Today, we have an excerpt from Adrian J. Walker‘s latest novel, The Last Dog on Earth. Published by Del Rey in the UK, here’s the synopsis:
Every dog has its day…
And for Lineker, a happy go lucky mongrel from Peckham, the day the world ends is his: finally a chance to prove to his owner just how loyal he can be.
Reg, an agoraphobic writer with an obsession for nineties football, plans to wait out the impending doom in his second floor flat, hiding himself away from the riots outside.
But when an abandoned orphan shows up in the stairwell of their building, Reg and Lineker must brave the outside in order to save not only the child, but themselves…
The Last Dog on Earth is out now.
Reginald Hardy’s Journal
4th December 2021
I am afraid I may have spoken too soon; Bertha is struggling. I have been trying to ignore the jiggering sound all night, but there’s no getting around it – the generator needs some attention.
It is a fairly simple fix, of course; a couple of new bearings should do it. The only problem is that I have a feeling the only place I shall find such bearings is on the outer reaches of my operational boundary – an extremity to which, happily, I have had neither the necessity nor the desire to stray since before the bombs.
The first was only a tiddler by all accounts. From what I heard it was 100 tons, just a fraction of what landed on Hiroshima. Ground zero was Kings Cross Station, the resulting blast and fireball taking out most of Regent’s Park, Camden, the British Library, the British Museum, Great Ormond Street . . .
The second one was a touch bigger and above ground too, so it packed more of a punch. It made short work of Westminster, removed a hefty slice from Buckingham Palace, and turned St James’s park into a swamp. A third and fourth – little ones again – detonated near Canary Wharf. I saw those from the flat; spectacular to watch those banks crumble like dust.
They were not enough to flatten London, but they did rob it of power. The grid was still running then (just) but down on the ground we had frazzled substations, melted cables and blown fuses by the bucketload. So, for electricians like me, business was booming. Every mushroom cloud, you might say.
I remember those few weeks running around trying to get to every job. Absolute pandemonium. Most of the work was impossible to complete, but I saw it as my duty to try. It was easy at first because the streets were suddenly quiet, as if the shock had made the population shrink inside like molluscs. To some extent I expect it was a misplaced fear of fallout that kept people indoors, but the prevailing wind was from the south and I knew enough about blast zones and radiation levels to know that the chances of being affected were fairly slim. I took a calculated risk.
Either way, the streets were mine, and I whizzed my Transit around them like a pinball on an open table. It was a joyful time, really – if you leave aside the threat of nuclear cataclysm and social collapse, of course.
My freedom was, however, brief. The panic, confusion and fear those dirty great bombs caused – what they were designed to cause, in retrospect – soon set in. Reality ensued, plans were formed, and somewhere within that woeful, muddled aftermath, an exodus began; the good people of London fled their homes.
Adrian Walker’s The Last Dog On Earth is published in the UK by Del Rey.