Series: Starbound #1
Published by Disney-Hyperion on December 10, 2013
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Sexual Content: Kissing, implied sex
Reviewed by: Kate
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.
A mashup of the story of the Titanic and Beth Revis’s Across the Universe trilogy, THESE BROKEN STARS is part adventure, part thriller, and part romance. The first in the Starbound trilogy, THESE BROKEN STARS is one of those books that once you pick it up, you can’t put it down. I read the entire thing in a day - and writing this review was hard because I feel like I can't do the book justice and explain how much I loved it.
Lilac and Tarver are quite the couple. The relationship between Lilac, the daughter of the richest man in the universe, and Tarver, the came from nothing war hero is neither unconventional nor unexpected, but still manages to feel fresh and touching regardless. We never find out exactly what Tarver did to earn him his accolades, but he certainly manages to show the reader how competent he is in terms of using what is there to keep him and Lilac alive as they traverse the planet. Not that Lilac doesn’t contribute - she does, just in different ways. She probably goes through the most change as a character, or at least the reader’s (and Tarver’s) perception of her changes the most, from spoiled rich society girl to a strong independent young woman.
The narrative itself is also very well done. The story is told by both Lilac and Tarver, with interjections of Tarver’s “debriefing” by the military that clearly takes place after the whole experience. Sometimes, dual points of view are frustrating because one character is less engaging, but I enjoyed both Lilac and Tarver’s voices, and loved having the insight into their characters that the reader gets. Even the interspersed future Tarver conversations weren’t distracting, instead it was like they were almost egging me on toward the end of the book.
THESE BROKEN STARS made me feel quite the gamut of emotions. There were times when I was a little creeped out by the things happening to Lilac or Tarver (as were they), there were times when I was hopeful for them, or scared, or even sad. Kaufmann and Spooner created a world and characters that just drew me in and wouldn’t let me go. The limited interaction the reader has with the galactic society of terraforming, top hats and Titantic-esque spaceships only whetted my appetite for more- which I hope we’ll be getting in the rest of the Starbound trilogy. The next installment can’t come too soon.Series Titles:
- These Broken Stars
- This Shattered World