Taken from an ancient text found abandoned in a cave, The Last Man ends in 2100, “the last year of the world.” A devastating worldwide plague has annihilated all of humanity except for one man, who chronicles the world's demise. This novel of apocalyptic horror, originally published in 1826, was rejected in its time and was out of print from 1833 to 1965, when the first Bison Books edition appeared.
Mary Shelley (1797–1851) was the author of many works, the best known of which is the classic Frankenstein. Judith Tarr is the author of more than thirty novels of fantasy and historical fiction, including the Epona sequence.
“The Last Man created an entirely new genre, compounded of the domestic romance, the Gothic extravaganza, and the sociological novel. . . . [Mary Shelley's] most interesting, if not her most consummate work.”—Muriel Spark
“An absorbing roman à clef, [it] develops one of the major themes of romantic art, that of spiritual isolation, and . . . treats it in a unique way.”—The Year's Work in English Studies
“A fascinating . . . novel-romance on a timely subject.”—Studies in English Literature