The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James – Book Review
It’s probably a well-known fact by now that I adore books about space, especially if they’re YA. I stated before that my very specific favourite genre is contemporary YA books about/set in space, and I don’t think that will ever change. So when I find a new book that hits those boxes, I can’t wait to get my hands on it!
I first heard about The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James at YALC last year. It was SO hyped but for some reason, I didn’t pick up a copy because I wasn’t sure what it was. I finally got a copy of it when I found out that Lauren James would be at this year’s YALC and my goodness, I’m so happy I did!
Romy Silvers is the only surviving crew-member of a spaceship travelling to a new planet, on a mission to establish a second home for humanity. Alone in space, she is the loneliest girl in the universe until she hears about a new ship which has launched from Earth – with a single passenger on board. A boy called J.
Their only communication is via email – and due to the distance between them, their messages take months to transmit. And yet Romy finds herself falling in love.
Can you fall in love with someone you’ve never met, never even spoken to – someone who is light years away? But what does Romy really know about J? And what do the mysterious messages which have started arriving from Earth really mean? Sometimes, there’s something worse than being aloneâ€¦
The structure of The Loneliest Girl in the Universe is everything I love in a book. Cool things like newspaper articles to show the backstory instead of huge chunks of description; plenty of world building without there being too much world building; and short, snappy chapters.
For a book to really capture my attention, it has to make me intrigued to know more about the story straight away. Loneliest Girl definitely did this. I was sucked right into the strange and unique story of Romy, and couldn’t wait to find out more about her situation. I mean, she’s a teenager who is controlling a spaceship in which she is completely alone – who wouldn’t be intrigued to find out why and how she got to that point?!
From about halfway through, the story is SO full of twists and turns and I was GRIPPED. I couldn’t put the book down and I finished most of it in one sitting. The characters and the story change so much that you’re left in bits, wondering how the hell everything can change so quickly.
Sometimes, so much happens in a book that I feel like it went a bit too fast, and I wonder what I missed. But with Loneliest Girl, everything is written SO well and structured so clearly.
I don’t think I can this stress enough: if you love a good plot twist (or multiple) – the kind that make you pretty much gasp in shock – then this book is your perfect match. It’s got an amazing female main character (almost only character), and the whole plot is driven with only two characters.
Lauren James’ writing is flawless and intelligent, and the knowledge and research she has put into telling a realistic space story is impressive. It’s no wonder that so many people adore this book, and I’m now one of those people!
Have you read this magnificent book? Did you love it as much as I did?