Monday, October 14, 2013

Book Review: Starglass by Phoebe North

Starglass
Author:  Phoebe North
Publisher:  Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 448 pages
Publication Date:  July 23, 2013

From Goodreads:
Terra has never known anything but life aboard the Asherah, a city-within-a-spaceship that left Earth five hundred years ago in search of refuge. At sixteen, working a job that doesn't interest her, and living with a grieving father who only notices her when he's yelling, Terra is sure that there has to be more to life than what she's got.

But when she inadvertently witnesses the captain's guard murdering an innocent man, Terra is suddenly thrust into the dark world beneath her ship's idyllic surface. As she's drawn into a secret rebellion determined to restore power to the people, Terra discovers that her choices may determine life or death for the people she cares most about. With mere months to go before landing on the long-promised planet, Terra has to make the decision of a lifetime--one that will determine the fate of her people.


Review:
This book was a well-written sci-fi/dystopian.  The world-building was solid (although I did have questions about how they got the raw materials for everything they had on the ship and how it was produced), and the characters were fleshed out and complex.  Terra, the MC, is a sixteen year old girl who lost her mother when she was twelve.  Since then she's been mostly alone since her father, who was always tough, has turned to alcohol and basically ignores Terra or is really hard on her.  She doesn't really get along with her older brother, who left as soon as he turned sixteen and got married (they can get married as soon as they're sixteen and they're supposed to find someone by the time they're eighteen or someone is chosen for them).  I felt really bad for Terra, she obviously had a difficult life.  She wanted to be an artist, but on the ship there is a caste system where you are placed in a certain position (leader, laborer, specialist, etc.) and Terra is assigned to be a botanist.  Coming home from work one evening, she stumbles across a murder and suddenly becomes aware and involved in a rebellion.  

There are many sub-plots going on, including Terra's relationship with her father, her brother, her new boss, her best friend, Rachel, Koen, a boy who works for her father that she grows close to, and Silvan, Rachel's boyfriend who Terra's always had a crush on (with two guys you think there would be more romance but be warned there really are no swoony moments).  Terra's personal life and personality driven conflicts are more of the focus throughout most of the book, with the rebellion plot line becoming more important toward the end.  

The book is more focused on the characters rather than action, but it was well-paced and interesting, and the action does pick up after the first half.  The ending is rather abrupt, pretty much in the midst of the action, which was annoying.  Overall, I enjoyed the book and I'm looking forward to reading the sequel.


Posted by:  Pam


12 comments:

  1. Pam, would you consider it a book to buy or a book to borrow? I received the ARC for book two, but still need to read this one.

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    1. It was good, but not great, so if you can borrow it, I would. That's great that you got the ARC for the second book! ~Pam

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  2. I'm so glad this was a well-written sci-fi. There needs to be more of those! I think I'll wait for the next book to come out before I pick it up since the ending is abrupt. Awesome review!

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    1. Yeah, if I had known I would probably have waited. I'll probably forget everything by the time the next book comes out! ~Pam

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  3. This one sounds interesting but not necessarily something I should go rush and read. I will probably read this one if the sequel gets good reviews. Thanks for sharing :)

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    1. It was well-done, but I didn't love it. ~Pam

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  4. Ooh, this one sounds really good. I LOVE when a book like this has good world building, it makes the story all the more realistic. I also am a big fan of sub plots when they don't take over the rest of the story.

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    1. It was definitely a unique read and the world-building was well done. ~Pam

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  5. I have this one on my Kindle, but haven't gotten around to it yet. I didn't realize it was so huge, for one, and I just haven't been in the mood for a space book. I hope to get to this soon and it certainly sounds interesting with the caste systems and various relationships. I hate it when books end in the middle of the action, so I'll definitely wait until the sequel is closer to being released. Great review!

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    1. Yeah, I'm getting tired of the cliffhangers. If only I would read series that are completely done! ~Pam

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  6. I do like characters driven stories but this one sounds a little busy? That said - good review. I'll be keeping an eye out for this one.

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    1. There is a lot going on, but it's not overwhelming. ~Pam

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