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Saturday, 25 July 2015

Alex Scarrow - AFTERLIGHT

Review written and read live on the bookshow by Brian Lowen 23rd July 2015.
A book that really makes you think – could this really happen – probably not, but just maybe.

A disaster type story when the world runs out of oil due to a series of explosions throughout all the oil producing areas that stops the flow of oil.  Tankers are destroyed and the oil stops flowing.  We are not told why this happened and to me it does seem rather improbable.

Within one week water supplies dry up as there is no fuel for the pumps.  Then electricity fails and the whole world descends into chaos.  In the UK the Government has set up several safe zones where food and bottled water and fuel has been stock piled.  One we focus on in the book is the O2 arena at Greenwich run by members of the Government and controlled by the RAF and Police.  2,000 people are housed here, all skilled and important types who will be needed in the future.  The area is fenced in to keep out all the marauding gangs roaming the country.

Normal life has ceased as food and water run out.

The story also centres on a group of 450 people who are existing on a north sea oil rig, catching rain water to drink and growing their own food.  They keep chickens and their waste plus human waste is stored and fermented to produce methane to run a small generator.  They have some boats which they use for foraging trips ashore for supplies, including medicines. 

The climax of the story occurs when the O2 arena group run out of stores and sail down the Thames and up the east coast to try and take over the oil rig.

An interesting story which gives some idea of how people would react in an emergency such as this.

I did not enjoy it as much as other books by Scarrow but would recommend it if you like this type of story.

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