by Elizabeth C. Bunce
First sentence: “I couldn’t think.”
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I adored Elizabeth Bunce’s first novel, A Curse Dark as Gold, so when I found out that she had another (thanks, Leila), I knew I would read it. And I kind of had an inkling I would love it. Which, of course, I did.
Without giving too much away, sixteen-year-old Digger is a thief in the city of Gerse. She’s made a living, ever since she ran away from the convent at age 11, stealing things for people. It’s been a good way to survive, especially in the increasingly intolerant and restrictive atmosphere of the capital city. Except, this time, the job went horribly wrong. The authorities were waiting, and Digger just barely escaped with her life. Twenty-four hours later, disguised, she falls in with a bunch of nobles and ends up in a mountain retreat with them. Where she finds that nothing is quite as it seems, especially since she’s being blackmailed to find out all the secrets.
It’s a complex world Bunce has created, fascinating in its religion and politics. I would have been captivated if it had only been that. She reveals things slowly, peeling back layer by layer, to keep you guessing and wondering and hoping. But it’s more than that: the characters, especially Digger, are fascinating. (Okay, it helps that I’m half in love with one of the men, yet again.) Like the religion and politics of the world, they are fairly complex; you can sense that even the stereotypical ones are hiding some sort of secret. Maybe it won’t be revealed in this book, but it’s there, lurking under the surface.
It’s the first in a series (I hope; there’s a sequel due out next year), something which I can’t wait to sink my teeth into.
2 thoughts on “Starcrossed”
I know that I have never used this phrase in a book review before, but it is so apt for STARCROSSED: a web of intrigue. This book really got under my skin. It wasn't a paranormal romance, and it wasn't an urban fantasy. It's wasn't even a fantasy that I've come to read in YA. It was a book all on its own, and it was amazing.
So is this a fairy tale retelling also?