Sunday, March 31, 2013
And All the Stars by Andrea K. Host
And All the Stars by Andrea K. Host
The original synopsis is quite the entrapping one with opening lines like this:
Come for the apocalypse.
Stay for cupcakes.
Die for love.
How can you not become instantly curious? I know my already interested mind was ensnared. Madeline “Maddie” Cost is an aspiring artist. It is her dream to win the Archibald Prize, which would make her the youngest winner ever. Her famous cousin, Tyler, is the perfect subject for her portrait and all she needs is to get him to sit down for it. She never expected the Spires to come. The Spires are huge and they spray dust over the lands. No one knows where the Spires come from, but Maddie has to find a way out of St. James Station in Sydney first. When she does what she discovers is a new world and an ending one. This book is something incredibly different from what I would usually read and it is also incredibly unique. Everything about And All the Stars screams originality when it comes to the destruction of our world as we know it. One of my favorite things about this novel is the time line of the book. Instead of our usual YA book where it’s about rebuilding this was about fighting something while it is happening and I loved that. It was refreshing and a great sci-fi novel. I don’t read sci-fi and prefer it on the TV or in movies, but I enjoyed this book. One of my biggest qualms with this book was how much was just running and not fighting, but I can appreciate this because it was a part of the Musketeers journey. It also took me a whole month to read this book because I happen to be fairly busy in the month of March. I’m busier than I expected to be so I didn’t have time to just sit there and be immersed in the world filled with Spires and Blues and Greens. This book is very quick and happens in a period of less than a month, but it feels like weeks with all the plotting and discovering. This isn’t a bad thing at all. In fact I love that it wasn’t a long and drawn out takeover of the earth, but a much quicker one. It seemed more realistic, well about as realistic as aliens and invasions can get.
The main female character is Maddie. Maddie is a good heroine, but I lost interest in her and then I would regain it. One of my favorite things about Maddie is her passion for art. Even when the world is ending she finds beauty and paints or draws it. Maddie was a lot more relatable than I would expect a girl in her position to be. I know that if I was in her position I would’ve been just as scared as her and she was incredibly brave at times. I admire her for that because her bravery is more impulsive than to prove that she’s a hero. She wants to save her friends and that’s admirable considering that she’s only known them a few days.
Kick-Butt Heroine Scale: 9
The main male character is Fisher. I’m not incredibly sure where I stand where Fisher is concerned. I’m as hopelessly confused as Maddie was, but I still haven’t come to a conclusion about my feelings for him. In my opinion, I liked him before the big reveal of big reveals (if you’ve read the book you’ll know what I’m talking about). I didn’t particularly think Fisher was a great love interest, but I liked the connection that he shared with Maddie. Guess what you guys? This book has sex. Not very descriptive adult romance kind of sex, but it isn’t that weird awkward sex that we sometimes get in YA. I was pleased by this and hats off to Ms. Host for doing it pretty well and not making it seem out of place. I’m still not sure about how I feel about Fisher. It shall forever remain a conflict within me I guess.
Swoon Worthy Scale: 7
The Villain- I loved the villains because they were well done in where they came from and what their purpose of invasion was. It was interesting, fresh, and new. I loved it. The En-Motts were captivatingly creepy and I loved what they brought to the table. It was so good and I don’t want to spoil if you haven’t read the book and want to or are thinking about it (which I urge you to do).
Villain Scale: 9.5
There was a very wide cast of characters, but I’m going to discuss the main ones, which are mainly the Musketeers. Our first Musketeer that Maddie met was Noi. I really liked Noi. She was funny and even though she was in pain at times from losses, she was cheerful in presence. Then there was Emily and I didn’t hate or particularly like Emily. I’m neutral towards her because I felt like she was just there. Even when she was making a presence I wasn’t moved by it except for when we first met her. Nash was incredibly insightful besides Fisher and their two heads together was better than none. Pan was probably my favorite of them all. He was so funny and upbeat and just full of energy. I loved his passion for theatre and how he would sprout lines from plays at any given moment. Min was like Emily for me, but he made more of an impact because of his sarcasm and smart logic when he did speak. I liked him and wished he was around more. Then we have someone who wasn’t a Musketeer, but was still crucial. Maddie’s cousin, Tyler, wasn’t around a whole lot in the novel but he had a big impact on Maddie so he had a presence. I did like him, but he wasn’t around a whole for me to make a huge decision about how much.
Character Scale: 8
The ending wrapped up perfectly and I’m satisfied with it. I definitely enjoyed And All the Stars and I recommend giving it a shot even if you don’t like sci-fi. I usually don’t, but I was intrigued and I’m so glad I gave this a shot. This is definitely a great novel and it shouldn’t be overlooked. I will definitely be reading more of Host’s works.
Cover Thoughts: I absolutely love the cover. It’s one of my all-time favorites. The stars are perfect on Maddie’s face and fit the story perfectly. It fits with the tale of the Blues without giving it away.