the End of the World Run­ning Club Run for your wife

SFX - - Reviews - Sarah Dobbs

Could you sur­vive the end of the world? Have you got the skills to cope with­out su­per­mar­kets, cars, elec­tric­ity – even run­ning wa­ter? For most of us, the an­swer is ob­vi­ously not.

And the same should go for The End Of The World Run­ning Club’s Ed, too. Lazy, over­weight and mis­er­able, he’s hardly a can­di­date for Sur­vivor of the Year. But af­ter the UK is hit by ex­tra-ter­res­trial mis­siles and civil­i­sa­tion col­lapses, he’s forced to learn all sorts of new skills. And when his fam­ily is air­lifted to safety and he’s left be­hind? It’s time to run.

Most of the tried-and-tested apoc­a­lyp­tic sce­nar­ios crop up in this book: teenagers gone feral, mil­i­tary types abus­ing their power and so on. But Adrian Walker’s easy style makes it com­pul­sively read­able even if you’ve got a book­case full of apoca-lit. Choos­ing Ed as a nar­ra­tor is a par­tic­u­larly clever move: he’s petty, vin­dic­tive and gen­er­ally aw­ful, but he’s also un­com­fort­ably re­lat­able. Even if you don’t warm to him by the end, you’ll at least feel in­spired by him. If this book doesn’t make you want to take up run­ning, noth­ing will…

As re­search for the book, Adrian Walker talked to ul­tra­ma­rathon­ers to get their per­spec­tive on long-dis­tance run­ning.

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