I had to really think about this book before writing my review. It’s a sci-fi YA, not supernatural or straight dystopian. YAY! It’s got a stunningly gorgeous cover. (Seriously, I hope the cover of the next book can remotely compare.) It gets a wee bit draggy during the “survival” part, but that’s really small potatoes compared to all the awesome this book has to offer.
THE PLOT: The setup is very Titanic-esque, only on the spaceship Icarus (also aptly named!) instead of an ocean liner. Lilac is the only child of the man who, pretty much, owns the entire galaxy. Tarver is a young country-bumpkin solder who’s only in first class because of some heroic deeds. There is instant attraction, which Lilac quickly squelches. (See, her powerful father has a problem with any man who might want his daughter, so even though it doesn’t seem like it, she’s protecting Tarver.) But all Tarver knows is that she’s a spoiled rich girl who thinks he’s beneath her.
Then the Icarus crashes, and the only reason Lilac and Tarver survive is through chance and Lilac’s hidden skills. What follows is a story of two mismatched companions struggling to survive on a completely abandoned planet. (Or is it?) Lilac believes that her father will move heaven and earth (figuratively speaking) to rescue her, but as time goes on, Tarver is more and more sure that they’re stuck for good. Something on the planet seems to be causing Lilac to lose her mind. In the meantime, our characters fall deeply in true love…the kind that lasts, not the “OMG he’s so hot” kind. Then something happens that’s so shocking, so mind-blowing, that the reader is astounded.
MY TWO CENTS: I didn’t even realize just HOW emotionally invested I’d gotten in this book and these characters until the shock that comes 2/3 through the book. I loved the characters. Lilac has an amazing strength at her core; not only does she survive, but for a while she does it in a silk dress and heels. She’s got seriously hidden depths and is pretty smart, too. Tarver is a gentleman soldier, your very first pick for who to be stranded on a deserted planet with. Keep in mind, I did feel that the “survival” part was getting a little slow, but it’s all build and strengthening their relationship. It’s worth it, I promise.
BOTTOM LINE: I love this book. It’s beautifully written with a love story you can believe in. The story is a springboard for the rest of the “Starbound” series. From what I understand, the next book, This Shattered World, will focus on a different couple in the same world…this time, a female soldier and a rebel. For those counting down, This Shattered World will release on 11/11/14.
I really do have to do one more shout-out on the cover design for this book. Covers are supposed to catch your eye and draw you in, and boy, this one does. The beautiful jewel tones, the dramatic reach, the dress that is TRUE TO THE STORY!!!! These artists got it all right. Love it. LOVE IT. This is a book you want on your shelf.
TEACUP RATING: Five out of five teacups full of starry yet romantic tea. A book to love and savor for years to come. (You’ll probably want an immediate re-read.
Note: Review is based on an ARC provided by the publisher via Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.