Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Sound of Stars” as Want to Read:
The Sound of Stars
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Sound of Stars

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  5,591 ratings  ·  831 reviews
Don’t miss this spectacular debut novel… Can a girl who risks her life for books and an alien who loves forbidden pop music work together to save humanity? This road trip is truly out of this world! A beautiful and thrilling read for fans of Marie Lu and Veronica Roth.

Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deat
Kindle Edition, 322 pages
Published February 25th 2020 by Inkyard Press
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Sound of Stars, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Maddie Alechia Dow said: Fingers crossed, I hope so!
Maddie There is some violence as they do executions by tying a rope on someone's neck and dropping them off a building. They do talk about sex, but never do …moreThere is some violence as they do executions by tying a rope on someone's neck and dropping them off a building. They do talk about sex, but never do it themselves.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,591 ratings  ·  831 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Sound of Stars
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I mean... I feel like I have to give myself the best rating possible, since I was a *tough* judge of my own work while writing it, you know?
Miranda Reads

So excited about this Booktube video - all about the Top 10 Books of 2020 (so far).

"If we get separated and you have to choose between life and joining us, choose life, okay? Live. Live for us. Breathe for us. Survive for us."
Janelle aka Ellie is one of the few survivors who made it through the first few waves of the Ilori alien invasion.

The new world is...depressingly different. The Ilori are keeping the few remaining humans alive and imprisoned in their apartment complex.

And w
Nilufer Ozmekik
Three it started sooo good but that ending!!! It ruined all my expectations stars!!!

There are so many good intriguing, entertaining things about this book keep my attention like popular culture references used with song and book quotes, bounding friendship and connection between a human and alien (my childhood’s favorite movie is E.T., I was raised with my adoration of Spielberg and alien nations till I met Ripley in Scott’s Alien movie!), and of course road trip idea.
But there is also annoying
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell
no idea if this will be good or not but I want to rub my tongue on that cover
♠ TABI⁷₈⁷ ♠
hi this sounds like all the tropes I love smashed into one story and I need it now and also I NEED THIS COVER AS A POSTER ASAP cause I just wanna pin it up on my ceiling and lay on my bed ogling it for hours

Aug 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020-releases
February 19, 2020:

➝ Sum it up in points!

✔ humanity meets hope through resistance
✔ alien invasion and class-ism
✔ rebellious lover of books + fearless lover of music
✔ human-alien romance
✔ great references
✔ plus-size, biracial, demisexual MC with anxiety
✔ gender-queer & bisexual side characters

The Sound of Stars travels through a dystopian, post alien-invasion New York where rules are drilled and humans are expected to stay at the lower strata. In the midst of fear and silent chaos, a human girl wh
Fadwa (Word Wonders)
I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange of an honest review

CW: colonization, violence, execution, oppression, brainwashing and mind control, anxiety, panic attacks.

I’ve been pushing away writing this review for weeks now because I’m unsure of what to say. Not because the book is bad, mind you, it’s the complete opposite. I loved this book so much and it made me feel so many things that I just…don’t know how to put into words or how to properly convey those feelings and emotion
Mar 16, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq-read, 2020-arcs
I wanted to love this book. I mean, look at that cover. Who wouldn't want to love the story behind it? Unfortunately, I'm sad to say that this book wasn't for me. I felt like I was putting too much effort into reading it and I wanted to dnf it many times. While this book has a really nice premise, it failed to transport me.

This book follows a girl living under the threat of being executed any day or turning into some kind of zombie like her dad. There's been an alien invasion on Earth trying to
I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not in any way affect my opinions.

This book is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful books I have ever read.

I'm struggling to figure out how to review this one, because it is such a masterpiece and no review of mine could ever do it justice. But alas I got an arc so I guess I'll have to try and put my feelings for this book into words.

I want to touch briefly on the lot before I move onto all of my favourite par
Claudie Arseneault
Jun 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, ya, lgbt, asexual, owned, aoc
This is a frankly stellar book. I was a little wary picking it up because it was so obviously set up to center a romance, and these tend to be hit and miss for me, but wow their relationship is all I actually *want* in a romance. Their chemistry is great, for a start, and they clearly care for one another beyond the layer of being in love. They care for their respective passions, they care for who they are, and they care for their differing goals, too. I love how they built upon another, it's ju ...more
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
I had tears streaming down my face after finishing this. What a beautiful, beautiful book. So immense, so full of life and love and all the goodness in the world. This was not at all what I expected, and thank goodness for that.

- In a world where aliens have invaded Earth and have prohibited all forms of art, this book follows Ellie, a Black teen who runs a secret library, and M0R1s, an alien (named the Ilori) who, was raised to be emotionless, loves music. When her love for books and his love f
DNF'ed at pg 80. Sometimes I try to read a hundred pages or so if a book is so and so, other times I DNF faster. In this case I felt no conection to the plot or the characters, the love the author expresses for books is amazing, but that's it. Seems like the characters keep repeating themselves about how they feel, with some shocking elements about the invasion in Janelle's POV and about the alien society workings in Morris' POW, but not enough to make me want to keep reading, sadly. ...more
Laura Weymouth
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So, I was lucky enough to read this book at an early stage and can safely say I expect many people to just adore it. Dow's debut is a fun, heartfelt scifi romp reminiscent of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, featuring eminently shippable protagonists, a high-stakes road trip, and a gorgeous exploration of the humanizing influence of music and literature. One of my most anticipated releases of 2020 <3 ...more
Athena (OneReadingNurse)
Thank you to Harlequin Teen via NetGalley for the eARC , all opinions are my own.

I read some other reviews though and feel very alone in my way of thinking about the book, so I am concluding that my old curmudgeonly self is not the target audience, even though I have read within the YA scifi /romance genre before and loved it.

So what threw me off? The labels, right from the start, the labels threw me off and I never recovered. Why does everything have to be labelled so that I need Google to unde
☆ 3.5 / 5 ☆

This book closely follows an alien invasion and yet manages to stay so wholesome and full of hope and love.

It’s been two years since the Ilori have taken over Earth, the remaining human population lives under surveillance and restrictions in residential centers. Iloris have deemed human emotions and means of self-expression (anything artistic or creative) to be dangerous and are now banned. However, Ellie ends up running an illegal library when she becomes desperate for a source of ho
Helen Power
< Synopsis
Two years prior to the beginning of this book, aliens named the Ilori took over Earth, effectively oppressing mankind as they plan to transform the planet into a new vacation spot.  Ellie Baker is a teenage girl who lives in her old apartment building, which has been completely taken over by Ilori.  Books and other forms of artistic expression are no longer allowed, but she runs an illegal library in the basement.  M0Rr1S (Morris) is a lab-born Ilori, but he isn't like the rest. H
Xandra (StarrySkyBooks)
3.5 stars

I liked the main characters and a twist at the end, but the book itself was too slow and too long.
Vicky Again
Apr 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lush, hopeful, and brimming with dreams, The Sound of Stars is an emotional story you won't want to miss. ...more
I'm going to be honest here - I had very high expectations for this book. It was one of my most anticipated books of 2020 and it absolutely surpassed all of my expectations in a big way. Which rarely happens!

There were so many things I loved about this book. For starters, the two main characters were very easy to root for. Especially Ellie, who is a black teen trying to survive in Ilori-occupied earth, with her main source of comfort being the illegal books she's keeping. Ellie's insecurities, h
J. Elle
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh, where do I start?

This is one of the best books I've read all year. I am not a big Sci-Fi reader but I loved the premise so much and the COVER (OMG!) so I had to give it a try. And ohhhh myyyy wooord. The prologue alone had me enthralled. From the clever use of structure to the DEEP characterization of the two main characters to the heartwarming way their belief systems shift as the novel progresses--I was HOOKED.

If you love character-driven stories with plot twists, TSOS is for you. I rarel
Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book for Pridemonth some weaks ago and now I've finally been able to read it. And what can I say... I'm in love. 😍😭💜 Like really very much in love. Like favorite book of the year in love. 😲😍
There I said it. This is my favorite book of the year for many reasons and I LOVE IT SO MUCH! 😭💜

"The sound of stars" takes place two years after an alien invasion. Books, music and art are forbidden, but our main Ellie keeps a secret library going. One day, Morris, one of the aliens called the I
Jul 23, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Despite the dystopian setting and some difficult content, this turned out to be a surprisingly sweet story about a girl who loves books and an alien who loves pop music coming together to save the world after an alien invasion. It's an interesting mix of the whimsical and the raw- tackling real issues while also reveling in moments of joy and the growth of love. I'm not sure this will work for everyone, but I found it to be really charming and an enjoyable read. Plus we have a heroine (Ellie) wh ...more
Jodi Meadows
Lots of fun, with a sweet romance and intriguing worldbuilding. Great for bookworms and music lovers alike.
Kate (GirlReading)
3.75* On the surface, this is a fun, classic sci-fi. As its heart, it's a brilliant exploration of colonisation, systematic racism and the power of art (whilst also being a super fun read that plays on many classic sci-fi tropes).

I loved Janelle, one of the main characters, who is a demisexual biromantic fat Black teen living with anxiety. She was an unsure, strong and real teen who fights back with the kind of quiet acts of rebellion that can change the world. Her passion for literature and th
Where is the sequel? Someone please tell me there's a sequel.

For two years an alien species called the Ilori has been ruling after an all out military catastrophe. Janelle "Ellie" Baker is a survivor in a New York based camp run by the Ilori. All art: music, books, paintings have been outlawed and Ellie runs a secret library. When one book goes missing, Ellie fears for her life. Luckily for her, the Ilori who found it, M0Rr1S (Morris), has a penchant for music. He's looked down on by the true Il
Amber (The Book Bratz)
The full review + more can be found at The Book Bratz

Aliens. Books. Dystopian NYC. This book screams my name, so it is no shock this this is one of my most anticipated reads and debuts of 2020 (Though I got to read it last week!) The Sound of Stars did not disappoint for one second and kept me wanting and needing to know what was going to happen next.

Can we take a moment to admire how beautiful the cover for this novel is?! The art and the colors blend beautifully and I absolutely adore it, th
May 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
CWs: incurred racism, alcoholism, mentions of human experimentation, some descriptions of anxiety episodes, descriptions of graphic injury

This is like the actual softest and purest story, and the fact that it's about an alien invasion *while* being so soft and empowering is all the more amazing to me.

Especially when it comes to hostile alien take-overs, it would be so easy for a story like this to center human violence as a means of reclaiming power, but this story goes in a completely diffe
May 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well that was a clever sci-fi twist of an ending! Just finished THE SOUND OF STARS - Alechia Dow's YA novel about NYC native Janelle "Ellie" Baker - who is living in a post alien invasion world. The alien Ilori are colonizing Earth, intent on subduing the "inferior" humans and rehabilitating an environmentally worn planet. Ellie is a 17-year-old rebel librarian and music lover who runs a covert library (anything that inspires strong, and possibly rebellious, emotion, like music and books, is str ...more
J. Greene
Feb 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Sound of Stars took me through a plethora of emotions, most of which always seemed outside my grasp.

Janelle Baker is a human with an inordinate passion for books. But the world has been taken over by the Illori, a non-human life force. Under their dominion, books are forbidden, as well as anything remotely artistic. Possession of these items resulted in infractions that ultimately led to death. Morris is a lab-made Illori, a disgrace to his family because of his ability to feel, and his love
Sol ~ TheBookishKing
didnt hate it, definitely didnt love it, going to take me a few to gather my full thoughts ~

« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Vault-a-thon: SATURDAY: Chapter 23-End 1 2 Jul 15, 2021 04:57PM  
Vault-a-thon: FRIDAY: Chapters 18-22 1 1 Jul 15, 2021 04:37PM  
Vault-a-thon: THURSDAY: Chapters 14-17 1 1 Jul 15, 2021 04:36PM  
Vault-a-thon: TUESDAY: Chapters 5-8 1 1 Jul 12, 2021 07:12PM  
Vault-a-thon: MONDAY: Chapters 1-4 1 2 Jul 12, 2021 07:08PM  
YA Buddy Readers'...: The sound of stars by Alechia Dow - starting March 7st 2020 11 15 Mar 31, 2020 03:01PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Crossroads and the Dominion of Four
  • Found (House of Night Other World, #4)
  • Hawk (Maximum Ride: Hawk, #1)
  • Havenfall (Havenfall #1)
  • Supernatural Academy: Year Two (Supernatural Academy, #2)
  • Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined (The Twilight Saga)
  • Rage and Ruin (The Harbinger, #2)
  • The Iron King (The Iron Fey, #1)
  • The Conference of the Birds (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children, #5)
  • Carry On (Simon Snow, #1)
  • Dead Voices (Small Spaces, #2)
  • A Constellation of Roses
  • You Are Not Alone
  • Slumber
  • The Memory Thief
  • Anna K: A Love Story (Anna K, #1)
  • Highfire
  • Three Things I Know Are True
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Alechia Dow is a former pastry chef, food critic, culinary teacher, and Youth Services librarian. When not writing about determined black girls (like herself), you can find her chasing her wild child, baking, or taking teeny adventures around Europe.

Articles featuring this book

While books about anti-racism are trending on Goodreads and dominating the bestseller lists right now, some of our favorite Black authors are...
277 likes · 39 comments
“Until I became a librarian, I didn't know I was a rebel.” 7 likes
“Music and books, they transport you. They make you feel in ways you didn’t know you could.” 6 likes
More quotes…