Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Review: For Darkness Shows the Stars


It's been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.

Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family's estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot's estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth--an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.

But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret--one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she's faced with a choice: cling to what she's been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she's ever loved, even if she's lost him forever.

Inspired by Jane Austen's "Persuasion", "For Darkness Shows the Stars" is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.


I have never read Persuasion by Jane Austen. Honestly, her literary works sound boring. But when I read For Darkness Shows the Stars, I believe I would like Persuasion; for I LOVED this book. I was expecting the big secret to be something about overthrowing the government, but no. How do I describe was like a contemporary novel set in the future. It had its moments when it was sweet, frustrating, sad, and happy. For Darkness Shows the Stars is a beautifully written book based off a classic. I was kinda sad to finish it.

Plot: Despite it being set in the future, and it sounding like there's a rebellion coming, there really isn't any big fight or overthrowing of the government in the book. It talks about it, but not much. Anyway, Elliot, our main character, is a young girl trying to make sure her stays above ground while her father and sister do nothing much to make sure the farm runs smoothly. Then Kai, her ex-best friend of a long ago who ran away and hates her still for not coming with her, comes back with the rest of his crew to build a ship on the Boatwright's (her grandfather's) estate. Well, while she tries to make sure the farm gets through the winter, she has to deal with Kai and his angry towards her.

In a way, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a contemporary novel. Elliot was constantly fighting her father and sister and herself at some points to make sure the farm survived, and with Kai and his coldness toward her. Elliot herself, despite the fact that her family takes her for granted, stays strong and defies what she's learned and tries to save the farm in a way that could get her killed. In the events of twists and turns, there weren't much, but a lot of obstacles that Elliot had to face to get to the end; it was kinda like the Game of Life. You have to battle obstacles and other problems to make it to the top.

And one cute thing I loved about this book was the way we got a glimpse into Kai's and Elliot's past. In the past, they mostly talked through letters, and we got to read them. At first I was confused at what I was reading. Eight Years Ago? What's that all about? But then I realized that was how many years ago the letter was written in reflection to the present and how both turned out. It was an interesting way to view flashbacks. A way that was very clever and unique.


Elliot: Strong. Determined. Sensitive. Very caring. All this is Elliot. When she choose her home over leaving with Kai and his love, she didn't do it because she was rich and he wasn't. She did it for a very important reason; for if she did leave, most of everyone on that farm would have been dead or would have left, leaving her family to ruin. And when Andromeda, on of the Captains next to Kai, accuses her of the things Kai has said to her Posts, she stands up for herself and says that she [Andromeda] can hate her all she wants, but not her Posts. Same for Kai. Her Posts (workers) come before her. I loved that about her. And when she finally speaks her mind after learning Kai's terrible secret (along with the entire crew's secret), she tells him that she won't tell, but then says she's not sorry anymore, making Kai think differently, but making her speak her mind more about things.

Kai: Stubborn, a guy, incredible strong, fast, and able to do things other humans wouldn't. Also an ass for most of the book. Kai believes Elliot didn't come with him because he thought she thought she was above him. This makes him an ass for most of the book. Then when he finds out that she use to be sorry she didn't go with him, and when he finally realizes why she stayed, he calms down and tries to be her friend, or at least, tries not to make her mad anymore. At points in the book I wanted to shake him. He has to be one of the meanest heroes ever. The way he treated Elliot made me dislike him a lot, even though I read his prequel. But in the end, he won me over.

The rest of the characters were well.....well written. Elliot's family were spoiled and greedy, wanting the best in life. The Posts were caring and strong and stubborn, and willing to stay behind only for Elliot. And the Fleet, they were nice. Donovan was the sweetest.

Romance: Kai is an idiot. The romance of the book was just mostly tension between Kai and Elliot. And it didn't help that Kai was paying attention to Olivia, Elliot's 14 year old neighbor. Later on in the book, when Elliot revealed that she used to be sorry she didnt' go with him, we see Kai change and try to talk to Elliot, even if he still pays a bit more attention to Olivia, which then ends eventually. But he waited until the last moment to finally tell Elliot how he felt, and when he was about to leave. Even though it's romantic, he's still an idiot. Elliot just felt hurt and confused and jealous and indifferent thoughtout the whole thing. An accidental kiss would have been nice.

Ending: And since it was kinda like a contemporary novel, I had visions of different versions where either Elliot won or lost. When she lost, she took her life or worked herself to death (no, I'm sucicidal). When she won, she did it without the help of Kai or anyone else but her friends. The ending of the book was so much better than what I could have thought of.

Future: not sure. Stand-alone maybe?


"They met . They touched. And then she was in his arms, again and at last." pg. 395

Yes. It's the Big Kahuna Award. I loved it that much.

Cover & Ending:

Not sure how I feel about the girl's makeup, but the rest is beautiful.

*I donated money to get this book. And then paid for shipping

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