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Last Gasp [Paperback]

Trevor Hoyle
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (19 Jan 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0722147619
  • ISBN-13: 978-0722147610
  • Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 10.6 x 3.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 992,031 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Trevor Hoyle was born in Lancashire, UK, where he still lives. He was an advertising copywriter and worked for Granada TV before publishing his first novel. Since the 'seventies he has published over 20 novels, including The Man Who Travelled on Motorways, Vail (a dystopian vision of Britain as a police state) and Blind Needle, a chase thriller set in the Lake District (all John Calder).
The Last Gasp, a novel dealing with environmental catastrophe, is currently under option in Hollywood. In 2003 Pomona reissued Rule of Night (first published in 1975), about skinheads in a northern town, which was Time Out's Book of the Week. His most recent publication, the "fictional memoir" Down the Figure 7, about growing up in a northern cotton town just after the war, won the Ray Mort fiction prize.
Trevor Hoyle has also written for BBC Radio 4, his first play, GIGO, winning the Radio Times Drama Award, and another, Randle's Scandals, about the rude Wigan comedian Frank Randle, was critically acclaimed. He also wrote and presented a feature for Radio 4, "The Lighthouse Invites the Storm", in memory of the writer Malcolm Lowry.
More recently he has had short fiction published in the anthology Litmus, and in LEMistry, celebrating the work of Polish SF writer Stanislaw Lem, both published by Comma Press.

Links to other websites featuring Trevor Hoyle:
Author website: http://www.trevorhoyle.com
Society of Authors: http://www.societyofauthors.org/profiles/writers/trevor-hoyle
Pomona Books: http://www.pomonauk.com/books/trevorhoyle/index.php
Contact Trevor Hoyle via literary agent: tanja.howarth@btinternet.com

Product Description


A story about the ultimate threat to life on Planet Earth, when the air begins to thin out and a team of top researchers learn that humanity's military and technological madness has tipped the world's ecological balance disastrously out of kilter. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant Read 31 Mar 2011
By Jayne24
I first read this book in the 1980's and of course, at the time ,it seemed a little far fetched. I was in my teens and very idealisic and to be honest I kind of skimmed over all the data and scientific descriptions in the story, but for some reason it always stayed with me, bits and pieces in the headlines about the enviroment would make me think about the book, then Japan happened a few weeks ago and I read it again.
This time round and being that much older I was flabbergasted at how accurate the book was, not just about our climate and enviroment but about the destructive greed of various world governments and ultimately of Man himself even into the little piece of utopia that might be left.
A Brilliant Read and one to keep and maybe show the Grandkids,if there's anything left!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended - excellent read 21 Oct 2008
This book - written in the 1980s - takes the reader on a frightening journey of our destruction of the basic elements that make planet Earth habitable for humans. Written as a novel, what makes it most frightening is how much of the story has already come true for us, and how much of it might still come true in the not-too-distant future. The Last Gasp describes how our selfish "live for today" attitude and the greed of a few creates an earth that can no longer sustain us - the few humans left are literally gasping for air, as the atmosphere is so changed that the oxygen we take for granted is no longer available.
The author puts a lot of emphasis on the role of the oceans in our oxygen supply, something which strangely even today is not given much attention. As the source of at least half of the world's oxygen, I would expect a much more reverent attitude towards our oceans. The 'red tides' mentioned in the book are a reality. Something else which is not mentioned (perhaps something this brilliant author did not foresee) is the plague of plastic and plastic particles in the ocean. One headline reads: 'continent-sized' stew of plastic trash'.
We take for granted our place on this planet, but as the last lines of Sara Teasdale's poem remind us:
"and Spring herself, when she woke at dawn
Would scarcely know that we were gone."
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4.0 out of 5 stars What would happen if we ran out of oxygen? 31 Dec 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is divided into 6 parts, spanning 38 years. It's set in the near future (at the time of writing) and describes what could happen if mankind fails to take action and continues to upset the natural balance of the planet. In particular, the book discusses in some detail what would happen if the algae within the oceans is killed off, reducing the composition of the air we breathe (there would be less oxygen).

This environmental message is told in a fairly accessible way. Although some specialised scientific issues are discussed between characters, it's done in a manner that most people can understand without having to follow all the technical details.

The story follows a group of people over the years as they attempt to warn the relevant authorities about the possibility of oxygen depletion, and then describes how they, and society, deal with it as the situation becomes increasing worse. The story itself is fairly well thought out but it's hard to say what type of book this is. In some respects it's a work of fiction, but based on fact, some of it reads like a thriller, but it becomes more like apocalyptic fiction as the story progresses. It's quite a long book and takes a while to get to the more interesting sections, and there are some major plot lines that ultimately don't really go anywhere, but overall it's an interesting concept and well written (even though I thought the ending was slightly unbelievable personally).
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