The Last Astronaut

The Last Astronaut

Mission Commander Sally Jansen is Earth’s last astronaut–and last hope–in this gripping near-future thriller where a mission to make first contact becomes a terrifying struggle for survival in the depths of space.Sally Jansen was NASA’s leading astronaut, until a mission to Mars ended in disaster. Haunted by her failure, she lives in quiet anonymity, convinced her days in...

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Title:The Last Astronaut
Author:David Wellington
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Last Astronaut Reviews

  • Lisa

    David Wellington may be one of the few author's who I would allow to take me into space. I love science fiction in movies and television. In books, eh, not so much! If I have to imagine it, then I guarantee that I will manage to scare the crap outta myself! This book wasn't near as terrifying as I expected. But, this story had heart. Also, the alien, " s"? was completely unexpected and downright scary without having to have blood and guts. Also, yes there is indeed blood and guts "of a kind!"

    David Wellington may be one of the few author's who I would allow to take me into space. I love science fiction in movies and television. In books, eh, not so much! If I have to imagine it, then I guarantee that I will manage to scare the crap outta myself! This book wasn't near as terrifying as I expected. But, this story had heart. Also, the 👽 alien, " s"? was completely unexpected and downright scary without having to have blood and guts. Also, yes there is indeed blood and guts "of a kind!" This is a book I'm happy to have read. My thanks to Orbit publishing, Netgalley and Mr. Wellington. Highly recommended! P.S. That ending...

  • OutlawPoet

    Ground Control to Major T…………OMG, WHAT IS THAT THING????

    Lol – so, I admit it. When I started reading this book, the background music in my mind was totally Ground Control to Major Tom. I was digging our space scenes, marveling at the amount of detail and danger that the author put into his book, and, even with some tragic scenes, kind of in a state of zen-enjoyment.

    And then. Oh, and then…

    The background music changed. Instead of David Bowie, I heard creaks and groans and drips and screams and

    Ground Control to Major T…………OMG, WHAT IS THAT THING????

    Lol – so, I admit it. When I started reading this book, the background music in my mind was totally Ground Control to Major Tom. I was digging our space scenes, marveling at the amount of detail and danger that the author put into his book, and, even with some tragic scenes, kind of in a state of zen-enjoyment.

    And then. Oh, and then…

    The background music changed. Instead of David Bowie, I heard creaks and groans and drips and screams and that eerie silence that comes when you know SOMETHING IS GOING TO GET YOU!

    I loved this. Every moment of it. I’ve already recommended it to a bunch of people and I want it to be a movie – not starring Sigourney Weaver, but I’d like her to have a cameo in it.

    An amazing mix of hard science, action, and pure adrenaline SF.

    Five. Perfect. Stars.

    *ARC Provided via Net Galley

  • Lilyn G. | Sci-Fi & Scary | Empathy Shouldn't Be That Hard To Understand, People.

    I fucking loved this book. This is one of the best books I’ve read this year (and possibly better than any I read last year as well). It never went where I was expecting it to go and for someone who reads quite a lot that is such a rarity.

    I was completely immersed in David Wellington’s world. The alien object that they encounter was fascinating and different enough from anything I had read (at least that I can remember) that my mind was constantly at work picturing it all. The author does a

    I fucking loved this book. This is one of the best books I’ve read this year (and possibly better than any I read last year as well). It never went where I was expecting it to go and for someone who reads quite a lot that is such a rarity.

    I was completely immersed in David Wellington’s world. The alien object that they encounter was fascinating and different enough from anything I had read (at least that I can remember) that my mind was constantly at work picturing it all. The author does a great job of not overwhelming the reader with walls of world-building. Instead he deals it out carefully so that you are discovering the object right along with the characters.

    Even though The Last Astronaut is listed as purely science fiction, the general feel of it put me in mind of my favorite sci-fi horror movie. I’m talking, of course, about Event Horizon. As each piece was revealed and I got sucked deeper into the “Holy shit” zone (you know what I’m talking about) that movie in all it’s twisted glory kept springing to mind. (Basically what I’m saying here is for the love of God can someone please make this a movie ASAP? Also cast Jamie Lee Curtis as Sally Jensen while you’re at it. It needs a queen owning it the way only she can.

    At roughly 400 pages, this is a tight novel that refuses to meander the way a lot of the thicker science fiction novels being released lately do. if you’re looking for a nicely paced read that will take you on one hell of an adventure into unknown territory, look no further than The Last Astronaut.

    Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Netgalley for review consideration.

  • Char

    THE LAST ASTRONAUT took all my thoughts about "First Contact", (I'm a Trekkie), and turned them on their heads.

    This book deserves a better review than I have time available to give right now, so I must keep it brief.

    This was science fiction with a bit of humor and a big bunch of tension. It was fast-paced, with well drawn, deep and fascinating characters. I especially loved Sally Jansen. This woman was one of the bravest characters I've ever read about it. She wasn't perfect and everyone knew

    THE LAST ASTRONAUT took all my thoughts about "First Contact", (I'm a Trekkie), and turned them on their heads.

    This book deserves a better review than I have time available to give right now, so I must keep it brief.

    This was science fiction with a bit of humor and a big bunch of tension. It was fast-paced, with well drawn, deep and fascinating characters. I especially loved Sally Jansen. This woman was one of the bravest characters I've ever read about it. She wasn't perfect and everyone knew it, which is what I think made her so special to me.

    I'm a bit of a space nerd, so all the science was fun and interesting to me. The situation into which these astronauts were placed was such a tough one the odds were heavy on their failure. Being that this year is the 50th anniversary of our landing on the moon, my respect has risen for all those who ever took that chance in real life, whether or not they made it. They are all winners to me, the real men and women, and those in this book.

    All I can say is that I'm so glad I'm friends with readers who read and appreciated this book. If it were not for all of their rave reviews, I'm sure THE LAST ASTRONAUT would have passed under my radar. Thanks to all of you guys, you know who you are.

    My highest recommendation!

    *Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

  • Liz Barnsley

    I devoured this book, probably one of the most addictive of my year so far, apart from a break when I had to work it was a one sitting read. Once you start you just have to get to the end.

    I do love a good first contact tale and this one was a doozy- fast paced action, twists and turns, hugely imaginative throughout and utterly unpredictable. The scene setting is superb, the characters all intriguing and it’s one of those stories you just live the entire time you are reading it.

    The science is

    I devoured this book, probably one of the most addictive of my year so far, apart from a break when I had to work it was a one sitting read. Once you start you just have to get to the end.

    I do love a good first contact tale and this one was a doozy- fast paced action, twists and turns, hugely imaginative throughout and utterly unpredictable. The scene setting is superb, the characters all intriguing and it’s one of those stories you just live the entire time you are reading it.

    The science is utterly believable, the human aspects all gripping and overall it’s a pure adrenalin rush of a read with a pitch perfect resonant ending.

    Very clever. Brilliant. Highly Recommended.

  • Lindsay

    This is a superb SF Horror book that's aware of what has gone before it in both genres, takes what it needs, but comes up with its own clever take on it all. Think

    and

    with healthy does of Alien and any number of astronaut books and movies.

    Twenty years ago astronaut Sally Jansen was the central figure in a horrible space accident during the first mission to Mars that was the beginning of the end for the NASA crewed space program. Now, an object similar to

    ,

    This is a superb SF Horror book that's aware of what has gone before it in both genres, takes what it needs, but comes up with its own clever take on it all. Think

    and

    with healthy does of Alien and any number of astronaut books and movies.

    Twenty years ago astronaut Sally Jansen was the central figure in a horrible space accident during the first mission to Mars that was the beginning of the end for the NASA crewed space program. Now, an object similar to

    , except that it's decelerating. With little time to prepare and no crewed spaceflight in years, NASA turns to the only experienced astronaut they have left and a small crew of experts to try and make contact with alien visitor.

    This one has it all. The ultimate dark cavern haunted by ghosts (a rival team that got there first) and monsters of unknown type and intent. All of which takes the flawed characters that form the NASA mission and amps up all their anxieties, all while trying to work out if the visitor is friendly, hostile, indifferent or just too alien to imagine. The pressure ratchets up unrelentingly to an absolutely brilliant conclusion.

    Highly recommended. It would also make a terrific movie.

  • Sarah

    The Last Astronaut doesn’t waste too much time getting to the heart of the issue, which I loved. it maintained a pretty quick pace throughout the book, alternating between bouts of action and bouts of discoveries about this alien object. The setting and tone are consistently dark, grim, desolate, and lonely. The image of lights on a space suit cutting through a misty darkness were used repeatedly, which is perfect for this kind of book.

    Which is why it baffles me that I didn’t love it more than I

    The Last Astronaut doesn’t waste too much time getting to the heart of the issue, which I loved. it maintained a pretty quick pace throughout the book, alternating between bouts of action and bouts of discoveries about this alien object. The setting and tone are consistently dark, grim, desolate, and lonely. The image of lights on a space suit cutting through a misty darkness were used repeatedly, which is perfect for this kind of book.

    Which is why it baffles me that I didn’t love it more than I did? Unfortunately, and this could just be the mood I was in, I found it really easy to pick this book up, but I also found it really easy to put the book down. I never dreaded picking it up again, and I definitely wanted to finish, but I wish it had compelled me a little more, kept me up late at night because I just had to see what happened next.

    I will say the last 25% had me glued to the page so it ends much stronger than it started.

    If I had to pinpoint where I struggled with this book I can point to two factors, one of which is a spoiler, but the other of which is the characters. I did like all of them, but I think the character I connected to most, Sunny Stevens, the guy who kick starts the whole book, is absent from the 2nd half. He is the comic relief, he is the character that feels most alive to me. All the other characters are serious, grim types. Which is fine- most scientists probably are that way, but I really needed his jolt of personality to keep me caring about the events of the book. The other characters all feel human enough, I wouldn’t say any of them feel shallow or flat, but they just weren’t characters I connected to. Your mileage may vary.

    The writing is great. Descriptive enough to give you the idea and convey the tone without lingering too long on it or slowing down the pace. The length also feels just right. At 400 pages, we’re given just what is needed to tell the story, it’s not bloated but it doesn’t feel like any details were left out either.

    The format of the book is that we are reading an in-world book that has been written about these events after they have happened. It’s interspersed with little side snippets of what I thought of as confessions or transcripts from the characters themselves talking to (who I presume) is NASA. I personally enjoyed the format, and it definitely added a layer of impending doom to many of the scenes, but I know that’s not everyone’s cup of tea.

    The ending is perfect, and I won’t lie, it made me tear up a little. Overall a good read that’s well worth checking out if you like a good alien, sci-fi horror mash up. Thank you to NetGalley and Orbit for providing me with an eARC for review.

    The Last Astronaut releases on July 23, 2019

  • David Putnam

    I liked this book a great deal. Great concept and execution. There is never a dull moment, (with one exception). The author did an excellent job getting across the enormity of space and how it is so difficult to survive out there. I also found my mind getting stretched with many concepts I don't normally think about. The characters are well drawn.

    I would have given this book five stars had the style been more intimate, a voice that was closer third person or even first person alternating third.

    I liked this book a great deal. Great concept and execution. There is never a dull moment, (with one exception). The author did an excellent job getting across the enormity of space and how it is so difficult to survive out there. I also found my mind getting stretched with many concepts I don't normally think about. The characters are well drawn.

    I would have given this book five stars had the style been more intimate, a voice that was closer third person or even first person alternating third. Also, I think part of the issue for me was the constant shifting points of view within the same scene it made it a little rougher than it should have. It makes for great story telling but the sacrifice was staying with one character long enough to cheer for them.

    Absolutely the loved the concept of the book, (again, I try to stay away from giving the story away in my reviews).

    Another way this book would have rated five stars was if it was more cerebral in what they found in the alien ship (more like Asimov). Don't get me wrong I loved the concept and the way it played out but it did take that one giant step close to the edge of horror and it teetered on that edge.

    I think the author d welled too long once inside the ship, in the odyssey through the obstacles. Wonderful imagery and creativity but it went on too long. The wrap up was very satisfying--Well done.

    I am definitely going to recommend this book to the scifi writers in our writers group and will be first in line to buy this author's next book.

    David Putnam author of The Bruno Johnson series.

  • Lata

    This was good! A nice blend of first contact, exploration, and horror. No jump scares, but there were some scenes where I found myself “eeeeww”-ing from the sheer awfulness the characters were faced with, and liking the tension as the characters made their way through the big, dumb object. The interpersonal dynamics were interesting, though I found it a little predictable who was going to become super paranoid and violent with each new setback/revelation.

    This was good! A nice blend of first contact, exploration, and horror. No jump scares, but there were some scenes where I found myself “eeeeww”-ing from the sheer awfulness the characters were faced with, and liking the tension as the characters made their way through the big, dumb object. The interpersonal dynamics were interesting, though I found it a little predictable who was going to become super paranoid and violent with each new setback/revelation.

    And the ending was oddly fitting, both creepy and a nice wrap-up to Sally Jansen’s dream.

  • The Captain

    Ahoy there mateys! Unpopular opinion time. This book has been described as Gravity, Alien, and The Martian combined. I should have loved this one but only managed to make it to the 4% mark. I was struggling with the narration style from the beginning. This is certainly a case of wrong book for this particular reader. But give it a shot if it sounds good to ye because the crew loves this one!

    I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for me honest musings. Grateful for the review copy. So

    Ahoy there mateys! Unpopular opinion time. This book has been described as Gravity, Alien, and The Martian combined. I should have loved this one but only managed to make it to the 4% mark. I was struggling with the narration style from the beginning. This is certainly a case of wrong book for this particular reader. But give it a shot if it sounds good to ye because the crew loves this one!

    I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for me honest musings. Grateful for the review copy. So sorry that it didn't work out for me.

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