The Last Man on Earth ClubThe Last Man on Earth Club by Paul R. Hardy

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed The Last Man on Earth Club. Honestly, I picked this book up expecting it to be mostly humorous; I was pleasantly surprised to discover a serious treatment about an interversal organization that managed to round up the last survivors of parallel Earths, and offer them psychological aid after the death of their species. The world-deaths were wonderfully diverse, and some of them will sound very familiar (such as a planet where everyone went Zombie, and another that succumbed to a human-vs-AI war), but they are all handled effectively, not kitchy or predictably, and, of course, it is the fates of the individual survivors that’s important.

The book cannily provided enough depth and dimension to the various survivors and their descriptions of their experiences as the last of their race that you almost felt you’d read their full story before being introduced to them here. Interestingly, the main POV character, Doctor Asha Singh, started out as such a blank slate that I realized only after a very significant interval that the character was a woman. Since I had no impression from the book that this was intentional, I can only guess that either some deficiency in the book, or in my attention, left this as a mystery so far into the book.

The book is also vague on the actual workings of technology, but that’s a good thing; it could have easily bogged down the story otherwise. The story never threatened to spend too much time on interversal technologies, politics, races, parallels, etc; it stays nicely grounded.

I let all of my other reading and projects pile up so I could finish this one. I’m glad I did.

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