Let me prepare my 12 year old self for the shock of her life. I did not like this Malorie Blackman novel. I wanted to, honestly. But I couldn’t.
The heart rate’s back down, the breathing rate is normal. Panic over. Nearly. Malorie Blackman was my idol for my first year or so of secondary school, and I avariciously devoured all the novels that I could get my hands on, so being hit with a book that would probably have a longer life as (albeit uncomfortable) pillow stuffing is hugely disappointing.
Blackman’s latest novel, Chasing the Stars is a meandering (almost to the point when one’s urging a character to die just to spice things up a bit) story about some people on a spaceship. There’s a rescue, some romantic action (whether or not it’s entirely appropriate in a children’s book is another matter. Trust me, my appropriate/not radar is fine-tuned this week.), some arguments, some deaths and some really cringey dialogue/plot twists, and it’s all set in space. Great.
Vee and her brother are leaders of an empty ship heading towards Earth, after a virus wiped out the entire crew. Nathan and his collective (to be frank, there’s not a better world) have been unceremoniously dumped onto a planet in dangerous territory – hence the rescue mission. The rest of the mission is basically a love story, interwoven with an action plot that I can only presume is there to stop the reader from inflicting ‘Death by a Thousand (Paper) Cuts’ upon themselves.
The only vaguely good bit was the fact that I imagined Nathan to be ravishingly, take-me-here gorgeous. Entertaining fantasies about his abs and the hope that I won’t die depressed and lonely (although judging by the boy action now, that’s highly unlikely) was honestly the only reason why I kept going. Even then, my stamina didn’t hold on, and I skipped to the final three chapters.
I know. I couldn’t believe that I did that, either.
Personally, I didn’t enjoy this novel. I wanted to, I thought that I would – the cover was great, the synopsis was interesting – but I didn’t. It was the literary equivalent of being forced to watch Real Housewives for ten hours straight. Not fun.
Have you read Chasing the Stars? If so, I would honestly love to hear what you’ve got to say – do you think I should give it a second chance?