Read Empty World by John Christopher Online


When a deadly virus kills off most of the world's population, a teenaged boy tries to survive in a seemingly empty England. (John Christopher is the pseudonym of Samuel Youd.)...

Title : Empty World
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780435122454
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 134 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Empty World Reviews

  • Carie
    2018-11-30 20:16

    I read this book when I was a teenager and I have thought of it often since. It has haunted me, but I couldn't remember the name of the book or the author. I spent a lot of time researching before tracking the book down and finding out that it was out of print. I finally obtained a copy from ebay and was excited to read it again.I found this book to be just as disturbing and thought-provoking as I remembered it. What an eerie, haunting book! Very short (134 pgs.), it imparts a lot, but leaves you wanting more and wishing you knew what happened next, but almost dreading to know. The ending is unsettling, but so interesting. I love the exploration of character, morals, loss, and survival.I would highly recommend the book, if you can get a hold of a copy and don't mind feeling a little disturbed and unsettled.

  • Laura
    2018-12-15 03:03

    Empty World is another post-apocalyptic children’s novel by John Christopher. Neil Miller is left orphaned as the lone survivor in a car accident that kills his entire family. As he adjusts to his new life with his grandparents, a terrible plague sweeps the world, killing off just about the entire population. Neil, who survives the plague, is left in an empty, silent world. Neil deals with the everyday needs of survival as well as the loneliness of being alone in the world as he presses on, searching for other survivors.Even before the plague sweeps through the plot, this is a bleak novel. The orphaning of Neil, before the plague, is brutally sad. As the plague becomes a major element in the story, the book becomes morbidly fascinating as Christopher describes, in crushing detail, the end of the world as we know it. Everything–the plague, the decay, Neil’s emotional state, the will to survive–is described with fascinating realism throughout the book, making it a compelling and quick read.I would recommend this book to tweens and younger teens looking for a quick read that is realistically dark and frightening. Not for those seeking fantasy or action-based adventure, but I think readers who enjoyed books like The Giver, not to mention Christopher’s other novels, will find this book to be an enjoyable, thought-provoking read.

  • Keri (JD)
    2018-11-23 02:21

    I found this book with no cover re-bound TAPED to the underside of a shelf in my school library. I was in a dark place in my life and this book brought me the light and hope at the end of the tunnel I needed.

  • Kirsty
    2018-12-06 02:07

    Well, that was horrifying. Glad I didn't read this as a child as it would have given me nightmares.

  • J.E. Anckorn
    2018-12-03 21:03

    Great concept, ending so abrupt I thought it was a printing error, but typical of the era it was written in.

  • Ben
    2018-12-01 23:09

    I'm realising that post-apocalypse fiction is a guilty pleasure of mine. I just love it. I came across another one here.In 1966, British sci-fi author John Christopher turned to sci-fi for adolescents. The most famous product of that decision was the Tripods trilogy, adapted for TV by the BBC in the 1980s. Empty World (1977), is just as good, a post-apocalyptic novel akin to Christopher's The Death of Grass (1956), but with children as the main characters.For a book aimed at children, it's incredibly dark. It starts with a car accident that kills a boy's whole family and leaves him the only survivor, continues with his loneliness in living with his grandparents and then with almost everybody else in the world dying of a plague that kills all the adults and leaves only a very few children.But it's his family's death that prepare Neil emotionally for what's to come. Another boy that Neil finds has gone mad. Another hangs himself. But Neil's strength sees him through and, finally, he shows compassion to another who has done him great wrong but who is weaker than himself.I've found this novel as a 38-year-old but it would have blown me away as a child.

  • Yak
    2018-12-06 20:32

    Really meant for teenagers, this describes a plague and its aftermath for the few survivors (children, of course). It seemed to be rollicking along and then it just... ended. Sometimes books are too long, but this one could've used more of everything.

  • Rebecca McNutt
    2018-12-01 00:19

    Eye-opening, moving and profoundly frightening, this post-apocalyptic scenario from the eyes of a young boy is expertly written and definitely worth reading.

  • Mads Kamp
    2018-12-12 23:14

    Where has this little gem been hiding? Just spent a day off listening to it and I must say I enjoyed it a lot.The author lands somewhere among John Wyndham and Richard Matheson in both style and plot. But it sets itself apart by being more of a YA-book and is simple and yet enthralling.The main character is well written and contains all the aspects of a 15-year old. Interesting that most of his problems come through the interaction with others rather than when he is on his own.The lack of widespread panic when 99% of the world's population dies is also interesting and I guess it can only be accredited to an England long ago.John Christopher could have written this as a horror story, but instead chooses to make the loneliness give you the thrills.Well done.Read it!

  • Nina Cooper
    2018-11-29 00:03

    This is an easy and short read, and nevertheless I needed a moment to figure out what it is that makes Empty World somehow pretty disturbing. On the one hand it is the description of the consequences of a disaster that kills almost everybody but the protagonist -Neil- and a few others. The way he sees how his grandparents die, the streets become empty and civilization breaks down is pretty gloomy. Neil more or less comes to terms with all that, sometimes he is maybe accepting his fate too easily, but somehow he goes on adapting to a completely different life. When he finally meets others, new challenges come up, and the way John Christopher creates all this definitely makes the book worth reading. 5 out of 5 stars.

  • Clark Hallman
    2018-11-26 21:17

    John Christopher – Empty World: When a deadly virus kills off most of the world's population, including all adults, Neil, a teenaged boy, tries to survive in a seemingly empty England. Although devastated by the loss of his elders he must force himself to accept his difficult (even terrifying) situation and learn to survive by himself. Scavenging canned and preserved food and other necessities from empty homes and businesses provides most necessities. Loneliness becomes a difficult thing to deal with, but he learns to avoid most other people because they are likely to be dangerous. Eventually, he makes his way to London, where necessities and desired items abound for the scavenger. However, the London environment also includes many more dangerous characters to avoid. I found Neal to be a very interesting, resourceful, and admirable character. This is another engaging science fiction novel from John Christopher and I enjoyed it.

  • Emma
    2018-12-03 23:02

    Read when I was about 11 years old and reread many times. Excellent. I went on to read more of his work. Left me with a love of post-apocalyptic fiction.

  • Petra Be
    2018-11-21 20:26

    A disturbing story. I find the ending a bit abrupt and unconvincing.

  • Will Pierlot
    2018-11-19 19:15

    Summary:Neil had it hard;Like trump[image error](not)His mother and father died in a car crash.He had to move to his grandparents in Winchlesea, East Sussex, England,Europe,Northern Hemisphere, Earth, The Solar System,Orion Arm, Milky Way, Local Group, Super Cluster, The Known Universe, The Spacetime Continium, Void (50.9250° N, 0.7096° E).Then the Calcutta Plague comes from India. It savages entire continents and countries. Only killing adults not kids. Age is key for surival. You need to be young enough to be free of the calcutta plague but old enough to fend for yourself.Neil is a survvivor he survives more than others; some crazy, some free of the will to live.Until he finds two other survivors alive and well.Review:The book was a bit bland at the start and was actually uninteresting 'till the plague started to spread. The `boring-ness` really exagerated how sad and depressed Neil felt.The other characters seem to whizz by like a Lamborghini.For Instance; You heard about Neil's parents and Neil was sad for a while then his grandparent's died from the plague; a character named Clive D'arcy went crazy for jewels and almost killed Neil then Clive was gone; till he settled with two girls named Billie Docket and Lucy Stephens who didn't like him despite that got used to him.Personally, I think it makes the story dull

  • Quartknee
    2018-12-18 01:27

    This is a haunting novel with a melancholia and wistfulness that reflects the protagonist, Neil's heart-wrenching descent into solitude. Of course there is redemption from that after several false starts. Meeting other survivors seems to bring its own set of issues that are explored through the second half of the plot. Progeria as a plague is such a unique and interesting take on planetary destruction.Most reviewers seem to overlook the fact that John Christopher's novels in this genre were mainly written for tweens. His Tripods Trilogy was published about ten years before this book and basically created this category which is now called YA Dystopian Fiction. The publisher says this is for ages 10-14 and US grades 5-9 which seems quite young to be grouped with "Young Adult". I remember reading it about that time in my life and I've thought of it periodically over the years... yes, it is that kind of narrative. So categories change but this plot stays the same. Re-reading it now, I'm struck by how natural and current everything could still be. There's no talk of cell phones, the internet or many mod cons we take for granted but elderly people aren't yet known for such things so the milieu at the beginning of the book still feels plausible to me.The biggest let down for me is the fact that there is no sequel. The characters spend so much time having rows and planning for their long-term survival. They feel so real and natural to me, I found myself really rooting for them to succeed. With a change of heart at the end and it's such an abrupt ending, it really comes across more like a cliffhanger and set-up for a sequel than anything else.With 8 different pen names and such a long and prolific career it's obvious he was a very creative and imaginative author. I just wish he was as invested in the characters and their future as I seem to be.

  • Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
    2018-11-25 19:15

    Christopher, John Empty World, 224 pgs. Aladdin; Reissue Edition, 2015. $7.99. Language: PG; Mature Content: PG. Violence: PG. CHAPTER BOOK. This book is about a boy named Neil, who lives in modern day London. He is an orphan and lives with his grandparents. Suddenly a plague starts to spread all around the world. At first it only targets the aged, taking their lives but then younger people start to die. Soon, there are only a few left on the Earth who are immune to the plague. At first Neil thinks he is alone but then he meets a boy named Clive who seems kind at first but then slits the tires to Neil’s car. He is alone when he thinks he has found another human being who has survived but when he gets to his house it is too late and the other survivor has killed himself out of loneliness. He finds another girl named Billie, someone who seems pretty sketchy to Neil it turns out she has a friend, someone who seems to be more trustworthy. Her name is Lucy. Read to find out how they will survive. I did enjoy this book because it was scary and suspenseful. I could not put it down! I tried to imagine myself in Neil’s position and I don’t think that I would have handled being one of the last people on Earth like he did. This book was very well written. I enjoyed the suspenseful parts most of all. MS- ESSENTIAL. Student Reviewer: JL-age13

  • Andy Phillips
    2018-12-06 22:04

    I've read at least a hundred 'end of the world' books and this one comes up time and time again when I've looked through lists of apocalyptic fiction, but I've only recently found a copy. I wasn't disappointed, other than in the length of the story (but I think it's aimed at the young adult audience so that's fairly typical). Every John Christopher book I've read was great so I was expecting a good story and I enjoyed this one too.The story follows a teenage boy whose family is killed in a car accident at the beginning of the book. As he is recovering from this, living with his grandparents in a small English town, a plague spreads across the world. Old people are the first to die in an accelerated aging process, but gradually younger and younger people are affected. We follow's the boy's adventures as he seeks survivors in a vastly depopulated UK, but to say much more would spoil the story.Thoroughly recommended.

  • Cheryl
    2018-11-27 02:06

    Empty World by John Christopher revolves around the story of Neil Miller, a teenager who was living a normal life until a car accident killed the rest of his family. He is sent to live in a quiet retirement village on the coast of England with his grandparents, and one of his first nights there the news reports the story of a plague sweeping through India. The plague mutates and rapidly spreads around the world, killing almost everyone, starting with older people. Neil is one of the few who survives, in part because he has learned to handle grief and loneliness. He teaches himself to drive and goes to London in search of other people. This story is beautifully written, and affected me more than John Christopher's more famous post-apocalyptic novel "No Blade of Grass". This story is told from the perspective of a teenager, and the end of the world as we know it is particularly sad as seen though the eyes of an innocent. Highly recommended.

  • Mighty_Mo
    2018-12-16 01:18

    Es handelt von dem 15jährigen Neil, der bei einem Autounfall seine Eltern verliert und nun bei seinen Großeltern lebt. In den Medien wird bekannt, dass in Indien eine Seuche ausbricht, welche fortan ans Kalkutta-Krankheit bezeichnet wird. Diese führt dazu, dass anfangs vor allem alte Menschen sterben.Doch die Seuche breitet sich aus und erreicht den Rest der Welt und somit auch England.Die Krankheit bereitet sich sehr schnell aus und bald erfasst sie auch jüngere Menschen die daran sterben.Bisher wurde noch kein Heilmittel dagegen gefunden.Es beginnt ein Kampf ums Überleben.Die Geschichte ist wirklich sehr spannend geschrieben. Man fiebert mit Neil mit und will ihm tatkräftig zur Seite stehen. Die Vorstellung in einer Leeren Welt zu leben, lässt einen Erschaudern. Das Buch liest sich sehr flüssig und ist mit seinen 163 Seiten auch sehr schnell gelesen.

  • Mitchell
    2018-11-21 21:24

    A terrible plague has swept the world, leaving only a few survivors. English lad Neil, already numb with grief from the recent death of his family in a car accident, adapts relatively well to the empty, lonely new world. Setting out for London, he soon encounters other young survivors and scenes of misery, loneliness and madness.In other words, John Christopher sleepwalks his way through a familiar young adult plot that never comes up with any particularly memorable scenes. Which is not to say Empty World isn’t a perfectly entertaining and enjoyable short read. There’s just nothing to distinguish it from his more famous apocalyptic works, or indeed any other number of post-apocalyptic pandemic stories.

  • SBC
    2018-12-17 19:09

    This was an absorbing read. It starts with Neil's family dying in a car crash and then shows what might happen if 99% of the world's population are killed by a plague. When I read the blurb I thought teens and children would all survive but the death toll is much higher than that - this truly explores an empty world.As with his Tripod trilogy, women are not well written. There are three female characters in this novel - the first is a frail girl who it is concluded likes being bullied by men; the second a tomboy whose lesbianism is implied; and the third the angel in the house.But the novel is a really interesting exploration of Neil's character. The ending is very interesting, too.

  • sabisteb
    2018-12-04 20:13

    Inhalt:Bei einem Autounfall verliert der 15jährige Neil Miller seine Eltern und lebt jetzt bei seinen Großeltern in einem Küstendorf. Über internationale Flughäfen kommt die sogenannte Kalkuttapest nach England. Zunächst werden nur ältere Menschen von dieser Krankheit getötet, aber mit der Zeit werden die Opfer immer jünger. Nachdem seine Großeltern und die meisten Menschen im Dorf gestorben sind, begibt sich Neil ins menschenleere London, um dort nach Überlebenden zu suchen. Die ersten Bekanntschaften machen nicht gerade Mut: Ein Kleptomane der in einer Phantasiewelt lebt und ein Selbstmörder, der sich kurz bevor Neil ihn findet erhängt. ...Rezension:Spannend und eindringlich bis zum Ende. Absolut super! Nicht nur ein Buch für Kinder sondern auch noch für Erwachsene spannend.

  • Charles Oakley
    2018-12-14 00:07

    Written in 1977, a basic backdrop which was good enough to let the imagination take off from. Not rivetting story telling, mostly telling not showing. Follows a teenager in an empty world. Nothing too horrific mentioned, as the original intended audience was for younger readers.George R. Stewart's 'Earth Abides' is the pinnacle of post-apocalyptic literature (even though this too suffers from a fair amount of telling, not showing), for anyone interested. It's a fascinating book compared to Empty World. Earth Abides was the inspiration behind Stephen King's 'The Stand'. For really grisly post apocalyptic horrors, 'The Road' by Cormack McCarthy is the one to go for.

  • Debb24601
    2018-12-02 22:23

    First off, I can't believe I read that as a child... and I certainly understand how it made such a lasting impression on me. I've been making attempts to track this book down for the past few years with only a vague, slightly inaccurate synopsis. Through a very strange series of events, I finally discovered the title and was able to order a copy second hand as it is out of print.This is the book that set off my post apocalypse obsession. Rereading it now as an adult I was more focused on the exploration of what "alone" and "loss" really mean.I love everything about this book, the main character, the style of the writing, the tone of "keep calm and carry on". I'm so glad I found it...

  • Japhet Palencia
    2018-12-13 20:06

    John Christopher's Empty World is a pleasure to read. It's a well told short novel about a young man's survival in a post-apocalyptic world. I haven't read much young adult fiction, but this book stands out as one of the darker ones I have read. My only complaint with the novel is the ending. Although it is consistent with the protagonist's character I feel it goes against the grain of the story's tone. However, this is still an enjoyable read and if you have a few hours to spare and are a fan of post-apocalyptic fiction I recommend you read this book.

  • Nadia Simonenko
    2018-12-08 03:31

    For the longest time, this was one of my favorite books. I found an old copy marked for discard while I was volunteering at my town's library when I was a child, and it opened up an entirely new genre of books to me. It hadn't aged well when I re-read it a few years ago, but it was (at the time) one of the darkest YA books I'd ever read. I'd give it three stars these days, but I'm also no longer a child. Four stars for nostalgia and for fresh perspective. :)

  • Kay Smillie
    2018-12-05 23:02

    How did I not know about this novel until recently? If you enjoy John Christopher stories then you will like this. Imagine thinking that you are the only person left alive after a worldwide disease? Then finding potential evidence of a.n.other. How would you feel and what would you do?Would have loved it if we got to know what happened to the main protagonists, in the style of Earth Abides, but that isn't to be.Ray Smillie

  • Kimbolimbo
    2018-12-17 22:24

    This was a very depressing book. From the first page to the last page. Not sure I recommend this book to anyone, especially not hormonally whacked out YA who often get depressed for no logical reason whatsoever multiple times a day (I know that isn't a fair assessment of YA, there is a logic trail for most of their hormonal up and downs, it just doesn't make sense to me any more).

  • Debumere
    2018-11-25 21:31

    I really enjoyed this, a teenager trying to survive in a world after a plague wipes out pretty much everyone. It is a young person's book but written in the 70s when kids weren't afraid of their own shadows. Wouldn't recommend it to pre-teens today but would recommend it to those who like a bit of vintage sci-Fi. Also recommend John Wyndham novels.

  • Jonathan Tennet
    2018-12-14 19:03

    I first read this book when I was 10-11 years old, and I still occasionally re-read it, even 30 years later. It had such a massive impact on me back in the day, and really fuelled my adolescent fascination with post-apocalyptic scenarios and societies, the whole idea of "could I survive?".And the scene where the protagonist finds the boys hanging has stuck with me after all this time...