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The Last Policeman by Ben Winters
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The Last Policeman (edition 2012)

by Ben Winters

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,1101287,455 (3.84)1 / 190
Member:JBD1
Title:The Last Policeman
Authors:Ben Winters
Info:Quirk Books
Collections:Removed
Rating:****
Tags:Fiction, Read in 2012

Work details

The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters

  1. 30
    Countdown City by Ben H. Winters (sturlington)
    sturlington: Countdown City is the sequel to the Last Policeman
  2. 00
    We all looked up by Tommy Wallach (meggyweg)
  3. 00
    The Fractal Murders by Mark Cohen (JanesList)
    JanesList: I can't explain quite why, but these two detectives remind me of each other.
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Showing 1-5 of 130 (next | show all)
The coming asteroid end-of-the-world transforms a police procedural into something rather wonderful and poignant. ( )
  jjaylynny | Nov 12, 2016 |
I'm still not sure I know what happened, but here's the jist of it. Hank Palace is a policeman, and an asteroid is going to crash into Planet Earth somewhere, sometime soon. Everyone's going a little cookoo, what's the point of behaving if the apocalypse is any day now? But Hank finds a dead body that looks a little too much like a suicide, and he starts investigating. And he discovers that some people are being sent up to the moon, rescued by the U.S. government, and some people are being killed (by the Government? I couldn't tell) and it's being staged to look like a suicide by the insurance companies, so they don't have to pay out. But why? Because they're going just as broke as everybody else.

The thing is, I'm still not sure I care that I don't understand. This was a great thrill ride, and I enjoyed reading it. ( )
  minxcr1964 | Nov 8, 2016 |
Coulda sworn I wrote a review, but somehow it's not here.  Well, I'm guessing I read it a couple of months ago.  I do still remember a fair bit about it, which is an indication I liked it.  But I do know I have no interest in the sequels.  The world- and character- building were done well enough, the adventure and intrigue I've had enough of (never my thing - if you like those you probably will want the whole trilogy). ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
A quirky, quixotic murder needs to be solved by Detective Hank Palace but there’s one problem; the world will end in six months via an Apophis class asteroid. A terrific story that grabbed me by the scruff of the neck and held me so entranced, I couldn’t put it down. Follow up books, Count Down City and World of Trouble, will help me get my Hank Palace fix. ( )
  ShelleyAlberta | Jun 4, 2016 |
A wonderful police procedural set against the backdrop of a coming apocalyptic event: A giant asteroid headed straight for Earth. The main character is Hank Palace, a former beat cop who was elevated to the position of detective after numerous vacancies opened up in the department as people fled to spend the last days of their lives doing something other than report to work.

Around the world, people are giving in to chaos, going about checking off their "bucket lists" and in some cases, committing suicide. Palace is called to the scene of one of the latter and determines that it might not actually be a suicide, but a homicide. Humorously enough, (and believable given the circumstances) he is the only one in the department who cares enough about his job to try and solve a murder. At every turn, he's told to leave the case be, but like a dog with a bone, he just won't let go.

Recommended to readers of mystery, crime and science fiction. ( )
  Steve_Coate | Apr 2, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 130 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Winters, Ben H.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Horner, DoogieDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McGurk, John J.Production managersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pushnik, JonathanCover photosecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
"Even for Voltaire, the supreme rationalist, a purely rational suicide was something prodigious and slightly grotesque, like a comet or a two-headed sheep." -- A. Alvarez, The Savage God: A Study of Suicide
"And there's a slow, slow train comin', up around the bend." -- Bob Dylan, "Slow Train"
Dedication
To Andrew Winters, of the Concord Winters
First words
I'm staring at the insurance man and he's staring at me, two cold gray eyes behind old-fashioned tortoiseshell frames, and I'm having this awful and inspiring feeling, like holy moly this is real, and I don't know if I'm ready, I really don't.
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Book description
What’s the point in solving murders if we’re all going to die? Detective Hank Palace has asked this question ever since asteroid 2011L47J hovered into view. Several kilometers wide, it’s on a collision course with planet Earth, with just six precious months until impact.

The Last Policeman presents a fascinating portrait of a pre-apocalyptic United States. Industry is grinding to a halt. Most people have abandoned their jobs. But not Hank Palace. As our story opens, he’s investigating the latest suicide in a city that’s full of suicides—only this one feels wrong. This one feels like homicide. And Palace is the only one who cares. What’s the point in solving murders if we’re all going to die?

The Last Policeman offers a story we’ve never read before: A police procedural set on the brink of an apocalypse. What would any of us do, what would we really do, if our days were numbered?
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When the Earth is doomed by an imminent and unavoidable asteroid collision, New Hampshire homicide detective Hank Palace considers the worth of his job in a world destined to end in six months and investigates a suspicious suicide that nobody else cares about.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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