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Starsight

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All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she's a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing. Spensa is sure there's more to the story. And she's sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she's a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing. Spensa is sure there's more to the story. And she's sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she heard the stars--and it was terrifying. Everything Spensa has been taught about her world is a lie. But Spensa also discovered a few other things about herself--and she'll travel to the end of the galaxy to save humankind if she needs to.


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All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she's a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing. Spensa is sure there's more to the story. And she's sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she's a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing. Spensa is sure there's more to the story. And she's sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she heard the stars--and it was terrifying. Everything Spensa has been taught about her world is a lie. But Spensa also discovered a few other things about herself--and she'll travel to the end of the galaxy to save humankind if she needs to.

30 review for Starsight

  1. 5 out of 5

    Emily (Books with Emily Fox)

    I need more Doomslug in my life... right now!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    Love love love love LOVE IT! I love this cover sooooo much Mel Love love love love LOVE IT! 😉😘 I love this cover sooooo much ❌⭕️ Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Hey, would you look at that, I'm actually writing a review. I can't remember last time I wrote a review instead of just a short reaction to a book. SO. Starsight. This was my most anticipated read of the year. Did it live up to my expectations? Yes and no. It did live up to my expectations because it was a solid installment of the series and it made me want to know what happens in the next book. It did not live up to my expectations because of the direction the story went in - I did not expect Hey, would you look at that, I'm actually writing a review. I can't remember last time I wrote a review instead of just a short reaction to a book. SO. Starsight. This was my most anticipated read of the year. Did it live up to my expectations? Yes and no. It did live up to my expectations because it was a solid installment of the series and it made me want to know what happens in the next book. It did not live up to my expectations because of the direction the story went in - I did not expect it to be slower paced than the first book nor did I think the plot would go in the direction that it did. Since I was reading it quite slowly, I decided to listen to the audiobook as well as read it; I found that this helped me become more invested in the story and when I neared the last 100 pages or so of the book, I switched back to reading it because I had to know what happened. While this wasn't the most exciting book at times, I think it was a solid sequel to Skyward and once again, the main character, Spensa, grew throughout the book. Now, let's get into more of the specifics of the book. Plot I'm not going to talk much about this because of spoilers, but the book leaves off a couple of months after Skyward. Characters I can't really talk much about the characters either since new ones are introduced, but Spensa, Jorgen, Kimmalyn, and M-Bot are all in this story. Themes I don't normally talk about themes, but I think the themes in Starsight were important. This story explored collectivism vs. individuality, prejudice, and biases. Although Brandon explores these themes, it never seems like he just 'threw' these themes in just for the sake of it. These themes are important to the story and it helps the reader understand more about the universe that Spensa and the other characters live in. This book also shows how important it is to look passed one's biases and listen to others, even if they may be different than you. Without these themes, I think I would've rated this book lower because I think it would've been a disservice to the story. Brandon really handled these themes well and it added so much to the story. Okay, so now I'm going to get into some spoilers... (view spoiler)[ - I CAN'T BELIEVE THAT HAPPENED TO M-BOT?! I know I shouldn't have been THAT upset about what happened to him, but I am. - So doomslug's species is a hyperdrive??? - Winzik is AWFUL and Brade is awful, too. I do feel bad for Brade, though. - I love the kitsen and Morriumur. - That scene where Spensa showed Cuna who she really was is SO powerful. I really hope that Cuna survived. - That ending?! I have no idea where the next book will start now. Will Brandon explore the nowhere??? Will it start with her back on Detritus? I have SO MANY QUESTIONS. (hide spoiler)] General Thoughts Overall, this was a solid installment of the story. While I may have enjoyed Skyward a little better, I think that this installment was better and really helped build the world. I'm very much looking forward to book three and I'd recommend this book to anyone who read Skyward. Rating: 4 or 4.5/5 stars ===== What was that ending???? Now I have to wait years for book 3? UGH. Review to come. Rating: 4.5/5 stars ====== Happy Publication Day! Can't wait to see what happens. ==== [11/19] JUST ONE MORE WEEK. As you can tell, I'm NOT excited about this book at all. Nope, not at all. ==== [8/16] The release date was announced so I'm moving this to my to-read shelf because I know I'll be reading it the day it comes out (hopefully). I'm SUPER excited for this book. ===== [5/31] THE COVER IS HERE AND IT IS BEAUTIFUL. ==== Dear Brandon, Can you please release this book as quickly as possible? I need to know what happens to Spensa and her friends. Sincerely, A Fan

  4. 4 out of 5

    amy ☂︎

    i can feel it in my spidey senses tingle that this is going to be a 5 star book update: spidey senses were off

  5. 4 out of 5

    Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽

    4.5 stars for Brandon Sanderson's latest novel, which is on sale now! Review first posted on Fantasy Literature: “A hero doesn’t choose her trials.” Spensa can’t help but hear her Gran-Gran’s voice saying these words to her every time Spensa balks at a new trouble in her life. And Spensa — a magnet for trouble — has plenty of occasions to remember these words. In Starsight, the sequel to Brandon Sanderson’s young adult science fiction novel Skyward, the few humans who remain have been trapped on 4.5 stars for Brandon Sanderson's latest novel, which is on sale now! Review first posted on Fantasy Literature: “A hero doesn’t choose her trials.” Spensa can’t help but hear her Gran-Gran’s voice saying these words to her every time Spensa balks at a new trouble in her life. And Spensa — a magnet for trouble — has plenty of occasions to remember these words. In Starsight, the sequel to Brandon Sanderson’s young adult science fiction novel Skyward, the few humans who remain have been trapped on the barren planet of Detritus for several decades, with alien guardians who frequently attack the human colony with their fighter spaceships, preventing them from leaving Detritus. Spensa is a hot-headed young fighter pilot who revels in the space battles with the alien Krell, and lately she’s been pushing the envelope in those battles, in the hope that getting herself into deadly danger will trigger her latent cytonic ability, allowing her to hyperjump or teleport herself and her ship through space … and possibly open up a way for the humans to escape Detritus. Thanks in part to Spensa’s ability to “hear” the aliens’ remote commands, the humans have been able to push the boundaries of the battle out farther from the planet itself. So when a small single alien spaceship of unknown design appears by their space defense platforms, Spensa is sent to intercept it. She finds the ship is already damaged and its pilot is injured. Before the pilot sinks into a coma, she gives Spensa a warning, combined with a plea to go to a huge deep-space station called Starsight. This may be the opportunity the humans have been looking for to steal the aliens’ hyperdrive technology, but the risks are as immense as the potential rewards. I liked Skyward, but I think Starsight is a more unique and engaging novel. Starsight took a sharp turn in a new direction early on, and Sanderson throws in several game-changer developments throughout the novel, keeping both Spensa and the reader on their toes. It wasn’t at all the sequel I expected, and I enjoyed it all the more because of that. Spensa’s horizons and the worldbuilding in this universe both expand exponentially. Starsight is not just a place, it’s also a description of the visions Spensa sees when she’s in the nowhere of hyperspace: stars that are also eyes, focusing their malevolent view on Spensa. Those hate-filled eyes turn out to be significant to both the past and present events. Spensa is slowly learning to curb her more reckless impulses and play better with others … well, at least some of the time. If I have a complaint about this novel, it’s that Spensa’s inner thoughts, and the frequent dogmatic declarations she makes to herself about the evils of certain alien individuals and their society, telegraph fairly clearly that Spensa is going to be slapped with a reason to re-examine her internal presumptions and prejudices. Still, I found these perspective changes truly touching when they occurred. This theme of self-examination and personal identity is reflected in several different characters, particularly M-Bot, Spensa’s AI companion that drives her spaceship. M-Bot is still funny in that annoying way, but he’s also an artificial intelligence having an existential crisis, which adds an interesting flavor to the story. Even the surprisingly delightful Doomslug turns out to be far important than she first appeared. There are a few interludes in between chapters, featuring some familiar secondary characters, that begin as fairly simple fleshing out of their characters and the world of Detritus, but end in a significant discovery that will almost certainly play a key role in the next book in the SKYWARD series. Between that and the rather cliffhangerish ending of Starsight, I’m searching for a way to teleport myself into the future and get a copy of the next book in this series now rather than in 2021! Prior comments: If you liked Skyward, I think Starsight is even better! So many gamechangers here, and they’re just so much fun. I have to say the blurb for this is about the most non-informative blurb I've ever seen (it basically just recaps the first book) ... but there are Reasons for that, and I want to honor that by not giving away too much about the plot. But Doomslug turns out to be important, which warms my cold tired heart. M-Bot is a key player as well, and still funny in that annoying way, but he's also an AI having an existential crisis, which added an interesting flavor to the story. And Spensa finds out that you can't just rely on your initial impressions of individuals and their societies, and also that prejudices - both against or in favor of someone - can lead you astray. Thanks so much to Penguin Random House for sending me the ARC! Initial post: I just opened a package with the hardback ARC of this book!! I love it when the books sent to me that I didn't request are actually things I really want to read. And this immediately solves my "what to read next" question. :)

  6. 5 out of 5

    TS Chan

    Starsight proves once again that Brandon Sanderson is a masterful storyteller across genres and age groups, and who simply excels at writing sequels. I'm actually at a loss as to how to start or write this review without sounding like a broken record. As far as I'm concerned, Sanderson is a genius and he has never failed to deliver a captivating story, whether he was writing adult or young adult, fantasy or science fiction. And after reading so much from him and listening to him talk at signings Starsight proves once again that Brandon Sanderson is a masterful storyteller across genres and age groups, and who simply excels at writing sequels. I'm actually at a loss as to how to start or write this review without sounding like a broken record. As far as I'm concerned, Sanderson is a genius and he has never failed to deliver a captivating story, whether he was writing adult or young adult, fantasy or science fiction. And after reading so much from him and listening to him talk at signings and interviews, I honestly believed that it comes from his passion in just wanting to tell good stories. Notwithstanding the excellent worldbuilding and fantastic magic systems he is so well-known for these were, first and foremost, stories about people. A hero does not choose her trials. Starsight is another damn fine young adult novel by Sanderson.  In Skyward, Spensa, a teenage pilot who was trying very hard to proof that she was as brave and courageous as her father, discovered some hard and devastating truths. Her character development in the first book was convincing and realistic for a girl undergoing what she had to.  Spensa continued to learn and grow in this sequel, as she was thrown into a position that contradicted her nature, and the stakes were a lot higher as she became embroiled in galactic political machinations.  One of the best parts of her characterisation was that the life lessons experience taught her actually stick. In short, she didn't regress to some of the silly antics that she used to do just for some plot device's sake. In a couple of early scenes, she readily told the truth about what she was trying to do even though it sounded stupid or dangerous. I really shouldn't need to mention how this was commendable, but I'm tired of how some authors make their characters lie or withhold information for the sake of creating tension or drama. Do I even need to mention that the worldbuilding was excellent and fascinating? This is Brandon Sanderson we're talking about. From the planet Detritus and its orbital platforms to the central seat of power of the universe, the scope of the worldbuilding increased substantially in this sequel.  And from the deep and vast ocean of his imagination, Sanderson created and breathed life to a myriad of weird and wonderful alien races or beings that are well-conceived and well-executed. While they may appear strange in their form, physiology, culture and philosophy, I also somehow felt that they were quite believable. It's really hard for me to explain why without giving away details. This is one of those books that I cannot reveal anything about the plot, for even the book's synopsis did not say much. I enjoyed myself immensely going in as blind as I could be, so I hoped the same experience could be had for those who read this review. The themes that Sanderson threaded through this story are highly relevant to what we are facing in our real world; presumption, prejudices, and the inability to understand (or even accept) that which is foreign.  These were not done in a preachy nor heavy-handed manner (which is typically not Sanderson's method, anyway).  He was able to achieve this by showing instead of telling, and I'm positive that he just keeps getting better at it with every book he has written.  This skill of incorporating the worldbuilding through the eyes of the main character extended to even the ideology or thematic commentary of the story.  The realisation of certain ideas or notions hit me at the same time that it hit Spensa.  And almost every time it happened, I felt the same emotions that Spensa did.  If this is not brilliant writing, I don't know what is.  The worldbuilding and themes were just so seamlessly melded into Spensa's character growth.  I'm not forgetting the fan favourites, of course.  The uber-cute Doomslug gained importance to the story, and the ship AI with an attitude, M-Bot, had some interesting developments in his 'sentience'.  M-Bot's story was quite moving, and I teared up in one scene, which to me demonstrated how powerful this narrative was about an AI who wants to become more than just a programme.  Frankly, it is also a bit scary as how would one really know whether M-Bot could morph into something uncontrollable. "You've lived your whole life with autonomy.  For me it's a new, hazardous thing - a weapon I've been handed with no instructions.  I might be on my way to becoming something terrible, something I don't understand and cannot anticipate." I've raved about the dogfighting scenes in my review of Skyward.  While there were fewer dogfights in Starsight, there were still enough well-written and awesome action scenes to make this book an exciting and fun read. The big climax at end of this book when we reach the hallmark Sanderlanche was much bigger in scale and quite terrifying. One of the coolest worldbuilding elements in Starsight would fit right into a scifi horror movie.  Sanderson's action scenes are always so cinematic and have such visual clarity.  It doesn't matter whether it's a magic or space battle, you can see everything that is happening. The use of light-lances was such an inventive way of creating a more dramatic aerial battle scene. It pushes the boundaries of real flight patterns to make it more fantastical, but also seem highly plausible and infinitely more interesting. Fast-paced and utterly absorbing, Starsight ended with somewhat of a cliffhanger, but it didn't leave me feeling unsatisfied.  Although I do wish that the third book can be written soon, Sanderson has two Cosmere books to complete next which I'm even more eager to get my hands on. With Starsight, Spensa's story has exploded into an exhilarating, high-stakes space adventure filled with the strange and the wonderful, but at the same time, remain grounded with compelling and loveable characters. You can find this and my other reviews at Novel Notions.

  7. 4 out of 5

    may ❀

    no one: spensa: the delvers: so i definitely missed my skyward squad in this book but the ending was packed with action and reveals, i could not stop reading rtc pleasedon'tletusdownsando buddy read with emily, my space princess no one: spensa: 👩‍🚀 the delvers: 👁️ 👁️ 👁️ 👁️ 👁️ 👁️ so i definitely missed my skyward squad in this book but the ending was packed with action and reveals, i could not stop reading rtc 👽please🌟don't🌠let⭐us☄️down🌌sando🌕 buddy read with emily, my space princess

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kogiopsis

    Listen, that synopsis is crazy vague and is 70% Skyward recap, and after blitzing through the ARC in two days I can tell you: that's really the best they can do. I cannot tell you anything about the plot of this book, because it takes a hard left within the first 100 pages and from there, I hope you all get to experience all of the revelations and the delightful feeling of things coming together the same way I did. What I can say is: - I love everyone in this book, new characters and old, but Listen, that synopsis is crazy vague and is 70% Skyward recap, and after blitzing through the ARC in two days I can tell you: that's really the best they can do. I cannot tell you anything about the plot of this book, because it takes a hard left within the first 100 pages and from there, I hope you all get to experience all of the revelations and the delightful feeling of things coming together the same way I did. What I can say is: - I love everyone in this book, new characters and old, but especially my Space Daughter Spensa, who has at least moved beyond her days of literally eating rats and is slightly less garbage now. She's still got a lot of room to grow, but that's why I love her. - The themes are really good, guys. I can't tell you what they are, but I like them a lot. If you're familiar with Brandon's body of work, you'll recognize some through-line ideology here. - There is SO MUCH more worldbuilding (galaxybuilding?) in this book, and I ate it all up with a spoon because that is what I am ABOUT. Including some neat aliens - and btw, if anyone else listened to that Writing Excuses episode about worldbuilding gender roles and got worried about alien gender, don't be; the idea discussed on the podcast has been refined and made way more alien/less parallel to human genders and reproduction, and I actually quite liked it. I think that's about as specific as I can be, because the process of discovering and figuring things out in this book was so much fun for me that I really want everyone else to get to enjoy it the same way. One last, more general note - as much as I love the Stormlight/core Cosmere books, I do think that Sanderson's shorter, faster-paced works are often better, whether in terms of sheer enjoyment (this series, the Wax and Wayne books, the Reckoners) or craft (The Emperor's Soul). It's nice to read something from him every now and again that isn't weighed down by a massive, complicated plot, and just feels like a storyteller giving himself a chance to play.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Mogsy (MMOGC)

    5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/12/03/... Authors take note, this is how you write a book that will resonate with readers and stand the test of time. These days, I find the problem with a lot of YA is how canned it all feels, the way writers try so hard to conform to some pre-existing narrative which just makes the end result seem so sanctimonious and fake. And that’s why I’m such a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson, who has always ever only been interested in telling 5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2019/12/03/... Authors take note, this is how you write a book that will resonate with readers and stand the test of time. These days, I find the problem with a lot of YA is how canned it all feels, the way writers try so hard to conform to some pre-existing narrative which just makes the end result seem so sanctimonious and fake. And that’s why I’m such a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson, who has always ever only been interested in telling good, genuinely fun stories. There’s never an awkward social message shoehorned in or a romantic subplot not-so-unobtrusively shoved in your face, yet somehow his books always manage to be incredibly meaningful and filled with heartfelt connections anyway. Starsight is the sequel to the brilliant Skyward, and dare I say it, but it might even be better than its predecessor. Due to the fact it would be impossible to discuss this book without getting into details from the previous one, I also highly recommend being caught up before reading this this review as it may contain potential, inadvertent spoilers for Skyward. The story once more follows protagonist Spensa, who is still processing some devastating news about her father, as she prepares to embark on another mission for her home colony of Detritus. Her people are in desperate need of hyperdrive technology—so desperate they are willing to risk sending one of their best pilots to infiltrate the Krell, a crab-like alien race who are at war with humans. Using holographic tech to take on the identity of Alanik of the UrDail, a species once allied with humanity, Spensa signs up for an interspecies training program sponsored by the Krell which would enable her to mingle with pilots from all over the galaxy. Out of her depth, Spensa never expected she would have to play a spy. And yet, with the survival of Detritus and everyone she cares for hanging upon her success, she’s willing to do anything to get her hands on the information she needs, even if it means having to lie her way through training and deceive everyone around her. However, nothing could have prepared her for the friendships and camaraderie she finds among members of the other alien species, some of which humanity would count among their enemies. Eventually, as the truth behind what she and her fellow pilots are really training for is revealed to her, Spensa also comes to a new understanding of the world and the way she sees it. To say that this is a book everyone needs in their lives right now is an understatement. At its heart, Starsight is a story about unity, empathy, looking past our prejudices and differences because deep down inside we all want and care and fight for the same things. But unlike a lot of YA you find on the shelves today, this novel manages to get all these points across without being preachy, divisive, or smugly self-congratulatory about it. The message simply comes across naturally as an intrinsic part of the story, one that anyone anywhere at any time can relate to, and to me that is the mark of a classic. Personally, I was moved to tears as I was experiencing Spensa’s revelations and all the moments where she was hit with a clarity, and I don’t even know if Sanderson was going for such a hard-hitting emotional response, but he got it from me anyway. Also, I say this every damn time I review anything by Brandon Sanderson, but hey, it’s true—the guy is a master world-builder. The sci-fi setting of the Skyward series is one full of originality and wonder, where the jaw-dropping surprises and moments where you think to yourself, “Cripes, how does he come up with all these cool ideas?” never stop coming. If you enjoyed being introduced to all the fascinating planets and aliens in the first book, then we will love Starsight, which expands the universe even more. Speaking of which, there are plenty of interesting new characters to meet and fall in love with, which goes a long way in making up for the fact we don’t get to see much of those from Skyward. But fret not, for Doomslug and M-Bot are back, of course, and in a big way. By the end of the book, I guarantee you won’t look at either the same away again. And of the new characters, I loved all the aliens whose personalities and traits highlight once again the extraordinary imagination of the author. Like I said, I did miss some of the interactions between Spensa and her friends from the first book, but with time, I think this new group will endear themselves to you in more ways than you can imagine. In fact, the only real piece of criticism I have to level at Starsight is the unbelievably sudden, unbelievably cruel cliffhanger at the end of the epilogue. While Sanderson has been known to leave some major threads hanging between books, there was a real “Are you kidding me?!” quality to this one that seemed a bit uncharacteristic of his endings. Good thing he’ll be churning out more books to his other series that I will also read in the interim, but I won’t lie, the wait to find out what happens to Spensa next will be a killer. This was just a great sequel, and a book that brought me so much joy, emotion and excitement deserves no less than a full five stars. Audiobook Comments: I listened to the first book in audio and was fortunate to receive the opportunity to review Starsight in this format as well. Kudos to the wonderful Suzy Jackson for bringing Spensa and all the characters of this world to life with her superb narration; I loved her in Skyward and she has once again delivered a pitch perfect performance for this sequel.

  10. 4 out of 5

    alana ♡

    How in the hell am I supposed to wait until 2021 after that ending?!?!? RTC. Blog | Twitter

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rekha

    *sigh* I want my own cytonic hyperdrive so I can teleport to 2019 to read this book. (Yes I know that’s not how it works)

  12. 4 out of 5

    April (Aprilius Maximus)

    1.) Skyward 2.) Starsight ----------------------------------------------- “A hero does not choose her trials. She steps into the darkness. Then she faces what comes next.” representation: do non-binary aliens count? [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ・゚: *・゚:* 5 s t a r s *:・゚*:・゚ THIS SERIES IS SO UNDERRATED. It's so much fun, so badass, with loveable characters, an awesome fully-realised sci-fi universe with different species and politics and UGH. 1.) Skyward ★★★★★ 2.) Starsight ★★★★★ ----------------------------------------------- “A hero does not choose her trials. She steps into the darkness. Then she faces what comes next.” representation: do non-binary aliens count? [trigger warnings are listed at the bottom of this review and may contain spoilers] ✧・゚: *✧・゚:* 5 s t a r s *:・゚✧*:・゚✧ THIS SERIES IS SO UNDERRATED. It's so much fun, so badass, with loveable characters, an awesome fully-realised sci-fi universe with different species and politics and UGH. JUST. SO. GOOD. Also, I would die for Doomslug and M-Bot. Just saying. trigger warnings: death, murder, war, deaths of beloved characters, violence.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jackie ϟ Bookseller

    Thank you to the publisher for providing me with an ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Skyward: 1/2 Starsight: Book Three: ? Book Four: ? "A hero does not choose her trials." Starsight, sequel to 2018's Skyward, is an amazing, non-stop exciting, massive expansion of the fascinating universe readers discovered in the previous book. In this well-crafted installment, we follow Spensa beyond her own planet of Detritus as she tries to discover more about her mysterious powers and the Thank you to the publisher for providing me with an ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Skyward: ★★★★1/2 Starsight: ★★★★☆ Book Three: ? Book Four: ? "A hero does not choose her trials." Starsight, sequel to 2018's Skyward, is an amazing, non-stop exciting, massive expansion of the fascinating universe readers discovered in the previous book. In this well-crafted installment, we follow Spensa beyond her own planet of Detritus as she tries to discover more about her mysterious powers and the aliens who have imprisoned her people for nearly a century. While the sudden change in setting takes a moment to adapt to, the vast world Sanderson has created soon becomes impossible to put down. Espionage, war, politics, new alien species, and a whole lot of shocking, and moving, answers are all to be had in this thrilling, well-written continuation of Spensa's adventures. I'll admit that I was a little put out by the fact that Spensa, within the first few chapters of this installment, would be leaving the planet and the people that I'd grown so attached to in the first book. Furthermore, once she got to Starsight, a new planet/outpost of the much larger empire that the survivors of humanity on Detritus had been left mostly in the dark about, it was hard to believe and adapt to at first. Things seems to fall into place a little to easily for her, too, but I chose to ignore those moments in the end. That being said, I soon got sucked into the story as Sanderson delivered another one of his amazing, twisting, exciting plots, revealed slowly and then all at once. I don't want to spoil anything else, but let's just say that if you liked the first book in this series, I urge you to push through those first 100 pages of change to get to the meat of this installment. Spensa continues to grow into herself and her powers, and this incredible world and its lore get deeper and more serious than one could even have suspected in the first book (or at least I did not). (small spoilers...)(view spoiler)[The mysterious eyes that torment Spensa, and Doomslug (DOOMSLUG!), become much more than they seem, (hide spoiler)] and really, everything else that began in Skyward becomes so much MORE in Starsight. Hard to believe at times, but in the end, it was an absolute joy to read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    helena

    ANOTHER PERFECT BOOK. scud. SCUD. SCUD. this book was brilliant. again, brandon sanderson delivers perfect pacing, characters and writing. something that skyward didn't have and made my eyes sparkle are the alien races. this book is set in a space station and, of course, there were alien races there. and, holy shit, this is one of my personal examples for Good Alien Design. i’m gonna be honest: i missed the old characters, who didn’t appear as much as in the first one, but the new set of ANOTHER PERFECT BOOK. scud. SCUD. SCUD. this book was brilliant. again, brandon sanderson delivers perfect pacing, characters and writing. something that skyward didn't have and made my eyes sparkle are the alien races. this book is set in a space station and, of course, there were alien races there. and, holy shit, this is one of my personal examples for Good Alien Design™. i’m gonna be honest: i missed the old characters, who didn’t appear as much as in the first one, but the new set of characters is also a delight. in conclusion: spensa nightshade only gets better and better and i would die in battle for her.

  15. 4 out of 5

    sofia (sam willows)

    is anyone actually surprised a sanderson book is great?? my feelings can be summarized by: i still really liked it and had fun reading, but some aspects from book one that i was really attached to and wanted to read more about were missing

  16. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Elend Wolf

    4.25 stars. “Don’t trust… their lies. Don’t trust… their false peace.” Wasn't this quite the ride? I'll admit, this was not what I had been expecting when I picked the book. Not even close. When I finished Skyward last year I figure something big was gonna happen but I would have never guessed what actually went down. At first, I was so uncomfortable and unsure of that particular twist. Having a mostly complete new cast was a bold move. But it grew on me. It also makes sense. A lot of 4.25 stars. “Don’t trust… their lies. Don’t trust… their false peace.” Wasn't this quite the ride? I'll admit, this was not what I had been expecting when I picked the book. Not even close. When I finished Skyward last year I figure something big was gonna happen but I would have never guessed what actually went down. At first, I was so uncomfortable and unsure of that particular twist. Having a mostly complete new cast was a bold move. But it grew on me. It also makes sense. A lot of sense. After all, Sanderson did create a big universe full of possibilities. His way of approaching that fact and furthering his universe while exploring some of what it can offer was, actually, pretty nice and fun once I got used to the idea. “Perspective [the worst part of being in charge]. When you’re young, you can assume that everyone older than you has life figured out. Once you get command yourself, you realize we’re all just the same kids wearing older bodies.” Scud. The number of philosophical questions I got sucked into because of all the introspection that's going on was quite impressive. Because, of course, even though this is a YA book it is not a regular YA book and makes you question the deeper meanings of being alive, agency, and identity. Which I quite like because it follows nicely the thread of thought that was introduced in the previous book. An aspect I greatly enjoyed in both. We also have more parts adding to this ongoing conversation this time. The Superiority -and alien superpower - and every character that we met added their own shade and angle to the conversation. In the end, you have a very cohesive theme going on. Everyone is struggling with a shade of the same thing and yet... you won't feel it like that is the case. “While all experience is subjective, and all reality in some ways an illusion, this offers a practical danger.” I was constantly amazed to the imagination that Sanderson is capable of to create this amazingly complex worlds. Sure, I know he is capable of it but I'm always amazed when I see it in action. The different species of aliens were rivetting. Their cultures. Physiology. Psychology. Politics. Everything. It was just so curious. To the point that my head hurt, and still does, from trying to understand some things. Or, like, just make peace with the fact that this species considers that normal. And it was so cool. We got mostly the basics of these civilizations but I would not object if we got to see more details of each one. “It seemed to me that the ones who didn’t fit were the most significant – the real measure of what it was like to live in the Superiority.” Then we have the Superiority. Yep, that's their name. Looking back, it really tells you a lot. As a galactic superpower that has been around for hundreds of years, there's quite a lot to unveil and discover in them. There's a lot of politicking going on. But, like, quietly done. Because that's the best way of making politics. Basically, the Superiority is conformed of several, maybe hundreds, different species from all around the galaxy. They help keep peace and prosperity in the planets where they are present. They also have these outposts around for people to live on them and enjoy cultural diversity I guess. Man, were they interesting. With the likes of Cuna and Wyznick plotting around you have plenty of opportunities to see and judge what you think of them. “A hero… does not choose… her trials, Spensa… […] She steps… into the darkness, the voice said, fading. Then she faces what comes next…” Just because we have a lot of new characters does not mean that we don't get to fly around, we do. Quite a lot. Spensa most endure a rigorous training program that will prepare her to fight the ultimate foe. Along with her new friends. So, yeah, we get our quality time inside of a cockpit and flying around and running drills. Accompanied by fun new experiences. We see Spesa step into different shoes and that was a delight. At the same time, we get some pretty intense moments towards the end thanks to this that were a pretty nice twist. That final battle was refreshingly different and opened so many possibilities. “Jorgen had a way of making me vocalize the things I didn’t normally acknowledge, not even to myself.” Even though Starsight is by no means a romance book we do have our sprinkle of it through the story. And how I like how it's handled. Sure, I wish it had played a little different. I had so many wishes for that particular part of the story that when the moment came I was, both, incredibly pleased and a little outrage. Still, they handle it like champs. One of the things I particularly like is that the romance never overpowers the rest, more important, of the story. It just adds a little sizzle and spiciness. “She had a patient voice. A voice like a rock would have, he imagined. Immobile, ancient, and thoughtful.” As I keep hinting, there where, sadly, somethings I did not like. Mainly the fact that we get a mostly new cast of characters with just tiny little peeks at our beautiful OGs. I was crushed and completely devastated when this particular fact was prompted. I had never considered that could happen. I want to see my babies again and enjoy them. But that is not what happened. Sure, the new characters are not bad. Actually, they are pretty great. I grew to love them and got really invested with them. Seeing Spensa bonding and having fun with them was great. Especially because of the sharp contrasts that most of them were to each other but especially Spensa. It created opportunities for these gut-wrenching scenes. It really paid off. But, as you may know, when I had my expectations broken it was a hard moment for me. And the thing is that I think it could have been solved with a few more interludes. “Feelings aren’t proof. Feelings are the opposite of proof.’ ‘Not when the thing you’re trying to prove is someone’s humanity.’” For what it is worth, I had an incredible time with the book. Even if the ending made my heart stop and will keep me in semi-coma until the next book comes out. Even though it wasn't what I had thought it was gonna be it was what the story needed and it was the perfect fit for it. It did fulfill my aching heart and provided quite a lot of answers... though, it did inspire a whole lot of others. I'm just glad I got to share the experience with my darling Aoife. I had the best time reading and talking all those crazy theories and having 20 different conversations as well as mile log messages. “Infinity went both directions. You could expand forever outward, but at the same time, the closer you looked at something, the more detail you saw.” __________________ Excuse me, How is that the ending?! My emotions are all over the place right now and I need answers! RTC. __________________ It's happening. It's finally happening!!! I can't believe I can finally read this beauty. Even better, that I'm buddy reading it with the amazing Aoife. It's gonna be such a fun adventure to share. After re-reading Skyward I'm even more hyped to see what this sequel has in stores for us and continue with this journey that I love so much. And I can't believe we got it just a year after the first one. That's a total treat. I'm so excited to read this beauty I can hardly handle it. Making it the last book I read this year also seems like the best idea ever. A perfect way to finish the year. ______________________ Isn't it a beauty? I've been waiting for the release of this cover since I read Skyward and it didn't disappoint! I have now several questions that originated from it, which is always fun. The bottom line is I just can't wait for December to arrive and finally have this beauty in my hands.

  17. 4 out of 5

    ChopinFC

    3.75 Stars (Very Good/Excellent) God I was looking forward to Starsight so much- that my 'hyperdrive' expectations got the best of me. What the hell did I expect after the sensational and incomparable 'Skyward', which shattered every notion of Sanderson's depth as a writer! After flying with 'Spensa' for the first novel, I felt connected to her struggles. I felt immense gratification in the relationship between Spensa and her beloved ship 'M-Bot'. In many ways, it was that exact extreme 3.75 Stars (Very Good/Excellent) God I was looking forward to Starsight so much- that my 'hyperdrive' expectations got the best of me. What the hell did I expect after the sensational and incomparable 'Skyward', which shattered every notion of Sanderson's depth as a writer! After flying with 'Spensa' for the first novel, I felt connected to her struggles. I felt immense gratification in the relationship between Spensa and her beloved ship 'M-Bot'. In many ways, it was that exact extreme connection formed between human and ship and that unbreakable bond, that lead to Starsight's Achilles heel: M-Bot took almost a 'secondary role' in this new story!! Another weakness in the story is how it made me feel. Reading about extraordinary intergalactic species I felt like: As opposed to a: I'll explain. Spensa and 'M-bot' are finally able to explore other transgalactic species, mostly due to Spensa's ability to use 'cytotonic' teleporting. Sanderson again, does not fail and flexes his limitless creativity muscle to bring us some of the most unique aliens ever developed! I had much of a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' feels with some aliens depicted. There are hundreds of species of aliens, but the principal one known as the 'Superiority'- becomes a key player in the story. Sanderson provides plenty of 'social commentary' on topics of equality, discrimination and premature judgement. He also builds the social and political strata of the 'Superiority' with the same intensity and meticulousness as seen in some 'Stormlight' series. What made the Skyward so unique and touching, were the 'human' interactions that Spensa had during her flight training and battles. Specially her interaction with M-bot! Starsight loses much steam due to its misdirection! What do you mean 'misdirection'? ** Spensa spends 80% of the story away from 'Detritus' (Earth) and the wonderful humans characters from the first novel!! ** There's little to almost NO DOGFIGHTING involving M-bot and Spensa as the pilot!! ** The chance to build on previous relationships with 'Cobb', 'Jerkface', 'Kim', etc... Starsight still a widly entertaining story with many great moments and new 'alien' characters. The premise of species racism is very much prevalent in the story and adds a new dimension to the narrative. In part, most 'Superiority' aliens think of humans as 'inferior' aggressive , underdeveloped species! Sanderson knows how to infuse broad themes that will make readers ponder well beyond. Also, the few action scenes are quite fantastic, and almost 'movie' like. Only Sanderson can up the ante and shift gears so rapidly, as when writing action scenes. As to the the 'epilogue'- of course there will be more Spensa and adventures in the future. Here is to hoping we'll see more of M-Bot and the wonderful friends and characters from Earth in the next one! 3.75 Stars

  18. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Obida

    It ended with a cliffhanger which isn't exactly surprising but it still sucks. Despite rating this book high it was a bit of a struggle reading the middle part of this book, it was so slow and filled with intensive internal monologue, it would have been better if this book was either multiple or dual narrative but only Spin was the narrator and there was little or nothing of interest happening around her. The beginning and the end of the book was really quite interesting but it wasn't enough to It ended with a cliffhanger which isn't exactly surprising but it still sucks. Despite rating this book high it was a bit of a struggle reading the middle part of this book, it was so slow and filled with intensive internal monologue, it would have been better if this book was either multiple or dual narrative but only Spin was the narrator and there was little or nothing of interest happening around her. The beginning and the end of the book was really quite interesting but it wasn't enough to increase my rating. Moving on to lovable things in this book, the originality, that's something Brandon never disappoints. I've seriously never read anything like this. This book is somewhat different from the first book, its kind of like reading a book one all over again, so as not to spoil anything I'll be vague. Spin got a new squad with aliens, the weirdest kind. There is also a lot of revelations about the Krell in this book, not to mention she gets to learn how her awesome mechanical powers work. Of course the world building was awesome, sadly I couldn't say the same for the writing, excepting the final pary which blew my mind. Spin was as cool as ever, there wasn't much of the other characters in this but I really liked the new characters especially Vapour, Hesho and Morrimur. Last but not the list, M-bot “By the way, if you do get us killed, be warned that I intend to haunt you.” “Haunt me?” I said. “You’re a robot. And besides, I’d be dead too, right?” “My robotic ghost would haunt your fleshy one.” “How would that even work?”

  19. 4 out of 5

    Joleen (starlightbooktales)

    Oh god the love of harmony. I LOVED THIS BOOK

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

    Oh, all the goodness. So, aside from not being able to talk about the joys in this YA space opera by the wonderful Sanderson, I can at least gush over the things it made me feel. I was always thrilled about every space battle. It's a perfect blend of personality, piloting, humor, and many little oddities that make this kind of thing special. I was never annoyed by any of the main characters. I loved the AI's existential crises, the cuteness of the tiny fox/badger aliens and their king, and the Oh, all the goodness. So, aside from not being able to talk about the joys in this YA space opera by the wonderful Sanderson, I can at least gush over the things it made me feel. I was always thrilled about every space battle. It's a perfect blend of personality, piloting, humor, and many little oddities that make this kind of thing special. I was never annoyed by any of the main characters. I loved the AI's existential crises, the cuteness of the tiny fox/badger aliens and their king, and the fact that the majority of the novel deals more with perception and assumption than practically anything else. The twists? Really great. But no spoilers. We've got an epic setup here and a very satisfying conclusion. You know, aside from that very last bit that makes me want to scream and tear out all my hair and demand that all the bookgods heed my plea for the next book in my hands RIGHT THIS INSTANT... Ahem. My only complaint? Our big bad aliens read like the ideological liberal left taken to an amazing extreme. Like, total caricature. And while we do dig below the surface and see a bit of variety, it's kinda funny how very... phobic... both sides get, or how those phobias take on some very strange features. Maybe it's not a complaint, but a bit of an annoyance because I would like to have seen a lot more subtlety and divergence in these details even as they grew more pronounced. But, let's face it, this IS a YA novel. Oversimplification, even in an ostensibly FUN tale written for the sake of FUN, is kind of the name of the game. :) Putting that aside, I had a damn lot of fun. :) So I do believe this is a total win. :)

  21. 4 out of 5

    Robin (Bridge Four)

    4.5 Am I Alive Stars “I will sing to you,” I whispered. “As your ship burns and your soul flees, I will sing. To the contest we had.” What happened is what always happens when I read a Sanderson novel. I devour it in a day or two and then I can’t think of how to write something that does it justice. So here it is weeks later and I’m finally getting to a review for it. The short of it… But the long of it is that Sanderson does sequels great. He takes the foundation of what he has already 4.5 Am I Alive Stars “I will sing to you,” I whispered. “As your ship burns and your soul flees, I will sing. To the contest we had.” What happened is what always happens when I read a Sanderson novel. I devour it in a day or two and then I can’t think of how to write something that does it justice. So here it is weeks later and I’m finally getting to a review for it. The short of it… But the long of it is that Sanderson does sequels great. He takes the foundation of what he has already established in the prior books and expands on it. I never have word building complaints or think his characters are one dimensional because they are always complex with both good and bad traits just like real people. I thought that I might get a little bored hanging out on Detritus with the crew fighting the Krell but Sanderson made she that wasn’t going to happen by introducing new characters from across the galaxy and opening up the story to see inside the other side. “Cobb,” I said, stepping closer. “Those aren’t bloodthirsty monsters out there; they’re just people. Normal people, with lives, and loves, and families.” “And what did you think we’ve been fighting against all these years?” Cobb asked. “I…” I didn’t know. Red-eyed, faceless creatures. Relentless destroyers. Not far from how they saw humans. “That’s what war is,” Cobb told me. “A bunch of sorry, desperate fools on both sides, just trying to stay alive. That’s the part that those stories you love leave out, isn’t it? It’s always more convenient when you can fight a dragon. Something you don’t have to worry you’ll start caring about.” I don’t want to give away too much because the magic is in the story itself but M-bot, Spensa and Doomslug go on an epic adventure and we learn more about them along the way as they travel in space and meet the enemy. A hero…does not choose…her trials, Spensa… “Gran-Gran?” I asked, trying to pinpoint the location of the words. She steps…into the darkness, the voice said, fading. Then she faces what comes next… M-bot is truly a favorite character of mine. I mean a sentient ship with an uncompromising love of mushrooms how could you not adore him. Plus he is great banter for our Spensa and sometimes her reality check. This is a true Sanderson story where we get glimpses of other complex cultures and how they live. In true Sanderson fashion there are great small details that just give a lot of life to the story. Like thinking about how a culture would live and reproduce and how that could form an entire culture. “Some are crimson, others blue,” I said. “Is that like humans, with our skin tones?” “Not exactly,” M-Bot said. “It’s kind of like a gender distinction.” “The blues are boys, the reds girls?” “No, their biology is very different from yours. They have neither sex nor gender until they breed for the first time, whereupon they form a kind of cocoon with another individual. It’s really quite fascinating; as part of the breeding process, they merge for a time into a separate third individual. Regardless, after breeding, they become red or blue, depending. They can initiate a change in other ways, if they wish to be considered unavailable for some reason—while the dark purple color is the skin tone of one who has not mated, or who has broken their pair bond and is seeking another mate.” Truly fascinating how Sanderson’s imagination works. Even though we didn’t get a lot of time with the gang from the first book I saw them just enough that I was satisfied with the developments there. I like that Jerkface has his own mission and isn’t just a pretty face in the story. I’m already desperate for the next book as Starsight left off at a precarious place for Spensa, M-bot and Doomslug. Plus Jorgan is doing something very interesting too and I’m excited to see how his quest goes. Just one more book to look forward to in 2021 I guess since Stormlight 4 is scheduled for 2020. I totally accept this because STORMLIGHT 4!!!!!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kaitlin

    I really enjoyed this second instalment, although it took such a different turn from what I expected. Unlike in book one where we see Spencer with her friends in flight school, this one is much more focused on infiltration, aliens, AI and adventure. I think that the story Sanderson has set up here is just such a fun one, and I found that I could get back into it very easily too. I think some of my favourite bits remain the friendships formed by Spencer, and in this book we still see that, even I really enjoyed this second instalment, although it took such a different turn from what I expected. Unlike in book one where we see Spencer with her friends in flight school, this one is much more focused on infiltration, aliens, AI and adventure. I think that the story Sanderson has set up here is just such a fun one, and I found that I could get back into it very easily too. I think some of my favourite bits remain the friendships formed by Spencer, and in this book we still see that, even though many of the friendships are formed with non-humans (which is quite a surprise!). I also like the relationship between Spencer and her AI (and Doomslug of course) and we get a lot of cool moments about sentience being discussed here too. Lots of action and a lot to sink your teeth into. If you liked book 1 this is different but still very good :) 4*s from me!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Vero

    What the prologue needs to be: what happened to Doomslug Also some people might hate me for this but.. Spinface, anyone?

  24. 5 out of 5

    Zitong Ren

    Ok, look, I’m the sort of person to already be demanding book 3 even though this book came out like two weeks ago when I am writing this review. But, whoosh, that ending though! Sanderson, calm down with your endings, because, damn, they’re good and makes me want for more even though the next book won’t be released until at least 2021. I don’t have a whole lot to say about this book that I haven’t said about Skyward, but I do have some points I would like to talk about. To start with, the world Ok, look, I’m the sort of person to already be demanding book 3 even though this book came out like two weeks ago when I am writing this review. But, whoosh, that ending though! Sanderson, calm down with your endings, because, damn, they’re good and makes me want for more even though the next book won’t be released until at least 2021. I don’t have a whole lot to say about this book that I haven’t said about Skyward, but I do have some points I would like to talk about. To start with, the world building in the first book, while not on the level of his Stormlight Archive, was still pretty darn good, but what this book did in building upon it and expanding outwards into the literal universe was absolutely phenomenal. We got to see so much more of the world and I loved every single bit of it. There are so many different aliens and cultures that, for a YA book, is incredibly rare, but Sanderson did it so darn well. So basically, really loved the world building in this one. We are introduced to a wide variety of new characters in this book, all of which are really distinct and different to one another. There is also lots of conflict within each individual character on their beliefs and views of this highly advanced yet often unfair society. There were huge contrasts in character and there were also great amounts of development between every character and that too was really wonderful. One thing I would have liked more of was to have more page time from the Skyward Flight like Jorgen aka Jerkface as whilst I loved the new characters, I would have loved to have seen more of the old characters from the first book, though one thing I will say, this book felt more like a set up for the next book due to the way that this book ended. I do understand why this happened, though I still did want more interactions between Spensa and the rest of Skyward flight in this book. M-Bot and Spensa were great as always and there is nothing better than a talkative AI with loads of opinions because often, Sanderson makes you sympathies with a talking machine which is just awesome. It is evident that while Spensa is still very much the heroic girl from book 1, there are lots of things that have happened in both this book and the first book that have changed and affected her as a character. So in the end, I absolutely loved this book though would have liked so have seen more from the brillant characters from book 1. 9.5/10

  25. 4 out of 5

    Gavin

    Starsight is the second instalment in Brandon Sanderson's Skyward/Cytonics series. This is a good quality YA sci-fi series and delivered pretty much everything one might expect from a Sanderson story. We got a nice mix of action, humor, mystery, and surprise twists and turns that kept this an engaging read. It also had the usual cast of memorable characters and compelling plot that sucked in my attention from start to finish! I felt like Starsight was a worthy sequel to Skyward. If anything I Starsight is the second instalment in Brandon Sanderson's Skyward/Cytonics series. This is a good quality YA sci-fi series and delivered pretty much everything one might expect from a Sanderson story. We got a nice mix of action, humor, mystery, and surprise twists and turns that kept this an engaging read. It also had the usual cast of memorable characters and compelling plot that sucked in my attention from start to finish! I felt like Starsight was a worthy sequel to Skyward. If anything I might have enjoyed this even more than Skyward! I took a little bit of time to warm to Spensa in the first book so it was definitely beneficial for my enjoyment of the story that I already liked her, and a bunch of the secondary characters, from the very start! The first book ended with a fun twist and to avoid spoilers I'll not mention too much about that but it did mean that it gave Sanderson the opportunity to take the story in a slightly different direction in this sequel and I think that new direction was even more fun! The first book felt a little like a mix of Top Gun and sci-fi dystopia while this was felt more like a mix of Star Wars and a spy thriller. The combination for this sequel worked better for my personal taste. One of my favourite things about Starsight was the fact that we got to met a ton of fun new secondary characters. I cannot say to much without spoiling things but I really enjoyed learning about the new characters and their various different quirks and cultures. We did not get to see quite so much of the secondary characters we met in the first book but we did still get plenty of M-Bot and Doomslug. The M-Bot/Spensa banter was as fun as ever as was M-Bot's own story arc but I think Doomslug remained the star of the secondary characters. I'd not rate this as one of Sanderson's best series as it is not quite on the same level as his Cosmere books but despite that I do still think this was a solid 4.5 to 5 stars sort of read. It was still a really fun and engaging tale! Even the average Sanderson books are still better than 90% of the stuff I read from other authors! I'm looking forward to seeing how the story develops in the sequels. Rating: 4.5 stars. I'm rounding up to 5 stars here at Goodreads as it probably deserved that anyway.

  26. 5 out of 5

    ✩Anneli✩

    Starsight What?! No, give me more! *Me after reading these books realizing I’m doomed to reread them forever because they’re so good!* Starsight ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ What?! No, give me more! *Me after reading these books realizing I’m doomed to reread them forever because they’re so good!* 😮🤔🥳

  27. 4 out of 5

    Twila

    Going into Starsight, there were several things that I was hoping for. I wanted the scope of the world we got to know in Skyward massively expand and to see the characters we got to know develop even more. Most of all, I just wanted things to get BIG. In Starsight, I was not disappointed! Brandon somehow once again produces a huge and detailed new setting and a world that really showcases the entire breadth of his talent. To say anything about the plot would be a spoiler since the story took Going into Starsight, there were several things that I was hoping for. I wanted the scope of the world we got to know in Skyward massively expand and to see the characters we got to know develop even more. Most of all, I just wanted things to get BIG. In Starsight, I was not disappointed! Brandon somehow once again produces a huge and detailed new setting and a world that really showcases the entire breadth of his talent. To say anything about the plot would be a spoiler since the story took such an immediate turn. But if you’ve read one of his books before, then you know of the crazy unique spins he usually does in his fantasy works where he creates races, religions, and remarkable magic systems. To see this type of worldbuilding and character building applied to science fiction is like nothing else. He is such cinematic writer that we truly get to see an incredibly vibrant and unique universe in its full glory. And the sheer magnitude! It was HUGE. There were more characters. There were more species of characters. There were more planets, more technology and more magic. It was A M A Z I N G. Brandon did such an impressive job of combing these intriguing new story directions, a mostly unknown alien society that introduced many new characters, and a fascinating new setting into one concise narrative that the end result is an incredible book. The alien civilization and culture he presented was very impressive. He really took the opportunity to create some really eclectic and clever alien races that each had their own complex and fascinating behaviours, and yet somehow wrote them in a way that they were never too hard to understand. Brandon’s writing prowess was on full display and the resulting narrative is a fantastic blend of different story elements. We have the main overarching story of the humans against the aliens, and on the smaller scale, we have all the intimate struggles of each of our characters where everyone had their own goals and conflicts that they had to overcome. I really appreciate what he did where he could have taken really predictable sidekick type characters and added new dimensions to them and even set the stage for future development. But then we also have these other mid-level struggles that act as the vehicle to put the two together. It actually quite bizarre how much he packed into this. I think what made this book most fun for me to read was the manner in which Brandon managed to lay breadcrumbs to follow throughout the story. I always felt on the verge or just on the verge of figuring something out that I was always eager to continue reading. Some reveals felt a bit telegraphed and not surprising, but many weren’t. Either way, I was always entertained. But one downside to all the changes was that we got separated from most of the supporting characters we got to know in Skyward. To see the focus shift away from them and to see several of them hardly even make an appearance was a bit unsatisfying, to be honest. The new characters are wonderful, but their interactions together just didn’t have the same charm to them that the first group did. Something else I felt a little lackluster was the use of M-Bot as a plot device. Spensa relied on him and his seemingly endless range of abilities way too much for my liking and it struck me that he was sometimes just a little too competent and he did things with too much ease. It felt a bit like a deus ex machina where whenever there was a new problem, he always conveniently came up with a solution. Because of this, things sometimes went a little too smoothly for Spensa when she should have been on the brink of disaster. It was a little frustrating. Overall, a worthy sequel? Absolutely! I read it in about a day and a half and it was easily one of my favourite books of 2019. With how Brandon manages to set book 3 with the promise of even further exploration of a yet unseen part of the universe, we’re looking at some crazy stuff to come in a couple of years and I cannot wait! With every book, I am reminded that it is such a delight being a fan and reader of Brandon Sanderson.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kael

    4.5 stars *screams into the nowhere* UUUGH the wait for book 3 is going to be truly agonizing I don’t love this the way I love Skyward - for spoilerly reasons. (view spoiler)[I completely understood the necessity for Spensa to go off on her own - thus expanding the world, but I just really missed the original squad. Also, this one didn’t feel nearly as cinematic as Skyward. (hide spoiler)] The vague synopsis is basically just a recap of of book 1, and for good reason. Everything is a spoiler. But 4.5 stars *screams into the nowhere* UUUGH the wait for book 3 is going to be truly agonizing 😫 I don’t love this the way I love Skyward - for spoilerly reasons. (view spoiler)[I completely understood the necessity for Spensa to go off on her own - thus expanding the world, but I just really missed the original squad. Also, this one didn’t feel nearly as cinematic as Skyward. (hide spoiler)] The vague synopsis is basically just a recap of of book 1, and for good reason. Everything is a spoiler. But hey, it’s Brandon Sanderson so you know it’s good. The plot thickens and the world expands. If you enjoyed Skyward, you’ll enjoy Starsight. Just trust me and go into it blind.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lena K.

    “A hero does not choose her trials” (and a reader does not choose the direction a book will take) Well, this was surprising. I didn't think Starsight will go that way, but I actually enjoyed it a lot. I did miss the set of characters from Skyward, but on the other hand I liked the new set of characters as well. Hesho and the kitsen are my favorites. I mean how can you not like those little samurais? “What was it like?” Hesho asked from his throne. “Bright, like a thousand sunrises experienced “A hero does not choose her trials” (and a reader does not choose the direction a book will take) Well, this was surprising. I didn't think Starsight will go that way, but I actually enjoyed it a lot. I did miss the set of characters from Skyward, but on the other hand I liked the new set of characters as well. Hesho and the kitsen are my favorites. I mean how can you not like those little samurais? “What was it like?” Hesho asked from his throne. “Bright, like a thousand sunrises experienced all at once? Dark, like the gloom of a cavern that has never seen the sky?” “Neither,” I said. “It was an empty room, Hesho. They don’t know what’s at the center of a real maze, so they couldn’t imitate it.” “How disappointing,” he said. “That’s not poetic at all.” M-bot and his existential crisis was greatly done, and of course Spensa's journey and self growth were even better than in the first book. And her bravado, thank the skies I had more of that. “Resigned sigh.” I looped us after an enemy ship. “Did you just say the words resigned sigh?” “I find human nonlinguistic communications to be too easily misinterpreted,” he said. “So I’m experimenting with ways to make them more explicit.” “Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?”“Obviously not. Dismissive eye-roll.” I would've loved to see more of Jorgen, Cobb and the rest on Detritus though... and hope I will in the 3rd book. The themes explored in this book were relevant more than ever - prejudice against the unfamiliar, understanding and accepting the different, even when it seems impossible, and knowing that those on the opposite side of you are people and have feelings as well. Some things seemed too convenient to me and that spoiled the overall experience, but nothing is perfect (except for the kitsen, they're perfect).

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sara

    4.5 stars. After that epic final to Skyward, I was excited to see where Starsight would take us. I wasn’t disappointed. Keeping the plot vague because, spoilers, this introduces a whole host of new characters that I loved (the Kitsen in particular) and expanded the world in a way that answers questions yet also keeps throwing out mysteries. It’s fast paced, literally throwing us into the dogfighting star battles, and adds a whole host of political intrigue, spying and mythology to support our 4.5 stars. After that epic final to Skyward, I was excited to see where Starsight would take us. I wasn’t disappointed. Keeping the plot vague because, spoilers, this introduces a whole host of new characters that I loved (the Kitsen in particular) and expanded the world in a way that answers questions yet also keeps throwing out mysteries. It’s fast paced, literally throwing us into the dogfighting star battles, and adds a whole host of political intrigue, spying and mythology to support our main plot. I also really liked the development of Spensa. She’s starting to think beyond her rash decisions, and reflect on the wider repercussions of her actions. The advancement of her abilities also felt appropriate in terms of being slow and exploratory and dangerous. As usual the twists here shock me, but on reflection seem so obvious. It makes me want to reread Skyward again if only to catch all the little hints that are scattered throughout. It’s wonderfully written. I would say that the initial set up for the plot falls into Spensa’s lap a little easily and quickly. Without it none of the plot for Starsight could occur, but it feels a little bit amateur for Sanderson to employ. I would also say that a couple of the secondary characters we grew to love in the first book are woefully sidelined here, and really underused. A lot of time was spent developing these characters and relationships in Skyward, and I missed them. That said, I do think I’m particularly hard on Sanderson because I know by now what a good author he is. This was a brilliant addition to the series, that fully enveloped me in its world building and characters and left me desperate for more Spensa, M-Bot and (my favourite) Doomslug.

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