Starsight by Brandon Sanderson // Book Review

The second book in the Skyward series and I’m so glad I read it before the third book arrived. I know that this is a four-book series, but it’s the first series in a really long time that I’m actually caught up!

Here’s more about Starsight

All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she’s a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing.

Spensa is sure there’s more to the story. And she’s sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she heard the stars–and it was terrifying. Everything Spensa has been taught about her world is a lie.

But Spensa also discovered a few other things about herself–and she’ll travel to the end of the galaxy to save humankind if she needs to.

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My thoughts

In many ways, I loved Starsight more than I loved Skyward. Skyward was so great introducing Spensa and the characters along Detritus. I loved learning about the world and the introductions to all the characters who will be playing a role. I especially loved the introduction of cytonic powers and how Spensa has the ability to hone it. That was a bit of a spoiler, but this is the second book so I highly suggest checking out the first book before you get into this one.

In Starsight, we go to space and OMG I was living for it. While the book starts off a little slow with Spensa fighting off more Krell ships and understanding how they’re all prisoners on a prison planet, the tiny group of people living on this planet finally realized that they needed to escape using the hyper drives that the Krell ships use to come in and out of Detritus’s space.

When a mysterious star fighter shows up at the planet, Spensa and the others find it an opportunity to infiltrate the Krell base and steal the hyper drives they need to escape Detritus. Using holograms to hide her identity, Spensa flies off to Starsight, a massive spaceship that houses a whole bunch of different alien species that live under the ruling of The Superiority. Here, Spensa is told that she’s being trained to help destroy the delvers; a shadowy creature that destroys everything in its path that have somehow started to show signs of being a threat again.

Ok, I did a lot of explaining, but this book has so much to unpack that I felt like I needed to explain the setup a little bit before I headed into the rest of the book. I really loved this story and I loved going deeper into this world with the different alien species and how they all co-exist together. Of course, there were the Krell that we all know from book one, but we’re also introduced to many others with different gender identities, government aspects, and personalities from Detritus. It was really interesting to see all the other aliens that occupy this space and how Brandon Sanderson dives deep into each type including their own history and traditions. I love this part about Brandon Sanderson’s writing. He’s so capable of creating worlds that can never exist, but also getting super deep into how they exist, how they live their lives, and how they’re not so different from us. It’s one of the strongest components of this book.

And as Spensa starts training to defeat the delver, you get to know these characters much deeper and how Spensa is able to learn and adapt to the worlds around her. While the training components of the story were a bit slow, I still loved reading these parts to see how Spensa reacts to different worlds and species within the universe. I loved how human Spensa is and how frustratingly wrong the aliens have it about the human race as well.

But the most intriguing part was the ending when things started to come together and you understand more about everything. You learn about what the Krell use for their hyper drives. You learn about the bigger plot that’s being laid out for us. You learn so much more about what Spensa is capable of and how her humanity really plays a part in saving the aliens and herself from the bigger threat. I also loved that there was a little political intrigue thrown in the mix as well.

Overall, I loved this story. It was action-filled with tons of exposition on the world. I loved learning more about Starsight and the aliens that existed on the space station. I absolutely love a spy story as well and I was completely on Spensa’s side the entire time hoping that she wouldn’t be caught too soon or too late for her to do anything. This definitely sets you up for the third book, but also just intensely good on its own as well. I cannot wait to see what book three has to offer.

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