December 23, 2014
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The second installment in the epic Starbound trilogy introduces a new pair of star-crossed lovers on two sides of a bloody war.
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.
The second book in the Starbound trilogy, after last year's These Broken Stars, takes place in the same universe as the first, but does not center on Tarver and Lilac.
Captain Lee Chase is a fierce, tough girl who has found her place in the military. Captain of troops sent to the planet to end the rebellion so the planet's terraforming can progress, Lee knows what is happening on Avon. Or, she thinks she does.
To Flynn the rebellion is something entirely different. The promise of a better life, of a better planet has never come to fruition for Flynn or his people. As the quality of their lives decline, the rebellion gains strength. But it isn't those usual grievances that have Flynn on his current mission . . .
I loved meeting the characters as we did. These two characters that you would not expect to encounter each other are in the same place from the beginning and we're able to see how they view each other, both their misconceptions about the other and things they keep secret.
Even as the we know something more is at play, it seems that Jubilee and Flynn are on such opposing sides, that nothing between them could ever work. Flynn may not agree with his people - and the plans he knows they have for the captain - but he certainly doesn't see things the way she does, either. Lee knows who the rebels are, what they're doing. And she knows it's up to her to stop them.
The more time we spend with the characters, the more time they spend with each other, the more we see their struggles to incorporate new facts into beliefs they've held for so long.
I love that there is a bit of a reversal in Flynn and Lee's roles from what might be expected and from the first book. Here it is Flynn who's mostly known for being someone's relative and judged on who they are while Lee is the regimented military officer. She is the one more prone to violence while he aims to avoid it. Their roles reminded me a bit of June and Day from the Legend series.
The different ways we learn about both character's history, their story and how it's brought them to where they are, is really well done. It is not some information dump or a narrative by the character, but works really well into the story and builds the larger plot - the planets' histories, etc - as well.
As in These Broken Stars we meet two characters who, seemingly, couldn't be more different, they are placed into a situation that quickly moves beyond what they're familiar with, what they've always known . . .. and it all comes together pretty perfectly.
I am still in love with Tarver and Lilac - and loved what we saw of them here - but now I really cannot wait for even just a bit more of Jubilee and Flynn's tale. I am really excited to meet the new characters in the third book and see how the characters we already know appear.
If you're in need of a last minute holiday gift for someone (or for yourself!), This Shattered World is out tomorrow (and These Broken Stars is in paperback now)!
The Series - in order, including the (free) novella:
received via NetGalley from publisher for this review, thank you!