The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore

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The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore

Category: Historical Fiction
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Olivia Tierney
Reviewed by Olivia Tierney
Summary: An enchanting novel, The Last Days of Night is an exquisite example of historical fiction at its best. With an incredibly likeable and intelligent narrator as well as brilliant pacing, the fight for electricity comes alive. Graham Moore's book is enthralling and should be the next book in your hands.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: September 2016
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1471156663

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The night-time of our ancestors is ending. Electric light is our future. The man who controls it will not simply make an unimaginable fortune. He will not simply dictate politics… The man who controls electricity will control the very sun in the sky.

Graham Moore's latest novel is set in 19th Century New York City following the War of the Currents immediately after the discovery of electricity. Paul Cravath is a young lawyer, recently graduated from Columbia Law School, who finds himself at the centre of the biggest lawsuit in American history to date: who invented the light bulb. Enlisted to defend George Westinghouse against 312 lawsuits and a sum of one billion dollars, Paul embarks on a seemingly impossible case to win. Going up against the incredibly intelligent and extremely resourceful Thomas Edison, who has newspapers at his disposal and the support of J.P. Morgan himself, Paul is nonetheless determined to win by any means necessary. In his unwavering quest for victory, Paul encounters Nikola Tesla, the eccentric genius who could have the power to stop Edison; Alexander Bell, the inventor of the telephone and only one to beat Edison before; as well as Agnes Huntington, the astonishingly beautiful opera singer. With the stakes so high, Paul will discover that everyone is desperate to win, setting in motion their own plans with disastrous consequences.

The Last Days of Night is an outstanding piece of historical fiction and is the best legal thriller I've ever read. The fast pace of the novel is particularly exceptional making the book highly entertaining to read and captivates the readers leaving them desperate to know more. Although, the time in the book is condensed from two decades to two years, Graham Moore's novel is historically very accurate and it's fascinating to learn about a time in history, which is recent, yet ancient in comparison to today's technology.

Our narrator, Paul, is very likeable and fronts a fully formed and well developed cast of distinct historical figures who come alive with every page. The choice of Paul as the narrator was masterful as he's at the heart of the story yet is ignorance of all scientific knowledge. This presents a platform for the author to explain the situation scientifically as well as legally, ensuring that the reader can constantly follow events and has an in-depth knowledge of the story. Paul's character development is also well documented as his life amongst the highest members of society and his pursuit of victory causes him to become calculating and shapes him into an exceptionally talented lawyer. Moore also does a fantastic job presenting all the characters' differences and highlights the good qualities of each character whilst not shying away from their dark tendencies. Neither does the book overlook horrifying real life events that were used by title characters to advance their aims, such as the first electric chair execution.

Graham Moore has written an exciting novel with great pace as well as excellent characters and througherly deserves high praise. The Last Days of Night tells a love story, a battle of wills, a determination to succeed and a young man making a name for himself. It has many elements which are wonderfully written. If you're struggling to find a book to read, look no further – you won't be disappointed!

Many thanks to the publisher for providing a copy to review!

In terms of further reading, The Movement of Stars by Amy Brill is another brilliant piece of historical fiction centred on scientific discovery. With wonderful characters and great writing Brill's debut novel is definitely not to be missed.

Booklists.jpg The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore is in the Top Ten Historical Fiction Books of 2016.

Buy The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore at Amazon.com.


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