Synopsis from Goodreads: It's been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.
Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family's estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot's estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth--an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.
But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret--one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she's faced with a choice: cling to what she's been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she's ever loved, even if she's lost him forever.
Inspired by Jane Austen's Persuasion, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.
This book... This book is just amazing. From the characters to the plot to the way the new world of the Luddites and the Reduced is structured; it's all just perfect. A few months ago, I was quite literally obsessing over Jane Austen, and most specifically, her novel Persuasion. Quite incidentally it was around the same time that while searching through Goodreads , I came across this one and decided to try it out. I mean, it is based off of Jane Austen, I just had to.
Even though I'm not the biggest fan of dystopian novels, I still managed to become totally and completely enthralled by the injustices and the fantastic scientific and moral challenges that the people of this new world have to conquer. For Darkness Shows the Stars is a story of lovers and friends, once betrayed by their own hindrances and beliefs, and now reunited, but with a barrier of hate and anger still separating them. The writing is beautiful and really brings to light the internal struggle that Elliot faces throughout the novel, not only as a lover but also as a daughter, as a friend, and as a rebel against the teachings of her society. Elliot is strong and independent. Yes, she's pissed at Kai for being a knucklehead. But no, she doesn't let that break her. Throughout the novel, as our dear Captain Malakai Wentworth acts like a jerk, Elliot keeps her head held high and continues to assist her people. The letters exchanged between Kai and Elliot throughout the novel also offer a somewhat comedic relief while also giving readers a glimpse into Kai's mind and why he does what he does throughout the novel.
Admittedly, Kai is really not a nice person 95% of the novel. And to be completely honest, I wanted to hate him so much. But I just couldn't! Throughout the novel, while also understanding Elliot's pain and humiliation, the reader also learns to sympathize with Kai and learns that though he might not always do the right thing, he does so because he's been hurt by the one person he trusted.
All in all, I give this book a whooping FIVE stars for being perfection. Thank you Peterfreund for such a fascinating read.
Check out the next book in the For Darkness Shows the Stars installment: Across a Star Swept Sea
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