Monday, July 23, 2012

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

For Darkness Shows the Stars
By Diana Peterfreund
Pages: 402
Source: Bough from B&N
Format: Hardback

Rating: Really Liked it! 

Goodreads Synopsis:

It's been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.

Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family's estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot's estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth--an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.

But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret--one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she's faced with a choice: cling to what she's been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she's ever loved, even if she's lost him forever.

Inspired by Jane Austen's "Persuasion", "For Darkness Shows the Stars" is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.

My Review: 

As most of you know, I’m an action junkie. I like books with kick-ass characters, quests, action, ect. But every now and then, there comes along a book that may no exactly fit my normal standards, but I still end up loving it. For Darkness Shows the Stars is one of those books. This book isn't necessarily "dystopian". At it's core it is an epic love story. If you’re looking for an action-packed book, you won’t get it here. Neither will you get a tough and brave character in the physical sense. But there are different types of bravery. There are other ways to fight and show defiance. Strength isn’t always physical. Sometimes, being selfless is the hardest strength of all. Which is why I absolutely adore Elliot.

Elliot isn’t your physical kick-butt girl. She’s not going to go get a sword and destroy evil or anything. No. And because of this, at first I wasn’t sure I loved her. She seemed almost passive, something I abhor in a character. Yet I gave her a chance and I’m glad I did. Elliot is one of the most selfless characters I’ve ever read about.

Although not legally the keeper of the estate, her father’s ignorance and lack of care means she is the one to take care of everything. The only good thing about her life was Kai. We know that she didn’t run away with him, but the “why” is what makes her such a fantastic character. She put the welfare of those under her care above her own happiness. She knew her father’s cruelty and carelessness and couldn’t let her people suffer at his hands. She sometimes seemed passive because if she made her dad angry, he’d take it out on people she cared about. Therefore, she had a quiet strength. She did things without him knowing. She defied him in silence. While it did take her a while to stand up to him and sometimes I just wanted her to go ahead and do it already, I respect her choice. 

To be honest, I absolutely hated Kai through the first half of the book. Because we know why Elliot stayed behind, I simply couldn’t understand how he could be so cruel to her when he returned. But don’t despair. Kai definitely redeems himself. He’s got such a good heart, he just first has to get past his hurt.

One element I really enjoyed throughout the book were the letters between Kai and Elliot. They give flashbacks to their relationship when they were young and I think it was just incredibly sweet and adorable. I loved getting the glimpses of their relationship.

And, as with all books, I love that it makes you think. While this book has religious undertones, it’s not “in your face” and it’s general. It’s part of the Luddite way. While prominient in some parts of the book, it doesn’t bother me because you get to see both sides and even a middle ground. Each character believes a bit differently and it’s makes you think about how things can apply to everyday situations.

Although this book is considered "dystopian", it is definitely "dystopian lite". The main purpose of this book is to shows the love story between Elliot and Kai, so don't expect fantastic world-building. I have to say that it did bug me some, I wanted to know more, but I was able to look over it and get to the meat of the story. 


For Darkness Shows the Stars isn’t an action-packed novel with kick-butt characters. It’s a beautiful love story with characters that are tough in their own ways. While not always my cup-of-tea, I couldn’t help but become entranced. 


  1. I've been wanting to read this so badly, but still haven't gotten the chance. It sounds lovely. I'm not sure what I'm expecting, but I'm glad I've been warned that it isn't a kick-butt action kind of thing. Wonderful review (=

  2. I've been wanting to read this one ever since I saw it's beautiful cover! I wasn't really expecting an action-packed book with this, but that hasn't put me off reading it at all. Brilliant review! :)

  3. Ohhh I want to read this one so bad!! Hopefully the lack of world building won't ruin it for me, that stuff matters a lot when I read. Thanks for the in depth review! :)

    Jessi @ Auntie Spinelli Reads

  4. I'm a big action junkie too, but I really want to read this! And I'm glad that you really enjoyed it! And OMG, her name is Elliot? My husband and I have decided that our next child, if it's a boy, will be named Elliot, but I'm currently trying to talk my husband going with Elliot whether it's a boy OR a girl! So it's cool that her name is Elliot!! :D Great review, Mackenzie!


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