SYNOPSIS: When Princess Cassia Rose fled her home world of Eturia to escape an arranged marriage, she had no idea her sudden departure would spark a war. Now after two years hiding as a ship hand, she is finally returning to her beloved home but not in the way she imagined. Shackled by bounty hunters, she is violently dragged back to account for her crimes. Her only solace is that the Banshee crew managed to evade capture, including Kane Arric, her best friend…with occasional benefits.
Meanwhile, Kane and the rest of the crew of the Banshee plan a desperate rescue mission. But when they arrive on Eturia, Cassia isn’t exactly in need of heroics–she’s claimed her birthright as Eturia’s queen, but has inherited a war-torn planet simmering with rebellion. Cassia must make alliances, and Kane, the bastard son of a merchant, isn’t a choice that will earn her any friends. Kane knows he will never find someone to replace Cassia–and is certain she returns his feelings–but how can he throw away his own promising future waiting on a queen?
When the outer realm is threatened by the dangerous Zhang mafia, Cassia, Kane and the rest of the Banshee crew uncover a horrifying conspiracy that endangers the entire universe. In the face of unspeakable evil, Cassia must confront her own family’s complicated legacy on Eturia and decide once and for all who her real family is.
Starfall by Melissa Landers
Series Starflight #2
Format Hardcover, 368 pages
Publisher Disney-Hyperion (February 7th 2017)
Read Feb 7 to Feb 8, 2017
In Starflight, the first book, we were reading from the point of view of Solara and Doran, a mechanical genius and a blue-blood who come aboard the Banshee under interesting circumstances. In Starfall, we are experiencing the galaxy through the eyes of Kane and Cassia, a star-crossed seducer and a displaced princess-turned queen. The transition of the points of view across two novels was a unique concept that I quite enjoyed. It allows you to experience two characters that you didn’t discover a ton about in book one, while still keeping the others in the mix.
The writing, as Melissa Lander’s writing always is, very well-voiced. Her style is unique and really shines through in all of her novels, not just the Starflight duology. Landscapes are descriptive, fights are epic, and characters develop further and further while still managing to surprise us now and again. Overall the skill and technique is a ten out of ten.
The only bad thing that I have to say about the novel is the timeline transitions. One minute Cassia is being held captive by her fiancé, then escapes and the chapter ends. Then immediately in the next chapter, she’s Queen and struggling to put her country back together. This sort of thing happens a few times in the majority of the book, but I understand the familiar concept: make a sudden plot introduction, then develop the backstory of it later. Nevertheless, I thought that it made the novel just the slightest bit choppy and a little confusing at times.
In the long run, I give Starfall a 4/5. We explore Cassia and Kane’s points of view, and also get to learn a lot more about our beloved kleptomaniac Renny, which I thought was a well-deserved. Although some of the timeline seemed askew, the excellent writing skill and talent made up for it in this wonderful continuation of the Starflight series.