I’ve been reading a lot of science fiction lately after not touching any for a year or two and I’m loving this step back into the genre. One of my latest reads was The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James. It’s a young adult book and perfect for teen readers looking to get into something lighter on the science side with an emphasis on the human experience instead. This was a 4 star book out of 5 for me and I found the overall premise fresh. It was also a quick read, which I appreciated since so many books in the genre tend to be on the long side.
The book follows Romy Silvers, a teenaged girl stuck alone on a space ship after her parents died. The mission is to colonize a new planet, but Romy struggles to cope with being alone. Then she finds out a second ship is on the way and will soon catch up with her. Her excitement fades to horror as she realizes there are worse things than being alone. Now if you read the blurb for the book, you might expect a romance, but this isn’t a romance and it isn’t a book I’d recommend for anyone looking for a sci-fi romance.
Overall I enjoyed the plot. I enjoyed how the story focused more on what it’s like to be stuck on a space ship alone more so than the ship’s mission. The mission to colonize a new planet is a popular thread in the genre but getting a story focused on the travel in space and how it affects the passengers and how they cope after being struck by disaster was a fresh take on the idea. The mystery surrounding the death of Romy’s parents kept me guessing and reading about a girl coping with being alone in space made me wonder how I’d do in her shoes. It was easy to sympathize with Romy and understand her. The book was also a quick read that helped give the book a snappy pacing.
There were a few aspects that didn’t appeal to me personally. I found the voice felt a little too young compared to most YA I read and it led me to thinking Romy was several years younger than she was at first. The motivations of the crew on the other ship were also hard to grasp and felt a little outlandish to me at first. However I still enjoyed all the twists and turns and getting to explore the human emotional experience in regards to space travel.
The daughter of two astronauts, Romy Silvers is no stranger to life in space. But she never knew how isolating the universe could be until her parents’ tragic deaths left her alone on the Infinity, a spaceship speeding away from Earth.
Romy tries to make the best of her lonely situation, but with only brief messages from her therapist on Earth to keep her company, she can’t help but feel like something is missing. It seems like a dream come true when NASA alerts her that another ship, the Eternity, will be joining the Infinity.
Romy begins exchanging messages with J, the captain of the Eternity, and their friendship breathes new life into her world. But as the Eternity gets closer, Romy learns there’s more to J’s mission than she could have imagined. And suddenly, there are worse things than being alone….