Caitsbooks Reviews Soul of Stars (Heart of Iron #2( by Ashley Poston - 4.5 Stars

Soul of Stars (Heart of Iron #2) by Ashley Poston – One Of My Most Anticipated 2019 Releases (Review)

Overall: 4.5/5 Stars
Characters: 4/5
Setting: 5/5
Writing: 5/5
Plot and Themes: 4/5
Awesomeness Factor: 4.5/5
Review in a Nutshell: Soul of Stars is an out-of-this-world sequel. And I’m not sorry for that pun.

[ Related: Heart of Iron (Heart of Iron #1) by Ashley Poston – Review ]

// Content Warning: Violence, Death //

“Love was stubborn, and love was impatient, and thoughtless and self-centered and vainglorius. It hid in the crevices of your soul when you thought it had run away, and it never left– like a scar: deep and ugly and enduring.”

Release Date: 7/23/2019
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Page Count: 400 pages
Premise:
Soul of Stars takes place several months after the heartbreaking events of Heart of Iron. Our main characters are still trying to deal with what happened (honestly, so am I), all while trying to save their friend and the kingdom. 

Read more for all of my thoughts on this book!

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these broken stars review amie kaufman meagan spooner caitsbooks 5 stars

These Broken Stars (Starbound #1) by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner – A 5 (Unbroken) Star Read!

I’m sorry for that title. The pun was just there and I had no choice.

Overall: 5/5 Stars
Characters: 5/5
Setting: 5/5
Writing: 5/5
Plot and Themes: 5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 4/5
Review in a Nutshell: These Broken Stars was the first Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner book I ever read, and it made me fall in love with this author duo. It’s funny, adorable, heartbreaking, and slightly ominous- basically everything you could ask for in a book.

“But who names a starship the Icarus? What kind of man possess that much hubris, that he dares it to fall?” 

[Related: Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (Review)]

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// Content Warning: Violence, Death, PTSD //

“You don’t mention death when it’s hovering near someone you love. You don’t want to attract the reaper’s attention.”

Release Date: 12/10/2013
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Page Count: 384
Premise:

These Broken Stars is what you would get if you put Titanic in space (except, with a lot more Man vs. Wild in there too). Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen are from two different worlds. Lilac has lived in luxury her whole life, as the daughter of the richest man in the galaxy. Meanwhile, Tarver is a soldier who came from nothing. But their two worlds collide on the Icarus, a luxury space-liner. However, the Icarus itself then collides with a planet in the middle of nowhere. Lilac and Tarver are lucky to survive the crash, but can they stay alive on this mysterious planet?

Read more for all of my thoughts on this book!

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Defy Me by Tahereh Mafi – Review

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Quick Stats:
Overall:
 4/5 Stars
Characters: 4.5/5
Setting: 5/5
Writing: 4.5/5
Plot and Themes: 3.5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 3/5
Review in a Nutshell: Defy Me is a fascinating new installment in theShatter Me universe that has me so excited for the next book!

“Happiness does not happen. Happiness must be uncovered, separated from the skin of pain. It must be claimed. Kept close. Protected.”

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Last of Her Name by Jessica Khoury – ARC Review

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*All quotes are taken from the ARC and are subject to change. I received this ARC in exchange for an honest review. All reviews are unbiased and my honest opinion.*

Overall: 4/5 Stars
Characters: 4.5/5
Setting: 4/5
Writing: 4/5
Plot and Themes: 4.5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 4/5
Review in a Nutshell: Last of Her Name is a fun, fast-paced space adventure that is perfect for running through in one sitting.

“If there’s one thing you need to know about me, it’s that I always press the red button.”  

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Review: Zenith by Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings

31394234Overall: 4/5 Stars
Characters: 4/5
Setting: 4/5
Writing:
3/5
Plot and Themes: 4/5
Awesomeness Factor: 4/5
Review In A Nutshell:  Zenith is an action-packed, epic young adult science fiction novel that follows Androma Racella, also known as the Bloody Baroness. This book was filled with constant adventure and surprise.

“Remember, Xen Pterrans, and never forget, that even the stars can bleed!”

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Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

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When I first got this book, I was intrigued by the format but honestly didn’t know what to expect. Now, almost three years after reading book one, this series has been cemented as of my all-time favorites.

Overall: 5/5 Stars
Characters: 5/5
Setting: 5/5
Writing:
5/5
Plot and Themes: 5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 5/5
Review In A Nutshell: Illuminae is an epic, impactful novel sure to be one of you favorites.

“Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.”

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Review: Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston

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Overall: 4.5/5 Stars

Characters: 4/5

Setting: 4/5

Writing: 5/5

Plot and Themes: 5/5

Awesomeness Factor: 5/5

Review In A Nutshell: Heart of Iron is an extremely fast-paced read, full of mystery, adventure, and action, all set in a fascinating sci-fi universe. But at the heart, this book is truly about home, love, family.

“I’ll always come back for you. I promise you on iron and stars.”

(anyone else singing In A Crowd Of Thousands after reading this quote? Just me? Okay…)

Heart of Iron follows four different characters and is a loose, sci-fi retelling of Anastasia. I’ve recently become obsessed with Anastasia, so this premise really did hold the key to my heart. First, there is Ana, who was found as a child with no memories of her past and raised by a crew of outlaws. She was found with D09, also known as Di, a Metal who is suffering from severe glitches and may not be able to function for much longer. Then there are Jax and Robb. Jax is the pilot of the outlaw ship the Dossier, and Robb is an Ironblood, a royal mess, who is looking to see if his father survived the rebellion so many years ago. The same rebellion that killed the royal family including the young Ananke, who was thought to be the Goddess herself. When Robb and Ana collide while searching for the same coordinates, Ana has no choice but to journey to the past to discover things about her she never would have thought could be true.

Since this is a sci-fi story, there are a few different planets and species to understand, however, the setting was never really that big of an aspect of the book. While the locations the characters went to were explained well, there isn’t much explanation of the rest of the universe. This was something I expected going in, considering Ashley Poston had previously only published a contemporary and she really just had to jump in and learn to do it. This isn’t a bad thing, the focus is instead on the plot and characters, which I enjoyed. The writing style was descriptive and very fun to read, but despite the technology and science aspects, a lot of this book focused on court and politics. This does make sense since it’s based on Anastasia, which is a historical fiction with just a touch of fantasy.

The plot was extremely fast-paced, to the point where it did feel a little jarring jumping into it. There is constant action and not a slow moment in the book. However, this does lead to some of the relationships to feel a little rushed. After less than a hundred pages through the book, it starts to feel more natural, but it does take a second to adjust. This does, however, make the book almost impossible to put down. Despite how much you know about Anastasia and think you know exactly what will happen, there is an abundance of unpredictable turns. A lot of the story differs from the original tale, which is really important for good retellings. No matter how badly I want a word for word YA book version of Anastasia (someone please write that!), what Poston added and changed really makes it stand out. Less of this book revolves around the rumor and the legend, instead focusing more on the mystery of the rebellion and what truly happened that night.

The characters in this book are so fun to read about. While, as I mentioned before, some of their relationships feel a little rushed, these characters are still awesome, and I still adore the friendships and love stories that this book creates. There are plenty of diverse characters, and a gay relationship so that made me super happy. Ana and Di were adorable, and I was shipping them the whole time. Robb and Jax felt a little more rushed initially, but I don’t care, I still loved them. The rapid switching of point of views may not work for everyone, but I really enjoyed their different perspectives and found it added a lot of suspense (to the point of frustration, but I guess that’s the point).I especially loved reading from Di’s point of view, I found it the most interesting, but this could also be because I just adored Di as a character. There were a lot of great minor characters as well, and all of them were well developed. I swear, every single time there was a scene with Di and EOS I couldn’t help but smile. My only complaint with the side characters was that due to the fast plot, whenever a character died I felt like there was never enough time to really have it sink in, although I guess that would be the same for the characters, so it isn’t that much of a complaint.

Also, THAT ENDING!!! Ashley Poston really pulled no punches with that ending and I both love and hate her for it.

Pros– Fun characters, interesting world, gripping and compelling plot

Cons– Relationships felt rushed, the pacing was almost too fast

Overall- 4.5/5 stars.

If you are looking for a fun, action-packed read with cute relationships and a fascinating mystery, Heart of Iron is the perfect book for you.

Also, be glad I only included a few unnecessary musical-based puns in this. Now excuse me as I continue to freak out over the ending and continue with my countdown until the sequel is released.

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Note: This review was originally written for my other blog, and had been written months ago. Follow my blog to see new reviews twice a week, and please be patient as I transfer over old posts to the new website!

Review: Defy the Worlds by Claudia Gray

35959679Overall: 5/5 Stars
Characters: 5/5
Setting: 5/5
Writing:
5/5
Plot and Themes: 5/5
Awesomeness Factor: 5/5
Review In A Nutshell:  Defy the Worlds is a fantastic sequel to an equally fantastic book. It’s action-packed, adorably romantic, and full of fun (and slightly terrifying) science and technology.

“As he understands it, love is not transactional; it is a thing freely given. The joy is in the giving.”

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