Last Star Standing

By Spaulding Taylor

On a post-apocalyptic 23rd-century Earth, an Aussie rebel battles its rulers - and his own demons

Fiction | Sci-fi & Fantasy
109% funded
114 supporters
Writing in progress

Publication date: TBC

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A post-apocalyptic speculative novel about a fiery and indigenous Aussie rebel living on a 23rd-century Earth, battling the Xirfell rulers – along with his own internal demons. 1984 crossed with Catcher in the Rye.

Reviews of McVeigh’s previous novels:

The Sunday Times:

'Characters rise and fall to McVeigh’s superbly controlled conductor's baton. The orchestra becomes a universe in microcosm; all human life is here . . . McVeigh succeeds in harmonising a supremely comic tone with much darker notes.'

The Sunday Telegraph:

'McVeigh is a professional cellist and is thus able to describe with wry authority the extraordinary life of a London orchestra. This is a very enjoyable novel, and not quite as light as it pretends to be.'

The Good Book Guide:

'The author is a professional cellist and a highly intelligent novelist. In the hothouse atmosphere of a group welded together but battered by individual stresses, relationships blossom and painfully disintegrate. McVeigh spins her sentences across the page, carrying the reader with them.'

Publisher's Weekly:

'McVeigh's captivating, witty debut offers uncanny insights into music, love, and the human heart. Her portrayal sings with lyrical intensity and eloquent feeling.'

Daily Mail:

Ever wondered what goes on in the backstage life of a symphony orchestra? This racy, pacy novel was written by someone who knows.'

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1st edition paperback, eBook edition and your name in the back of the book.
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  • Alice McVeigh avatar

    Alice McVeigh

    Alice McVeigh (writing as Spaulding Taylor)

    Alice was born in Seoul, South Korea, and grew up in Southeast Asia, where her father was working as a diplomat. After surviving her teenage years in McLean, Virginia, and achieving an undergraduate cello degree in cello performance at the internationally renowned Jacobs School of Music, she came to London to study cello with William Pleeth. There she worked for over a decade with orchestras including the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, and Sir John Eliot Gardiner’s Orchestre Revolutionaire et Romantique. Alice was first published in the late 1990s when her two contemporary novels (While the Music Lasts and Ghost Music) were published by Orion Publishing – now Hachette – to excellent reviews, including:

    'Characters rise and fall to McVeigh’s superbly controlled conductor's baton. The orchestra becomes a universe in microcosm; all human life is here . . . McVeigh succeeds in harmonising a supremely comic tone with much darker notes.' (The Sunday Times)

    'McVeigh is a professional cellist and is thus able to describe with wry authority the extraordinary life of a London orchestra. This is a very enjoyable novel, and not quite as light as it pretends to be.' (The Sunday Telegraph)

    The film rights to While the Music Lasts were sold to Channel 4. Her first play (Beating Time) was also published, after a week’s run at the Lewisham Theatre, as was her non-fiction book, All Risks Musical. A prolific ghost writer and book editor, Alice occasionally contributes to publications including the Guardian, Verbatim and the Strad. Her website is at www.alicemcveigh.com.

    Alice is married to Professor Simon McVeigh; and their daughter is currently studying Chinese at the University of Oxford. When not playing cello, writing or editing, Alice is generally smiting fuzzy yellow balls at the Bromley Tennis Centre. (Her daughter once remarked, when she was about three, 'My mum hits the ball farther than anybody!')

  • I find myself sorry for the Creature. Did it ask to be made so huge, so spectacular, so ravenous? The ultimate outsider, it’s as imprisoned as the rest of us. Even more, perhaps, for it has no choice at all.

    Still: those jaws. There’s a collective intake of breath as the creature swishes past her, that lethally spiked tail terrifyingly close to that poised little face. She sits composedly on the bottom of the tank, by comparison the size of a doll, though clearly returned to her element. The cameras are extended, greedy arms waiting to gather her in. It’s almost certainly a live broadcast.

    Hope so.

    The plac

    Read more...
  • Spaulding Taylor has written 2 private updates. You can pledge to get access to them all.

    1st October 2019 Last Star Standing off to the editorial board. . .

    It's a very odd thing, and never happened to me before. This is my seventh completed novel and the only one that, returning to it after a year of writing another has made me think, 'Too long. Really wants pruning.' 

    Maybe it's the speculative genre, I don't know. Anyway, I assumed I'd just shoot it back off to Unbound after a light read, of a sunny evening.  Instead, it's been a gruelling fortnight…

    9th August 2019 Thrilled to be at 50%!!!!!

    Dear supporters, friends and anyone interested enough to click on my update:

     

    First, thanks SO MUCH for your belief, those of you who've got me to 50% in under a week!! :

    Here's a blog post about the writing of Last Star Standing: 

     

    God stepped out on space,

    And he looked around and said:

    I'm lonely—

    I'll make me a world.

     

                             …

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