Monday, July 16, 2012

Review: For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

For Darkness Shows the Stars
Diana Peterfreund
June 12, 2012
Balzer + Bray
402 pages
Synopsis: It's been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.

Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family's estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot's estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth--an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.

But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret--one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she's faced with a choice: cling to what she's been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she's ever loved, even if she's lost him forever.


     For Darkness Shows the Stars is beautifully written with a unique concept. I definitely felt the Jane Austen influence and although technically a dystopian novel, it felt more like a historical one. It took a little too long to get to the point, and I might have even been a bit bored at first, but the writing is so pretty that I kept on. I loved the secret notes between the young Elliot and Kai at first, but going back and forth in time became annoying and I found myself wanting to skip those sections, but I didn't because they often had helpful back story, which clearly was the author's use for them. They are also some of the only true interaction you actually see of Elliot and Kai that isn't obscured by misconception. By the end of the novel, I wanted to scream at the characters to put aside their pride, open their eyes, and just communicate already!  
     This is a love story, yes, but set against a very interesting struggle between science and religion, painted in a way that I was not exactly sure at first which side the author wanted to win (even later, the message is subtle enough and open to interpretation that I doubt anyone reading it would be offended). I kept picturing the Luddites (of which Elliot is one) as Amish, and although I think that possibly was the intent, I found it a little distracting. 
     After it was over, I was wishing for a sequel - not only to see more of Elliot and Kai, but I actually want to know what happens to this world that Ms. Peterfreund has created. I cannot remember the last time I read a book where that happened. For Darkness Shows the Stars sends a powerful message that will having you thinking way past the last page. 

For Darkness Shows the Stars: 4/5 stars
Cover: 5/5 

Audience: PG-13 (some violence and tough concepts)

*Special thanks to Krista from Nawanda Files for the giveaway of this great book! 

No comments:

Post a Comment