The Last Man in Europe
Praise for the Last Man in Europe
‘Dennis Glover has dared to burrow into the moral universe of George Orwell, there to look through his unblinking eyes upon the malevolence, vanity, cowardice and deceit that menace the potential for a decent society. The result is a story rivetingly told, not only of Orwell's insight and courage, but of his torments, his loves, his gut-wrenching struggles. Read this book to better know and understand an essential figure of the 20th century whose writing and example still speak to us with urgency.’ – Don Watson, author of Enemy Within: American Politics in the Time of Trump.
Thomas E. Ricks
‘This imaginative work is an unexpected treat for fans of George Orwell. The Barcelona scenes are especially memorable, cinematic in their brightness. The more you know of Orwell, the more you will enjoy it. This, finally, is the biography--even though a novel--that Orwell deserves.’ —Thomas E. Ricks, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and author of the New York Times bestseller Churchill and Orwell: The Fight for Freedom.
‘Dennis Glover's account of Orwell is so compelling and so wonderfully written that I read it all in one go. It's a ludicrously ambitious premise for a novel, but somehow – exhilaratingly – Glover pulls it off. Ten out of ten.’
‘This is a novel about George Orwell and 1984, written uncannily in the style Orwell would have used if he had decided to write a novel about his own life. The result is a fascinating, compelling and, in the end, a deeply moving work, a wonderfully accurate and entirely unsentimental tribute to the political writer who grasped with greatest penetration the meaning of the European catastrophes of the first half of the twentieth century. Glover’s Orwell is fully imagined and precisely understood. With The Last Man in Europe, a major new literary talent has been revealed.’ – Robert Manne, author of The Mind of the Islamic State
‘I doubt literary biography will ever recover. Glover is so good with character, place and politics. He's so clever telling you all you need to know while pretending you know it already. Great with pain. You never have a sense that Orwell is rattling down a familiar track. Each step is into the unknown. It's thrilling.’
What the reviewers are saying
The Australian Financial Review
"This is a richly imagined piece of writing, which provides a fascinating insight into the mind of one of the great thinkers of the last century."
"...reading this novel feels like witnessing the creation of two great masterpieces."
"As the ice caps melt and fake news sticks in our throats, The Last Man in Europe makes Nineteen Eighty-Four bite all over again."
The Age and Sydney Morning Herald
"Glover musters an impressive empathy for Orwell. His book is both a tribute to the latter's indefatigable labour and the portrait of a man whose deepening melancholy maybe overcame his hopes of change."
The Orwell Society (UK)
"It is imagined reality, it is a character study. It’s a very moving one and it is handled with skill, without a dead note... I felt after finishing, I’d seen Orwell from another angle."
Annabel Crabb and Leigh Sales
Annabel and Leigh praise The Last Man in Europe in Episode 61 of their popular podcast 'Chat 10'.
The Herald Scotland
"The Last Man in Europe shows its readers the influences which shaped Orwell’s masterpiece, but transcends even that, giving an affecting portrait of the man himself."
The Daily Mail (UK)
"...as the end draws near, with Orwell desperate to finish Nineteen Eighty-Four before the ultimate deadline, Glover magically wrings high-stakes drama from the fundamentally undramatic scene of the writer at his desk as he hesitates over his chilling final page..."
The Toronto Star
"The Last Man in Europe... is a unique and thought-provoking work, intellectually challenging and emotionally rich. It will likely compel readers back to Nineteen Eighty-Four — never a bad thing — and force them to take a look at the world around themselves, to consider warnings unheeded."
The New Statesman
"...rivetingly told... A terrifically assured hybrid of fiction and life-writing."
The Wall Street Journal
Orwell biographer D.J. Taylor reviews The Last Man in Europe in the WSJ:"...no doubt the HBO miniseries is already in development."
The Wall Street Journal essay
Dennis discusses his five best books on the warriors who defeated the Nazis.
Literary Review (UK)
Shows the life as lived, with all hindsight stripped away. Throughout, we believe entirely in Orwell as a man who had no idea that his work would be worshipped by later generations. A passionate but unvarnished tribute to Orwell as a man and a writer, [and] a novel that succeeds in its own right.
Books from Scotland
Fictionalised literary biography is a hard art to master. It demands almost the same amount of research as a biography, but also the ability to show how characters change through time and to reanimate key moments in their life. Glover’s is highly readable, massively informative.
Allan Massie, Yorkshire Post and The Scotsman, 30 Jan 2021
Glover’s eagerness to relate Orwell’s own experience to the making of his dystopian satire Nineteen Eighty-Four is persuasive.
News about The Last Man in Europe
New theory surfaces on number in Orwell's classic
The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, 1-2 July 2017
Did a dying Orwell put a new end on his classic?
The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, 1-2 July 2017
Interview on Radio National's Books and Arts
Michael Cathcart and Dennis discuss The Last Man in Europe, 19 July 2017.
Book industry veteran Bill Liddeleow calls The Last Man in Europe "the book of the year"
Hear Bill interviewed on 6PR in Perth
The Last Man in Europe on BBC Radio 4 Open Book
Hear Dennis discuss how George Orwell has been represented in literature.
Dennis's interview on NPR
Dennis discusses Orwell's life with Scott Simon on 25 November 2017 -- with transcript and recording.
Crikey praises The Last Man
Crikey's Urbanist blog calls The Last Man in Europe "One of the best novels of 2017 anywhere."
MPs put The Last Man on their reading list
From Troy Bramston's annual Christmas reading column in The Australian.
Awards for the Last Man in Europe
Also by Dennis
Nineteen Eighty Four, by George Orwell, with a new introduction by Dennis Glover