Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

ARC Review: These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

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These Broken Stars (Starbound #1)
   by: Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

Publication Date: Dec. 10, 2013
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Genre: Science Fiction
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 374 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4.5/5 stars


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.

 
Oh, wow. You guys. This book? Amaaaaaazing! I was immediately drawn in when I heard it was a Titanic meets Battlestar Galactica type book. I love science fiction but it is such a tricky genre to write, as you can't overwhelm your readers with the technical aspects that it often requires, but you don't want to scrimp on the world building either. I feel Kaufman and Spooner did a great job of making this novel work. There was enough world building and description to help you understand what was going on, though at times I did find myself a little bogged down with description. But it could be I was just waiting for Tarver and Lilac's relationship to blossom. Hey, I'm a romantic at heart, okay? Kaufman and Spooner definitely kept me on my toes throughout the book and at about 75%, I felt my heart literally stop beating in my chest. I was terrified to keep reading because- holy plot twist!
 
I loved that this is dual POV too. Lilac and Tarver are so different from one another, but their situation requires them to work through those differences if they have an hope of survival. Lilac was a difficult character to like at first. She is the daughter of the wealthiest man in the galaxy and therefore is held to a much higher standard than everyone else. She has to be cautious as to who she associates with, speaks to, even looks at. Her father's influence is everywhere and she can't risk someone else's life. It seems like a very lonely life for Lilac. She can never just be herself, always putting on airs and playing the role of daddy's precious daughter. Upon meeting Tarver Merendsen, for a brief moment, she lets herself go and lets herself talk to this charismatic boy. Tarver faintly recognizes her, but does not recall her name. He approaches her initially after having spotted a potential threat to her and after sharing a flirty smile, he has no qualms about going up and speaking to her for a few minutes.
 
However, seeing each other the next day, reality sets in for both of them. Because of their difference in status, she cannot lead him to believe there is even a remote chance with her and effectively shuts him down. Tarver's pride is hurt for sure, and he realizes the girl he glimpsed the night before doesn't exist.
 
After a catastrophic event dumps the two of them together, they must swallow their pride and learn to work together in order to make it through. Lilac may appear as a rich, snobby girl, but really she is fierce, strong, and quite determined. I love that she doesn't fall apart at every turn- in fact, she's really quite stubborn and Tarver has to knock some sense into her so she doesn't push herself to her breaking point. Tarver was amazing. He is patient with Lilac and while his pride still stings, he sucks it up and does his best to use his skills as a solider to guide them to safety and seek out help. They definitely don't see eye to eye on a lot of issues, and his knowledge of the terrain and how to survive makes her feel slightly inferior to him and I think that bothers her in the beginning.
 
One of the things I loved most about Tarver and Lilac's relationship is that it develops naturally. We have two people who are initially attracted to one another, but go to resenting each other due to the restraints placed on them by status and class. As the two spend time together, they end up forging a relationship based on necessity and later, of more. I loved watching these two genuinely fall for one another. Lilac sheds her suit of armor and helps Tarver understand why she is the way she is and why she must act a certain way. I still have feels from these two!
 
Their relationship is really what fueled this book for me. I loved the science fiction, survival aspect, but to add in a sweet romance where the two main characters realize just how much they need and depend on each other and would do whatever necessary to protect the other is priceless.
 
As I said previously, this was a great science fiction story- it doesn't overload you with the inner workings of space and the galaxy and make it too complicated to follow. My only qualm was I felt the description was a bit too much at times and would find myself wishing the pace would increase a bit. (Though after about 50-60%, the pace picks up and it's a whirlwind ride to the end because there is some craziness happening on this planet!) I am definitely excited for the next book in the series and I do hope we see some tie-ins from this one!

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14 comments

  1. Great review girl! I am so excited to read this book. I love that it's dual POV and it sounds like the authors did a great job with the world building and the plot.

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    1. Thanks Chelsea! I am excited for you to read this too! It's nice to break out of the usual genres and read something different!

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  2. Another great and positive review for These Broken Stars.. I've literally read over 10 good reviews of this and every single one raves about it. I am excited to read about the world building and also the naturally developing romance!

    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

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    1. I hope you like it when you get to it Juhina! I thought it was very well done and am really happy with the direction it took!

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  3. I'm so glad you liked These Broken Stars because I read it all in one sitting! I couldn't get enough of Lilac and Tarver and I can't wait until the second book even though I know it wont come out for a long time!

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    1. Yes! I am so excited for the next book! I do hope we get to find out how L & T are doing!

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  4. I've seen so many good things about this one!! And titanic? Battlestar Galactica? I'm in! Really really want to read it!

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    1. Haha! That immediately pulled me in! I love BSG so much! And Titanic! I was obsessed as a teen! LOL.

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  5. Holy plot twist is right. I was a mess at that point a complete mess! I adored this book and I am so glad you did too. Lilac and Tarver are one of my favorite couples because of the way their relationship grows. Fantastic review!

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    1. I was literally close to rocking back and forth in a corner. I already had one book do that type of twist, except it wasn't a twist and I was SO MAD. I'm so glad you liked this one too!

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  6. Titanic meets Battlestar Galactica??? Yes please! Gosh, I keep hearing amazing things about this one, so I know I have to pick it up! It sounds amazing! Tarver and Lilac are charaacters I know I have to meet!! LOVED this review! I am definitely getting this one when I can :D

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    1. Yay! Thanks Magen! I can't wait for you to pick this one up! I have a feeling you'll really enjoy it! You will love Lilac and Tarver!

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  7. YAY! I am SO HAPPY to see you loved this one! I was nervous when you started. LOL

    I think the romance was the biggest part for me too. I loved these two together. :) Great review!

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    1. :D Hahaha! No worries! This was amazing! I hope we see Tarver and Lilac at least a little in the upcoming books!

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