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Empty World (Puffin Books) [Paperback]

John Christopher
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin Books; New edition edition (3 Dec 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140313052
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140313055
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 11 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 95,466 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A terrifying book 25 April 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I read this book at school and it scared the living daylights out of me. I had dreams about it for years and, some 20 years on, I could tell youevery detail of the plot. It also started me on a bizarre fixation with"end of the world" novels, films and TV series.
Part of what makes it so chilling is the hero's response when a plaguewipes out seemingly everyone in the world except himself. He never cries,panics or really reacts. This is because he is already in a sort of stateof shock, because shortly before it all, his family died suddenly in anaccident. He's numb, even when a child he takes care of during the plagueturns out not to be immune, rapidly ages to seem like it has the face ofan old person (a symptom of the plague) and dies in front of him.
There are other really shocking incidents in the book, though nothinggraphic. The ending is incredibly ambiguous. I don't know if I can say Ienjoyed it, but it must have had something to keep me remembering it soclearly all these years.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Scary but not horrific. 17 May 2009
Format:Paperback
Very much along the line of Terry Nation's 'Survivors' - but written for children (published 1 year later). Gripping story line but the main character does not engage with the reader - yes, he's in shock but a little more reaction from him would have rounded out the character. I have read this as an adult - but I'm absolutely sure a teenager would be more critical. The ending leaves the story wide open - would be perfect matter for classroom discussion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic of the genre 31 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback
I've read at least a hundred 'end of the world' books and this one comes up time and time again when I've looked through lists of apocalyptic fiction, but I've only recently found a copy. I wasn't disappointed, other than in the length of the story (but I think it's aimed at the young adult audience so that's fairly typical). Every John Christopher book I've read was great so I was expecting a good story and I enjoyed this one too.

The story follows a teenage boy whose family is killed in a car accident at the beginning of the book. As he is recovering from this, living with his grandparents in a small English town, a plague spreads across the world. Old people are the first to die in an accelerated aging process, but gradually younger and younger people are affected. We follow's the boy's adventures as he seeks survivors in a vastly depopulated UK, but to say much more would spoil the story.

Thoroughly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Empty World 16 July 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book at School and search for years, lucky found the book with delivery next day, happy days reading again.
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