“Defy the Stars” by Claudia Gray (2017) Review

If futuristic space novels are the latest book trend, then I’m all in for it. The space and galaxy theme is exciting, fun and constantly evolving. It’s also a glimpse into our own future and that’s both a curious and somewhat terrifying thing. Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray perfectly captures this essence of both the beauty and terror of space travel in a science fiction novel that isn’t just another dystopian YA.

“When Noemi meets Abel, one of Earth’s robotic mech warriors, she realizes that Abel himself may provide the key to Genesis’ salvation… Stranded together in space, they go on a whirlwind adventure through Earth’s various colony worlds, alongside the countless Vagabonds who have given up planetary life altogether and sail forever between the stars.” – Credit to Allen and Unwin.

Noemi and Abel were likable characters (which always helps when you’re spending the entire novel with them!). Despite my love for female protagonists, I loved the character of Abel the most and found him fascinating and beautifully written. Although the blurb on the back of the book focused on their blossoming romance, it never dominated and to be honest wasn’t really a focus at all a part from the mere development of their friendship throughout the book.

Defy the Stars was very much a narrative that took its readers on a journey – most specifically to get somewhere or with a destination as the goal. Abel’s was clear through knowledge given throughout the book, Noemi’s felt a tad unclear. Don’t get me wrong, we got to know her, just not in the way we got to know Abel. For example, we heard a lot about Noemi’s past and current life but we were just told a lot of it rather than experiencing it. I would have loved to have met her ‘family’ or see her upbringing and how it got her to where she is in the book. We do get a glimpse at the end of the novel when Noemi reaches her home world though so I’m hoping we get to jump further into it in the second novel.

If science fiction space novels are your thing, than most certainly read of Defy the Stars. It’s futuristic setting and captivating story is perfectly pulled together into a 425-page book that might as well have a ribbon wrapped around it despite the odd critiquing factors.


Book supplied by Allen and Unwin NZ  – (RRP: $22.99). Click here for details.