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Are you a fan of science fiction and fantasy stories set in a distant future? Do A.I. and robots give you pause because of what sci-fi has told us? Then Our Dark Stars is for you!
4 stars, solid fantasy tale that reminded me of Battlestar Galactica.
It’s the future, humanity has taken to the stars after Earth was destroyed, robots and humans have been at war, and there is just one hope.
I thoroughly enjoyed the story, and while it reminded me of themes explored in sci-fi (particularly BSG) it brought its own creativity to the table of the genre. The story is told from two points of view (one written by each author, I presume) and jumps between the past and present a bit. The writing is consistent, although it feels a bit disjointed at the start. There are little nuances that come through that probably would have been better told from first person rather than third since there are literally two different voices authoring the characters. But that is just my personal preference, and overall it is executed incredibly well.
Unfortunately I found Talia’s narrative point of view a bit more difficult to read, perhaps because of her inner monologue but I couldn’t really place it. Will’s POV seemed more fast paced and certainly less whiney, which considering this is YA I can forgive. What I had a difficult time with were a few minor plot/continuity/logic holes that didn’t seem to make sense: why Talia never thought to ask what a flesher was, why they didn’t tell her what year it was, Talia’s sudden distrustfulness/hate of mocks (“the last person she ever thought she’d received comfort from was a mock,” which is disingenuous considering her best friend was one and earlier parts of her narrative indicate her struggling with reconciliation). It seemed that the only reason everyone was content to not clue the other in was for no other reason than to create conflict. As the book progressed the pacing improved, and I do think that the authors hit a stride that will serve a sequel well.
What I liked: I am always for sci-fi that takes a look at how we as a species determine the value of another life, whether it be to subjugate those that are deemed inferior or to outright eradicate them. Themes of assigning meaning and value to other life forms, holding grudges, free will, and sacrifice.
I would be interested in seeing what is in store for Talia and Will moving forward and hope that this becomes a series.
Thank you Netgalley and the publisher, Blaze Publishing, for the e-arc in exchange for an honest review. Our Dark Stars is available today. You can find information about my rating criteria here.