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The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James - Review

Wednesday, December 26, 2018


Where did I get it? I bought it at the Northern YA Lit Festival in March, and had it signed by Lauren there. 

What's it about? Romy is on a spaceship heading towards a planet which is likely to sustain human life, and she is alone, with supplies to make a new civilisation when she gets to the other planet. The spaceship left earth years and years ago and Romy was born on board. She's alone after an accident killed her parents, but she gets regular emails from someone at NASA. She manages to keep the spaceship going with her own knowledge, but all the same it was terrifying to think of being alone like that. Especially because there's a delay of around eighteen months between emails being sent and being received, so it was like a newsletter rather than a conversation. 

One day Romy receives news that another ship has left earth to come and help her, with just one person on board. She starts to receive emails from J, and over the months that it takes for him to reach her, she starts to fall in love with him. 

This book is so well written, and extremely creepy. I hate the idea of space travel anyway, but especially by myself. I thought it was alternately fascinating and terrifying, and I really enjoyed it. 

What age range is it for? 14+, probably. 

Are any main characters LGBTQ+? No

Are any main characters people of colour? No

Are any main characters disabled either mentally or physically? Romy has some kind of PTSD going on for sure, which is very understandable. 

Is there any sex stuff? No 

Are drugs mentioned or used? I don't think so 

Is there any talk of death? Yes, some of it is quite gory and traumatic. 

Are there swear words? I don't think so. 

What criticisms do I have? Almost none, it was one of those books where I think "Well I wouldn't have written it like that", but that doesn't mean it was bad or wrong, just different. I liked that Lauren's own passion for science shone through, I am obviously pro encouraging girls into STEM subjects. 

Would I recommend the book? Yes absolutely, even if you don't normally read YA. 

Why did I choose to read it at this point in life? I was actually looking for something else, and pulled it off the shelf. 

What other books is it like? When I was about seventeen I read a book called Calling B For Butterfly which is about teenagers and space travel. 

How many stars? Eight out of ten 

Where is the book going now? It's signed so I'll keep it of course! I also think it has the most gorgeous cover. 

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