Monday, 17 June 2019

The Quiet At The End Of The World - Lauren James

How far would you go to save those you love?

Lowrie and Shen are the youngest people on the planet after a virus caused global infertility. Closeted in a pocket of London and doted upon by a small, aging community, the pair spend their days mudlarking for artifacts from history and looking for treasure in their once-opulent mansion. 

Their idyllic life is torn apart when a secret is uncovered that threatens not only their family but humanity’s entire existence. Lowrie and Shen face an impossible choice: in the quiet at the end of the world, they must decide who to save and who to sacrifice...

I'm going to start this by saying I absolutely adored this book! I've loved all of Lauren's books but something about this one just stuck with me a bit more. Lowrie and Shen are the youngest people left alive on the entire planet after a virus struck causing permanent infertility and there's never been any success in finding a cure or discovering what caused it.

Lowrie is bisexual, torn between her feelings for Shen but not wanting to lose their friendship in case things don't work out, and Shen is Shen. Laidback, aware of his feelings but not pushing Lowrie, fully prepared to wait until she's ready - even if that takes forever!

I've seen this referred to as soft apocalyptic SF and I quite agree, there's no imminent danger but you do get the feeling time is running out. Everyone is carrying on as usual but after a rather shocking helicopter crash it's obvious things are starting to go wrong and it's going to be up to Shen and Lowrie to solve the problem.

The Quiet At The End Of The World is a beautiful blend of romance, science fiction, and philosophy. There's plenty of discussion about how to carry on the human race, about aliens and if they really are out there, and talk about infertility and how to solve it. There's so much to love about it, from lifeguard robots called Mitch to social media posts from the 21st century when the virus originally struck. I really liked how Lauren blended these tweets and FB messages into the main body of the story, and how Lowrie and Shen used them as a way of learning about history.

There are a couple of cracking twists in this book, which I didn't see coming, but they make the story so much more entertaining! And the nod to who Lowrie's ancestors were, and where they live, is both hilarious and jaw-dropping! I read this in one sitting, and I don't regret the lack of sleep at all. I'm looking forward to seeing what Lauren comes up with next.

The Quiet At The End Of The World - Lauren James
ISBN - 9781406375510
Publisher - Walker Books
Release date - March 7th, 2019
Source - Bought from bookshop


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