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4.1 out of 5 stars
42
Survivors
Format: Hardcover|Change


on 16 August 2017
Terry Nation's own novelisation of his dystopian drama series SURVIVORS, which was a big hit on the BBC in 1975. Like most of Nation's writing, it's tight, pacey stuff - a good page turner. In places it sticks closely to the television screenplays ('The Fourth Horseman', 'Genesis' and 'Garland's War'), however elsewhere it veers off in a completely different direction to the TV show, with a dark twist at the end which may put you mind of events in Nation's next series, Blakes 7. Survivors' story concept was always powerful thought-provoking stuff. The TV series benefitted from some great casting and bleak visuals, and obviously you don't get these on the printed page, but it's still full of a wealth of details that hammer home Nation's thesis about how mankind would come in the aftermath of such an epidemic.
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on 24 February 2017
Been a very long time since I had read this novel. Probably just as long since I watched the tv series (the original, not the dire remake). Now you can tell this was based on the first series of Survivors (rather than the novel being written first) as I was vividly recalling scenes from the tv show and remembering the actors and actresses who played Abby, Jenny, Greg, Tom and a few others. Not the greatest novel of a post apocalyptic world but if you recall having enjoyed Survivors in the mid-70s, as I did, then this will bring the memories flooding back.

Ray Smillie
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on 3 November 2012
Ok, so I read this book AFTER watching the 2008 BBC series. Loved the series by the way (except the ending, grrrrr) and with all the positive reviews really looked forward to getting stuck into the book. I wasn't disappointed. The book is very different to the telly show from 2008. Different characters, different story lines, different timeline and wow, the ending. Didn't see that one coming. But it worked. It needed that really sharp jolt to 'end' it. But therein lies the rub. See, I don't think the novel has ended. It really could have run to another volume (what happens afterwards etc) and I felt real disappointment that when I closed the book I wouldn't hear from Greg, Jenny etc ever again.The last line of the book could have provided a springboard for Survivors Vol 2. Hence the 4 stars. It read 'short' to me, it read a bit slack on detail and i felt the characters weren't quite as rounded as they could've been. They are only small niggles though. The detail for when society breaks down, now that really caught my imagination. And the theorizing about going back to caveman living, society being forced to return to its agrarian roots, really provided me with food for though. One of the most descriptive and though provoking sections in the book is when Terry Nation describes the roads breaking up and being literally eaten alive by young trees and vegetation, how the team made candles and creating moats for defense.
Read it in about 4 days. I do recommend this book and those who love apocalyptic fiction that is incredibly easy to read, won't be disappointed.
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on 11 May 2016
I love post apocalyptic stories, The Death of Grass and A Wrinkle in the Skin being my two favourites, so I was keen to give this Book a go. I remember little of the 70's tv series, and have seen nothing of the remake, but I have to say that this book was excellent. Bits reminded me of The Day of the Triffids, and there were hints of cosy catastrophe about it, but it was also quite dark and near the knuckle, too. And as someone else has pointed out, the last page is nasty. What has been read cannot be unread!
All in all, a great gripping story, with good characters. Highly recommended.
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VINE VOICETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 5 April 2009
I never saw the original 1970s TV series, but enjoyed the 2008 version and thought I'd check this out. I'm glad I did.

Rather than being just a tie-in novel to a TV series, this is a great post-apocalyptic survival story in its own right, on a par with (and in some ways with a lot in common with) other classics like "Day Of The Triffids" or "The Last Man".

The characters are rich and believable, and the problems the 'team' face in trying to regress to an electricity-less, telephone-less, leader-less society are strong issues that are just as important as they were 30 years ago, if not more so.

The speed of the story increases almost exponentially- the first half of the book covers only a few weeks' action (and is closely mirrored by both the 70s and 00s TV series), but then it steps into a different gear and before you know it, three years then five years have gone by. In this way the story stays gripping throughout.

Even if you haven't seen or didn't enjoy the TV series, treat this as a great sci-fi novel in its own right, and have a read.
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on 18 January 2015
I have to say that after watching the original TV series some years ago, I resisted watching the new series for a few years, as I thought it might lesson the memory of the original. How wrong I was! Although it is a remake of Survivors, it's not a like-for-like remake, and more of a re-imaging if you like. Now, having read the Terry Nation novel, I have to say that I love each and every one of the versions of Survivors. Each is quite different in it's own right. I won't go into details of the book, and give anything away, although as others have mentioned, the 'end' is quite different from the original TV series, on which this book is based. Well, decide for yourselves, but I heartily recommend it, especially if this is your type of thing.
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on 31 July 2016
Takes a turn in direction from the first (old) series. All the better for just not being a straight take on the TV show. Really enjoyed this. Not as much space to explore themes as the show but absorbing if you enjoyed the old series.
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on 5 February 2009
I read this book in a day - it was such an easy read with a gripping story line. It is different from the TV drama, and not only because the book's setting is back in the 70s before the mass take up of technology, but because it covers a longer time period and there is no conspiracy with people in white coats studying the disease. The book is much more prosaic dealing with the real issues of survival when everything we've known has gone!
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on 4 November 2016
Classic Terry Nation. Book is the basis for the 1970's BBC series
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on 4 January 2016
This is an excellent book - needs a reprint. The first half follows the BBC TV series quite closely, but then departs on a more probably course than the TV show did. The last page is a shocker.
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