If it's good, I'll read it! Instagram: @crystenasbooks
Author: Tessa Elwood
Rating: 5 Stars
I received this book free from NetGalley in the hope that I would review it. The opinion that this is one of the best YA novels I've read this year is purely my own.
Blurb: "Three royal houses ruling three interplanetary systems are on the brink of collapse, and they must either ally together or tear each other apart in order for their people to survive.
Asa is the youngest daughter of the house of Fane, which has been fighting a devastating food and energy crisis for far too long. She thinks she can save her family’s livelihood by posing as her oldest sister in an arranged marriage with Eagle, the heir to the throne of the house of Westlet. The appearance of her mother, a traitor who defected to the house of Galton, adds fuel to the fire, while Asa also tries to save her sister Wren's life . . . possibly from the hands of their own father.
But as Asa and Eagle forge a genuine bond, will secrets from the past and the urgent needs of their people in the present keep them divided?"
The writing in this YA novel is unusual. It's disjointed, fragmented at times - reminiscent of Taherah Mafi's Shatter Me trilogy. It's also beautiful. I loved it.
I found the story to be original for a YA story, definitely of the space opera/sci-fi genre. The story is told from Asa's point of view and the disjointed writing really lets you in on her thoughts and emotions. I loved the characters. They were flawed and short-sighted at times. I loved how people's motives sloooowly revealed themselves, changing who you felt was villain and hero. I also enjoyed the love story's slow build. There was no triangle, proving you can write a compelling YA romance sans a triangle. Again, loved it.
The plot moved at a steady pace, then quickly at the end. The science part of the story took me a few reads to get my head around. It wasn't skimmable, as some of it needed to be understood in order to understand an important aspect of the climax. I didn't find that to be a bad thing, but it may put some people off. The political intrigue was also well done. I could not put the book down for the last hundred pages. The ending came way too quickly.
I want the sequel now. I hope it comes out soon. Please?
I would definitely read another one of Ms. Elwood's novels.