Terra has never known anything but life aboard the Asherah, a city-within-a-spaceship that left Earth five hundred years ago in search of refuge. At sixteen, working a job that doesn't interest her, and living with a grieving father who only notices her when he's yelling, Terra is sure that there has to be more to life than what she's got.
But when she inadvertently witnesses the captain's guard murdering an innocent man, Terra is suddenly thrust into the dark world beneath her ship's idyllic surface. As she's drawn into a secret rebellion determined to restore power to the people, Terra discovers that her choices may determine life or death for the people she cares most about. With mere months to go before landing on the long-promised planet, Terra has to make the decision of a lifetime--one that will determine the fate of her people.
This book is good. It's not as good as other books of the spaceship genre, like Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder, or Across the Universe by Beth Revis, but if you are looking for something to pass the time, or fill your spaceship void, I would definitely recommend Starglass. The setting of this book was suitably claustrophobic and was developed so well, I really felt as though I was on Asherah with Terra and the story was developed beautifully.
I did get confused or lost quite a few times, sometimes there just seemed to be a little but too much going on. I love reading about the flaws in the society and all the secrets and the science, but at times I would have liked to get on with the main story, rather than sit around and read North's attempt at making this book different from similar books in the genre. In my opinion, the plot was good and decent but it wasn't all that unique so it's not really the type of book that's going to stand right out in an already inundated genre. In my opinion, the only thing that really sets this book apart is the fact that a lot is based on Judaism.
Starglass has some amazing characters, and this is what I liked about it, Though Terra did annoy me at times, everything she did had a purpose, and it;s so difficult to find characters that actually help themselves. I also really liked her best friend Rachel, Koen and Van were also great characters and without posting any spoilers I can honestly say that my heart broke for the two of them. North does a great job of weaving together the relationships of the many characters and making seem multi-dimensional, that is one thing I have to applaud her on.
So why is this book just not getting a higher rating? Well, mostly because even though it was fun and interesting, it wasn't particularly gripping. The twists were inevitable and anybody who is well read in YA-sci-fi-dystopian-rebel novels can see a lot of what is going to happen way in advance. I guess it all comes down to the fact that Starglass just doesn't shine - it isn't all that different from a lot of what is out there.
Still, I would definitely recommend this book for people looking to fill their spaceship fix. Definitely fans of Across the Universe, Inside Out or even Spark.
Overall Rating: C
Book released 23rd July 2013 by Simon and SchuesterBook received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review (Edelweiss)