Book Reviews · Original Posts

Book Review: This Shattered World

this shattered world

This Shattered World is the sequel to These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, continuing the Starbound Trilogy. If you haven’t read that beauty, read my review here then go grab it for yourself! It may also be helpful to have read This Night, So Dark, the short story between These Broken Stars and This Shattered World. My review of the short story is here.

Because of the nature of this series, it is impossible to review this book without spoilers from the previous one. Therefore, if you haven’t read this series, YOU SHALL NOT PASS! (10 points to your Hogwarts house if you identify that reference correctly, btw.) Read the first book now! you won’t regret it. Then you can come back here 🙂 Alright, spoilers begin… now!

Here’s the description from Goodreads:

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. Terraforming corporations make their fortune by recruiting colonists to make the inhospitable 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 in a bloody and unrelentingly war, 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 the rebel base together, caught between two sides of a senseless war.

I was SO disappointed when I found out this installment did not keep following the adventures of our adorable idiots, Lilac and Tarver, who I became very attached to. It’s probably better that it didn’t because of how nicely tied up These Broken Stars was. Kaufman and Spooner would have had to create conflict where none existed between the two of them. In fact, I was surprised there was a sequel, though This Shattered World might be more accurately described as a companion novel that spoils you for the first one if you didn’t read the first one first. I didn’t enjoy it as much, but it was still a really good book.

Kaufman and Spooner continue to impress me with their ability to make normally detestable first person points of view lovely with both Jubilee and Flynn’s points of view. As characters, I really loved both of them! They’re very complex in ways that Tarver and Lilac aren’t, and I thought both of their character development was great! However, I didn’t buy them as a couple wholeheartedly. There were moments when I saw it, and the rest of the time I just felt like they were awesome best friends. Which is cool, don’t get me wrong! I just thought they didn’t really work. Their relationship got almost sidelined because of the huge scale of the plot in this one, which damaged the already fragile construct. The plot was awesome, actually, with tons of political intrigue and the return of a few sinister plot lines/people from These Broken Stars. A few good characters come back too, but they don’t get enough screen time in my opinion. I actually think I’m going to reread this whole book, slower, because I read it in one sitting (it’s that good!) and reassess Jubilee and Flynn’s relationship, because I want to buy it so badly!

There were chapter inserts between the point of view shift, and they were the most gorgeously written part of the whole book! Seriously, the language is beautiful. Discovering what they are is part of the journey of reading This Shattered World, but let me tell you they are important in understanding Jubilee and the entire plot.

This Shattered World, while much more thematically complicated and important, didn’t hold my attention rapt like These Broken Stars did, probably because I couldn’t buy the main characters’ relationship as well as in the first one. Because of this, it’s a solid 4/5 stars in my mind. However, when I finished I was anxious to get my hands on Their Fractured Light and complete this epic series! The Starbound Series is one of the best space operas I’ve ever read, and both These Broken Stars and This Shattered World contributed heavily to that.

Quotes:

Life Advice:

“Letting yourself get hurt isn’t brave, love. Brave is protecting others from hurt.”

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

On Souls:

“‘What do you know of hearts and souls and how they break here? You don’t know me at all.’

‘Oh, Jubilee…Hearts and souls and how they break? That’s all Avon teaches anyone.'”

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

On Stars:

“He can’t take his eyes off the stars, but I can’t take mine off his face. I can see the stars reflected in his eyes, can see the wonder of it in the way his mouth opens but no sound comes out. His eyes, his face—they’re beautiful.”

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

On Being Yourself:

“You’re the most important thing in this universe. You; this vessel; the people of this planet; lovers, warriors, artists, leaders, dreams more numerous than stars. Each mind unique, each thought created for an instant and then broken apart to form new ones. You don’t understand the unbearable beauty of being you.”

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Everyone, read this series! It’s an awesome space opera that you won’t regret.

 

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