13 In Review

Review: The Loneliest Girl In the Universe by Lauren James

Review: The Loneliest Girl In the Universe by Lauren JamesThe Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James
Published by HarperTeen on July 3, 2018
Pages: 305
Format: Hardcover
Goodreads

A surprising and gripping sci-fi thriller with a killer twist
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….
Now nominated as a YALSA Quick Pick!

I have never been the biggest fan of science fiction books, which anyone who scans my Goodreads shelves can tell you. It’s not that I inherently don’t like science fiction, it’s more that it has this tendency to be so dry and boring and slog on and on and onnnnn. When I picked up Illuminae last year, though, I realized that there was this whole other genre of science fiction that was actually interesting and I could follow it, it wouldn’t put me to sleep out of boredom. So I’ve been challenging myself to pick up a sci-fi book every now and then, pushing myself ever so slightly outside of my comfort zone full of contemporary fluff and murderous spouses. (I just realized that I read some weird shit).

Thankfully, The Loneliest Girl In the Universe subverted my expectations, and I couldn’t be prouder.

Rating: 

How I’d Describe This Book to a Friend

Our narrator, Romy, is the titular loneliest girl in the universe. She was born on a space station headed straight for a new planet to colonize – Earth II – and after an unfortunate accident killed both her parents, she is the only one that can land safely on this new planet and begin life anew for herself and the hundreds of embryos stashed in statis on the ship. That’s a lot of pressure on a sixteen year old, y’all.

Romy is sassy, and incredibly smart. She can do quantum physics, and yet her favorite thing to do is write fanfics based on her favorite show (sort of like a hybrid between Bones and Zootopia … wow that got weird really fast). This ship singlehandedly relies on Romy to keep it running safely, and she is up to the challenge, daydreaming of what it might be like to have a place to rest her head that’s on terra firma.

So Romy is pretty damn surprised when suddenly she receives notice that NASA is sending out a vessel, designed to link up with hers and transport them both to Earth II. She’s even more surprised when she discovers that the boy in question is 22 years old and insufferably handsome, not to mention he loves her favorite show too and even sends her the new seasons she hasn’t been able to receive! 

Unfortunately for our dear, sweet Romy … things are not as easy as they seem.

The Bottom Line

James is so good at making us feel Romy’s emotions. I felt cold, helpless and empty. I felt lonely and afraid and nervous – I felt it all. I even felt her teenage jitters as she began to fall for J, the sexy boy next door … if the boy next door is “next door” as in a space station over.

As the two space stations move closer and closer, and J’s is almost ready to dock and join up with hers, things get stressful. Because in this case, when two become one nothing as amazing as the Spice Girls imagine seems to happen.

 

When 2 become 1, some shit’s about to go down in space!

If I say much more, I’ll start giving you spoilers which I am vehemently opposed to doing. So let me say this much:

  • females are strong as hell
  • badass feminist representation
  • mental health address is A+
  • still unclear on how periods in space work though
  • damn nature, you scary

Don’t judge this one by its blurb. I only took off the one star because the ending was a little too “big red new car bow” for me, but not enough to detract a ton. If GoodReads let me do 4 1/2 stars, this book would get it.

“Is no life at all better than the constant fear and fight for survival I face every day? I don’t know. If a life of fear isn’t worth living, then why should I carry on? It’s not possible to be more afraid than I am right now.”

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13 Comments

  • Reply
    Delly
    January 30, 2019 at 1:14 pm

    It is great that you have found a new part of sci-fi to enjoy! I started to read this book but wasn’t in the right state of mind at the time. Great review and thanks for the reminder to pick this one up again! One of my favourite authors is Becky Chambers. If you haven’t read the Wayfarers series you should definitely have a look. It is in space but again they are not ‘heavy’ sci-fi. The stories are character driven and the world building is excellent.

  • Reply
    Sarah Campbell
    January 30, 2019 at 1:14 pm

    I know that people love this book, but I’ve stayed away because I’m not too into sci-fi. Live the cover though and great review ?

  • Reply
    Justine
    January 30, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    I have my eyes on this book! As a sci-fi lover! I am more than happy to see you seeing a new view on the genre. If you’re looking for more sci-fi I totally recommend Red Rising – Pierce Brown and Ignite the Stars by Maura Milan.

  • Reply
    Kate
    January 30, 2019 at 1:27 pm

    I read and reviewed this last year and absolutely loved it! I 100% agree about the blurb too! I’m not a huge sci-fi person but this was the exact type of sci-fi I can get on board with!

  • Reply
    Ash
    January 30, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    Wow, this sounds like my kind of book!

  • Reply
    Dorka
    January 30, 2019 at 1:43 pm

    This one sounds quite interesting, I’ll definitely be adding this to my TBR! 🙂 Great review!

  • Reply
    Tanya P
    January 30, 2019 at 2:11 pm

    LOL *Hearteyes* Best use of that gif that I have seen in a while.

  • Reply
    Jackie
    January 30, 2019 at 7:25 pm

    Oh my goodness. This is such a unique premise and I am Instantly drawn in! I have been in such a science-fiction mood and this seems like it will fill the void. I have literally just added it to my Goodreads TBR!

  • Reply
    Lois
    January 31, 2019 at 9:17 am

    This is my all-time-favourite book! I love Lauren James and her writing, it always captivates me. I am always recommending this book to anyone who is looking for sci-fi books!

  • Reply
    Cora @ Tea Party Princess
    January 31, 2019 at 11:19 am

    OK you have definitely sold this book to me! I was convinced that it wasn’t my cup of tea, but this review is just filled with so much awesome that I can’t *not* add this to my TBR. I really appreciate that your review is spoiler free too 🙂
    Cora | http://teapartyprincess.co.uk

  • Reply
    Cora - Tea Party Princess
    January 31, 2019 at 11:28 am

    OK you have definitely sold this book to me! I was convinced that it wasn’t my cup of tea, but this review is just filled with so much awesome that I can’t *not* add this to my TBR. I really appreciate that your review is spoiler free too 🙂
    Cora | http://teapartyprincess.co.uk

  • Reply
    Cora - Tea Party Princess
    January 31, 2019 at 11:28 am

    OK you have definitely sold this book to me! I was convinced that it wasn’t my cup of tea, but this review is just filled with so much awesome that I can’t *not* add this to my TBR. I really appreciate that your review is spoiler free too 🙂
    Cora

  • Reply
    Cody Levi
    February 1, 2019 at 6:40 pm

    Awesome review! Not much of a fan of Sci-Fi books but might try this one out.

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