Spinning Starlight by R. C. Lewis

Released Date: Oct 6th, 2015

Length: 336 pages

Age Group: Young Adults

Genres: Retelling, Sci-fi

Format: ARC (provided by Netgalley)

External Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N


Sixteen-year-old heiress and paparazzi darling Liddi Jantzen hates the spotlight. But as the only daughter in the most powerful tech family in the galaxy, it’s hard to escape it. So when a group of men show up at her house uninvited, she assumes it’s just the usual media-grubs. That is, until shots are fired.
Liddi escapes, only to be pulled into an interplanetary conspiracy more complex than she ever could have imagined. Her older brothers have been caught as well, trapped in the conduits between the planets. And when their captor implants a device in Liddi’s vocal cords to monitor her speech, their lives are in her hands: One word and her brothers are dead.
Desperate to save her family from a desolate future, Liddi travels to another world, where she meets the one person who might have the skills to help her bring her eight brothers home-a handsome dignitary named Tiav. But without her voice, Liddi must use every bit of her strength and wit to convince Tiav that her mission is true. With the tenuous balance of the planets deeply intertwined with her brothers’ survival, just how much is Liddi willing to sacrifice to bring them back?
Haunting and mesmerizing, this retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’sThe Wild Swans strings the heart of the classic with a stunning, imaginative world as a star-crossed family fights for survival in this companion to Stitching Snow.

This book is what you call The Unexpected. In a very, very good way.

Spinning Starlight is a sci-fi retelling of The Wild Swans. Oh yes, your eyes weren’t deceiving you. It’s science fiction AND retelling, the two genres that you would never thought could combine. I was really excited reading this book, and deeply appreciate the fact that it was based on a minor fairy tale (let’s be honest, there are too many Cinderella(s) and Little Mermaid(s) out there). However, in the end, I was left…conflicted.

Don’t get me wrong, the book was really good. Really good. But I guess it didn’t give me the “on the edge” kind of feeling, not that there isn’t one. Perhaps I wasn’t giving the book the full attention it deserves, or maybe the plot wasn’t really appealing to me as it seems. Nevertheless, it was a wonderful read.

Liddi Jantzen is the one and only heiress of a large technical company after her parents’ deaths. Her eight brothers (this is why I sign up for this) are tech-geniuses, who are working on a project about conduits, or of some sort, portals, a transportation for people between the seven worlds (imagine “planets”). However, on a fateful night, a group of armed men broke into the Jantzen’s house, and her eight brothers were found missing, Liddi’s world seemed to change. She discovered a horrible plan, where the most trusted person of her company was the one behind all of these, and nothing will stop her from achieving what she want, including hurting people around Liddi. Now, Liddi is the only hope for rescuing her brothers.

I love how detail and vivid Liddi’s mind and emotion is. Reading the original tale, I can’t really picture the stress that the princess has to overcome, and so I truly appreciate how amazing Liddi’s inner narrator is. At first, she was seen as a “princess”, the young heiress of a large, successful company, which gave out the “shallow and naive” kind of vibes. However, slowly throughout the book, her true personality was revealed, not only for us readers, but also for herself. She’s a brave young girl, who always willing to sacrifice herself in order to save the one she loves (not in a rash way). She’s also a decisive person, the personality’s trait in which I love the most. She takes responsible for her own choices, and carries out the plan all the way to the end. The character’s development was beautifully written.

Liddi didn’t really talk in the book. Not that she can with the device implanted in her vocal, alerts the “villain” anytime Liddi does so, which can leads to her brothers’ deaths. As I mentioned before with the original tale, Spinning Starlight truly brings to life the frustration, the patience that Liddi must gone through without her voice. How she interacts with people and problems around her (note that she doesn’t know how to write, since the society is too advance that everything was controlled by voice). It was really fascinating.

The only problem I have with this book is Tiav, Liddi’s love interest. He’s really cool and smart and patience, and I also give him the credit for truly look at people and love them for who they are (like Liddi). However, he’s kinda the under-the-radar character, even though he could be considered the “male protagonist”. I couldn’t feel the connection between the readers and characters with him. I guess he didn’t have the right amount of attention in the book for me to really get him. However, this doesn’t mean he’s not an awesome and sweet boyfriend (aww ❤ ).

In the end, this was a great book. I really enjoy it, the way the author mixed up the genres and set up the scenes and characters. Although I didn’t feel excited about the book as much as I should have, it was amazing. Recommend it all the way!

Ratings: 4/5 stars


Similar books: A Thousand Nights, Stitching Snow, Mechanica

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