If you’ve seen my previous posts, you’ll know that I read Skyward, by Brandon Sanderson , which is the first book in this series, a few weeks ago, and I really enjoyed it. It was my first time reading a Sanderson book, and I didn’t know what to expect of the next : was the enjoyable experience of Skyward only a fluke, or was the sequel going to be as good as it promised to be ?
So, naturally, when my library hold came through for this book, I started reading it ASAP
and ignored my university work for a whole day even though I really shouldn’t. And oh boy, I was not disappointed.
Fair warning : even though I try my best not to spoil the action of the book I’m reviewing, this review does contain spoilers for the first book in this series. Read at your own peril (and please don’t be like this reviewer on Goodreads who got angry at the author because the description of book 2 spoiled the ending of book 1. That’s just a big no.)
All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she’s a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing.
Spensa is sure there’s more to the story. And she’s sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she heard the stars–and it was terrifying. Everything Spensa has been taught about her world is a lie.
But Spensa also discovered a few other things about herself–and she’ll travel to the end of the galaxy to save humankind if she needs to.
What I liked
When I finished this book, I updated my goodreads list and added a few words about it on my account. You can find my abridged, right-after-reading review here.
One of my main critics from book one was that I had some difficulties maintaining my suspension of disbelief when the characters were thrown in some pretty unrealistic situations. The sequel avoids that problem by relying a little more heavily on its science-fiction elements and introducing a lot of new and colorful characters and places, which felt like a breath of fresh air after the confined atmosphere of the first book.
I really appreciated the fact that the main character’s powers, if you can call them powers, weren’t described as fantasy magical abilities, and more like something resembling the X gene in X-men – a mutation granting her the ability to do things others couldn’t, that put her in danger as much as helped her and her people. I loved learning more about what she could do, and how it was linked to her people’s past and their larger role in the universe.
The different species of aliens introduced in this new installment of the skyward series were super interesting to read about, and I loved the surprising turn into politics that this book went to. The much greater world-building helps a lot with the new themes the author tried to reach, and helped raise the stakes for the dramatic ending.
What I didn’t like
That being said, one of the thinks I liked from the previous book was the fact that the ending, while being an open ending preparing the characters for book 2, still felt like the characters arcs had been satisfyingly completed and the story arcs wrapped up.
This one ends on a cliffhanger, and to be honest… I’m not a big fan of those. I know a lot of authors love using them, and it keeps the readers engaged and wanting to read more, but it just gives me such an unsatisfied feeling that I can’t help but be a little disappointed every time a book ends on one.
I really enjoyed reading this, and I’d rate this book 4.5 stars – it was a fun sci-fi sequel that I’d recommend to anyone who likes YA and Science-Fiction. I wouldn’t recommend it if you’re looking for romance, though, as there is little to none of it in the whole 450 pages. Definitely a fun read !