The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)

Paperback, 288 pages

English language

Published July 10, 2012 by Quirk Books.

ISBN:
978-1-59474-576-8
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4 stars (32 reviews)

The Last Policeman is a 2012 American science fiction mystery novel by Ben H. Winters. It follows a police detective in New Hampshire as he investigates a suicide he believes was really a murder. His efforts are complicated by the social, political and economic effects of preparations for, and anticipation of, an asteroid impact six months in the future. Winters describes the work as an "existential detective novel", turning on the question of why people do things in spite of their long-term unimportance. He consulted with experts not only in astronomy and police techniques but psychology and economics. The book was well received by critics, and won the 2012 Edgar Award in the category Best Paperback Original. Producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura has optioned it for a possible television series. It is the first in a trilogy; Winters published Countdown City, the second volume, in mid-2013. World of Trouble, the final …

1 edition

Denial and Coping

4 stars

I enjoyed the writer's style and the story. This is a murder mystery, but it's set in a world under a death sentence from an approaching asteroid. This isn't a spoiler- there's an asteroid on the cover and you find out about it right away. So our hero goes about trying to solve the mystery in a world where everyone expects to be dead in less than a year. I enjoyed it very much and am now reading the third book in this series.

Pre-apocalyptic fiction

5 stars

This is a new genre on me, lol, but one I like. It raises all kinds of philosophical questions while being a damn good mystery/police procedural. Has me thinking all the time and journaling on the themes. What would I do if I knew? How would I act?

Went straight from this one into the 2nd book in the series. Not even a bathroom break in between, lol! It's that good. Highly recommend.

Review of 'The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

I don't remember how this book landed on my pile. But I am really glad it did. In the end I gave it three stars, but I was close to giving it four. I really enjoyed the premise. To me, the series is what science fiction is about. It doesn't need spaceships and robots. Science fiction explores how things would be if the world was different. In this case the big difference is the deadline for all life on earth. A big asteroid is headed towards earth and society is breaking apart. And amidst all this, The Last Policeman is still working a case. I really liked that. It's mostly a murder mystery where the author imagined how that would be if the world was about to die.

Recommended if you like crime novels and sci-fi.

Review of 'The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

Of all my book club picks, I would say this is one of my favorites (after Christina Henry’s “Lost Boy”). I’m curious if I would have found it interesting without the whole “there’s a giant meteor hurtling towards Earth” element of the book. But, overall, I enjoyed the writing and the story kept me engaged.

Review of 'The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

One of the best dystopian procedural police stories I have read (much better than Altered Carbon). This is a very interesting, extremely well plotted, fast moving story. It depicts a world where everything is unraveling, human foibles become exaggerated and emotional and intellectual stress abounds. The primary characters and surrounding communities offer countless interesting, understandable flaws.

I enjoyed this novel enough to grab a copy of the next installment immediately.

Review of 'The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

If a huge asteroid was heading towards earth threating to destroy all mankind, what would you do? Would you even bother to continue working? Would you worry about solving a crime? Detective Hank Palace is determined to solve a suspicious suicide even when the rest of the world doesn’t care in this apocalyptic whodunit, making him The Last Policeman.

I love the idea of blending apocalyptic fiction with a pulp type crime novel. The world is in decline and Hank Palace has only just made detective. So without anyone else caring about this crime, why would he spend so much time trying to prove himself as a homicide detective? This really is the driving force of this book; you are always questioning the motivation of Palace when the rest of the world wants to live life to its fullest.

Personally I would have liked to see Hank to be a …

Review of 'The Last Policeman (The Last Policeman, #1)' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

I did not give it more than three stars because, while I liked it, it did have some slow moments for me that made me put it aside for a bit. However, the book was still good enough that I did want to finish it. I just took my time with it.

On the negative side, I did find the epilogue somewhat irritating. To be perfectly honest, the whole subplot with Nico, Hank Palace's deadbeat sister, was pretty much an irritation that I could have done without. I think the murder mystery in the novel was good enough on its own without tossing that distraction into the blend. Since I understand there may be more novels in this setting, maybe the author will develop that subplot further, but as it stands now, I think the novel would have been fine without it.

So, let's move on to why you need …

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