Hello, fellow readers! Today’s review is kind of difficult. I have been reading and listening to The Last by Hanna Jameson for probably a week and half now and just finished it.about five minutes ago. And I have SO many thoughts.
Description: The story is a written account of the world after a nuclear attack. Basically, the end of the world has happened and twenty people are stranded at a hotel in Switzerland together. There is no phone, no Internet, and no news. These people don’t know if they are the only people left in the world or what waits for them outside the hotel grounds.
What I Liked: I loved 99% of this book. It was pretty character driven because looking back, there was not alot of action. The narrator, Jon, has taken it on himself to be the historian and is writing down people’s stories while also investigating a shocking discovery in the hotel. Despite there not being a ton of action, I was never bored reading The Last. It was honestly just interesting to read the developing dynamic between 20 strangers who had previously been staying at the hotel together for one reason or another and suddenly had to begin talking to each other and working together. There is a mystery element to the story, but I did not feel that was the driving force of the story.
What I Didn’t Like: The ending is the only thing I didn’t like because there were SO many opportunities to go a different direction based on subtle mentions or foreshadowing.
Slightly spoiler-ish thoughts…
For instance, there were mentions of how large the hotel is and how one person felt they were not the only people in the hotel. And several times it was mentioned that maybe everyone left at the hotel was there for a reason and they were meant to survive together for a purpose.
End spoiler-ish thought.
The ending just did not fit the rest of the book at all and it was a total letdown. Too many things were left unresolved for me because the end was so short and rushed compared to the pacing of the other 99% of the book.
Final Thoughts: I went back and forth on rating this 3 or 4 stars. Ultimately, I gave it 4 stars because it was a 5 star read up until the last two chapters. And reading The Last helped pull from out of a reading slump because I finally felt excited to pick up a book at the end of a long workday and read again. The audiobook was a good option because I liked the narrator once it was explained in the story that he is supposed to talk with a slight Southern accent. I am from the south and the accent is definitely not perfect, but it is close enough when you consider Jon explains he is from the south but moved to California and so his accent is a bit different now.
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