Friday 27 May 2011

Book Review & UK Book Trailer: Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini.

Product details:
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books.
Release date: June 3rd 2011.
Paperback, 480 pages.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Ages: 13+
Source: Received from publisher for review.

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?

Set to be one of this summers blockbuster reads, Josephine Angelini’s Starcrossed is an addictive blend of majestic storytelling, inventive plot twists and a forbidden, dangerous romance that will leave readers breathless and wanting more.

I’m always a little wary of books that are much buzzed about and hyped. What can I say, I’ve been burned before. But then there are those that truly live up to the high expectations placed upon them, and I’m glad to report that Starcrossed is one of those books. Fans of Greek Myths and Legends, as well as just about anyone who appreciates great storytelling will love this one. The writing style is intricate, evocative and engaging while the pace, while slow at first, builds to an exciting crescendo and  includes an unexpected plot twist that has left me with a lot of questions and wanting the next book already!

Starcrossed tells the tale of Helen Hamilton, a girl who is different in more ways than one. For a start, she is stronger, faster, taller and more stunningly beautiful than your average teenage girl, and while Helen tries to keep her head down so as not to draw attention to herself, its difficult on the Island of Nantucket where she lives, and where everybody knows her name. Still, her life is pretty uneventful until, that is, the mysterious Delos family arrives in Nantucket. With their arrival, everything in Helen’s blissfully normal life is turned upside down. First the nightmares start, and then she is haunted by terrible visions. Then there’s Lucas Delos, there mere sight of who fills the normally mild mannered Helen with a ferocious rage!

Whoa! Not what you were expecting right? Honestly, when I saw the title of this book, and when I read the description of Lucas (totally hot, by the way) I was expecting a serious case of the dreaded insta-love to infiltrate Starcrossed, but it’s not so, I’m glad to report! You could cut the tension between this two with a knife, and it’s not tension of the good kind! There’s a lot more to Lucas and Helen’s connection that unfolds as the story goes on, and while I’m not going to spoil anything here, I will say that the development of their relationship was one of my favourite parts of this enjoyable story. However, while I warmed to Lucas immediately, Helen took a while to grow on me. Helen is timid and cautious and suffers from a number of unexplained ailments that she mentions quite a lot. I found her to be a little annoying at first, but as she learns more about her background and her heritage, I warmed to her, and I was totally rooting for her by the end of the book.

Along with Lucas and Helen this book is filled with a wealth of great characters. I love when authors develop secondary characters to such an extent that I feel as though I know them all well, and although this book has a large cast of characters, you can tell that Angelini has put a great deal of time into crafting her characters and each and every one of their personalities shines through. Honestly, I hate it when secondary characters just blend into the background and I don’t get to know anything but their names, and I really appreciate it when authors go that extra mile in developing great casts of characters for readers to enjoy. I cant’ wait to find out more about the complex characters of Hector and Cassandra in particular.

Epic in scope and with major crossover potential, Starcrossed is a wonderful tale of myths and legends, long held family feuds and secrets and a simmering romance that can only get hotter as the series progresses. I can’t wait to read Dreamless the next book in this series when it releases next year. For Josephine Angelini and Starcrossed, I predict a big summer hit!

Watch the UK book trailer for Starcrossed:


  1. I love the cover! It different but I think this one matches more with the book! Nice review!

  2. I so loved reading your review! I didn't realize this book was so hyped when I read it, but I can see why now. It's so good! I agree with what you said about secondary characters. I like how each of them here have distinct personalities and play important roles. I can't wait to read more about Hector <3

  3. Finally a YA book with Greek Myths that doesn't disappoint! I have been let down by at least 2 such books. I have it on my TBR; I can't wait to read it! Great review!

  4. Great review and thanks for putting the trailer in this post too as l haven't seen it before.
    Totally agree about the secondary characters and how well they are developed.

  5. I love the sound of the characters in this one. Too often I find that primary characters overshadow the others, but I'm glad to hear that's not the case with this one. Fab review! :)

  6. I just started reading this and am finding it slow like you mentioned. I'll stick with it though since you said that it gets much better and lives up to its hype. Thanks!

  7. Grear review. Am looking forward to my copy from Bookdepo.

  8. Love the review! I was a bit unsure about reading this but now I am definitely going to give it a go.

    And thanks for sharing the trailer :)

  9. Every time I hear more about this book I'm more excited to read it. I literally just put a hold on it in the library queue - I'm number two!

  10. So glad you liked this one too Leanna! I had the same reaction...the buildup led me to believe we were going to have the insta-love situation with the new boy at school and I was bracing myself for it and then WHAM...hatred:) Loved it!

  11. In your review you make Starcrossed sound as good as its book trailer is! Well developed characters(also secondary) are very important to me. So now I have to try to finish the novel I am currently reading as fast as I can, so I can start with Starcrossed.

  12. I loved this one! I found it highly addictive reading and hugely exciting :)

  13. I love this book so much - so glad you do too :D


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