Monday, 22 August 2011

Review: Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini

Starcrossed (Starcrossed #1) by Josephine Angelini
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Released: June 3rd 2011
My Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5
Find it on Goodreads

Set on the island of Nantucket, STARCROSSED tells the tale of Helen Hamilton, a young woman whose destiny is forever altered when she meets Lucas Delos and tries to kill him in front of her entire high school. Which is terribly inconvenient, not only because Lucas is the most beautiful boy on the island, but also because Helen is so achingly shy she suffers physical pain whenever she is given too much attention.

Making matters worse, Helen is beginning to suspect she’s going crazy. Whenever she’s near Lucas or any member of his family she sees the ghostly apparitions of three women weeping bloody tears, and suffers the burden of an intense and irrational hate. She soon learns that she and Lucas are destined to play the leading roles in a Greek tragedy that the Three Fates insist on repeating over and over again throughout history. Like her namesake, Helen of Troy, she’s destined to start a war by falling in love. But even though Lucas and Helen can see their own star-crossed destiny, they’re still powerfully attracted to each other. Will they give up their personal happiness for the greater good, or risk it all to be together?
(from Goodreads)

Starcrossed was a thrilling, engaging read that I could not put down. I was literally hooked – and despite the length of the book (it’s pretty long, over five hundred pages), I didn’t want it to end.

I first have to say that I really enjoy reading about Greek mythology in YA fiction, so before I even started Starcrossed, I had high expectations. I was not disappointed, and I loved the way the mythology was incorporated into the story. Helen Hamilton, our protagonist, always knew that she was different, but what she didn’t realise what that she was a Scion, an offspring of the Greek Gods. I really felt for Helen as she was suddenly thrust into this dangerous world she had no idea she was a part of, and as someone who was quite shy and self-conscious, it was doubly hard for her to adjust to everything. One of my favourite scenes was the day Helen first met Lucas Delos, one of the sons of a family who had just moved to Nantucket from Spain. One minute, Helen was walking down the hallway, next minute she was trying to strangle Lucas to death in front of the entire school. It was crazy – next thing Helen knew, she was suddenly no longer just a normal human, but was a demigod with powers, destined to kill Lucas and his family. Then a bunch of wacky (but awesome) things happened, and Helen was forced to learn how to defend herself, to learn how to fight, and Lucas and his family had to be the ones to teach her.

Helen was a character I felt I could connect with. I could understand why she was so frustrated, because everything was changing right before her eyes, and she had to deal with Furies and trying to control her powers as well as all her mixed up emotions for Lucas. I think she coped with everything that happened to her pretty well, and I liked the fact that she didn’t just give up on everything and actually tried to help herself (she was pretty badass too – her powers were awesome).  And Lucas....wow. He was cryptic at first – you didn’t really know what was going on in his head except he obviously wanted to kill Helen as much as she did him. But then as time went on, we got to see all the good things about him – and there were a lot. He was funny, and he knew the kind of things Helen liked, he was ├╝ber good-looking, he was smart, he was athletic, he could fly... He wasn’t perfect by all means – he got jealous easily and could be selfish at times, but I liked that he had flaws, that made him seem more real, in my opinion. The relationship between Helen and Lucas, though it progressed a little fast, was really great to read about too – I don’t know, it just seemed like after we moved passed the whole killing thing (words I never thought I’d say), they could be so at ease with each other, and there was obvious passion between then and ahhh it was just very, very good. The whole forbidden love aspect that I’m a complete sucker for was really well done, I loved it.

Starcrossed was also one of the only novels where I actually liked all the minor characters as well as the main ones. I loved the whole Delos family – I liked Hector, Lucas’s cousin, especially, because he seemed to be the kind of person that tried their hardest whenever they could, and he was completely devoted to his family – they really meant everything to him. He was also such a fun guy, especially when he was teasing Helen, and I found him a great character to read about. I also liked the twins Jason and Ariadne – they were healers, and both such kind people, you couldn’t just help but warm to them immediately. I loved seeing the build up of Claire (Helen’s best friend) and Jason’s relationship – they were both clueless but were well-matched and were really funny and sweet.

The twists in this book were unreal, and my head was spinning trying to keep track of what was happening, it was that exciting. There wasn’t a huge cliffhanger at the end of this book, but there was so much left to find out that I know waiting for the next book, Dreamless, is going to be very difficult.

Overall, I loved Starcrossed, and all I can say is that you should go buy it if you haven’t read it. If you’re a fan of Greek mythology and forbidden romance, then you’ll probably like this. And though Starcrossed has been compared to Twilight a lot, I personally think it’s a much better book. More likeable characters, and a great plot – so go check it out!

14 comments:

  1. I've read mixed reviews of this one - glad you liked it! I love Greek mythology, I love retellings, so I have high expectations, too. If you enjoyed it, hopefully that's a good sign for me!

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  2. Great review, Liz! Glad you loved this, you're actually sort of making me want to give it another go! I think one of YOUR powers is that of persuasion... :P I liked the plot and everything, but something stopped me from loving this. I think it was a combination of not being a big fan of the writing and for some reason I couldn't connect with some of the characters. I think I'm one of the very few in this opinion though!

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  3. Although I didn't like Helen at the start, I really enjoyed this one, and I warmed to her by the end. Can't wait to see what happens next!

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  4. Have yet to read this. I promise I'll read this. Been in the TBR pile for quite a while. Eek, I love mythology.

    Good review. ^_^

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  5. I definitely agree that Starcrossed was addicting! I could not put it down! I wasn't a big fan of Helen, but I loved all the other characters. Thanks for the review! :) - Lauren

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  6. Starcrossed! <3
    I loved it and I am glad you enjoyed it xD

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  7. Sounds like you really enjoyed yourself Liz! =) Thanks for the review!

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  8. I've yet to read this one, but your review of it is fantastic - my only qualm is comparing it to Twilight, which I hated haha Fab review though! :)

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  9. Great review! I loved this book soooooo much! While I compared this to Twilight, thank god this author knows how to write! Can't wait for the sequel!

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  10. I've heard mixed things about this one but ultimately, I really like what the positive reviews, yours included, have to say about it. I think I would really love the Greek mythology aspect and would not mind the length!

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  11. Why haven't I read this yet? I love a good forbidden romance. Amazing review :)

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  12. Ooh, Greek Mythology or Twilight! Haha I think the mythology wins, I now want to read this! I'm so used to seeing the other purple cover, I love the yellow (though not the kissy faces) great review!

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  13. great review! I have to agree, starcrossed is awesome!! :D

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  14. I read this one and loved it as well! (Another review I still have to write ahfjhfkhdf). The Greek mythology aspect was very well-done and I love the twists the author put on them. Loved Lucas' family too! Stellar review :)

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