The Last of Us

by Rob Ewing

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LoveReading View on The Last of Us

May 2016 Debut of the Month.

A remote Scottish island has been devastated by a plague-like virus which has killed everyone except for a group of children. We know not why. It seems the children have been on their own for at least a couple of years but they have lost count. They are a fractured group with two brothers living apart from the other three and a lot later they discover a lone mute girl. The whole thing is narrated by eight-year old Rona who still talks to, and indeed professes to listen to, her mother. It is graphically horrific, almost unbearably sad and hypnotically written. What those poor kids go through is quite dreadful. It is strange that such destruction has not affected the animals and big dogs run wild, kittens being a tasty meal. Raw, dramatic and emotional, it is not for the squeamish.

Sarah Broadhurst

The Last of Us Synopsis

'A story about the strength and fragility of human nature. Rob Ewing's writing is powerful, compassionate and brilliant. I absolutely loved it' JOANNA CANNON, the author of THE TROUBLE WITH GOATS AND SHEEP 'Bleak, beautiful, gripping' IAN RANKIN, on Twitter The island is quiet now. On a remote Scottish island, five children are the only ones left. Since the Last Adult died, sensible Elizabeth has been the group leader, testing for a radio signal, playing teacher and keeping an eye on Alex, the littlest, whose insulin can only last so long. There is 'shopping' to do in the houses they haven't yet searched and wrong smells to avoid. For eight-year-old Rona each day brings fresh hope that someone will come back for them, tempered by the reality of their dwindling supplies. With no adults to rebel against, squabbles threaten the fragile family they have formed. And when brothers Calum Ian and Duncan attempt to thwart Elizabeth's leadership, it prompts a chain of events that will endanger Alex's life and test them all in unimaginable ways. Reminiscent of The Lord of the Flies and The Cement Garden, The Last of Us is a powerful and heartbreaking novel of aftershock, courage and survival.

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The Last of Us Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Emma Smith - 'Not just children stranded on an island, but an exploration of group dynamics, grief, and the struggle to survive.'
  • Janette Skinner - 'This story takes place in the aftermath of disaster, which has killed most of the people on a remote island. It is an intriguing story told by one of the survivors, a child's view.'
  • Vikki Patis - 'It's horrible and terrifying, but wonderfully crafted. The Last of Us isn't a horror story in the traditional sense, but it's bound to give you shivers.'
  • Sarah Musk - 'A beautifully written story about six children left alive on an isolated Scottish island in the aftermath of a global virus.  The brave, resourceful children are an inspiration.'
  • Josie Barton - 'The Last of Us is a heart-breaking novel about courage, survival and the overwhelming power of hope over adversity.'
  • Sarah Harper - 'A fantastically powerful story that will stay with you for all the right reasons.'
  • Angie Rhodes - 'Saying the story is gripping is an understatement, it keeps you reading.'
  • Nicola Underwood - 'A well written, post epidemic story. A strong coming of age theme prevails.'
  • Mrs J Harper - 'This is an excellent read, totally believable.'
  • Wendy Stubbs - 'This novel tells the tale of a handful of children trying to eke out surviving on a remote Scottish island when left to their own devices after a pandemic eliminates all the adults.'
  • Olivia D'Silva - 'A story of responsibility and survival.'
  • Carrie Johnson - 'Many contemporary references make this novel horrifyingly real.  Sympathetically drawn characters, make it so credible, with brilliant asides that have the clarity of a youngster's observations.'
  • Jenny Shirley - 'A haunting story of survival after a deadly virus leaves just a handful of children alone on an island. Brilliantly told by the innocence of a child in a situation that would scare us all.'
  • Julie Reed - 'A wonderful novel depicting how children survive after a catastrophe. This story shows how love, trust, hope and friendship guide them through daily life with danger ever present.'
  • JB Johnston - 'Children plunged into a terrifying situation, simply trying to survive...If you enjoyed The Lord of the Flies, then you will enjoy this book.'
  • Suzanne - 'A brilliant original novel about survival, loss and hope.'

The Last of Us Press Reviews

'An amazing book of courage and survival ... a book about memory, friendship and hope. It's the kind of book that made me want to wake my children from their beds, just to kiss them and whisper that I love them. A tremendous novel - I absolutely loved it'
Claire Fuller, author of Our Endless Numbered Days

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780008149581
Publication date: 21/04/2016
Publisher: The Borough Press an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780008149581
Publication date: 21st April 2016
Author: Rob Ewing
Publisher: The Borough Press an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
Format: Hardback
Genres: Reader Reviewed Books, Debuts of the Month, eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction, Relationship Stories, Thriller / Suspense,
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About Rob Ewing

Rob Ewing is a GP who spent several years living on a small island off the Scottish coast (with more than five other people). His poetry and short fiction have been published by New Writing UK, New Writing Scotland, and performed on BBC Radio. The Last of Us is his first novel.

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