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Publisher's Summary

The critically acclaimed author of Polaris Rising takes listeners on an exciting journey with the start of her brand-new series about a female bounty hunter and the man who is her sworn enemy.

“Jessie Mihalik is an author to watch.” (Ilona Andrews, number-one New York Times best-selling author)

Octavia Zarola would do anything to keep her tiny close-knit bounty-hunting crew together - even if it means accepting a job from Torran Fletcher, a ruthless former general and her sworn enemy. When Torran offers her enough credits to not only keep her crew afloat but also hire someone to fix her ship, Tavi knows that she can’t refuse - no matter how much she’d like to.

With so much money on the line, Torran and his crew insist on joining the hunt. Tavi reluctantly agrees because while the handsome, stoic leader pushes all of her buttons - for both anger and desire - she’s endured worse, and the massive bonus payment he’s promised for a completed job is reason enough to shut up and deal.

But when they uncover a deeper plot that threatens the delicate peace between humans and Valoffs, Tavi suspects that Torran has been using her as the impetus for a new war. With the fate of her crew balanced on a knife’s edge, Tavi must decide where her loyalties lie - with the quiet Valoff who’s been lying to her, or with the human leaders who left her squad to die on the battlefield. And this time, she’s put her heart on the line.

©2022 Jessie Mihalik (P)2022 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Hunt the Stars

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Five Firefly stars

I’m stoked to find a new space opera series with so many of the things I love about the Firefly series, particularly a ‘verse recovering from war, an engaging crew trying to live their best PTSD life taking odd jobs with their shabby-but-loved ship (the Starlight), and smart, complex women in multiple roles.
But, this isn’t derivative fan-fic; there’s plenty of fresh characters, settings and plots, including humanoids with various telepathic abilities and a fabulous space-fox named Luna. Being book 1, the first half of the book brings a “working with the enemy” vibe as the crew takes a high-risk, but high-paying recovery job and forms an uneasy alliance with a team of former soldiers from the Volovian (Sp?) side of the war.
The second half adds in espionage and romance.

Yes, this is a romance book. And, it appears each book in the series will focus on a different couple within the crew. Don’t let that turn you off; unlike many who can only deliver one or the other, this is one of the few authors I’ve found that can deliver great space opera and romance in the same book. Also, the two naughty scenes are mostly mild and indirectly described. If you can handle slightly more than Firefly levels of romance, you’ll be fine. (This author’s Consortium Rebellion trilogy is stronger with both the romance and the descriptions of the naughty bits, in case more sizzle also works for you).

Were there faults? The action and humor were both more sparse than a book about bounty hunting space rogues should be. I also could have done without the occasional F bombs (perhaps this could have followed Firefly’s clever use of Chinese). The narrator was mostly excellent, although she sometimes skips consonants, like pronouncing “pattern” as “pa-ern.” There are a few tropey, predictable things, like when the guy and gal make out to avoid detection or when a character thinks “if I come back to the pool early in the morning, I can take a dip and no one will be here”… and therefore we all know someone will be there. But, hey, they don’t call this genre space opera for nothing. All things considered, these are minor quibbles that added extra flavor. I will gladly move on to book 2 in July.

6 people found this helpful

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So close to being wonderful

There was so much to enjoy about this book in the Audible form. The character development was great, the beginnings of the plot was great, the relationships between people developed as the story moved forward; that was all wonderful. But as I read the book I got so tired, so so tired of feeding the cat creature. There was so much effort involved in developing the cat creature I thought the cat creature could be used to scent out the missing, or be used as an early warning system for the approach of villains, But no, we just spent the book talking about how hungry the cat creature was. I also got very tired of the captain’s rage, she raged about this, she raged about that and then she wasn’t mad anymore. I got annoyed with her unwillingness to accept help, I got annoyed with her unwillingness to move her relationship forward because of A promise made to keep her safe, it made no sense at all and then the whole convoluted thing at the end of the book bringing all these plot pieces together didn’t make any sense at all to me and so overall it was sort of disappointing because of how weak the plot climax was after such a great start for 70% of the book, (other than cat creature)And the other thing that I found very annoying was a vocal habit of the narrator in the audible edition. Overall her performance approached excellence and she captured the tempo of the scenes well and caught the differing personalities well. But it drove me bonkers to have her drop the medial T sounds in words. “Impor-ant” “forgo-en” “mor-on” (forgotten, important, Morton). It’s a lazy vocal habit and it’s annoying. It is not a regional accent.
Apologies for my typing and editing which is entirely related to trying to compose using only opposable thumbs.

2 people found this helpful

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Recommended by Ilona Andrews with good reason

Ilona and Gordon Andrews are friends with Jessie Mihalik so when this was recommended on their blog, I tried a sample. I was instantly hooked. The story is complex and I second guessed right along with Tavi. World building is excellent and the characters, even the minor ones, are fleshed out and interesting. The only fault I can find is with the narrator. Frankie Corzo has a very annoying habit of not pronouncing “t” in the middle of a word. Important becomes impor’ant and Morton becomes Mor’on. Maybe that’s just a personal hang up, but it effectively threw me out of the story every time. I’m really hoping this is the start of a series because I will continue to follow Tavi and her crew.

1 person found this helpful

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Duped again.

I've read this author before. Her work is so far from real sci fi that it doesn't deserve the title. Even calling it space opera is pushing it. I'm so sad I used a credit up on this. The author relies on tawdry plot holes for her weak plots. In this story, one abused plot hole is the alien societies oaths of silence. Overused big time. And we have a supposedly adult and veteran earth captain who takes a mission from her career long military enemy with almost no information. Then we have to watch her get made about having no information even though its what she signed up for. The reader can pick out the future couplings for the future books in this boring romance series. That's just another distraction. Our supposed adult lead male and female main characters start making out during a high risk reconnaissance. No. Just no. Ugh. Couldn't finish.

1 person found this helpful

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An enormously enjoyable listen.

There is a particular Romance/Science Fiction niche in literature that is slowly expanding and in my opinion, nobody writes this particular niche better than Jessie Mihalik. She has rapidly become one of my favorite authors, her prior series - the Consortium Rebellion trilogy, has a treasured place on my bookshelf.
"Hunt the Stars" has a strong, compelling heroine, a taut, suspense-filled storyline and slow-burn, simmering enemies-to-lovers romance. The world building, which is essential in science fiction, is immersive and is done without detracting from the plot. It is important to note too, that the author navigates consent in a seamless way, which makes the book even more enjoyable. I will refuse to finish romance books that have questionable consent (in that the characters have sex while drunk, for instance). I am happy to report that the author writes consent exceptionally well in all her books, the sex scenes that are in this book are both hot and meaningful. The author has a particular ability to write strong, idealistic and lovable characters that stay with you after you put the book down. The narrator did an excellent job and it was an enormously enjoyable listen. Highly recommended.

1 person found this helpful

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  • M
  • 06-20-22

Changed my mind on First-Person narrative

I usually despise novels told in first person but Tavi’s voice was just so enthralling it only took half a chapter for me to not be annoyed by it. Additionally Mihalik does fantastic balancing the soft sci-fi aspects and the romance arc(s) of this refreshing new adult space opera. I’ll definitely be reading more of the series as it comes out and will be checking out her other work.

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Fun read with more flirt than sex scenes

This is a fun read - has enough action and flirting to hold anyones interest. The plot is convincing enough - not very deep with mostly the 2 diverging storylines that join towards the end. Not a lot of other plot lines going but that makes it a fun and easy read. This was perfect for my plane ride. Distraction but not too hot. If you are someone that likes a flirt heavy rather than intimate action heavy read this is for you. The story is female reluctant War hero vs spy Diplomat enemy war hero that need to stop their governments from restarting the war. There are many hanging threads left at the end with our 2 characters that are not explored (mostly female leads “special” skill and it’s purpose) but otherwise it seems that the author is switching to another crew mate for the next book. I can’t wait to see how this story evolves.

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Fun Story

The mispronounced words from the narrator was distracting. Liked it a lot. I'm ordering the next book in the series.

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Loved it

I loved this story from beginning to end. It's not only a white-knuckle exciting story, but a convincing romance. The sci-fi elements are well described and plausible with an enemies-to-lovers theme. I look forward to more from this author.

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Delightful

Truly a beautiful and fun story. The characters are written so you want to know more, like grab a drink with at a bar. Looking forward to this series.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-06-22

Loved it!

It’s offical, Jessie Mihalik is an auto-buy author for me. This was a perfect blend of SF worldbuilding and adventure, with a strong romance plot—everything I am looking for! More please and thank you ;)