl, Ruta depicts existential dread in various forms and flavors. I really liked the different characters, and the ending definitely stuck with me. It's very bleak and dark with unlikable characters, which worked for me in this book (though I don't a ...more
May 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Every May 28, people around the world celebrate Last Day. Each culture, in their own ways and rituals, gather to spend the day as their last.
In this story we meet several characters interwoven throughout the book. Three astronauts on the International Space Station, a tattoo artist, and a Jehovah Witness woman, are just a few people we meet celebrating this ancient holiday.
I love books(and movies) exploring the end of earth. This book is a good addition to the genre. I liked the writing, the c
Shawn Ingle
Sep 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
Good writing, ok story. The characters were somewhat interesting but none particularly likeable and failed to make me feel invested in their journeys.
Leighellen Landskov
May 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
This is a really interesting and unique novel. A part of me wants to mull it over for a week or two before writing my review, but I decided to write while it's all still fresh in my head and I'm a little unsteady about the whole thing. The concept pulled me in - all across earth, people from around the world are celebrating a holiday called Last Day. It was predicted long ago that the world would end on a certain day, so every year on the day before it is supposed to happen, people gather in pre ...more
May 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Once a year on May 28, all of humanity gather to celebrate the day of the planet's demise. People party and act as it is the last day they are alive. Sarah is a bookish wunderkind who is looking for love. She felt that she has always been asexual but, she finds herself attracted to an older man, Kurt. Sarah and Kurt met last year during her parents' Last Day BBQ. Kurt is a tattoo artist who is trying to make amends to a family he destroyed years ago.

Karen consistently gets in trouble. She was ab
Apr 17, 2019 rated it liked it
**2.5 Stars** This is now the second book I've read that has been compared to 'Station Eleven', and it's the second book I've read that is NOTHING LIKE 'STATION ELEVEN'. I really wish publishers would STOP comparing their mediocre dystopian-esq novels to the beautiful story that is 'Station Eleven'. It just pisses readers off and sets them up for disappointment. Also, this story is NOT dystopian. At all.


I'll start this review by telling readers what they REALLY want to know while readi
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Domenica Ruta was born and raised in Danvers, Massachusetts. She is a graduate of Oberlin College and holds an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin. She was a finalist for the Keene Prize for Literature and has been awarded residencies at Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, the Blue Mountain Center, Jentel, and Hedgebrook.

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