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Sky Without Stars

Tekijä: Jessica Brody

Muut tekijät: Katso muut tekijät -osio.

Sarjat: System Divine (1)

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"This sweeping reimagining of Les Misérables tells the story of three teens from very different backgrounds who are thrown together amidst the looming threat of revolution on the French planet-colony of Laterre"--
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Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 7) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
Rereading in anticipation of release of book 3! Loved it just as much the son time! ( )
  DebCushman | Aug 25, 2022 |
Brody, Jessica, and Joanne Rendell. Sky without Stars. System Divine No. 1. Simon Pulse, 2019.
It is not unusual for science fiction writers to rummage through classic literature for inspiration. The Odyssey has been done many times as a space opera. Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series drew heavily on Gibbon’s Decline and Fall. Brody and Rendell are not too far out of bounds by doing Les Misérables. We have a decadent society on the planet of Laterre that very much resembles 18th-century France, complete with a guillotine that has been enhanced with laser technology. Hugo is not only turned into space opera but young adult space opera at that. All the major characters are teens or children. Only a few of the villains are adults. Marcus is a young officer, Alouette lives in a convent that is not what it seems, and Chatine is a thief who knows her way around the underworld. Authors Brody and Rendell have the chops to do what promises to be a long series, but I wonder if it will make Simon and Schuster a profit unless a film deal can be cut. The story reads well with plenty of romance and adventure, but it seems aimed at an older audience than Harry Potter, which may mean lower sales. ( )
  Tom-e | Dec 3, 2020 |
I loved this.
It's a billon pages long and I want more.
ugh.
gimmeeeeeee

Chatine is my fav I think. Sassypants and a shit disturber. My kinda girl. ( )
  Shahnareads | Oct 22, 2019 |
Yes, Sky Without Stars is a retelling of Les Misérables set in space. Yes, it has your Jean Valjean, your Javert, your Marius, your Cosette, and your Eponine characters. Yes, it has an infamous criminal hiding from the police, a clueless adopted daughter, a member of the upper class questioning everything he knows about class, and a female street urchin caught up among all their stories. But what starts as a retelling becomes so much more.

What it becomes is a reminder of the power of the printed word. It is a call to remember history as accurately as possible because when you forget the past, you allow those who have not to gain control over you. It is the ease with which the monied exploit the poor and the many ways those in the middle ignore the exploitation. It is another example of how often history repeats itself without proper education and diligence.

It is a story about resources – people, money, food, and natural – and the dangers of having too much or too little. It is the lengths people will go to survive when desperate. It is the relationships that bind us to one another, whether we want them to do so or not. It is about secrets and political machinations that run deeper than anyone knows and the dangers of uncovering such plots.

Lastly, it is a space opera. Set in a different universe, on a plant that never sees the light of a sun, the permanent darkness plays a significant role in the mood of the people and the tone of the novel. Survival on a planet with limited resources is an aspect of the story that did not exist in the original. Nor did space travel, computer systems, embedded technology, androids, and other space elements. These add their own twist to the novel that makes it even larger and more spectacular than Hugo’s masterpiece.

Jessica Brody and Joanne Rendell do an excellent job taking Hugo’s story and making it their own. I like that they focus on the three younger characters rather than on the dynamic between hunter and hunted. I particularly like how they flesh out each of those characters, making them less insipid, more complex, more morally ambiguous, more human. I also enjoy how they downplayed the love story to focus on the political interplay. Best of all, by the time the novel ends, the story is heading in directions Hugo never went, making it original and providing enough unanswered questions to make anyone anticipate the sequel.
  jmchshannon | May 1, 2019 |
“‘What good would it do to send you back there? You’ll only escape again. I’ve chased you across Laterre. Hunted you down for far too long. You’ve evaded me one too many times, LeGrand.’ Limier clicked his neck to the side, and Alouette could swear she heard metal parts grinding. ‘I’m done chasing you. This is where the hunt ends.’”

There are a lot of similarities between the Les Miserables and Sky Without Stars, but enough of a change so you don’t feel like you’re just reading the same book in a different setting, which is a big leap forward when compared without retellings. Where Les Miserables seems more centered around Jean ValJean (LeGrand) and Javert (Limier), Sky Without Starts is more centered around Chatine (Eponine), Alouette (Cosette), and Marcellus (Marius).

In this book, the revolution hasn’t really started. It sets up all the characters’ pasts, they reveal secrets about themselves, and like pieces on a chess board, they’re put in position for the revolution to begin.

Chatine is the character that really makes the story take flight. Much like the Les Mis version of Eponine, she’s hard and streetsmart. She definitely has a deep grey area when it comes to morals, but unlike her parents, she does seem to have a line that she won’t cross.

Marcellus is much like Marius in that I don’t care for him much. Maybe I have a thing against love-sick rich kids. I do have to give props to the authors for giving Marellus a deep back story with his father and grandfather.

I feel about Alouette much as I do Marcellus. She seems to have a stronger personality than I remember Cosette having in the book, and she’s more inquisitive instead of just accepting things as they are; but she also just has that love-sick personality that grates on my nerves.

The world building in this book is amazing! Laterre the planet where the story takes place. It’s widely influenced by French culture, but spun so there’s no doubt you’re in a sci-fi setting. There are three suns in the sky that no one has seen for years due to thick grey clouds, making the setting even more dark and dismal.

There are three estates (and classes); the first estate consists of the monarchs, the second is the government, and the third is the workers. Most of this book takes place in the third estate where the conditions are deplorable. Luckily for them, once a year The Ascension allows one worker to move up in class. Workers accumulate points for going to their jobs. The more points, the more chances they have in being chosen at The Ascension. Hard workers, like Chatine’s sister, strive to be that one lucky person, while Chatine herself sees it as a fantasy.

The second estate governs and policies the third; police being composed of large robots with tasers, and beings such as Inspector Limier, who is some sort of cyborg. I loved this addition because it gives Limier a stoic personality, but it also hints that the character may not have human feelings and was designed that way to better do his job.

For those that only watched the Les Mis musical, there are a few easter-eggs that you won’t quite understand that the book-readers will drool over. In Hugo’s book, Eponine has three brothers one being Gavroche, the little boy of the barricades, and a sister, Azelma. The musical tends to skip that information, but Sky Without Stars gives Eponine (or at least her dopple in this book) her sister and at least one brother back.

Though most of the readers are probably going to be picking up Sky Without Stars because of their interest in Les Mis, you don’t have to be a fan in order to enjoy this story. Overall, I can’t wait to get the next book not only to see the differences in the story compared to Hugo’s original work but to also keep following this space opera on its own.
  ReadingBifrost | Apr 17, 2019 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 7) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
ei arvosteluja | lisää arvostelu

» Lisää muita tekijöitä

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Jessica Brodyensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetlaskettu
Adam, VikasKertojamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Osmanski, JoyKertojamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Zeller, Emily WooKertojamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu

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