The People of the Ruins: A Story of the English Revolution and After

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Frederick A. Stokes, 1920 - Great Britain - 314 pages
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Jeremy Tuft, professor of physics, is annoyed by the general strike that has overtaken England while he slept off the effects of the previous night's party. No breakfast is waiting when he arises, and he is forced to travel by foot, dodging military patrols, to keep his appointment with his friend Augustus Trehanoc, an eccentric inventor who is eager to demonstrate the new preservative ray he has discovered. During the demonstration, however, a bomb is thrown into the laboratory, and Jeremy is trapped under a table in the dying light of the ray generator as the ceiling comes down above him. When he awakens and digs himself out, he is baffled to find himself in a meadow; conversation with a passing stranger reveals that Jeremy has slept for 150 years, and the world, as a result of events triggered by the strike, has descended to a nearly pre-industrial age, with scattered pieces of technology preserved but not understood. Jeremy hopes to lie low and build a new life for himself, but the Speaker, monarch of southern England, decides Jeremy must marry his daughter, the Lady Eva, and he is thrust into the front lines of a battle that may spell the end of what remains of civilization. 


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Page 310 - As the book ends, the hero (who has straddled the twentieth and twenty-first centuries by a typical utopian device) has "a vision of the world sinking further below the point from which in his youth he had seen it .... Cities would be burnt, bridges broken down, tall towers destroyed and all the wealth and learning of humanity would shiver to a few shards and a little dust.
Page 76 - And it kept on breaking out again, first in one country and then in another. For fifty years there was always war in some part of the world.
Page 19 - Jeremy, enquiring what his own feelings would have been if he had been in...
Page 201 - Then suddenly his paralysis, which felt to him as though it had lasted a million years, was dissolved, and before he knew what he was doing he had turned and was galloping back to the battery at a speed which considerably astonished his horse. "Get those guns out!
Page 1 - He raised his head a little, stared around him, found something vaguely unfamiliar, and tried to go to sleep again. But sleep would not come.
Page 172 - She craned her neck to keep them in sight as long as she could, and drew back hastily when Henry Watkins came out.
Page 248 - But as he glanced cautiously at the old man he saw that he was leaning back in his chair, his eyes closed and his hands folded in his lap.

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