Friday, January 9, 2015

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund: Review


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.

Inspired by Jane Austen's Persuasion, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.


"I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul" - Persuasion by Jane Austen

For Darkness Shows the Stars is inspired by Persuasion, I've actually never read Persuasion. Since I'm waiting impatiently for Reborn (Yes, I'm still waiting), I racked through some of the older YA books. And I found this. So why not give it a try? And... it's not a bad book. In fact it's actually quite a good book. But it's also one of those books that pisses me off so much, it brings out the worse of me.

Despite being a "romance novel", it is actually not the important element in the book. In this case it's a relief, given somebody is being a first-class douche-bag. I'd love to save myself from more heartache for Elliot and more insult scenes directed at that somebody, thanks. I like those letters between the young Elliot and Kai. Their innocence is simply endearing. Despite not being as important as I originally thought, they are still one of the better parts of the book. At least, they are both adorable in the letters. For a book with 400 pages long, not much has really happened. But there are some really good twists that I think might give those who haven't read the book a good shock. Most of them happened later in the book, when things are starting to (kind of) deteriorate and become something else. 

Why does it pisses me off though? There are so much bitterness in the book that I have a really hard time getting that negative feelings out of my head and focus on the plot. That's why I only give it a 3 out of 5 on Goodreads, despite having some really good words and nice plot twists. Mostly it's from Kai. I'll try not to launch into full lash-out mode here, because it probably will just fuel my anger. But Kai... the only other fictional guy who rivals his douchery is Jackson from Poison Princess (I apologize for offending the fans of Poison Princess). I understand that he's angry. But he's being unnecessarily mean to her. Intentionally so. It's so easy to hate him when Elliot has really good reasons not to leave with him four years ago and she's been really civil all the time. Just because he's furious doesn't mean he has the right to insult Elliot or spread lies about her. I'm actually very impressed Elliot can forgive him so quickly (she just have a really good heart). He doesn't her forgiveness. He doesn't deserve her at all. The book is filled with a lot of bitterness from Kai and a little from Elliot (which is understandable, considering someone's being a jerk). It makes it hard to enjoy it when it makes me angry.

I wouldn't exactly recommend this book. But it's got some really good stuff. I guess it deserves the overall 3.93/5 rating on Goodreads.

Rating: 6/10

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