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Book Title: The Ragged Edge|
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Reader ratings: 3.9
The author of the book: John Christopher
Edition: Simon and Schuster (NY)
Date of issue: 1965
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 370 KB
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A Wrinkle in the Skin (aka The Ragged Edge) is a 1965 post-apocalyptic science fiction novel written by the British author Samuel Youd under the pen name of John Christopher.
A massive series of earthquakes on a worldwide scale reduce cities to rubble, plunging survivors into barbarism. Most of western Europe is dramatically uplifted, transforming the English Channel into a muddy desert, while elsewhere lands are plunged below sealevel & flooded.
The protagonist is Matthew Cotter, a Guernsey horticulturalist who finds himself one of only a handful of survivors on the former island. Cotter decides to trek across the empty seabed to England, in the faint hope his daughter has somehow survived. He finds the situation on the former mainland has descended to barbarism, with competing bands of scavengers preying on survivors. He & a young boy finally make their way to the borders of Sussex, where his daughter was staying, only to discover that the land has slipped beneath the sea. Cotter, along with some survivors from the mainland, eventually returns to Guernsey.
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Read information about the authorSam Youd was born in Huyton, Lancashire in April 1922, during an unseasonable snowstorm.
As a boy, he was devoted to the newly emergent genre of science-fiction: ‘In the early thirties,’ he later wrote, ‘we knew just enough about the solar system for its possibilities to be a magnet to the imagination.’
Over the following decades, his imagination flowed from science-fiction into general novels, cricket novels, medical novels, gothic romances, detective thrillers, light comedies … In all he published fifty-six novels and a myriad of short stories, under his own name as well as eight different pen-names.
He is perhaps best known as John Christopher, author of the seminal work of speculative fiction, The Death of Grass (today available as a Penguin Classic), and a stream of novels in the genre he pioneered, young adult dystopian fiction, beginning with The Tripods Trilogy.
‘I read somewhere,’ Sam once said, ‘that I have been cited as the greatest serial killer in fictional history, having destroyed civilisation in so many different ways – through famine, freezing, earthquakes, feral youth combined with religious fanaticism, and progeria.’
In an interview towards the end of his life, conversation turned to a recent spate of novels set on Mars and a possible setting for a John Christopher story: strand a group of people in a remote Martian enclave and see what happens.
The Mars aspect, he felt, was irrelevant. ‘What happens between the people,’ he said, ‘that’s the thing I’m interested in.’
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