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Publisher's Summary

The sequel to the New York Times best seller Skyward!

From the number-one New York Times best-selling author of the Reckoners series, Words of Radiance, the Mistborn trilogy, and the Stormlight Archive comes the second book in an epic series about a girl with a secret in a dangerous world at war for humanity's future.

All her life, Spensa has dreamed of becoming a pilot. Of proving she's a hero like her father. She made it to the sky, but the truths she learned about her father were crushing. The rumors of his cowardice are true - he deserted his flight during battle against the Krell. Worse, though, he turned against his team and attacked them. 

Spensa is sure there's more to the story. And she's sure that whatever happened to her father in his starship could happen to her. When she made it outside the protective shell of her planet, she heard the stars - and it was terrifying. Everything Spensa has been taught about her world is a lie. 

But Spensa also discovered a few other things about herself - and she'll travel to the end of the galaxy to save humankind if she needs to. 

"[A] nonstop, highflying opener." (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) 

"With this action-packed trilogy opener, Sanderson offers up a resourceful, fearless heroine and a memorable cast." (Publishers Weekly

"Sanderson delivers a cinematic adventure that explores the defining aspects of the individual versus the society.... Fans of Sanderson will not be disappointed." (SLJ)

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What listeners say about Starsight

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Somewhat disappointed 😞

I am a big fan of Sanderson's other works. I feel this series falls a bit flat. The story just feels too improbable and not referring to the sci-fi aspect.

Another minor annoyance, I can't hear "scud" one more time. The escalation of severity scales better with variety, not multiplicity. D___ to S___ to F___ gives you a better impression of a situation than, scud x 1, scud x 3, scud x 4 🙄😣 I'd rather hear no swearing than the same singular ficticous swear over and over again.

65 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good, but lacks where Skyward excelled.

I enjoyed this book, but the entire time I felt it was missing something that made the first book so good. The characters felt more shallow, and the story somewhat rushed and lacking in the interpersonal tension that the Skyward did so well. I feel like I had less of a reason to root for Spensa, as her personal struggles seemed less personal and her greater mission seemed too far in the background. Plus, so many of the characters I had enjoyed in the first one are only occasionally mentioned and hardly seen. That said there are some great moments throughout and overall it is still a great book. And just like the last one the audio performance is exceptional. It just feels lacking in the areas the first excelled.

56 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Unexpectedly disappointed with the direction

I did enjoy the book as a whole. However, I leave less excited for the 3rd book than I did for the 2nd. Here are my issues (without spoilers):
1. The beginning felt like it couldn't make up it's mind as to where the story was going. It was like: here is the plot... no wait it is actually there... actually it is over there instead. Okay lets go.
2. It was disappointing that the direction of the plot only brought original 2 characters along from the first book (well, I guess technically 3 if you count the slug). I don't mind getting to know the new characters, and it was done really well; just that the momentum from the first book was lost when the plot started going.
3. The main mystery plot device was completely guessable within the first half of the book. And completely suspicious from the first book. (Maybe I have just read too many Sanderson books so I recognize some of his tells)
4. The theme of the book seems to try and balance being a political spy thriller and a sportsie-combat-action. When the spy thriller theme took over, I found myself disliking the mundane combat-action scenes because I wanted to get back to the spy thriller.
5. The stakes didn't feel real. I didn't think anyone I cared about was going to die, unlike the first book where characters I liked died frequently. How many times can a star fighter fly within centimeters of something without harm? Or when did being without a shield suddenly have no consequences? In the first book Spensa, when got shot down, it felt like there were stakes, it felt like: "well, maybe the life buster will destroy Igneous and the story will go in a completely different direction because Spensa will survive with Mbot and go on a revenge campaign and help the humans live up to their sterotype". In this book I didn't feel any pain for any of the deaths, except for maybe the last one, but the way things were set up, lead me to believe a villain was being created rather than a sad loss of an ally and so the emotional beat missed me. Granted a bunch of my predictions were wrong too.
6. The 2nd book didn't build upon the progress from the first book in a satisfying way. Yes there was progress, but we spent the majority of the book away from it, so we didn't get to taste it. What about the other sides of the planet? Why didn't the DDF build a secondary base somewhere else? So many questions...
7. Once the plot got going, to me, the foreshadowing was done so straight, plain, and obvious that it was super predictable that certain events would take place.

47 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent continuation of series with cliffhanger

While the tone of this segment of the story is very different from Skyward, it is every bit as good. And Suzy Jackson's narration of Starsight is excellent.
I hope the next book is released Audible soon! I listened to this one in just 2 days, and it has a cliffhanger ending! Aarrrrgh!

39 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

I wanted to like this more...

The first book was rather enjoyable for YA science fiction. And this sequel had some fun, creative, and even thought provoking elements. However,...

About a quarter of the way in, the story gets hijacked by some tedious fixation on teaching a lesson about which gender/nongender pronouns are appropriate, and the annoying recurring "my, my, how aggressive." Could writers please refrain from using "they" for their nongender singular pronoun; it's tedious. You're writers, get creative already. Though to be fair, in the case of the character Morriumur it is perhaps appropriate and necessary.

On the bright side, it does eventually get past this and back to telling a story.

But worst of all, it's basically just the first book but with the human characters rewritten as aliens.

25 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not up to Sanderson's usual standards

2.5 stars, but I'll round up because it's not that bad a story.
Admittedly I'm not the target audience for this book, but it really didn't feel up to Sanderson's usual quality even for his YA stuff (I'm thinking the Reckoners series and the Rithmatist). While our protagonist is a headstrong 16 year old, which is all well and good, she's supposedly now part of a planetary defense force that is comprised of lots of people with lots of roles... but it seemed like there was a serious lack of adults doing the adult things. Mostly it seemed to be just Admiral Cobb going along with whatever Spensa was doing. The first book had Spensa's mother and grandmother, Cobb, old Ironsides and veteran pilots filling those roles, not so much in this book. There were a number of plot elements in this story where the timing of events seemed to be just too spot on. Plus a lot of the plot felt very predictable, like when you send a character out on a mission and explicitly give them equipment A, B, and C just in case. You just know that situations for A, B, and C are all going to come up and they do.

It's not a truly bad story but it's definitely not up to what usually expect from Brandon.

20 people found this helpful

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Simply amazing!

Realistic characters and flight mechanics, captivating writing, great humor and action. Very well balanced. You know it's good when it's Sci fi and my wife can't put it down. Thanks Brandon and thanks to your team.

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointed a big fan

I am an avid Sanderson reader and had really high hopes for this book and series. My tween and teen kids loved Skyward and have eagerly anticipated the release of Starsight. I think Sanderson missed the mark with this book. We finished it, mostly in hopes of a third book salvaging the story.
Most of the supporting characters are left behind or relegated to brief exchanges.
Spensa's character development felt forced and not true to her core character.
The use of "they" to refer toa single member of a race of alien species interrupted the story line and felt really politically correct and completely unnecessary.
Read it if you have a few hours to waste, but manage those expectations. My! My!

14 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Falls Short

Sanderson is out of his depth here. The quality is severely lacking from what you find in other Sanderson books. I couldn't even finish it. I stopped with one hour left. It just got really lame and I didn't care anymore. It's like someone has been writing his books for him until this series. Or maybe, he isn't really trying and he just can't write science fiction. I'm surprised at his lack of research and lack of imagination and lack of attention to detail. It's like he wrote one draft and sent it to print without any editing. Everything flows like it's part of a script, to the point where it becomes dull because you know the MC is never in any real danger.
The English language is insufficient for all the gender neutrality that Sanderson tries to interpose into the story. It becomes tiresome hearing the same 3 pronouns over and over to describe one person (them, they, their) instead of she, he, him, hers, etc. Either figure out what gender everyone is or make-up a masculine/feminine set of pronouns to describe the characters.
I'm surprised that I have to say this again, but stop using "scud" as a made-up swear word. It wouldn't be so bad if there were other made-up swear words, but there are not. The MC started-up with "scud this" and "scud that", 3 sentences into the story and I almost shut it off then. Get over it and say the real word or the solution is to just not have any swear words because apparently they offend the author. News flash, the intents and purposes of made-up swear words are the same as real ones, so they are just as vulgar and offensive. The story is ok and you don't hate the MC all the time, but I wont be continuing this half-scuded series nor recommending it. If you want a good scifi book, read anything by Dennis E. Taylor.

10 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent! This series doesn't get enough credit.

I read the first book last year on a lark, and fell in love with the world and characters. I am typically pretty snobby and stick to an epic/high fantasy genre only; I am SO GLAD I took a chance on these. This second installment, while admittedly shorter than I prefer at less than 20 hours, was still an amazing adventure in this series and leaves me drooling for more of this world. I must say... Sanderson is super popular for a reason; his stories really are just that good... and they don't even take 10 years to write.

10 people found this helpful