The Last Book You'll Ever Read?
My New Enemy, Ben H. Winters
You know, I think I hate Ben H. Winters. Not a "hunt him down and kill him" hate, just a blinding irrational jealously over his latest book. The Last Policeman, available as an eBook at Toronto Public Library, begins with a wonderful premise--a wonderful premise that I should have thought of first, darn it. It is a pre-Apocalypse police procedural--a simple, brilliant concept. The world is on the brink of destruction. There's a great big asteriod on a collision course with Earth and nothing can be done.
The marvelous thing about The Last Policeman is that it is not about the end of the world. It is about how life goes on just prior to the end of the world. Except that sometimes it doesn't go on and that's where our main character Henry Palace comes into play. He's a detective in Manchester, New Hampshire, a town with a soaring suicide rate. Palace is called to the scene of an apparent suicide. The dead man is Peter Zell, an actuary who has by all accounts been coping well with the impending doom. Unlike many, Zell has been steady and dependable--sort of like Henry Palace, actually.
Although it would be easy to label the death a suicide and close the case, Henry suspects it is murder and doggedly investigates.
I liked this book a lot and I'm not the only one. There is talk of it becoming a television series which would be fantastic.
The Last Policeman is the first in a trilogy with the second book scheduled for release in 2013. Please write faster, Mr. Winters.
Here's the book trailer:
October 31 Update: Toronto Public Library has ordered print copies of the book!