After London, or Wild England

Read by Ruth Golding

(4.4 stars; 93 reviews)

Jefferies' novel can be seen as an early example of "post-apocalyptic fiction." After some sudden and unspecified catastrophe has depopulated England, the countryside reverts to nature, and the few survivors to a quasi-medieval way of life.

The first part of the book, "The Relapse into Barbarism", is the account by some later historian of the fall of civilisation and its consequences, with a loving description of nature reclaiming England. The second part, "Wild England", is an adventure set many years later in the wild landscape and society.

The book is not without its flaws (notably the abrupt and unsatisfying ending) but is redeemed by the quality of the writing, particularly the unnervingly prophetic descriptions of the post-apocalyptic city and countryside. (Summary by Ruth Golding and Wikipedia) (10 hr 6 min)


01 - Part I, Chapter 1: The Great Forest 23:07 Read by Ruth Golding
02 - Part I, Chapter 2: Wild Animals 12:21 Read by Ruth Golding
03 - Part I, Chapter 3: Men of the Woods 27:02 Read by Ruth Golding
04 - Part I, Chapter 4: The Invaders 25:36 Read by Ruth Golding
05 - Part I, Chapter 5: The Lake 25:47 Read by Ruth Golding
06 - Part II, Chapter 1: Sir Felix 18:03 Read by Ruth Golding
07 - Part II, Chapter 2: The House of Aquila 20:03 Read by Ruth Golding
08 - Part II, Chapter 3: The Stockade 18:05 Read by Ruth Golding
09 - Part II, Chapter 4: The Canoe 18:02 Read by Ruth Golding
10 - Part II, Chapter 5: Baron Aquila 19:28 Read by Ruth Golding
11 - Part II, Chapter 6: The Forest Track 22:33 Read by Ruth Golding
12 - Part II, Chapter 7: The Forest track continued 15:38 Read by Ruth Golding
13 - Part II, Chapter 8: Thyma Castle 22:49 Read by Ruth Golding
14 - Part II, Chapter 9: Superstitions 19:54 Read by Ruth Golding
15 - Part II, Chapter 10: The Feast 14:44 Read by Ruth Golding
16 - Part II, Chapter 11: Aurora 13:30 Read by Ruth Golding
17 - Part II, Chapter 12: Night in the Forest 17:23 Read by Ruth Golding
18 - Part II, Chapter 13: Sailing Away 17:27 Read by Ruth Golding
19 - Part II, Chapter 14: The Straits 15:07 Read by Ruth Golding
20 - Part II, Chapter 15: Sailing Onwards 16:00 Read by Ruth Golding
21 - Part II, Chapter 16: The City 15:42 Read by Ruth Golding
22 - Part II, Chapter 17: The Camp 19:30 Read by Ruth Golding
23 - Part II, Chapter 18: The King's Levy 15:21 Read by Ruth Golding
24 - Part II, Chapter 19: Fighting 18:04 Read by Ruth Golding
25 - Part II, Chapter 20: In Danger 18:56 Read by Ruth Golding
26 - Part II, Chapter 21: A Voyage 20:15 Read by Ruth Golding
27 - Part II, Chapter 22: Discoveries 15:57 Read by Ruth Golding
28 - Part II, Chapter 23: Strange Things 15:01 Read by Ruth Golding
29 - Part II, Chapter 24: Fiery Vapours 17:32 Read by Ruth Golding
30 - Part II, Chapter 25: The Shepherds 19:05 Read by Ruth Golding
31 - Part II, Chapter 26: Bow and Arrow 13:34 Read by Ruth Golding
32 - Part II, Chapter 27: Surprised 16:57 Read by Ruth Golding
33 - Part II, Chapter 28: For Aurora 18:09 Read by Ruth Golding


As beautiful as it can get!

(5 stars)

This book is divided into two parts the first of which describes the ecological response to the human abandonment of Britain in the late 19th century. The second is a picturesque travel through the post-apocalyptic landscape. It was written in the 19th-century by Richard Jefferies (1848-1887), an English writer and naturalist. Many thanks to Ruth Golding for her wonderful reading of this novel. In another part of the English-speaking world, they would say: “She’s a hell of a reader”!

awesome until end

(3.5 stars)

MANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!! I was really digging the story and I didn't realize I was in the last chapter and then it just abruptly ended I know this was kind of in fashion of the time based on other stories I've read but still really disappointing-------even so I would highly recommend this book!

awesome with some great ideas

(4 stars)

a most enjoyable story I have listened to this story several times & still enjoy it

Excellent - if somewhat static

(4 stars)

Jeffries' chief strengths as a author were as descriptive writer, and it is no surprise therefore that the most sustained passages in After London are those in the opening part, detailing nature resurgent on the back of some unspecified national catastophe. Elsewhere when the main plot kicks in, some scenes, though well written, lack the necessary forward impetus. The author's strengths again rise to the fore in the two or three great chapters depicting the hero's journey into the black swamp. Some great passages here, depicting an eerie, hellish land both symbolic and real, made more so by the power of the prose, worth the price of admission alone. The ending is too abrupt to be fully satisfying but none the less overall it's a journey worth taking. The reading is excellent, with clear and responsive diction, the steady manner entirely in keeping with the stately prose.

well done

(5 stars)

enjoyable to the end which I came upon too quickly. loved the style of writing & the narrator was brilliant. thought she was too slow at first then realised my mind was too quick & impatient. it was like therapy to allow her voice to slow my mind. I am better for it & enjoyed a great fantasy story too. If it came true, for the planet's sake, it might be the best thing for it also... unless humans take heed of these kinds of warnings & change their ways drastically...

(4.5 stars)

Part 1 was a bit long. Part 2 was much better & thanks for the heads up that it finishes abruptly. Ruth Golding does it again with her wonderful reading of the novel. I think it would make a good series on Netflix. Interesting though that I didn't find Felix, the main character, very endearing until the end, a bit like I felt for Ulysses in the Odyssey. Thank you to allthe Volunteers for giving their time to read these books for the public.

Bravo from Borneo

(5 stars)

This is a remarkable book not just because it must be the first post apocalyptic book ever written, but also because it is beautifully written, both in terms of the language and descriptive skills used. The narrator's voice and cadence was absolutely perfect for this novel. The book does have a sudden end, but I wonder if this might be more due to Richard Jefferies' ill health than to a lack of ideas.

After London, or Wild England..excellent

(5 stars)

Possibly one of the most memorable books I've listened to. Listened to it several times now, each time it has captivated my mind and imagination. Big thumbs up to the narrator too, she does and excellent job of making my minds eye travel into the scenes she describes.