Book Reviews of The Last Town on Earth

The Last Town on Earth
The Last Town on Earth
Author: Thomas Mullen
ISBN-13: 9781400065202
ISBN-10: 1400065208
Publication Date: 8/29/2006
Pages: 416
Rating:
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 37

3.5 stars, based on 37 ratings
Publisher: Random House
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

15 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 291 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
If you're a fan of historical fiction, you'll probably like this book. Roughly, it is about a very small town in Washington state that decides to quarantine itself from the outside world to protect its citizens from the great Flu epidemic of 1918, and also during the same timeframe as WWI. Shortly after the town decides to quarantine itself, a soldier shows up needing food and shelter and the effects of what happens next really drives the whole novel. At first, I found this book to be very tedious and monotonous, and I almost put the book down and quit it altogether. There is a LOT of background plot details to establish, and a lot of characters to develop, which is especially concentrated at the first half of the novel. Once I got through that, though, I found the book nearly impossible to put down...it really became quite the thriller. My copy of the book contained an interview with the author about how he developed the novel and some little known, or overlooked facts about the great war and the great flu. I loved this book and, if you have the patience for it, highly recommend it!
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on
Helpful Score: 3
I enjoyed this book for its historical perspective on politics and labor movement of the time period. It didn't live up to my expectations in terms of writing style or plot. I feel that the writer would be better at historical non-fiction as he just didn't build sympathetic characters nor a well-sustained plot. There were far too many characters introduced who were only tangentially related to the plot, and the plot was interrupted by too many ill-defined subplots. Maybe a second book by this author will show more mature writing as the book was well-researched and the premise was quite interesting.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 146 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A small logging town decides to quarantine itself from the deadly flu. There are unforseen consequences from this decision. Draws you in and very good novel.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 181 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A few years ago, I read John Barry's non-fiction account of the 1918 flu pandemic. This novel about a fictional town (logging community, actually) which quarantined itself to keep the flu out, draws on accounts of other towns actually taking such precautions.

The imaginative combination of various historical events (the flu, unions, the Great War, suffrage, etc.) and complex characters (although it's pretty clear who the "good guys" are most of the time) make this worth reading.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 404 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
It's days later, and I'm still thinking about this book. Choices people make, even with the best intentions, don't always work in the long run. This book is a compelling look at how an epidemic during wartime affects a small town in early 20th century America in ways both large and small.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 91 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Historic Fiction. * * In the early 1900s, the residents of a small town decide to quarantine themselves from outside residents now suffering from a deadly flu.

Poorly delivered. The novel drags on unnecessarily. The first 200 pages is just setup. And then the flu takes backstory to another plot.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 593 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This was a very powerful and emotional novel set during the great flu epidemic of 1918. The novel raises some very serious issues about family and community responsibilities during times of crisis. When the town decides to quarantine itself to protect the community from the flu epidemic, pressures and paranoia set in. On top of the flu epidemic was added the pressures of World War I, refusals to enlist, and rights of the mill workers. In the town of Commonwealth, the fear of flu, the lack of supplies, and agreed-to restrictions eventually lead to catastrophe. This was a very thought-provoking and well-written novel and raises some big questions about how people react in crisis situations. The story is also very relevant to today's world with the threat of a bird flu pandemic and international terrorism. "Last Town on Earth" is definitely one of the best books I have read this year.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 114 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This was a pretty interesting book. I enjoyed the parts about the flu pandemic and how it affected lives. The characters were vivid and each had their own history and past experiences impacting how they were affected by the flu. The outbreak occurred during WWI, and that was also interesting to see how the war and flu simultaneously affected families, towns, etc. It was a tiny little bit too political for me at times - but overall a unique storyline about a topic I don't hear too much about. I enjoyed it.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 264 more book reviews
This story was well written and captivating but don't expect to be cheered up.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 204 more book reviews
This story moves slowly and seems a little unfocused, but it held my interest enough for me to finish it. Details about the time period are interesting, but given the benefit of hindsight, I wouldn't choose to read it again.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 25 more book reviews
Great premise, but I thought the author ran out of steam at the end.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 49 more book reviews
I bought this book because of the stories my grandmother told me of living through the epidemic. That made this all the more chilling for me. I found this to be three stories brought together. A good thing because they were all good and put together become more than just a sum of their parts. It was so very realistic. No one was all good or all bad. No one was always right or always wrong. This was a well written story and one that I will keep and read again.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on
all the way throught the book, I kept thinking "what would I do if I were there?". A very thought provoking book - but entertaining at the same time.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 488 more book reviews
A very interesting historical novel about WWI, the flu that killed millions, the labor strikes/union attempts, corruption, lumber mills in the Northwest and a town that tried to quarantine itself to protect it from the flu. The main character is a 16 year old boy who was adopted when he was orphaned at age 11. Good read..hard to put down.
reviewed The Last Town on Earth on + 204 more book reviews
This story moves slowly and seems a little unfocused, but it held my interest enough for me to finish it. Details about the time period are interesting, but given the benefit of hindsight, I wouldn't choose to read it again.