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Thursday, November 08, 2018

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner

 This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Megan Spooner

Book Stats:  

Reading level: Young Adult
Genre: Science Fiction
Hardcover: 390 pages
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release date: December 23, 2014

Series:  Starbound, #2

Source: Library

Reviewed by: Kara

Order: Amazon | Book Depository

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. His sister died in the original uprising against the powerful corporate conglomerate that rules Avon with an iron fist. These corporations make their fortune by terraforming uninhabitable planets across the universe and recruiting colonists to make the 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 against the military occupying his home, 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 base together, caught between two sides in a senseless war.
The stunning second novel in the Starbound trilogy is an unforgettable story of love and forgiveness in a world torn apart by war.

A new planet, a new pair of heroes, and a new star-crossed love. Having been used to Lilac and Tarver from the first series, it was a bit jarring to start over with Lee and Flynn. Rather than being immediately sympathetic to the characters this time around, I, too, found Lee cold and living up to her Stone-face nickname. She was hard to trust. Flynn, by contrast, seems immediately likeable. Hurting him seems like kicking a puppy. It's easy to see why he was the one who cracked her hard exterior worn like battle armor throughout her military career due to her childhood trauma.

This is probably by far my favorite planet of the series. Avon reminds me of Dagobah from Star Wars. Murky, swampy, filled with plops and oozes, slime and sludge. I didn't notice any mentions of animal life in the book, which struck me as odd. Here we have an ecosystem of algae and water, and while there's a bit of a mention of fish, there's no crocodile or snake equivalent that present a danger to the populace. That and maybe the lack of swarming insects? However, I think it can be written off as a result of their unstable climate.

In this novel, there's a different literary device used to tell the story. The narrative element of third-person descriptive scenes breaks up the action between Lee and Flynn and tries to give the reader a different perspective of Lee through past, present, and future. Sometimes I felt it was really used well and other times it carried me out of the story when I just wanted to know what happened next and couldn't be bothered to figure out yet again why there was a third narrator. However, the concept is intriguing (especially once we find out the why of said perspective). It seems to be related to dreams or predictions or memories of Lee, but none of these seem to fit exactly. Once Lee has the incident in the cave that results in a very sad death, that was when I started questioning everything and really trying to figure out, was this girl going mad too? Have we been following a would-be murderer this whole time?

You tell me.

P.S. This isn't so much relevant to this novel, but it's really easy to see this narrative plot device  morphed into the dossiers, IMs, emails and various other mediums used in Illuminae. . . Fascinating to study Amie's earlier work and how it evolved!

Kara is a teen librarian living in the southeastern US with her husband (who listens to books), young daughter (who sleeps with books), and dog (who tastes the books). She loves all sorts of books, but mostly YA, and will never catch up to all of the wonderful things to read.

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