The Movement of Stars

( 2 )

Overview

It is 1845, and Hannah Gardner Price has lived all twenty-four years of her life according to the principles of the Nantucket Quaker community in which she was raised, where simplicity and restraint are valued above all, and a woman's path is expected to lead to marriage and motherhood. But up on the rooftop each night, Hannah pursues a very different—and elusive—goal: discovering a comet and thereby winning a gold medal awarded by the King of Denmark, something unheard of for a...
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The Movement of Stars: A Novel

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Overview

It is 1845, and Hannah Gardner Price has lived all twenty-four years of her life according to the principles of the Nantucket Quaker community in which she was raised, where simplicity and restraint are valued above all, and a woman's path is expected to lead to marriage and motherhood. But up on the rooftop each night, Hannah pursues a very different—and elusive—goal: discovering a comet and thereby winning a gold medal awarded by the King of Denmark, something unheard of for a woman.

And then she meets Isaac Martin, a young, dark-skinned whaler from the Azores who, like herself, has ambitions beyond his expected station in life. Drawn to his intellectual curiosity and honest manner, Hannah agrees to take Isaac on as a student. But when their shared interest in the stars develops into something deeper, Hannah's standing in the community begins to unravel, challenging her most fundamental beliefs about work and love, and ultimately changing the course of her life forever.

Inspired by the work of Maria Mitchell, the first professional female astronomer in America, The Movement of Stars is a richly drawn portrait of desire and ambition in the face of adversity.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Brill's realistic, poignant conclusion gives her appealing protagonist almost equal portions of happiness and sorrow, just as she has done equal justice throughout to the passions of the mind and the flesh. Probing yet accessible, beautifully written and richly characterized: fine work from a writer to watch." —-Kirkus Starred Review
Library Journal
Although she spends hours searching the heavens from her father's rooftop observatory, Hannah Price lives a circumscribed earthly life in 1845 Nantucket. Attendance at meetings of the Society of Friends and work as junior librarian in the Atheneum structure her days. Everything changes after she agrees to teach Isaac Martin, a black seaman from the Azores. Their association progresses from lessons on mathematics and astronomy to discussion of their lives plus a growing physical attraction. Despite the Quakers' professed support of racial equality, the community ultimately condemns and excludes Hannah. Without the support of a father, brother, or husband, Hannah has little chance to attain her dream of discovering a comet and winning the gold medal offered by the king of Denmark. VERDICT Inspired by and incorporating details from the life of Maria Mitchell, America's first female professional astronomer, Brill's debut raises thought-provoking questions on the limitations to achievement societies impose based on race, gender, or divergent beliefs. For readers of historical fiction, particularly those with an interest in science, who savor the unfolding of a character's emotional and intellectual development. [See Prepub Alert, 11/1/12.]—Kathy Piehl, Minnesota State Univ. Lib., Mankato
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781452613314
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/20/2013
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged CD
  • Sales rank: 1,330,665
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 6.50 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Amy Brill is a writer and producer who has worked for PBS and MTV. A Pushcart Prize nominee, she has been awarded fellowships by the Edward F. Albee Foundation, the Millay Colony, and the American Antiquarian Society, among others.

Carla Mercer-Meyer, an AudioFile Earphones Award–winning audiobook narrator, has a strong musical theater background, and her performances include Into the Woods, You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown, and many other theatrical productions.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2013

    Amazing

    Extremely well reseaeched and engrossing. Great for anyone who loves historical fiction, asronomy, womens fiction or the era or location! My favorite book of the year

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

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