On The Beach
Powerful, gripping and haunting: Nevil Shute's most remarkable and influential novel
After the war is over, a radioactive cloud begins to sweep southwards on the winds, gradually poisoning everything in its path. An American submarine captain is among the survivors left sheltering in Australia, preparing with the locals for the inevitable. Despite his memories of his wife, he becomes close to a young woman struggling to accept the harsh realities of their situation. Then a faint Morse code signal is picked up, transmitting from the United States and the submarine must set sail through the bleak ocean to search for signs of life.
On the Beach is Nevil Shute's most powerful novel. Both gripping and intensely moving, its impact is unforgettable.
Praise for On The Beach
On the Beach didn't offer a literal second chance at life. But, as a nuclear cloud drifted over to people in Australia, it did show how knowledge of the end can dislodge the truest of feelings from their hiding places and give them a second chanceBoston Globe
A novel which, while aiming at popularity, respected its readership and was possessed of a decent level of craftPhilip Hensher, Spectator
Fictions such as On the Beach played an important role in raising awareness about the threat of nuclear war. We stared into the abyss and then stepped back from the brinkGuardian
Remarkable books...I share a fierce personal regard for Nevil ShuteRichard Bach
Shute's most considerable achievementDaily Telegraph
Still incredibly moving after nearly half a centuryEconomist
The most evocative novel on the aftermath of a nuclear warThe Times
They don't write them like this anymoreSciFiNow
this book by Nevil Shute, is one of the finest of the period. ... the drama comes from Shute's ability to capture how different people choose to come to the end of their lives, sometimes heroically, sometimes selfishly, but always gripping the reader's imagination and twisting the emotion. A taut, tightly written tale by an underrated, indeed largely forgotten writer."Mail on Sunday
Timely and ironic..an indelibly sad ending that leaves you tearful and disturbedLos Angeles Times