Noemi is a young and fearless soldier of Genesis, a colony planet of a dying Earth. But the citizens of Genesis are rising up - they know that Earth's settlers will only destroy this planet the way they destroyed their own. And so a terrible war has begun.
When Noemi meets Abel, one of Earth's robotic mech warriors, she realizes that Abel himself may provide the key to Genesis' salvation. Abel is bound by his programming to obey her - even though her plan could result in his destruction. But Abel is no ordinary mech. He's a unique prototype, one with greater intelligence, skill and strength than any other. More than that, he has begun to develop emotions, a personality and even dreams. Noemi begins to realise that if Abel is less than human, he is more than a machine. If she destroys him, is it murder? And can a cold-blooded murder be redeemed by the protection of a world?
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. Each step brings them closer - both to each other and to the terrible decision Noemi will have to make about her world's fate, and Abel's.
Review by Tanaya Lowden
It seems like the growing trend in YA books lately are those set in space. We've seen vampires, werewolves, angels, and demons, and now we've moved on to these epic space blockbusters (think Illuminae). If like me you love space, then this is a trend you will gladly jump for joy over, and Defy the Stars is a perfect example of this trend in motion as it's a spectacular new YA adventure romance set in space from the author of A Thousand Pieces of You.
Noemi is a young and fearless soldier of Genesis, a colony planet of a dying Earth. But the citizens of Genesis are rising up - and so a terrible war has begun. When Noemi meets Abel, one of Earth's robotic mech warriors, she realises that Abel himself may provide the key to Genesis' salvation.
This book was so incredibly fun to read. I always feel that Claudia Gray does an excellent job of keeping her plot exciting and engaging, surprising the reader with little unexpected twists and turns. I particularly loved the idea of Earth being the bad guys, and getting to explore the different and cool planets in this world that don't exist for us.
Noemi and Abel are also a fun bunch of characters. Abel in particular had me laughing out loud multiple times, and I thought Gray did a great job of making his voice develop in the story from very AI-like to more human.
If you like your romance slow and not so instalovey, this is the perfect choice for you, as although you can feel the chemistry building throughout, the romance is not rushed and that makes it all the more perfect.
Defy the Stars is the first in what I believe will be an explosive new series! Fans of the Firebird Trilogy will gladly enjoy the return to Gray's writing!
Marvellous worldbuilding that takes us from planet to planet, each of them distinct and fascinating; a well-thoughtout glimpse of our future and the repercussions of our current lifestyles; a measured, intelligent depiction of multiple societies and cultures... The story works beautifully on an emotional level too, and the pacing is masterful - never do you feel as though anything's being rushed, yet the story powers along at a rate of knots... usually to unexpected places. SFX magazine
Audience: Teenager / Young Adult
For Ages: 12+ years old
Number Of Pages: 432
Published: 29th March 2017
Publisher: Hot Key Books
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 13.0 x 2.7
Weight (kg): 0.35