“There is music in the beauty, and the silent note that cupid strikes, far sweeter than the sound of an instrument; for there is music wherever there is harmony, order, or proportion; and thus far we maintain the music of the spheres.” ~ Thomas Browne, Sr.
Ryan Mattson, of 'The Music of the Spheres' by Chase Potter, tries to keep his life as uncomplicated as possible. Ryan has three things that are most important to him—football, books, and his sister and father. Ryan's family is extremely close; but his mother's death left a gaping hole, one it seems no one else would be able to close, until Adam comes along. Ryan and Adam, another classmate, are assigned a school project together. At first, they are unsure of each other, but as time goes on, they discover that there is a phenomenal harmony between them. Although Adam is last person Ryan would ever have suspected would do so, Adam insinuates himself into their lives and becomes part of the family.
Although Ryan is exceptionally popular in high school, he has very few close friends. Except for his sister and his dad, Ryan keeps his emotional investment in people to a minimum. Ryan likes to stick to what he knows rather than be adventurous. He often rereads books he enjoys, rather than “take a chance” on a new one and possibly be disappointed. Ryan wants to know the outcome of something before he attempts it. When he is paired with Adam, Ryan intends to follow the same pattern he always has; interact with Adam as little as possible, get through the assignment, then go back to his mostly solitary, predictable existence. In Adam's case, Ryan is not able to do so. He's inexplicably drawn to Adam and can't explain why, even to himself. All he knows is that it feels good to be around Adam and so he spends as much time with him as he can. Ryan has moments of wondering if two guys should act and feel the way they do, but quickly pushes them out of the way. Ryan has so many emotions locked inside; it's difficult for him to express the way he feels. He reminds me of the old saying: ''If it ain't broke, don't fix it'' and that's how he views his relationship with Adam.
Unlike Ryan, Adam has a sense of what their relationship could be. He knows that it's more than a friendship because he is able to accept the way he feels about Ryan. Adam also knows that if he says too much, or pushes too hard in that direction, Ryan will not be able to handle it. Adam shows incredible patience and understanding, especially for a person so young; but considering that his childhood forced him to grow up much faster than he should have, it isn't surprising. Adam is ''wise beyond his years”. He's a survivor and is determined to survive this too. Unlike Ryan, Adam picks up every clue Ryan gives him and tries to act accordingly. Adam isn't a saint though. At times, he puts space between them because they both need it, but he always perseveres. Adam is Ryan's touchstone. He is there, if he possibly can be, whenever Ryan needs him. Adam even takes Ryan's place when Ryan doesn't have the strength or the energy to do something himself. Adam is waiting for Ryan's epiphany to come, determined to be ready for Ryan when he realizes that he and Adam love each other in a way that goes far beyond friendship and that they are meant to be together. Adam doesn't know how long it will take, but he is confident that it will happen and, when it does, he will be there waiting with arms open wide.
Even though this is technically a friends-to-lovers story, it doesn't have the same feel. Adam and Ryan take a long time getting together, but the process is far less angsty than in most books. There's no rush to get where they are going because in many ways they are already there. Instead of having to build trust and loyalty between them, like other couples, it's been in existence almost from the beginning. If you like stories about friendship, soulmates, families, overcoming grief, and unconditional love, you may enjoy this book. Thanks so much, Chase, for Ryan and Adam - who I am convinced, like Pythagoras, can also hear the music of the spheres.