Audio Review: Lost Stars by Claudia Gray

Posted January 29, 2024 by Lillian in Reviews / 2 Comments

Audio Review: Lost Stars by Claudia GrayLost Stars by Claudia Gray
Narrator: Pierce Cravens
Series: Star Wars Young Adult Standalones
Published by Penguin Audio on 2015-09-04
Length: 11 hours and 41 minutes
Reviewing Audiobook from TN R.E.A.D.S.
Reading Challenges: 2023 Audiobook Challenge, 2023 Backlist Reader Challenge

The reign of the Galactic Empire has reached the Outer Rim planet of Jelucan, where aristocratic Thane Kyrell and rural villager Ciena Ree bond over their love of flying. Enrolling at the Imperial Academy together to become fighter pilots for the glorious Empire is nothing less than a dream come true for the both of them. But Thane sours on the dream when he sees firsthand the horrific tactics the Empire uses to maintain its ironclad rule.

Bitter and disillusioned, Thane joins the fledgling Rebellionโ€”putting Ciena in an unbearable position to choose between her loyalty to the Empire and her love for the man she's known since childhood.

Now on opposite sides of the war, will these friends turned foes find a way to be together, or will duty tear themโ€”and the galaxyโ€”apart.

What an amazing read! Lost Stars by Claudia Gray is a story set in the Star Wars universe that follows the story of two friends during the rise and fall of the empire. Ciena Ree first meets Thane Kyrell on the day the Galactic Empire has brought their home world into its “protection.” Both dream of being pilots for the empire one day. The two find themselves at the Imperial Academy where Ciena embraces the life given to them and Thane is just happy to escape his family. As the two move through the Academy and up the ranks, Thane finds himself questioning all he thought he knew while Ciena becomes more of a loyalist, clinging to what she believes is their only hope.

I cannot express how much I loved this book! It was such a great read from start to finish. Told in dual POV, it was so easy to connect and empathize with both characters, especially since we get a sense of their motives. Thane and Ciena come from two different socioeconomic classes. Ciena was poor, barely making ends meet, and looked at as an outcast on their home world. Ciena sees the academy and the empire as her way of moving up in society, gaining respect. Thane, however, comes from an aristocratic family who only values what keeps them in their position. Before they even reach the academy, Thane is bitter and jaded, not sure he wants to work for the empire, but also understands it is his only means of escape from a physically and emotionally abusive family.

This book spans from the time the Empire took over their world, Jelucan, to after the events of Return of the Jedi. This is a massive time frame, or at least I thought it was. Turns out it wasn’t as long as I thought. The book really puts that into perspective, even for a big Star Wars fan like me ๐Ÿ˜‚ I loved seeing some of the events I’m familiar with from Thane and Ciena’s perspectives. It was interesting getting that different perspective, like seeing the explosion of the first Death Star from an Imperial standpoint.

I lucked up and found an audiobook copy from my library to listen too. The narration is fantastic! I’m not sure why it is no longer available for purchase (buy links above link to ebook/physical copies). If you enjoy audiobooks and can find a copy, I highly recommend it!

Overall, I really enjoyed Lost Stars. Ciena and Thane’s relationship over the course of this book will leave you feeling all the feels. The excitement and adventure of Star Wars is ever present, and again, I loved living the original trilogy through a different perspective. Highly recommend for all fans of Star Wars or fans of sci-fi.

About Claudia Gray

Claudia Gray is not my real name. I didn't choose a pseudonym because my real name is unpleasant (it isn't), because I'd always dreamed of calling myself this (I haven't) or even because I'm hiding from the remnants of that international diamond-smuggling cartel I smashed in 2003 (Interpol has taken care of them). In short, I took a pseudonym for no real reason whatsoever. Sometimes this is actually the best reason to do things.

I live in New Orleans. So far, in life, I've been a disc jockey, a lawyer, a journalist and an extremely bad waitress, just to name a few. I especially like to spend time traveling, hiking, reading and listening to music. More than anything else, I enjoy writing.

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