Sunday, August 16, 2020

Review - The Gravity of Us by Phil Stamper




 Title: The Gravity of Us

Author: Phil Stamper

Pages: 320

Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Release Date: 4th February 2020


Blurb from Goodreads: 

Cal wants to be a journalist, and he's already well underway with almost half a million followers on his FlashFame app and an upcoming internship at Buzzfeed. But his plans are derailed when his pilot father is selected for a highly-publicized NASA mission to Mars. Within days, Cal and his parents leave Brooklyn for hot and humid Houston.

With the entire nation desperate for any new information about the astronauts, Cal finds himself thrust in the middle of a media circus. Suddenly his life is more like a reality TV show, with his constantly bickering parents struggling with their roles as the "perfect American family."

And then Cal meets Leon, whose mother is another astronaut on the mission, and he finds himself falling head over heels--and fast. They become an oasis for each other amid the craziness of this whole experience. As their relationship grows, so does the frenzy surrounding the Mars mission, and when secrets are revealed about ulterior motives of the program, Cal must find a way to get to the truth without hurting the people who have become most important to him.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon US

My Review:

*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Bloomsbury Publishing Plc (UK & ANZ) and NetGalley*

When Cal's pilot father is placed on the shortlist for NASA's upcoming Mars mission, Cal's life is turned upside down.

Uprooted from his life in Brooklyn, Cal and his family move to Texas, disrupting Cal's plans to intern at Buzzfeed and the Brooklyn videos he films on the app FlashFame.

Now one of the families in the NASA reality show, Cal and his parents try to settle into their new lives.

Cal becomes fast friends with Leon, whose mother is an astronaut. The two grow closer and Cal finds himself getting deeper into the social media surrounding the Mars missions.

Will Cal have to give up his dream of being a journalist?


I'll admit that contemporary YA novels aren't my favourites, but the NASA element of this book really intrigued me, so I thought I'd give it a go.

Cal was a mixed character for me, and there were times when I found him quite frustrating and annoying, but I appreciated that he wasn't perfect and there were moments when I did feel sorry for him.

My favourite character was probably Deb and I would have liked to have seen more of her.

I wasn't a big fan of the romance as it was too fast for me - I prefer a slow-burn - but I really liked that it was a M/M romance.

The plot was OK, but I wasn't gripped. I definitely found the NASA elements to be the most interesting thing about the book.

The writing style was easy to follow and I liked that there were some interviews included at the end of the chapters.

I am disappointed that I didn't enjoy this more.


Overall, this was an OK read.

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