Jena's Reviews > It Takes Death to Reach a Star

It Takes Death to Reach a Star by Stu Jones
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“The streets are dark and cold, shadows upon shadows concealing the horrors of Etyom. It’s hard to believe this place was once considered a haven.”

We find ourselves in a distant but believable future. One where a plague, powerful, resistant, crept over the world while we fought over things that in the end, didn’t matter. The cold and isolation of a distant city in the Northern reaches of Siberia, the only one to survive.

From this city, mankind has lived, though they’ve struggled. And two very different people emerged. The Graciles, wealthy and powerful, have been genetically modified and bred to be resistant to the plague. They live in towers far above the ground, called Lilypads. And, the Robusts. The rest of humanity left to fight and survive on the ground below.

Within the first two chapters, we get to know our two narrators, Mila and Demetri. The authors manage to provide us with quite a lot of information regarding this world and the people in it, but it isn’t bulky, distracting, or read like information download. Between what we know from the blurb, and the details filled in by our narrators, we are fully immersed in this world seamlessly and quickly.

“The world has changed, but the people in it didn’t. Information is still power–and money.”

This fast-paced transition and immersion are necessary and match the pacing of the entire book. It is intense, with a ton of fight scenes and some spectacular explosions. Many parts read like an action movie. You can see the scenes unfolding as they are narrated, which is something that isn’t always easily achieved. However, it is well rounded with character development, so it doesn’t feel all action all the time.

Mila is my favorite character in the book. She is strong and persistent, smart and adaptable. I really enjoyed every scene she was in. Demetri was a bit hit or miss with me. I didn’t mind him, but his character confused me and felt like he was missing something. He didn’t feel as well rounded, and in many scenes, felt like a contradiction. He was strong but weak, superior but inferior. Normally I love this type of dichotomy in a character, but he didn’t feel complete to me, so I had a hard time getting him solidified in my mind. I did love Vedmak though. I know, he’s not exactly a nice guy, but his lines were sharp and his character was focused, both of which I am very fond of in a villain.

“You think too much and act too little, Vedmak says.”

While this is a really fun book to read, it is going to appeal to readers who really enjoy action elements in a novel. This isn’t a bad thing, but there is a lot of focus on the action, with a lot of explanations rather than letting the characters show the reader what’s unfolding. The action and fighting are vivid and real, but if I had one criticism, I wish the dialogue and character development were just as strong.

If you’re looking to get caught up in a kick-ass book with a strong female character this book is for you. Fans of military type thrillers or books where the action is nonstop will fall in love with the intense fast-pace of this novel.

It Takes Death To Reach A Star is the first in a series. I am looking forward to the next book, especially with the ending we were given! I’m hoping to see much more Vedmak, and maybe start to feel a bit more connected with Demetri. And of course, GIVE ME MORE MILA!!!

Thank you to TLC Book Tours for including me on this blog tour, and for sending me a review copy!
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Reading Progress

May 17, 2018 – Started Reading
May 17, 2018 – Shelved
May 21, 2018 – Finished Reading

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message 1: by Gareth (new) - added it

Gareth Thank you for the in depth review!


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