Thursday, 10 October 2013

Review: These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Title: These Broken Stars (Starbound #1)
Authors: Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Release date: December 10th 2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Format: ARC
Pages: 374
Source: Publisher

It's a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.

Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.

Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?

Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.

The first in a sweeping science fiction trilogy, These Broken Stars is a timeless love story about hope and survival in the face of unthinkable odds.

These Broken Stars is the first book in what I know will be an epic sci-fi trilogy. It's got an intense plot, beautifully developed characters, and incredible action. This book is pretty long, but the fact that I finished it in one go while staying away from the Internet shows how captivated I was while reading it. It's absolutely riveting!

Lilac LaRoux is untouchable. People - well, men - know to stay away from her, because of what her dad could do to them. Lilac even has her own personal bodyguard. And she's perfected the art of acting cold around guys who talk to her. But when she sees Tarver, a renowned war hero, she knows he's different. And yet, she can't allow him to get close to her. When the Icarus, the ship they're on, begins to crash, Lilac and Tarver manage to escape on a pod, and are stranded together on an unknown planet. And what they find on that planet will turn their world upside down.

This may sound weird, but I loved the initial hatred Lilac and Tarver seemed to have for each other. They throw insults at one another back and forth like a game of tennis. They're so different from each other, and it definitely shows. Lilac is like a princess, the highest of the high-class. And Tarver's just a poor boy who's known only because he shines on the field. Their relationship develops very slowly, but it's such a great development. It's amazing to see the way they began to care for each other, to the point where they'd die for each other.

Lilac is cold and aloof initially, and I can't say she really struck me as an outstanding person. Wearing poofy dresses and giggling with her girlfriends.. I wouldn't want to get anywhere near her at all. But underneath it all, she's such a great character. She's incredibly smart, and her vast knowledge of electric circuits is the only thing that got her and Tarver out of the crashing ship and onto a planet. And when she's on the planet, Lilac changes a lot. She's tough - tougher than most of the YA heroines I've read about. And she's so determined, so strong. She'll do whatever it takes to survive out there, even though she's at a disadvantage. She's willing to sacrifice anything for Tarver, and that kind of love is just.. wow.

I liked Tarver right from the start. He's so real. I don't know how else to say it. But he's not fake like the others on the ship, and he's not pretentious. Tarver is honourable and kind, though he does get really pissed at Lilac initially. I would, too. But their bantering is what helps them get through the hardship of possibly being the only two survivors of the Icarus crash. Tarver is completely at home on the planet, because he's been on the field and he's been around forests and wildlife a lot. It was really cool to see how much he knew of the planet's verdure. Tarver has this in-built protectiveness, and that extends to Lilac, too, when they're on the planet. It was so sweet to see how he'd care for her even when he didn't like her. And when he does grow to like her? He gets even more swoon-worthy! The things they go through together have forever bound them to one another, and their story is one of the best I've ever read.

The sci-fi elements in this book are awesome, and are reminiscent of those in Across the Universe by Beth Revis and the Star Wars universe. Also, the initial journey of Lilac and Tarver on the planet sort of reminded me of Aria and Perry in Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. So that was really cool, too! These Broken Stars is told in an alternating dual POV of Lilac and Tarver. I'm starting to really love dual POVs, because they tell you so much about both the protagonists. The entire plot of this book is so fascinating - I've never read anything like it. The secrets revealed, the dangers experienced.. I could see all of it vividly in front of me, like a movie playing in my head. It was incredible. The writing is so beautiful, and the descriptions so enthralling.

There's a huge shocker about 80% into the book, and I was left reeling. I won't say anything, of course, but wow. Everything that happened after was quite unbelievable, and I was even more absorbed in the pages. These Broken Stars is definitely one of my favourite 2013 novels, and I'm really looking forward to the next installment in the series. For all of you sci-fi fans out there, this one's totally up your street! I personally adore sci-fi, so I knew I'd love this one. But I underestimated it. This book completely blew me away! It's so perfectly carried out, and perfectly paced. I know I'm gushing, but I can't help it. I loved this book so much. I'd recommend it to every YA reader out there - this is a must-read.

*Thank you to Disney Hyperion for sending me an ARC for review*

Rating: 5/5

4 comments:

  1. First of all, yay! This is in my TBR. I'm so happy to see that 5/5 rating. The characters, the huge shocked and the scifi elements you mentioned in your review are making me want to pick up the book now. Thank you for the great review.

    Precious @ Fragments of Life

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  2. Ohh, I'm glad you loved this one :D I still need to read it.. though I tried, and I only got a few pages before giving up :\ but I will try again. I do think it sounds amazing. So happy that you enjoyed it so much :) Thank you for sharing. <3

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  3. I skimmed your review because I'm currently reading this. But I saw that you said there's a huge shocker at 80 percent! Now I'm super excited. Right now it's only a 4-star read for me. I hope I can connect better to Lilac overtime. I think I'll be able to!

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  4. Yes yes yes! I adored Tarver and Lilac's relationship, and loved them as individuals. Lilac was a character I dismissed at first but as she started to really grow, I just fell so hard for her AND Tarver. I loved the dual POV, too, even though at one point - THAT point - I was like "how is this going to work?" The end was very out there but I'm SO obsessed with this book.

    Molli | Once Upon a Prologue

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