Review – The Last Wild by Piers Torday

Series: (The Last Wild #1)

Audiobook Duration: 7 hours, 34 minutes

Narrator: Oliver Hembrough 


Twitter can be a great time suck, yet when it is not encouraging you to click ever onwards,  it is also a source of inspiration, information and competitions. I started listening to The Last Wild because a tweet in my timeline notified that the author Piers Torday was reading a chapter each day on Instagram from March 20th

That has been a useful appointment for the kids as an afternoon wind down; eventhough I’m of the impression that both have read it before.  Thus it is no surprise,  that I, unfamiliar with the book and author had to go search for the audiobook myself.  My excuse is that one chapter a day wasn’t going to satisfy my craving.  Also it was difficult to get thoroughly engaged due to the Instagram issues of syncing and buffering.  Fortunately the daily recordings are now available to view.

Yet I digress. What a lovely book,  narrated with skill and fantastic voices.

The story very simply put is a great adventure about a self mute boy who recently lost his mother and is whisked away from his father to live in a depressing boarding school, in a world where the majority of animals have died from a mysterious virus and food production is limited to manufactured slop which smells and tastes awful. Kester our hero, suddenly realises that he can talk to animals.  And so begins his adventure, first an escape from the jail like school, to meeting animals and fleeing from the authority.

This journey references powerful themes such as corporate greed, societal collapse, animal welfare and environmental issues presented in an child accessible way. No one theme is pummelled over your head.

The animals are the stars of this book. You almost don’t notice the lack of humans in this book as the animals are marvellous characters with amusing personalities.  Plus when we do get to meet humans, they’re not all that nice.

Contrast of human and animal society

Animals are shown to work together for the common good.  Will stand up for what they believe in and subjugate their own desires if it mean obtaining the objective.

Humans are greedy, indivudalistic, hold grudges and hate what they do not understand.  Power is their objective, greed is their motivation

To round up

A sweet read that we all enjoyed. So much so that I read it straight away and then listened to it daily by the author.

I enjoyed the narration (of the audiobook), though the villain did have a cod accent which was stereotypical and mildly annoying.

My favourite animal and there are a few contenders on the list is The Harvest Mouse, who is blessed with a caustic wit and has a dance for every situation.

How I wish I had the chops for a ‘Story telling dance of explanation.

Take a read, you’re unlikely to regret it.

3 Stars – Liked It

Engrossed Reader

Female, in her 40's who reads when she can, often to the detriment of sleep. Enjoying most genres and formats with a preference for ebooks, mainly for convenience

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