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Lytherus book club: This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, part 2

Lytherus book club header March

Hi all! We’re playing catch-up on this book review. The authors are under deadline, so we postponed the interview with them, but it’s still on the docket, so feel free to submit any questions you might have!

In case you want to catch up, I’ve already covered Part 1 and part 2 of THESE BROKEN STARS, and Part 1 of THIS SHATTERED WORLD. I am excited to wrap these books up in this post. And let me say again, as a gal who isn’t as big a fan of scifi as I am of fantasy, I absolutely adored these books. I thought they were well-written, had great pacing, were creative, and had some great romances in them. I highly recommend them, especially to people who might be like me, not as much into this genre.

Okay! So, Before we jump into the second half of this book, here’s the summary:

downloadJubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met. Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet’s rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.Rebellion is in Flynn’s blood. His sister died in the original uprising against the powerful corporate conglomerate that rules Avon with an iron fist. These corporations make their fortune by terraforming uninhabitable planets across the universe and recruiting colonists to make the planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.Desperate for any advantage against the military occupying his home, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape base together, caught between two sides in a senseless war.The stunning second novel in the Starbound trilogy is an unforgettable story of love and forgiveness in a world torn apart by war.

We left off with the main characters in serious trouble. And things really go crazy in the second half. Here are the main points I think are important from the second half of the book:

  • Flinn hides out with an old friend, the daughter of the man who blew up the barracks. She swears he would never do that.
  • He sends Sofia out with a note for Lee.
  • Flynn sneaks onto the base to talk to Lee in disguise.
  • Lee is asked to escort someone around, and it’s her old captain, there to help her, under the ruse of inspection.
  • They run into Flynn, and the three of them discuss what’s happening. Lee reveals all to Tarver.
  • They call in Lilac to do a little digging around to figure things out. She and Tarver conclude there are whispers involved, based on what Lee said. They’re what’s causing the Fury. They need to find proof, find the lab.
  • Tarver looks at Lee’s gun and proves it wasn’t fired recently, so she couldn’t have killed the rebels.
  • Lee and Flynn make out, hard-core. They basically share they they have feelings for each other, but at what cost? At the end, who will Flynn choose, her, or his people?
  • Lee talks to her commander, who she knows knows something. The commander confirms that it was a LaRoux facility out there, not a military one. And she’s freaked about the whispers, though she doesn’t know what they are. As she tells Lee more, something warps her mind and makes her forget the conversation.
  • Molly’s is burned to the ground. Molly is killed, shot before the fire started.
  • After questioning one of the rebels, all three of them come to the conclusion that McBride shot Molly, and shot the other rebels in the cave.
  • Merendson is forced to leave on the last shuttle, since the enemy is now blowing ships up. Lee pilots since she’s his security, and Flynn comes along.They make it off the planet.
  • The plane is searched, and Flynn hides, but is discovered. They fight, and knock out guards, which makes Lee a traitor.
  • They read Lilac’s note, and it says that there were shipments 10 years prior to three places, one of which is Avon, one of which is Lee’s home planet.
  • They head back to find the hidden lab. They’re almost shot down but they make it.
  • In the swamp at night they encounter lights called the wisps. It leads them to the island, and they realize that the lab has been hidden from sight all this time.
  • They sneak in to find incriminating evidence against LaRoux industries. But in the process the whispers take over and invade Flynn, talking to Lee through him. They needed them because all the employees have had their brains tampered with and aren’t susceptible to the whispering.
  • They say that they’re working independent of LaRoux, and that they need Lee. They also tell her that they’re one entity and that LaRoux separated them, which is agony. He’s basically been torturing the whispers.And now they’re over it and basically want to destroy all humans.They force Lee to release them or they’ll kill Flynn. She agrees.
  • At the last minute Flynn is taken over by a different whisper, a nice one who is fighting the others. It tells them they destroyed Flynn’s mind. It also tells them that they interacted when Lee was young, that it’s the ghost Lee thought she had as an imaginary child. This interaction has made her stronger and able to withstand them in her mind.
  • The whisper also confesses that it has stolen Lee’s dreams all these years, to selfishly experience what it’s like to be a human.
  • The whisper asks Lee to kill them, not release them. That will really set them free, and also might free Flynn’s mind without damage. This will also free up the communications tower so they can broadcast a message out to the universe about this place.
  • Flynn sends it. Everyone stops. He calls out McCormac, who loses it. Lee shoots him. And then everyone agrees to a tenuous cease-fire to talk about what’s happened here.
  • At the end LaRoux comes and offers basically a bribe in the disguise of charity, denying the truth. But Lee realizes that this planet is the tip of the iceberg with what he’s most likely planning.

The first half of this book was a slow burn. Lots of world building, character introductions, all that. It didn’t move as fast as the first book, but since that book basically started with a crash landing to an alien planet, the stakes were higher then. But once things really get going in THIS SHATTERED WORLD, they really don’t stop all the way to the end. It’s one thing after another, building up until the truth is revealed.

I also love how in this book, like the last, there’s something between all the chapters. For most of the book I had no idea what they were, though I had an inkling, but once the whispers die and Lee’s dreams come flooding back to her I know for sure that is what we’ve been experiencing: her stolen dreams.

One of my favorite things with series like this is when characters you love from previous books show up in the current one. And not just in passing, but they are present and help with the immediate problem. It’s wonderful visiting with those old friends again, and I really do think it adds some wonderful complexity to the story- and ties the books together nicely.

This series isn’t done yet. Man oh man, I cannot wait to see what the authors are planning. Because I have a feeling that we have yet to see the worst of what LaRoux has done. I cannot wait to see this villain fall.

Did you enjoy these books? I’d love to hear your thoughts on them. What did you love? Did they feel scifi-enough to you? What did you think about the characters coming back together from the first book and joining those in the second? I’d love to know! I’m also taking questions for the authors for their upcoming interview, so please send them our way!

We’ll be catching up with April’s books, SERAPHINA and SHADOW SCALE by Rachel Hartman, this week, so stay tuned for that!

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