'A beautifully realised and thought-provoking thriller.' THE TIMES
'A taut, thrilling runaround' GUARDIAN
'Reminiscent of Robert Harris's high-concept conspiracy thrillers' FINANCIAL TIMES
A WORLD HALF IN DARKNESS. A SECRET SHE MUST BRING TO LIGHT.
2059. The world has stopped turning.
One half suffers an endless frozen night; the other, nothing but burning sun.
Only in a slim twilit region between them can life survive.
In an isolationist Britain, scientist Ellen Hopper receives a letter from a dying man.
It contains a powerful and dangerous secret.
One that those in power will kill to conceal…
THE LAST DAY: an utterly original debut thriller, perfect for readers who loved Robert Harris' Fatherland, Emily St. John Mandel’s Station 11, and The Wall by John Lanchester.
'Wonderful: boldly imagined and beautifully written - the best future-shock thriller for years.'
‘A tantalizing, suspenseful odyssey of frustration, deceit, treachery, torture, hope, despair and ingenious sleuthing… Murray has so thoroughly thought through the ramifications of his conceit and conjured up such a dramatic plot and stellar cast of characters that he might have set a new standard for such tales.’
‘A stunningly original thriller set in the world of tomorrow that will make you think about what’s happening today.’
‘I read this hungrily ... Its intelligence and bravura characterisation will have you turning page after page. A fabulous achievement.’
‘A brilliant debut … Fans of Robert Harris will love it’
'To say it’s gripping is an understatement - I cancelled all my weekend plans to finish it'
'In his fascinating debut, Murray has crafted something original ... an interesting new twist on a post-apocalyptic tale.'
'Downright impossible to stop reading. The science is believable, the near-future world feels as real as our own, the characters are lively, and the plot is suspenseful. A near-perfect alternate-future thriller.'
‘Dark, believable and brilliantly written’
‘A thrilling page-turner, and a reminder to treasure our sunsets and sunrises while we still have them. I couldn’t put this book down!’
CHRISTINA DALCHER, author of VOX
'I loved the premise of this high-concept thriller ... a compelling read with some well-placed observations on the darkness of human nature and survival. The Last Day will keep you gripped to the very last page'
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
It came as no huge surprise to discover that the QI writer and comedian sold the film rights to his debut novel for a pretty impressive sum. The Last Day feels instantly cinematic in its scope and boldness, as well as presenting a terrifyingly plausible dystopian future. We’re thrown to 2059, where a solar catastrophe has plunged half the world into an endless night, while the other (including the UK) sits under relentless burning sun. Our hero is moribund scientist Dr. Ellen Hopper, who is swept up in a series of government secrets and cover-ups and soon potentially the ailing Earth’s only hope. While Murray’s plot is mightily bombastic (especially its Hollywood-friendly big finish), it’s the intricate, careful way he builds his characters that’s perhaps most impressive.
Murray's impressive eye for detail compensates for the scientifically preposterous premise of his debut. When a "rogue" white dwarf star passed dangerously close to Earth, it left the planet half scorched in sunlight and half frozen in darkness, with humanity barely hanging on in the dim zone between the extremes. Forty years after the disaster, dubbed "the Stop," Britain, in the middle zone, has descended into fascism. Depressed scientist Dr. Ellen Hopper conducts oceanic research on a rig in the North Sea, despite feeling her work is pointless. When Hopper is summoned to the deathbed of her Oxford mentor, Edward Thorne, a government scientist responsible for the deaths of countless refugees after the Stop, she catches wind of a secret that could spell further disaster for humankind. To save what's left of the world, Hopper launches an investigation into the government secret, rediscovering her hope for humanity along the way. Murray's despairing characters are convincing and his descriptions of the broken Earth are vivid, but his apocalypse is too conceptually contrived to be believable. Readers will easily invest in Hopper's mission, but will struggle to buy into Murray's vision of the future.