This short story features Sir Doyle's Professor Challenger.
Sir Doyle's mastery of the English language is in full force. The ripostes between Challenger and Summerlee are almost worth the price of reading the book.
Alas, unlike the The Lost World, I have to say this book is barely worth the read. The biggest problem is Sir Doyle sets up the story very well and then doesn't seem to know what to do with it.
It's a setup for what could be a great post-apocalyptic world of almost unthinkable horrors. But Sir Doyle flinches.
The ending is weak. Oh, it's clear Sir Doyle was aiming for a teaching moment about humanity needing to mature and not take everything for granted and so forth, but despite his normal way of handling plot and pacing, he hamfists the whole thing to something rather drab.
There's no adventure. It's passive. They hide out in a sealed room to keep the oxygen in. They go outside and record a horrifying end to humanity. And then Sir Doyle does an almost bait-and-switch with the ending so we all may learn An Important Lesson About Life.
Read it if you are trying to read everything by Sir Doyle. His use of English shouldn't be missed, but you can find his writing in much better books by him.
It's just better than a two, but hardly worth a three. Rounding up, I give it a meh.
- Paperback: 196 pages
- Publisher: Readhowyouwant; Large Print edition (1 October 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1425032443
- ISBN-13: 978-1425032449
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.2 x 22.9 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 295 g
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