Thursday, February 11, 2016

Review: Starflight

By Melissa Landers
Published: February 2, 2016

Solara Brooks needs a fresh start, someplace where nobody cares about the engine grease beneath her fingernails or the felony tattoos across her knuckles. The outer realm may be lawless, but it's not like the law has ever been on her side.

Still, off-world travel doesn't come cheap; Solara is left with no choice but to indenture herself in exchange for passage to the outer realm. She just wishes it could have been to anyone besides Doran Spaulding, the rich, pretty-boy quarterback who made her life miserable in school.

The tables suddenly turn when Doran is framed for conspiracy on Earth, and Solara cons him into playing the role of her servant on board the Banshee, a ship manned by an eccentric crew with their own secrets. Given the price on both Doran and Solara's heads, it may just be the safest place in the universe.

It's been a long time since Solara has believed in anyone, and Doran is the last person she expected to trust. But when the Banshee's dangerous enemies catch up with them, Solara and Doran must come together to protect the ship that has become their home-and the eccentric crew that feels like family.

My review:

I am a big fan of Alienated and Invaded so I was pretty excited about getting an ARC of Starflight for review. After reading the author's comments that she pitched this to her publisher as "Overboard meets Firefly", I wanted to read it even more. While I am not familiar with Firefly (it was a short-lived scifi show starring Nathon Fillian that was set in space), I have watched the Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell romantic comedy Overboard several times. 

Solara has had a hard life. She was abandoned by her parents and grew up in an orphanage run by nuns. Her big break was getting a scholarship to a prestigious school where she meets spoiled Doran Spaulding and gets on his bad side by beating him to win an award sponsored by his father. Doran retaliates by his cruel taunts and basically makes her life a living hell. When Solara leaves school and ages out of the system, she decides her best bet is to move to the outer realm. Unfortunately to afford the travel costs she has to indenture herself and Doran is her only option. 

Doran is a jerk to Solara, calling her "rat tail" when he sees her again and forcing her to pick up his messy room or answer his summons at all hours of the day. Things start to change when Solara books passage for them on the Banshee and Doran find out he is being hunted for a crime he didn't commit. The crew of the Banshee are welcoming especially with Solara's gift for fixing the ship. As Doran and Solara adjust to life on the Banshee and on the run, their animosity gradually turns into friendship and then romance but what will happen when they reach the outer realms and must part ways? Things are complicated by the charges against Doran and his dad's mission for him as well as the pirates chasing the Banshee and the enforcers who are on their trail.

Starflight is full of action, adventure and humor. I liked both of the main characters though Doran is initially not very nice. Solara is strong but not without flaws. She reminded me of both Cinder and Scarlet from the Lunar Chronicles. The romance between Doran and Solara develops naturally so it is believable that two people can go from mutual hate to love. The secondary characters are interesting, especially the ship's crew. I wanted to know what they were hiding and what their backgrounds were. 

My only slight complaint is a character that is introduced towards the end of the book and how things are resolved with Doran and the "crime". Thankfully there is a companion novel that will hopefully elaborate on that. Overall I thought this was a fun and fantastic novel perfect for fans of YA science fiction like Alienated or the Lunar Chronicles. There aren't any aliens and I think it was easy to get into the story so I could see this being a good pick for readers who don't typically read science fiction as well.

Note: I received an ARC for review purposes courtesy of the publisher and Netgalley


  1. Excellent review! I'm eager to start reading this book now :) Doran sounds intriguing.

    Majanka @ I Heart Reading

  2. I haven't read Alienated, but I do enjoy the Lunar Chronicles series. I've been on the fence of reading this book, but the more I hear about it, the more curious I get. I will have to check this out and see if I can order it for my library. Great review!

  3. Awesome review! I have been curious about this book. I have been reading more sci-fi, but never got around to Alienated, so I will have to check this one out. I love Overboard!! I also love that you compare Solara to Cinder and Scarlet (reading Scarlet now and love her!)

  4. I like the idea of the mysterious crew and the idea of being on the run. Sounds fun and while I'm not the biggest fan of the spoiled guy who is a jerk but then they fall in love, it sounds like it works in this one and is developed properly. I think I'll be adding this one to my list, that synopsis does intrigue me and based on your review I think I'd like this one.

  5. Great review! I'm becoming curious about this one.


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