Book Review: All That’s Left in the World by Erik J. Brown [Audiobook]

When Andrew injures his leg in a bear trap post-apocalypse, he limps into a cabin he finds only to realize it's not empty, but luckily Jamie decides to help. When Andrew is healed, the two boys end up trekking across the country, running into various dangers, but growing closer along the way.

Book Cover - All That's Left in the World by Erik J. Brown
Title: All That's Left in the World
Pages: 347
My Rating: 4 Stars
More Info: Goodreads // Amazon // Publisher


What a nice post-apocalypse book. A lovely balance of heavy and hopeful. Not too slow, but not too intense. Action here and there, but not an overwhelming amount. A sweet story without brushing over the gravity and seriousness of the situations and the complexity of the emotions.

The story was kind of meandering, in a way that made sense for a post-apoc story. The characters found each other, and then they just kind of took things as they came, adapted when the world threw difficulties at them, found new purposes in their new life, and tried to do good and find safety. I was content to sit back and just go on the journey with them.

Andrew and Jamie were easy characters to like and feel for, and their romance was slow-building and sweet and well-balanced with the rest of the story.

In his note, the author talked about how he wrote this because he wanted more queer rep in post-apoc fiction. But, though it was small, I also appreciated that the book touched upon the idea that elderly and disabled people’s lives have value too.

The author also talked about how the real Covid pandemic that happened influenced the book (which I believe he said he started in 2015). And I could feel a bit of that influence, not so much in the few Covid mentions, but in how the way things played out in this fictional pandemic felt believable and based on things that have actually happened.

This isn’t a book about sickness and death though. This story starts when the “super flu” has mostly or entirely passed, and the survivors are left to pick up the pieces and try to not just survive but also live. (Though there is still talk of a pandemic and losing loved ones, so do keep that in mind if those things will be upsetting for you.)

The audiobook narration by both Barrett Leddy (Andrew’s POV) and Andrew Gibson (Jamie’s POV) was great. They sounded natural and made it easy to tell characters apart. I also appreciated how they voiced characters similarly across narration (e.g. the way Barrett Leddy voiced Jamie was similar to Andrew Gibson’s narration/voice for Jamie, and vice versa). I enjoyed the audio.

Overall, this was a serious but lovely post-apoc book with a sweet queer romance and a hopeful story.

*Rating: 4 Stars // Read Date: 2022 // Format: Audiobook*


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  1. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Nice post apocalyptic book seems like a bit of a misnomer. It’s nice to hear this wasn’t all doom and gloom though and who doesn’t want to see more queer rep in every area of fiction? It sounds like the author delivered what they hoped to in this.

  2. Greg

    A lot of people don’t want to read about pandemics or don’t want to be reminded about Covid when they read (or at least so I’ve seen in various comments here and there) but I don’t know, to me it feels real because we ARE going through something like that. And the apathy towards it in some quarters almost FEELS post apocalyptic lol. anyway I can see where the author would be affected by Covid writing something like this. I mean how could you not, in a way? Also… nice that there’s a mix of heavy and hopeful.

    1. Kit (Metaphors and Moonlight)

      I can definitely understand not wanting to read about pandemics. For the most part, I don’t really either? But it depends on the book. I was ok with this one since it was focused on the after-pandemic part and was more sweet and hopeful. I get what you’re saying though, about how the real life experience can make the book experience deeper.