“The Movement of Stars
by Amy Brill
5/5 stars and a favorite
Set on the island community of Nantucket in 1845, the heroine, Hannah Price is making waves in her puritanical society by refusing to bow to convention. Not only does she spend hours studying and observing the night sky and its heavenly bodies, she has taken a scandalous tutoring job (teaching an African American sailor about navigation). This story wraps together so many themes that swept me away: the plight of women to achieve equality, the prejudices and labels of race and religion, the push and pull of family relationships, communities and their ability to consume or reject notions and people on mere whims, the ocean and the stars (and the tenebrous relationship between them), the path one carves of one's life, aided and abetted by destiny and free will, and most of all, the people whom we meet along the way, sharing instant bonds and never seeing the world in quite the same way.
This is not a fast-moving novel, but it is a heady stroll through succulent words and an encompassing visit into the probable past. It fiction, based very loosely on some key points in the history of the island town. The Movement of Stars is perfect reading material for sultry summer nights. It's a succulent feast fit for contemplation and/or discussion. In my humblest of opinions, it would make a great book club selection or something to read in tandem with your best reading buddy.”