The Stars We Steal

The Stars We Steal

Engagement season is in the air. Eighteen-year-old Princess Leonie Leo Kolburg, heir to a faded European spaceship, only has one thing on her mind: which lucky bachelor can save her family from financial ruin? But when Leos childhood friend and first love Elliot returns as the captain of a successful whiskey ship, everything changes. Elliot was the one that got away, the...

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Title:The Stars We Steal
Author:Alexa Donne
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Stars We Steal Reviews

  • Nenia ⚡ Aspiring Evil Overlord ⚡ Campbell

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    This is a retelling of

    set in space with a dash of

    . People from Earth now fly around in spaceships, and those of the nobility have especially luxurious ones. Leonie, aboard

    , is such a one, only her family is on the verge of becoming impoverished and she is going to have to take part in the extravagant match-making ceremony called the Valg, along with her sister and cousin, to help save the family

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    This is a retelling of

    set in space with a dash of

    . People from Earth now fly around in spaceships, and those of the nobility have especially luxurious ones. Leonie, aboard

    , is such a one, only her family is on the verge of becoming impoverished and she is going to have to take part in the extravagant match-making ceremony called the Valg, along with her sister and cousin, to help save the family fortune.

    Leo is therefore shocked and horrified when her childhood friend and ex-fiance, Elliot, arrives for the proceedings. When he left her, angry and heartbroken, he was still considered "the help." Now he is the captain of a ship that manufactures whiskey and considered quite the eligible bachelor. She watches him flirt with all the other women in front of her, still wanting him and wishing she didn't, all the while trying to broker a deal for a new water filtration system that will save her family without her needing to marry, while also trying to investigate some mysterious goings-on aboard the ship that hint at treachery and, maybe, murder.

    I enjoyed this book a lot for many reasons. First, as a science-fiction book, it's pretty light, so don't pick this up expecting hardcore space opera.

    is a pretty apt description for this book. It isn't quite

    (thank God), but nor is it

    . I actually enjoyed the drama, and the artfully done

    between Elliot and Leo just about killed me.

    Leo is a pretty great protagonist. I liked the fact that she was tall (5'11"!) and curvy. I thought it was cool that she was an inventor and a significant portion of the plot is about her filtration design. She also has a pretty healthy relationship towards other women. Even though she has a lot of jealousy towards her cousin and sister, it doesn't dissolve into a mess of girl-on-girl hate or shaming.

    Regarding things that this book could have done better-- well, it

    pretty fluffy, and I think it would have been nice to have more action beneath all the hearts, flowers, and trimmings. I also thought the LGBT+ rep was a bit clumsily done. There's an introduction of an ace character towards the end who basically serves as the foil for someone else's romantic relationship, and about 60% of the dialogue of the one lesbian character is her reminding all the characters that she's a lesbian and oh, by the way, are there any available girls around? It felt like her sexuality was a stand-in for her personality, which made me kind of sad, even though her character improved a little bit in the last quarter of the book.

    Overall, though, I did like THE STARS WE STEAL a lot. It was a fun read and I enjoyed it.

    3.5 stars

  • jessica

    this book commits a very unfortunate crime against readers, which is it solely relies on a telling narrative, not a showing narrative. meaning the reader is told something happens, rather than shown it.

    its an extremely lazy method of writing and honestly drags the story down. it completely ruins any sort of opportunity which may have been present for me to really connect with the characters, especially because the romance is key to the plot. i dont want to be told leo and elliot have a

    this book commits a very unfortunate crime against readers, which is it solely relies on a telling narrative, not a showing narrative. meaning the reader is told something happens, rather than shown it.

    its an extremely lazy method of writing and honestly drags the story down. it completely ruins any sort of opportunity which may have been present for me to really connect with the characters, especially because the romance is key to the plot. i dont want to be told leo and elliot have a connection, i want to see it. i need proof. just being told isnt good enough and a reader deserves more. in addition to pacing issues and an undeveloped plot, the writing really leaves much to be desired.

    however, this story does have some positives. there is a great range of representation present. honestly, i think every box is checked. lol. which could be seen as forced characterisation, but i thought it was refreshing. this also really inspired me to pick up ‘persuasion’ by jane austen, which this is a retelling of. i know for sure i will enjoy it sooo much more than this, so i have that to look forward to now, at least.

    so while there are some good things about this, i highly doubt i will ever think about this story again.

  • Brooke — brooklynnnnereads

    I was really looking forward to this novel but unfortunately, it was far less than what I expected.

    This story starts off with a bang (literally) and it's adventure and action right from the beginning. There is little to no introduction regarding the background of the world, the story, or the characters before the reader is thrust into the story.

    However, even with the story being introduced amidst action, this novel was mostly....boring for me. None of the characters caught my attention, nor did

    I was really looking forward to this novel but unfortunately, it was far less than what I expected.

    This story starts off with a bang (literally) and it's adventure and action right from the beginning. There is little to no introduction regarding the background of the world, the story, or the characters before the reader is thrust into the story.

    However, even with the story being introduced amidst action, this novel was mostly....boring for me. None of the characters caught my attention, nor did the romance. Even the political involvement of this world in the plot didn't keep me invested. As well, both of the main characters were not necessarily likable which is not a mandatory attribute but can help when it comes to maintaining interest in the story. As nothing captured my attention or interest, there was nothing that kept me truly anchored or invested in the overall story.

    As for the ending, it was fairly predictable but also abrupt for a story with such a slow pace. There was so much build up only for one climactic scene with little resolution aside from an epilogue. To me, it seemed as if there were still many loose ends left in the story.

    As a whole, I continued reading this novel until the end in the hopes that it would get better but if I was someone to 'DNF' a novel, this would be one that I would have stopped reading less than halfway through.

    ***Thank you to the publisher for supplying me with a copy of this book via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review***

  • Boston

    2.5 stars. I went into this book expecting a great story and fantastic queer representation. What I got was a somewhat entertaining story and queer characters that were clearly not researched well, if at all. I liked the political aspect of the story, though, I would have liked to have seen Leo actually do something about other ships starving to death rather than just saying she cared about the issue. The story was entertaining enough to keep me reading, but I wasnt wowed especially as a big

    2.5 stars. I went into this book expecting a great story and fantastic queer representation. What I got was a somewhat entertaining story and queer characters that were clearly not researched well, if at all. I liked the political aspect of the story, though, I would have liked to have seen Leo actually do something about other ships starving to death rather than just saying she cared about the issue. The story was entertaining enough to keep me reading, but I wasn’t wowed especially as a big Jane Austen fan.

  • Yun

    starts off with Leo, the heir to a derelict spaceship, trying to avoid the fate of having to marry for money. She's resourceful and smart, coming up with her own water-filtration system that could make money for her family while saving her from a marriage of convenience. But then it slowly devolves into a pointless YA romance, childish and overdramatic, and by the end, I lost all respect for Leo and this story.

    Leo pines for her ex-fiancé, who she broke up with years ago. Now

    starts off with Leo, the heir to a derelict spaceship, trying to avoid the fate of having to marry for money. She's resourceful and smart, coming up with her own water-filtration system that could make money for her family while saving her from a marriage of convenience. But then it slowly devolves into a pointless YA romance, childish and overdramatic, and by the end, I lost all respect for Leo and this story.

    Leo pines for her ex-fiancé, who she broke up with years ago. Now he's back, and she spends the entire book making eyes at him, while feeling hurt that he doesn't love her back, while giving signs that she hates him, while being sad that he's dating other girls. Ugh, I wanted to stab my eyes out. Please girl, figure out what you want! Stop giving mixed signals and expect others to read your mind, then acting so terribly hurt when they don't.

    All the drama in this book is pretty much people not saying what they should, so there's a lot of misunderstandings. Leo, in particular, has serious trouble with honest communication. She'll do something strange, then refuse to explain, and then act like a martyr when others get mad at her. She chases after two different guys because she can't make up her mind, and honestly, she doesn't deserve either. And she keeps drinking like a fish to de-stress because her life is SO hard. Please, my eyes have rolled out of my head.

    She's also portrayed as a privileged princess who can afford to look down her nose at others. She talks a good talk about how there should be justice for all, but when it comes down to it, she takes the easy road because her family and connections make it possible for her to do so. Meanwhile, she passes judgement on others who have to make considerably harder decisions in order to eat and live.

    In the end, this was such a disappointing read. Leo is so annoying that it's hard to cheer for a character like that. The plot is silly, and it's barely a real one since all the drama is manufactured by people who can't communicate honestly with each other or refuse to listen. I'm looking for books right now to help me relax and take me away into a fantasy world, but this book just made me angry.

  • Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink

    Ahhh! Gorgeous cover alert! I loved Brightly Burning, and I'm so excited for this one! Give me all that drama and intrigue - I'm so here for it!

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  • Mary S. R.

    I have a very crucial, life-altering question:

    I feel like this should be illegalno it's NOT fair to steal away people's money like that! *slams hand on desk, shouts* would someone call the authorities!? I'm taking this matter in front of a judge!

    (*sniffs* I smell...

    ! *wicked smile*)

    (*fumes* you don't set books in space and get away with it! Because then I'd have

    I have a very crucial, life-altering question:

    I feel like this should be illegal—no it's NOT fair to steal away people's money like that! *slams hand on desk, shouts* would someone call the authorities!? I'm taking this matter in front of a judge!

    (*sniffs* I smell...

    ! *wicked smile*)

    (*fumes* you don't set books in space and get away with it! Because then I'd have to read it!)

    (a Jane Austen retelling! Oops *whispers* I still haven't read Persuasion...)

    (wait...what? Whiskey ship? Hmmm, I have NO idea what's happening, but hell I'm intrigued 😁)

    ... :/ See you when the world ends 👋🏻

  • megs_bookrack

    The fact that I haven't gotten to this yet makes me rethink all of my life choices.

    Today we celebrate!!!

    Thank you so much to HMH Books for Young Readers for my ARC!!

    I enjoyed

    so much and have been anxiously awaiting this new release from Donne.

    Well, today the wait is over, my friends!

    This description had me at

    ...but GAWDDDD look at that cover!!!

  • Tucker

    - augghhhh, i want this so bad!!

    ************

    Me: Keeps forgetting it's 2019.

    Also me: Already wants the books from 2020

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  • Tara ☽

    Just - just please take my money. Take it. All of it. Please. I'm begging you, I need this so badly, just take my money, take it, plea-

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