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Customer reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

on 28 June 2009
This is the second of the Afterblight Chronicles I have read and the series is growing on me. Though well written this does not purport to be great and "improving" literature. It is just a damn good yarn. Incidentally, when I award stars I do so on the basis of the quality of a book in its genre rather than to some supposed absolute standard.
4 people found this helpful
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on 10 February 2014
After a worldwide pandemic kills everyone that is not blood type O~negative, a reluctant group of survivors must band together in order to survive a brave new world, in which murderous Daily Mail readers and cannibalistic, religious fanatics run wild and free...

Thoroughly enjoyed this tale of apocalyptic bloodshed, there's loads of colourful characters, plenty of humour and a glut of bloody violence and swearing. Granted it's not the most mature piece of writing and it's not gonna win any high~brow literary awards, but if you want sheer entertainment, you can do a lot worse.
It's set in an English boys public school, and follows the exploits of not only the children but also a few adults in their desperate attempts to survive the aforementioned dangers..
If you're thinking about buying this, bear in mind works like McCammon's 'Swan Song', David Moody, Cornel Wilde's film adaptation of John Christopher's 'The Death of Grass', and of course Anderson's 'If....', that way you'll know what to expect and unlikely to be disappointed. It is as I have said more humorous than those examples though.
I will certainly read the others in the trilogy, and keep an eye on the author's other future work..
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on 13 July 2012
I bought this book quite a while ago, and have re-read it many times since. It's remained a firm favourite, not just as a post-apocalyptic romp, but simply as a short, brutal and fast-paced novel that had me hooked from its opening lines to its closing pages.

So the world's mostly-ended after a pandemic called the Cull has swept through it, killing everyone whose blood type isn't O-negative. After his mother dies of the disease, the 15 year old narrator, Lee, heads back to his boarding school in the English countryside where he plans to await the return of his father, a soldier who is serving abroad at the time. The book follows Lee's stay at his school, detailing the sheer insanity of a world without order and, I'd hazard, serving as a tongue-in-cheek critique of a society (post-apocalyptic or not) run by incompetent, power-hungry and self-serving adults.

Older readers may shy away from a book featuring such a young main character, but Lee is somewhat mature beyond his years; you'd be pretty hard pushed to find a 15 year-old who handles the End Of The World nearly as well as he does. Andrews' narrative, through Lee, is very funny, especially given the grim premise, and the other characters are not simply props that are picked off during the plot like your standard zombie/monster horror flick. Even the villains, who can, at times, be very over the top and keep cropping up infuriatingly throughout the novel, are volatile to the point of unpredictability - this is not a philosophical book, and doesn't require much brain-input to power through in a couple hours, but it does make you wonder how far humanity can be pushed when society as we know it crumbles, and social Darwinism devolves to plain Darwinism in an instant.

One of my only complaints is that the novel features only one (key) female character. I suppose, being set in an all boy's school, there was always going to be more men than women, and to be fair, this sole female is adequately kick-arse enough to hold her own in the testosterone-filled environment. Add a few more of her, and we'd be good to go. Some readers may also be turned off by the novel's frequent instances of violence and cruelty, but sadly enough, I'd say that such scenes would be typical of the dog-eat-dog world that would arise after an apocalypse.

All in all, this is one of my favourite books, ranked alongside some literary legends - and not because Scott Andrews is going to win a Nobel with it, but because `School's Out' was fun, gruesome and action-packed. I also actually cared about and remembered all the characters, even now, however many years after first picking it up. A good, quick read, and thoroughly recommended.
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on 21 November 2010
Based on other peoples reviews i decided to give this book a try. All i can say is thankyou i really enjoyed this book and could not put it down. The characters are brilliant and the story is original, the two ingredients for a cracking book. I cared what happened and could not put this book down, i have lent this book to 2 colleagues at work and they have gone on to buy the other 2 books in the series just like i have. This series of 3 goes into my library collection,if like me you always wonder what you would do in an apocalyptic situation or if you would step up to the plate if needs be and want to live in a fantasy world for a few hundred pages then this is the book for you. This book made me laugh and reminded me of a violent st trinians without the stockings! Cracking read and good fun!
3 people found this helpful
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on 10 August 2011
I guess I am too old or experienced a reader to like this book very much. I thought that the book is too much a copy of ideas from other books, it is still well written if you have not read many SF og fantasy-books before. But, I will say that the book is predictable, sligthly boring, manic in pace at times and written for an audience that needs action, but not any grounding in reality. I love post-apocalypse books, but I will not buy a book in this series again.
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on 7 August 2009
Schools Out is the first I read out of the Afterblight Chronicles, Its definately my favourite as its set in England and its a lot less 'far fetched' than some of the American ones in the series! For this same reason my second favourite in the series so far is Arrowhead and I look forward to reading the new one Broken Arrow!
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on 3 September 2008
I must admit I'm into cheap blood and guts sagas and after reading various precis on 'The Afterblight Chronicles' I decided to try a couple that were very obviously based in the UK.

I selected 'School's Out' and 'Arrowhead'.

I'm halfway through 'School's Out' was was driven to give a quick review of what I've read so far.

'Lord of the Flies' or 'If' it's not but combine the two and take them a couple of murderous steps on and you have what I've just read.

An EXCELLENT read, a good plot and a likeable if rather 'hard' schooly hero sums it up. I think older kids (boys) will like it as well as some young adults and no shortage of gore... I can assure you of that.

Seems each book in the series is written by a different author so I shall look forward to sampling more of the same.
3 people found this helpful
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