Review Blog

Mar 28 2019

The quiet at the end of the world by Lauren James

cover image

Walker Books; 2019. ISBN: 9781406375510. 352p; p/b.
(Age: Middle secondary+) Recommended. In a future where the human race is infertile, the last two people to ever be born confront the fear of loneliness when a mystery disease rages through an already dwindling population.
It's difficult to discuss what makes this book good, because its best aspects hinge on a plot twist that shouldn't be spoilt. It tackles some interesting ethical issues that are becoming increasingly relevant today, and some thought provoking takes on the future of humanity. Don't worry though, it's not all heavy futurism - the novel also contains some quite personal themes of love and secrets. It's quite engaging, with a unique narrative device of reading through archived chat-logs online, interspersed at precisely paced intervals with more traditional narration. The representation in the cast is inspiring - bi and trans will last as long as humanity does.
You will just have to read it yourself, it is a wonderful read. The book is suitable for middle secondary-aged readers due to the themes discussed, however it can be a good conversation with classes as to the diversity and power of humanity.
Vincent Hermann

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