Monday, May 30, 2022

Review of "The Last Man: Book One," by Pia Guerra and Jose Marzan Jr.

 Review of

The Last Man: Book One, by Pia Guerra and Jose Marzan Jr. ISBN 9781401251512

Five out of five stars

Humans remain humans, despite catastrophic death

 What is great about this novel is that it depicts humans in their inglorious mode, even after a species-ending apocalypse. At a precise moment in time, nearly all mammals with a Y chromosome (male) die within seconds. The only known exceptions are Yorick and his pet monkey. With nearly all pilots and other people in authority male, most planes crash, there are massive chain reaction crashes on the freeways, governments and the power grids collapse.

 Yorick’s mother is a member of Congress, so she retains some authority, and a low-level member of the cabinet is named President of the United States using the constitutional rules of succession. True to human nature, the women immediately become factionalized, with a group of the wives of Republican members of Congress attempting to stage a coup against what is the legitimate national government.

 Furthermore, groups of extremely radical feminists form gangs called Amazons, true to the legend of the group, they destroy one of their breasts. They think nothing of killing other women that they perceive as enemies, and they want to hunt down what they hear is the last surviving male. The fact that their policies will lead to the extermination of humans over time seems lost on them.

 That is not the case with a small group of female Israeli soldiers. Understanding that the only nations that will survive are those that procreate, they travel to the United States in order to bring Yorick back to Israel.

 What is great about this novel is that it portrays women as brutal humans. Rather than working together in order to continue the species, they pursue their personal agendas, believing that might makes right. They consider the mass death of males to be their opportunity to take control from the destructive policies of the men. The fact that they are continuing the policies of killing those who disagree is a dark, yet fitting irony.

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