Thursday, June 29, 2017

DNF Review: Starfall (Melissa Landers)

Starfall (Starflight, #2)
Title: Starfall
Series: Starflight #2
Author: Melissa Landers
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: February 7, 2017
Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction
Told: Third Person (Cassia, Kane), Past Tense
Content Rating: Older Teen (Up to Page 64: violence, kissing, mistreatment)
Format Read: Hardcover (library)
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When Princess Cassia Rose fled her home world of Eturia to escape an arranged marriage, she had no idea her sudden departure would spark a war. Now after two years hiding as a ship hand, she is finally returning to her beloved home, but not in the way she imagined. Shackled by bounty hunters, she is violently dragged back to account for her crimes. Her only solace is that the Banshee crew managed to evade capture, including Kane Arric, her best friend...with occasional benefits.

Meanwhile, Kane and the rest of the crew of the Banshee plan a desperate rescue mission. But when they arrive on Eturia, Cassia isn't exactly in need of heroics—she's claimed her birthright as Eturia's queen, but has inherited a war-torn planet simmering with rebellion. Cassia must make alliances, and Kane, the bastard son of a merchant, isn't a choice that will earn her any friends. Kane knows he will never find someone to replace Cassia—and is certain she returns his feelings—but how can he throw away his own promising future waiting on a queen?

When the outer realm is threatened by the dangerous Zhang mafia, Cassia, Kane and the rest of the Banshee crew uncover a horrifying conspiracy that endangers the entire universe. In the face of unspeakable evil, Cassia must confront her own family's complicated legacy on Eturia and decide once and for all who her real family is.

*          *          *

I did not finish this book. I stopped at Chapter 8 (Page 64).

This companion novel picks up about a year after Starflight, this time focusing on Banshee crewmates Cassia and Kane. Although I really wasn't looking forward to their trademark bickering at the forefront, the book opens with them barely speaking to each other and without the bickering I found the dialogue seriously lacking. They are also separated almost immediately, and since the two of them together was what made either of them shine, apart they were rather dull. Especially Kane, although he didn't get much page time in the beginning as he was ignored for quite a few chapters to allow Cassia's story to make rapid progress (that unfortunately skipped over the interesting bits).

I expected Starfall to be a continuance of their Starflight story of adventure on the run, but was sorely disappointed when the run ended several short chapters in and the story instead turned to an overused one of political upheaval and rebellion. (I guess since I loved the first book so much I never really read the summary.) Cassia's common "royal rebel struggling with love of a servant" story just didn't offer anything particularly unique to engage me, and although Kane and the rest of the crew were finally returning to the scene in Chapter 8, and the summary promised a threatening mafia, by then I had lost all interest and couldn't muster enough curiosity to press on, let alone finish.

I will continue to love and highly recommend Starflight (you can read my raving review here), but will sadly be suggesting a pass on this sequel.

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