Ryann knows all about tough love, and upon meeting the standoffish Alexandria, she sets her sights on getting Alexandria to open up and letting Alexandria into her friend group.
But there’s more to Alexandria that meets the eye, and when Ryann discovers that Alexandria is the daughter of an astronaut who went on a one-way mission to space–a mission Ryann had researched for years, Alexandria becomes even more important to Ryann and her own dreams of exploring the stars. A dream Ryann stopped trying to accomplish when her parents died and she and her brother James moved into the trailer park on the wrong side of town.
I did not expect to like this book as much as I did, nor did I expect to read it quite late at night and all in one sitting.
I feel like Ancrum’s books are so hit and miss for me, but I’m honestly glad that The Weight of The Stars was a hit for me? I felt like I understood it a lot better than I did The Wicker King, and that made the experience a lot more enjoyable.
There were a few places I was still not completely in tune with, but overall, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this!
The characters are endearing.
I wasn’t sure what to expect from the characters, but I actually ended up really invested in their stories, which I was not expecting, but really loved.
They’re all very individual, which I loved, and their relationships were probably one of the strongest parts of this story. I loved the Ryann & Alexandria dynamic, as well as Ryann and her brother James, as well as how the rest of her friends interacted.
This is honestly what made this book so worthwhile to me–getting to read about the complex character relationships, which I found to be The Weight of the Stars‘ biggest triumph. They were complex and intricate and a little messy because that’s life.
Plus, the ending made it all the more tear-jerking, so ah–be prepared with tissues.
The near-future setting framed the story in a unique way.
I definitely wasn’t sure what to expect with the near-future setting, but I think it really helped add to the story. I think not only did it bring the characters together and made the plot work better, but it also made an interesting framework for the character relationships given things that happen which I won’t spoil.
Also, timeline-wise, for those of you who read The Wicker King, you might recognize Ahmed’s three (!!!) parents . . .
So yeah! I found the setting to be really quite unique with its near-future private space companies and how they played a big role in Alexandria and Ryann’s lives. I think it wasn’t just there to be cute, but it added to the story.
The way it pulled together was really satisfying.
I guess, what I really enjoyed about this and what sucked me in, outside of the characters’ personalities, was how it was all sort of building up in both the romance (umm yes I ship it) and what it meant for the characters.
It was like a vortex, and I just kind of got pulled in without realizing it. Something about this book (Ryann, mostly) really pulled me in, and then the ending made my cry but still gave me that tiny dot of hope.
Still, there were moments I was a bit confused.
I feel like there are parts of Ancrum’s books that I just don’t understand. I got most of the meaning from The Weight of the Stars, but it felt like part of the subtext was just flying over my head.
I still don’t know the signficance of the chapter titles (which are like different times i.e. 375 days or 15 minutes) and there were still elements I felt like I was just missing something with.
It’s weird, but even though I clicked with the overall, I still felt a little off beat with certain elements.
In the end, I feel like people will either love this book, or not click with it.
Overall, I actually enjoyed this a lot more than I expected, and found meaning in the story and a connection with the characters.
But I think this is also something that just varies with each reader, although I think people who have historically liked Ancrum’s work will like this!
(And for those who didn’t like The Wicker King, if you’re looking for something more linear and less epistolary, then you should still consider The Weight of the Stars because it went a lot better for me than Ancrum’s debut!)
Thank you so much to Imprint and Netgalley for providing me with a digital review copy in exchange for an honest review!