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The End of the World Running Club

Adrian J Walker
Have you ever considered what you would do if the Apocalypse struck? Have you planned for it? No, me neither. Nor had Edgar Hill. Nope, it wasn’t the sort of thing to cross his mind. Even when there were veiled warnings in the news. And strike the Apocalypse does. No, that doesn’t look right. Let’s do it properly shall we? APOCALYPSE!! That’s better. A bit more fear inducing. More impact. Oh yes, impact. That’s what it was. No nukes, no Zombies, no aliens in gargantuan space-ships. Just a few asteroids. OK, more than a few. And then some more still.

The UK, along with the majority of the Northern Hemisphere is pretty much wiped out as the Earth passed through an asteroid field. Impacts ranging from large to “Awww Hell!” pockmark the country. So what do you do? Hide in the cellar. Wait until you have nothing left to eat or drink and then pop your head out and see what’s left. And what’s left is pretty much nothing. Law and order is gone. As is food, fresh water, electricity, transport, communication and sunlight. You have to fight to survive. Find some form of working government. Secure your family. Plan to go somewhere safe.

Edgar Hill is just a bloke. A normal bloke. Hates his job, likes a drink or ten, he’s overweight, is a lacklustre father and unhelpful husband. Pretty much like most of the men out there (JOKE!!! Jeez, some people are touchy!). When the Apocalypse strikes he’s hungover. With only a few minutes warning he has to get to the shop for supplies, get his supplies and anything he can into his safest place, motivate his family to get their backsides in order and get them into his cellar. Of course, he’s unprepared. He’s just a normal, overweight bloke living in Edinburgh.

So he and his family survive the impact. They even manage to find somewhere to shelter, along with other random survivors, in what’s left of an Army Barracks. Of course all survivors are needed to work. Follow orders. Scavenge the ruins of Edinburgh. Even the overweight and unprepared. And it’s during one of these scavenging trips that his family and the vast majority of the survivors are rescued and taken somewhere safe. That somewhere being in Cornwall where a fleet of ships are waiting to take them and all the other survivors to the Southern Hemisphere.

Edgar now needs to get from Edinburgh to Cornwall to get on the ships heading South. With a few thrown together misfits. Across a destroyed UK, where not everyone is a going to help. And the only way to get there in time is to run…

This was, if you’re into ‘End of the World’ or Dystopian fiction, a really smashing read. The detail of Edinburgh was mostly excellent. As a frequent visitor to the city I could just about plot his journeys. Descriptive and packed with ‘real’ people, not Preppers or Supermen. There was a lot about Edgar that I recognise in many people. His portrayal of a destroyed and changed country left me totally immersed in the book. There are a few bits that made me raise a wry smile as well. I’ve not read any of Adrian J Walker’s books before, but I will now!

Oh yeah. Spoiler alert! Birmingham is nothing but a stinking crater!
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