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Title: Under Different Stars
Series: The Kricket Series, Book One
Author: Amy A. Bartol ♥ @Amy_A_Bartol
Expected Publication: December 17, 2013
Source: eARC provided by the author
Summary from Goodreads: All she wants is a home, but can she find one…UNDER DIFFERENT STARS
Kricket Hollowell is normally not one to wish upon stars; she believes they’re rarely in her favor. Well versed at dodging caseworkers from Chicago’s foster care system, the past few years on her own have made Kricket an expert at the art of survival and blending in. With her 18th birthday fast approaching, she dreams of the day when she can stop running and find what her heart needs most: a home.
Trey Allairis hates Earth and doubts that anyone from his world can thrive here. What he’s learning of Kricket and her existence away from her true home only confirms his theory. But, when he and Kricket lie together under the stars of Ethar, counting them all may be easier than letting her go.
Kyon Ensin’s secrets number the stars; he knows more about Kricket’s gifts than anyone and plans to possess her because of them. He also knows she’s more valuable than any fire in the night sky. He’ll move the heavens and align them all in order to make her his own.
When everything in their world can be broken, will Kricket rely upon love to save her under different stars?
Average Goodreads Rating (as of 12/17/2013): 4.83
Available for purchase here:
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- For more on the author, a giveaway opportunity, and to find out what the Litbrarians thought of this title…
**SPECIAL NOTE:** An eARC of this title was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review during this blog tour. However, that did not influence this review in any way. All thoughts, quotes, and opinions will be of this version and not of the published edition.
♦ Initial Thoughts and Rating ♦
Ana: 5 shiny wonderful sparkly stars!!! I loved this book. Amy Bartol has done it again. Everything here is perfect…the characters, the story, the adventure, the…well…the everything. Absolutely adored it! WANT MORE NOW!!
Christina: Absolute 5-star read! (Though it’s at times like this that I wish there were infinite stars to bestow on a book.) Amy Bartol has managed to wow me again, stunning me with the beauty of the world she’s created, making me fall in love with all these new characters, and keeping me completely riveted by the rich plot and break-neck pacing.
♦ Characters ♦
Ana: I loved Kricket. She is sassy and smart and strong. She is the type of female lead I am always looking for in a book. She outwits others who are much older and (supposedly) much wiser than she is and manages to do it with finesse. She’s always thinking two steps ahead and making plans that benefit not only her but those around her. She’s awesome. And, speaking of awesome, you’ve heard me say before that I love a book even more when the author takes care of her secondary characters. In this case, that is very true. Jax, Wayra, and even Kyon, were fantastic characters and played a huge part in the story. And Amy took care to give us enough information about them to help the reader fall in love with them as well. Last but certainly not least…Trey. My love for Trey knows no bounds. As a matter of fact, I called dibs on him only 10% into the book (so he’s mine, people…and I have the tweets to prove it)!! His character shows such strength and compassion and heart when, all the while, he had to maintain his role as a smart, savvy, tough warrior. *sigh* Amy….I need a book from his POV…thanks!!
Christina: I swear, you’d be hard-pressed to get me to admit that anyone writes better characters than Ms. Bartol, and with the lineup she has in Under Different Stars, she’s knocked it out of the park again. Kricket is everything that I love about a fantastic heroine– kickass and fiesty, witty with a good dose of snark, strong but vulnerable in all the necessary moments. I absolutely have a girl-crush on her. Trey was sexy and mysterious and brawny and swoony and just… Unnnnf, let me keep him? But the biggest testament to a good author, for me, is when they can make me love the secondary characters just as much, if not more, than the main characters. The author definitely had a supporting cast that had me laughing out loud and falling love with them, too. If I can’t have Trey, well, just send over Jax or Wayra (Maybe even Kyon. You know how I love my psychos.) because I’d be just as happy with them. Bartol has a true gift with giving us character after character filled to the brim with personality and unique quirks that make them leap directly off the page.
♦ Plot, Pacing, Setting ♦
Ana: The world-building in this book was spectacular. Ethar was different from any place I’ve read about before and the imagery was so clear that I could picture everything as I read about it. The plot had good and evil, love, hope, fear…every emotion you can think of was there and kept me turning those pages quickly! The writing and storytelling were fantastic – smooth, well-paced and descriptive enough to pull me into the story from the very first page.
Christina: This book read like a movie that I had front row seats to, and I never wanted it to be over. I wanted to submerse myself in that water wormhole and live in Ethar right alongside the other Etharians. The world-building was magical, the plot was so unique, and it was so hard for me to close my Nook without throwing a tantrum because I
desperately needed wanted more. This book has something for everyone: sci-fi elements, action, a slow-building yet hot–we’re talking supernova here– romance, a little mystery, and a whole lot of imaginative scenery to keep all your senses enticed. She managed to wrap all those aspects in a perfect pace, one that begged you to flip the pages, and I finished this novel all in one sitting. There’s so much to love about this novel, especially hot, sexy non-sex shower scenes with wiggle-worthy kisses. *cough*Sign me up for that.*cough*
♦ What We Loved ♦
Ana: Is it wrong to say everything?!?! Honestly, this book captured me from the very beginning and held on so tight that it made it nearly impossible for me to put it down for things like work and sleep. The characters were amazing, the setting and storyline so unique…it had it all!
Christina: I’m with Ana, it’d be so easy just to say what is there not to be enamored by?! Though it’d be difficult to pick out one particular point that I loved the most, I’ll go with the characters. I believe if you took these characters with their vivacious, different personalities and threw them in any setting or plot, that’d I’d love them all the same no matter what. They had me laughing and loving them the whole way through.
♦ What We Could Have Loved More ♦
Ana: Really?? I can’t think of anything, except that I would have definitely loved 300 more pages!! I must admit that it took me a while to get a grasp of the special Ethar terminology because there was quite a bit of it but that’s probably because I was reading so quickly most of the time! Seriously, there’s nothing I’d change here!
Christina: *taps chin* I’m not sure if there was anything that truly bothered me. Well, maybe that it took so long for Trey to get his “love” on, but I totally got his sense of duty to his house (country), job, and prior commitments. I also wasn’t sure why this was labeled a dystopian novel. It was more fantasy/sci-fi to me.
♦ Book Cover Thoughts ♦
Ana: Gorgeous! Haunting! Perfect!!
Christina: I am absolutely in love with it. It’s ethereal and gorgeous and suits the book perfectly. I only wish it would have had Ethar’s moon, like almost transparently, in the background or something to tie it to Kricket’s home. Still, so stunning!
♦ Rec It? ♦
Ana: A million, trillion times YES!! YESSSSSSSSS!! YES!
Christina: Do you love well-plotted novels that are filled with characters that you gravitate to and a world you want to live in? If the answer to that question was yes, then do not hesitate to pick up this book. If your answer was no, well… then why do you read books, silly? In short, go read this book.
Ms. Bartol, I have but one question for you, how does one become a pre-reader for you? I need the next book in this series like whoa. Oh, and Amy, just one more thing: I wouldn’t be opposed to more shower scenes but with more physical contact this time. *ahem*
♥ A very special thanks to Amy A. Bartol and Christina from Christina’s Book Reviews for allowing us to take part in this blog tour! For more on the author and a giveaway opportunity, continue reading down below.
I live in Michigan with my husband and our two sons. My family is very supportive of my writing. When I’m writing, they often bring me the take-out menu so that I can call and order them dinner. They listen patiently when I talk about my characters like they’re real. They rarely roll their eyes when I tell them I’ll only be a second while I finish writing a chapter…and then they take off their coats. They ask me how the story is going when I surface after living for hours in a world of my own making. They have learned to accept my “writing uniform” consisting of a slightly unflattering pink fleece jacket, t-shirt, and black yoga pants. And they smile at my nerdy bookishness whenever I try to explain urban fantasy to them. In short, they get me, so they are perfect and I am blessed.
For more on the author and her books, find her here:
Twitter ♦ Website/Blog ♦ Goodreads ♦ Facebook
Pinterest ♦ Amazon
Giveaway administered by Amy A. Bartol
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