Starboard Trilogy, The: These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
It’s a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.
Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.
Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?
Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.1
I can honestly say that I had no idea what this book was about when I started reading, or more accurately; listening, so providing you with the above summary has already given you an advantage. The cover of the book was the sole reason I selected this audiobook. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I may actually prefer not reading the summary and only having a brief idea of what the book is about before going into it. The above summary can provide two benefits which we will get into later.
Tarver Merendsen is a very young war hero, and it also doesn’t hurt that he is also very attractive. Reminiscent to the beloved movie Titanic, These Broken Stars tells a galactic adventure set in the future where our main characters Tarver and Lilac (Jack and Rose), the only survivors when the famous ship, the Icarus, is yanked out of hyper space and crashes onto an unknown planet. Tarver is a small fish swimming through an elite pond, and although they are celebrating his heroism, his rank in society is cleared marked by the medals on his jacket.
Lilac LaRoux’s life consists of ballgowns, parties and gossip. Her face is plastered all over the HV videos throughout the galaxy. Everyone knows who the heiress is, and knows the power of her father. Fake smiles; compliments; and attempts to benefit from her status have also become the norm for Lilac. When the handsome war hero has the nerve to approach her during a party, his fate is sealed, but is it possible that this strange boy has no idea who she is?
When the truth is revealed, Tarver and Lilac’s brief courtship turns heated making things more complicated when fate steps in to trap the two together in an escape pod. Barely escaping the wreck, their pod crash lands on a strange planet where it is immediately apparent that there is something not right about their surroundings. The two must trek across an unknown planet while mysterious apparitions cause Lilac to question her sanity and Tarver to question his beliefs.
As I mentioned before, the book summary provides two benefits. The first gives you a very accurate portrayal of what to expect when reading These Broken Stars. The second benefit is that if you do not have the time to read the book, fret not, the summary has already told you what you need to know. The first book in the trilogy follows Tarver and Lilac, with the second book introducing two different characters, and the third bringing their stories together for the finale.
Just when I thought I was settling into the story I was rudely awaken but an abrupt and strange twist in the story. This change of course threw me for a loop and really soured the whole experience for me. Sometimes the best thing about a story is the simplicity of it, but writers tend to throw in dramatic and complex ideas to set themselves apart and to keep the readers entertained. Unfortunately for me, just like the Icarus being yanked out of hyperspace from a luxurious space adventure, I’m crash landed onto a strange planet wondering what the hell just happened.
It’s too late now, I’ve already started the second book and will courageously continue you on in the pursuit of completion and valiantly taking the brunt of the blow to warn you of the hazards ahead. When it comes to These Broken Stars, I could take it or leave it. I wasn’t blown away by anything and wasn’t completely entrenched in the story. I have a feeling the final book will be rife with the confusion and complexities that ruined the first book for me so I am a bit wary.
- Book summary courtesy of Amie Kaufman’s webpage.