Review of This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

This Shattered World (Starbound, #2)This Shattered World
By: Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
Release Date: December 23rd 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Format: Print ARC
Source: Gift from Jon (Bookish Antics) and won a copy from The Midnight Garden

My Rating:
star

Summary:
Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet’s rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn’s blood. Terraforming corporations make their fortune by recruiting colonists to make the inhospitable planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage in a bloody and unrelentingly war, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape the rebel base together, caught between two sides of a senseless war.

My Thoughts:
I thought I’d read the first chapter to get a feel for the book and ended up not stopping until I was 3/4ths done with the book. I was completely mesmerized with the story and loved that it seamlessly tied into These Broken Stars. It was incredible to see Tarver and Lilac again (even for such a short amount of time). I loved how this world/galaxy feels so fleshed out and I can’t wait to see where they go from here. This story feels that it could continue into more than just one more book (fingers crossed).

The characters are all well developed and motivated by many factors. I loved that no one was perfect and each character struggled with their own internal battles. I felt that the relationships were well done though I never got as invested in Lee and Flynn as I was with Tarver and Lilac. I can’t pin-point exactly why I didn’t connect as deep but it could be their personalities. It wasn’t due to a lack of character development though.

Both the main characters were beautifully fleshed out and unique in their attributes. I loved the growth each character experienced especially Lee’s. She started the story closed off and motivated almost entirely by her duty. It was intriguing to watch her wrestle with her feelings especially for Flynn.

Spooner and Kaufman know how to create a male lead. Like Tarver, Flynn was incredibly likeable and easy to root for throughout the entire story. Though the two lead’s relationship was present it didn’t feel as dominant as in the first book. There were so many large issues on the planet to resolve the story had a broader approach and looked into the bigger picture of political and business corruption.

Action scenes were vivid and easy to imagine as well as the atmosphere of the planet. I  loved how creepy and realistic the descriptions were and how I could completely imagine a young planet being like that. The settler’s plight was understandable as well as their anger when the terraforming plans were not at the level promised. I can’t help but always imagine Doctor Who when I read about a planet being terraformed so many of my personal images are from the series.

Final Thoughts:
Kaufman and Spooner are experts at crafting beautiful characters and a world that seems incredibly fleshed out and real. I can’t wait to read more from them and though I liked This Shattered World just the tiniest bit less than These Broken Stars it has still become a favorite.

Review of These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

These Broken StarsThese Broken Stars
By: Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
Release Date: December 10th 2013
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Purchase:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble

A copy was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:
star

Summary:
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 Story:
I think everyone can agree that the cover for These Broken Stars is beyond beautiful. Thankfully the story, characters and writing match perfectly with the cover boosting this into my top favorites of 2013.

I was impressed and really enjoyed the different atmospheres Kaufman and Spooner were able to provide throughout the book. We start on a grand spacecraft, like the Titanic. This section of the book felt romantic and historical to me. I loved all the details and found it very easy to imagine this giant ship traveling through space. Of course, it reminded me of the Doctor Who episode Voyage of the Damned. Anytime I’m reminded of The Doctor we are on the right path.

Once I was fully immersed (and fondly comparing aspect to Voyage of the Damned and Titanic) things changed. Panic ensued and tragedy struck. It was done beautifully, I was able to feel the stress of the passengers and our main characters. I swear I was holding my breath at times and eager to see what would happen next. I read this with my reading group (Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings, Krys from Bibliopunkk and Jon from Scott Reads It) so we had a certain amount to read each night. I am typically right on track or a tad behind. With this book  it was a struggle to not keep reading. This feeling is a great and wonderful thing for a book blogger.

After the spaceliner crashed we get to read vivid and lush descriptions of the alien planet making it very easy to imagine what life would be like there. The book’s atmosphere changes again, thrusting the reader into a survivalist tale filled with mystery, romance, science fiction and even a touch of paranormal. I wasn’t expecting for there to be any aspects of this story that would creep me out but to my happy surprise there were. Lilac hears voices, murmurs and sees things that should not be there. This element really added to the story to me and was so happy to see it explored.

The Characters:
Told in dual first person point of views, These Broken Stars allows its readers to get to see the story unfold from both the main characters eyes. Lilac and Tarver are exquisitely crafted, each with a unique personality and distinct point of view. I loved them apart as much as together and felt that we were able to really grasp their strengths and weaknesses.

Tarver was what I look for in a love interest and main character. He was well rounded, self assured but not cocky. I loved that he wasn’t ‘good’ or ‘bad’ but a character with motivations and desires. If all that wasn’t good enough he even had a sense of humor.

Lilac was easy to relate to once she is stranded on the planet. Her lifestyle prior was easily something we’ve all seen before (rich girl pampered and given all that she could possibly wish for). Though she fits a very typical trope she was still able to become real and not stereotypical because of little details, like her mechanical skills. I felt that Lilac really shone once we got to see into her insecurities and I loved seeing her internal struggles and debates. I sadly think I might cope with an alien world much like she did.

Final Thoughts:
These Broken Stars is written seamlessly  and is full of vivid descriptions, wonderful characters and a fast paced plot. I loved the eerie yet romantic atmosphere Kaufman and Spooner so expertly crafted and can’t wait to see what they do next.

 

Waiting on Wednesday #8


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases we are highly anticipating. This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait to-read” selection is: These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner.

These Broken StarsSummary (via Goodreads):
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.

Why am I eagerly awaiting These Broken Stars?
First off look at that cover-it is stunning and then read the summary. I love sci-fi and everything about this summary just pulls me in. I must read this!

Look for These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner out in December from Disney-Hyperion.