Sunday, 8 June 2014

Review: These Broken Stars

These Broken Stars (Starbound #1) by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
Title: These Broken Stars
Series: Starbound, #1
Author: Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
Published: Allen & Unwin; 2013
374 pages, paperback
Source: Borrowed from the library
Rating: 2.5 stars
 Description (from 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 to 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 in this place 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.

My Thoughts:

 There is nothing quite like picking a well-loved and incredibly popular book which has gotten plenty of four and five star reviews from all your trusted friends and... well, hating it.

The Goodreads description promises us an epic survival journey with These Broken Stars complete with an epic dystopian space society and a gorgeous romantic subplot. Is there anything else that they could have added to sell me? No way! Its sounds perfect. I love myself a good a dystopian book set in space - not that I have really read that many - because I get positively giddy thinking about the endless possibilities. There is so much potential with this sort of book. Space is practically an unexplored continent - take it and run!

However, this is last thing that Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner had on their minds. They seem to get their kicks of out of clichéd romance, dull plotlines and implausible scenarios. *cue my disinterest* I should have known that this was all an overhyped empty promise from the get go. I mean, how many good dystopians have you read that have had such beautiful covers anyway? The girl is floating in a freakin' ball gown of all things - how did I not pick up that she would turn into a rich and spoiled brat?

My problems with this book started with the lack of interesting characters, the lack of space-related scenes, the lack of an intriguing dystopian society, the lack of a thought-out romance and the overall lacking-ness of this book. I wasn't impressed much at all to be impressed. The writing was dull and didn't capture me in the slightest either.

I had a lot of problems with the sudden romantic jump the two characters took and also the alien spin - it felt completely random and there simply for the sake of drama. The romance was just cringe-worthy to be honest. It was all that forced flirtatious action where everything is planned so that they have to touch or so Tarver has an excuse to cuddle under the blankets with Lilac for warmth or watch her get changed, and Lilac has a chance to mop Tarver's brow because he is oh so sick, the poor thing. *gags* This sort of lovey-dovey romance is more vomit-inducing than cute.

The lack of explanation into the dystopian society that Lilac and Tarver came from was infuriating. I had, no have, so many unanswered questions: how did they discovered hyperspace? How did we come to live in space? Are these "our" planets - Venus? Mars? Neptune? - or a creation of the authors? We don't get to know much about any aspect of their society and it left me feeling empty - like a large chunk of the book had been skipped.

The ending also ruined it for me. I cannot say much about it because it as a huge spoiler but under no circumstance is okay to do what these authors did to the characters of
These Broken Stars. It isn't fair to us readers or the other characters.

Overall, I have to say that this was a huge disappointment for me. I don't see how everyone has come to love this. I will probably give
This Shattered World a go though since it is set with different characters. Lets hope that it is an improvement to this.

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