Author: Pintip Dunn
Genre: YA Fantasy/Science Fiction
Release Date: October 2nd, 2018
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Source: E-galley from publisher
My rating: 4.5 stars
can be transferred via a pill, and society is split into Eaters and Non-Eaters,
seventeen-year-old Princess Vela has a grave dilemma. Her father, the king, is
dying, and only a transplant of organs from a healthy Non-Eater boy will save
Vela is tasked with choosing a boy fit to die
for the king, which is impossible enough. But then Carr, the boy she’s loved
all her life, emerges as the best candidate in the Bittersweet Trials. And he’s
determined to win, because by doing so, he can save the life of his Non-Eater
Refusing to accept losing the boy she loves,
Vela bends the rules and cheats. But when someone begins to sabotage the
Trials, Vela must reevaluate her own integrity—and learn the true sacrifice of
becoming a ruler.
This is my first Pintip Dunn book, and I can understand why I’ve heard such great things! Star-Crossed has all the expected parts of a YA science fiction story, with a very unique and surprising ending. I was very intrigued by the story from the very beginning. We got a pretty clear run-down of what had happened to the people on this spaceship when they landed earlier than planned, and had no way to make all the food to feed all the people they had brought with them. However it wasn’t bogged down as much as some science fiction can be. The author gave just enough background info to make it clear why things had to be the way they were, in order to get the story going. More details were distilled as the story went on.
As I began reading, I immediately thought the pills everyone had to take sounded pretty yucky, I guess partly from how they were made! The story soon morphed into a bit of a competition, with our main character, Princess Vela, being expected to make the final call on who would be the person giving up their life to save the King. By doing this, she would be showing the Council if she was the right person to take over the throne when her father died, or if her sister, who had always been a part of the running of the colony, should step up.
Making the decision itself wasn’t the only obstacle for Vela though. There was her best friend’s ever-growing sickness. There was the fact that her best friend’s brother, Carr, a boy she’d always looked at as if he was someone special, possibly being the best choice to sacrifice his life so her father could live. But could she choose him as the Fittest, with her feelings, and either way, could she allow the competition to be run fairly?
Competing with her sister, who had been given another task to complete to prove that she was the better successor to their father, opened up a story-line of possible sabotage. So the competition was not just about which boy would have to sacrifice their lives, but if her sister would do something to make Vela’s choice harder, or look as if she wasn’t fit based on how she handled it. And there was someone else it seemed messing with all the competitions. But why were they doing the things they did, and who was it?
I kind of guessed who it could be, once I realized that it might not be her sister. But the way things took a turn at the very end, putting Carr’s life on the line earlier than normal, along with the death of another major character, I didn’t see the way the twist would go at the end. And I really liked it! I feel like the story showed all the ways to be a great leader, and brought up so many moral dilemmas that would be hard to keep straight and still think of your own friends and family.
A great science-fiction read, with some really unique ideas and a plot to keep you on your toes until the very end!
About the Author:
Pintip Dunn is a New York Times bestselling author of young adult fiction. She
graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B.,
and received her J.D. at Yale Law School.
novel FORGET TOMORROW won the 2016 RWA RITA® for Best First Book, and SEIZE
TODAY won the 2018 RITA for Best Young Adult Romance. Her books have been
translated into four languages, and they have been nominated for the following
awards: the Grand Prix de l’Imaginaire; the Japanese Sakura Medal; the MASL
Truman Award; the Tome Society It list; and the Romantic Times Reviewers’
Choice Award. Her other titles include REMEMBER YESTERDAY, THE DARKEST LIE,
GIRL ON THE VERGE, and the upcoming STAR-CROSSED and MALICE.
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