By: Brandon Sanderson
Series: Skyward #2
Published: November 26th, 2019
By: Delacorte Press
Genre: YA | Sci-Fi
Buy it: Book Depository
All her life, Spensa’s 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. The rumors of his cowardice are true—he deserted his flight during battle against the Krell. Worse, though, he turned against his team and attacked them.
Spensa is sure that 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.
| Goodreads |
“A hero does not choose her trials. She steps into the darkness, then she faces what comes next.”
I think you must imagine this by now… but I LOVED it and more than I thought I would, which is great! I’ve been wanting to read this book since it came out and I’m SO glad I did because I really missed the characters, especially Spensa and her powerful and rebellious personality. This sequel has nothing to envy to the first book, I think the story is up to scratch and continues to give us impactful moments and a magnificent writing style. It has a lot of action from the first moment, it’s also full of funny and crazy situations, in addition to having very good dialogues and incredible new characters.
Starsight continues a few months after where Skyward ended and places us most of the time in another place in the galaxy, far away from Detritus. We’ll see Spenza disguise herself and with the help of M-Bot infiltrate on massive recruitment of pilots organized by the same beings that she knows as Krells, on a space platform called Starsight. There, posing as a young alien named Alenik, she will begin to know much more about other species, their customs, their motivations and also discover another model of a society absolutely unknown to her, its rules and the role that humans play in all this. In addition, she sees herself learning more about her powers, how to use them and their meaning. Many secrets will be revealed and Spenza’s perspective will completely change.
I think that’s all I can tell for now without spoilers, but there’s really a lot of information in this book. Because it’s located outside Detritus, we managed to know much more about the galaxy and how it’s conformed, we also know a lot about the political aspect and each species’ place in power. I appreciate it cause it’s super entertaining to read, especially knowing other species, from their sexualities and nature to their thoughts and customs, all of which are super different from our own. It has given me a new perspective, in addition to broadening our knowledge and give us more than we knew in the beginning with the first book. Sometimes we think sequels are usually a little weak, but in my opinion, this isn’t at all, on the contrary, it places us much better within the plot and gives us other important reasons and points for wanting to continue with this series. I hope we have many books because I never get bored of going through all this rich galaxy with its characters.
The writing style continues to be very solid, although as in the first book I feel that it’s a bit dense at times, which can make it slow. It wasn’t an impediment to enjoy it, but I think it’s something that I would like to highlight in case you going to read it. I think Brandon Sanderson has a unique way of getting you to know the revelations and plot twists because it’s done in a very organic and well-thought-out way, it shows that nothing is left to chance and everything has been planned beforehand. And once you discover things, everything has a great impact and that surprise effect that I love so much. At times, it seemed there was an overload of information especially about the other species that appear in the book, which I’ll not try to name because it would be very difficult for me lol, on the one hand, I think it’s interesting and I liked to know more, but on the other hand, I feel that there are things that weren’t necessary for the plot as such, you know?
Even when the plot is very solid and we have much more knowledge about the galaxy and the humans who previously inhabited Detritus, I think the most interesting point and my personal fave, were the characters. I saw Spensa grow from one book to another and being much better even in this book, I think she’s embarking on a path of greater discovery about herself and her “cytonic powers”, as well as knowing more about her ancestors and manages to expand her mind over other alien races, and all of this makes her grow a lot and create wonderful bonds with others. I think this time, she’s more open to relating and that powerful personality that she always had is much more empowered, she’s a great character. I’m 100% counting M-Bot as a character because it is! We have much more of it here and I confess that although I didn’t like it in the first book in this one… I LOVED IT, we see a much more autonomous M-Bot, asking many questions about himself and his own destiny. I think his dialogues with Spensa are some of the best in the book, they show great depth and feelings on this character despite being an IA, and I think we all know that he’s much more than that. He’s truly amazing and seeing him go through this kind of existential crisis warms my hearts, I swear, I want to hug M-Bot forever. It also has super fun scenes, it has made me smile more than once & Doomslug, I just cannot, it’s the most adorable thing and in this book it has a greater role and takes another type of dimension which I really liked. I still like Cobb quite a bit and I think Jorgen & Rodge are still good characters, although they have quite a minor role in this book, which makes sense. Still, I like what we learn about Jorgen and I think it will be very important for the next book.
We have LOTS of INCREDIBLE new characters!! That makes me so happy, in general, I’m not the biggest fan of having so many characters in the same book because I go crazy trying to remember who is who and most of the time they end up being quite flat. On this occasion, it was the opposite, I liked each one of them and in addition, they all have a great depth and complexity in their personalities, they have great importance and a great impact on the plot. I’ll speak very briefly about each one to give them the moment they deserve. Morriumur is possibly my favorite of all the new characters, he’s (they) a half blue and half purple alien (I think lol) and he’s quite insecure and always wants to do the right things because otherwise, his family will never allow him to be born … I KNOW, he hasn’t yet been born, he’s in a stage where he’s something like a model of what he will be and is created by a mix between his parents, I’m not sure how to explain this, but the way of reproduction of his species is very curious and I like how Spenza talk to him as “they” instead of “she/he”, I think it gives the diverse side to the book. He’s just so sweet, kind and adorable, I love him and his ending is perfect! Then we have Cuna, she’s (they) one of the leaders of the project to create a pilots army, and she’s a very complex character, who all the time leaves you wondering what she’s up to, I think she’s super interesting and I really liked her impact on the plot. Hesho & Vapor with both wonderful characters too, super brave and dedicated to their cause, in addition to the fact that towards the ending we discovered the immensity of their heroism, and I’m absolutely grateful for both characters, I loved them, also both races are super interesting to know, like their customs and ways of life. And finally, we have Brade, she’s a human but lives as a “pet” to serve Winsik who’s one of the supreme bosses of the place and also a “varvax” aka a Krell, and Brade is another very complex character and I like her interaction with Spensa because it has a great emotional weight and also many shocking moments. Winsik belongs to the power of something they call Superiority I think, sorry I’m bad with names, but basically, they’re the ones with the power and they accept certain species to be part of them to live in peace and harmony, in addition to granting them security. But they only accept those races that don’t have a degree of violence in them.
Basically, all the characters are in the plot with a purpose and none of them are left randomly or just put there to fill, you know? and I really appreciate that from the author.
Then there’s something called “Delver” which is a dark being made of shadow that’s super dangerous since it destroys everything it touches and generally is around the galaxy, but when it touches a planet it destroys everything in it. And I don’t want to give much info about this because I think it’s a very interesting and important factor to discover while reading the book, mainly due to its great weight in the plot.
As usually happens I wasn’t so interested in knowing more about things related to piloting ships and knowing how they work, that side always heavy to me because I’m not really interested, but I can still see that the scenes when they’re piloting are very well done, they transmit many feelings to you due to the stress to which the characters are subjected and it gives us many scenes of high impact and a lot of action. It also allows us to know another side of each character.
The plot twists & revelations are very solid and impactful, I really enjoyed them to the point where OMG, I had to stop reading for a moment because it made me feel anxious and nervous. There’s also a mystery vibe at times because you know that there are many hidden secrets in this place and the characters themselves are silent many things ais you know that soon everything will be discovered and will be a bomb. Maybe I didn’t mention this previously, but Spensa is disguised with a hologram of Alenik who’s an alien from another planet and she collides with the earth, she was looking for answers because she also has cytonic powers like Spensa and somehow felt her power. This is not a spoiler because it’s just how the book starts, so it’s fine. Then we don’t know much more about her, but I think her race would be very interesting to explore.
I think a rather notorious aspect is the fact that this book is quite similar in dynamics to the first one, and by this, I mean that Spensa comes to a new place, trains as a pilot, create a squadron and then they fight in the final battle, not counting everything that happens in Starsight, where we see her interact with each character in a different way and try to fit in an absolutely different place and unknown to her. So I understand those who say that it’s similar to the first one, BUT I defend the position that this book has A LOT of more useful information for the plot and it was a lot of fun to read it, I had an incredible time and read it much faster than I thought I would.
To summarize and finish, I loved the book I think is an incredible sequel that gives us a lot of new information, incredible characters and unforgettable moments. It’s also built in a very intelligent way and the ending is incredible, I got so emotional, I swear, it really pushes you to want to keep reading to know what will happen, so the wait for the third book will be LONG, guys lol. If you’re like me, and you usually have problems with sci-fi, I highly recommend you try this series because it will surely change your perspective. In addition to the sci-fi aspects that are obviously protagonists in the book, it touches on topics beyond that, of much humanity, and we explore each being, their expectations, their beliefs and their ways of thinking. It’s absolutely brilliant, so please read it if you haven’t done it yet, you won’t regret it, I highly recommend it!
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