Starglass by Phoebe North
Summary:.For generations, those aboard the Asherah have lived within strict rules meant to help them survive the journey from a doomed Earth to their promised land, the planet Zehava–which may or may not be habitable, a question whose imperative grows now, in the dwindling months before touchdown.
Sixteen-year-old Terra’s situation is tough. A dead mom. A grieving dad. A bitchy boss, and a betrothed who won’t kiss her no matter how bad she wants it. She’s doing her best to stay afloat, even when she gets assigned a vocation she has no interest in: botany. But after Terra witnesses the Captain’s guard murder an innocent man, she’s drawn into a secret rebellion bent on restoring power to the people. The stakes are higher than anything she could have imagined. When the rebellion gives Terra an all-important mission, she has to decide where her loyalties lie for once and for all.
Note: this was a DNF for me. I read about 30%, but couldn’t bring myself to read on.
I only started Starglass because of the author – Phoebe North. She is one of my favorite reviewers out in the blogosphere, and I was really interested in seeing how her debut novel would turn out.
Sadly, I just didn’t like it as much as I hoped I would. I think my main problem with Starglass was that I simply was never able to “click” with the concept. There was nothing in the plot – or the story as a whole – that interested me or made me feel like I wanted to read on. Simply put, I just didn’t care about the story or the characters in the story; and I think that made it harder for me to enjoy the story otherwise.
In my opinion, the plot was great – if not a little cliché and unoriginal – but it moved at a too-slow pace in my opinion. I felt it needed more action; more tension, and more originality to keep me interested. Hardly anything even happened in the 30% of the story that I actually did read.
Even though the summary seems to suggest otherwise, the plot wasn’t that original either. It’s something we’ve seen constantly in young adult literature these days – a ship traveling from Earth to another planet. Even though the idea isn’t that original in the first place, I feel like North could have made it original by putting her own twists and turns into the book to have made it less cliché. What disappointed me is that she didn’t. She followed the same old storyline we’ve seen so many times before – which really bothered me.
Originally, I picked up Starglass because the concept sounded at least somewhat interesting. Most people who know me or who know my tastes in books know that I despise Across the Universe by Beth Revis. In Across the Universe, the concept fascinated me, but the story and the execution just fell flat. This being said, I went into Starglass thinking it was going to be another Across the Universe – except better. And the thing is – it fell just as flat for me as Across the Universe did – if not even more. And this really disappointed me.
But I think the thing that annoyed me most was the constant references to Judaism. I just want to clarify – I have nothing against Judaism – or religion in general – whatsoever. I’m actually a pretty religious Christian myself, so the religion aspect didn’t really bother me. However, what bugged me was how “in-your-face” the religion aspect was. Literally on almost every single page there was a reference to Judaism (“mazel tov”; “mitzvah”, etc, etc); and that began to get on my nerves quite a lot.
All in all, Starglass wasn’t really my thing – but I suppose if you’re not bothered by constant religion references or a slow-paced plot than you might find it much more enjoyable than I did. But if that sounds like something that would probably bother you, than I’d definitely recommend you skip it.