3.5 Star Review: The Star Thief by Jamie Grey

The entire world had shifted, like she was fucking Alice in Wonderland and had just fallen down a rabbit hole.

Surprise me, why don’t you. This is a New Adult novel? I’m honestly astonished because there’s no slut shaming. The MC even walks with confidence about her sexuality and doesn’t go around pointing out what she looks like all the time. Let me be clear:

1. No slut shaming
2. No over analyzing her own looks
3. No comparing her own looks to other female characters
4. No over-angst
5. No whining
6. No over the top soap opera drama
7. No male love interest stalking.
8. No male love interest pressuring the MC into an emotionally abusive relationship

I’m not even sure this is New Adult, to be honest. But if it is, it’s my favorite New Adult novel I’ve ever read, which is saying a lot.

I’d also like to mention: It’s fucking rare for me to like science fiction. So you have Science Fiction + New Adult= and you have one surprised reader in Brigid.

I thought this was a wonderfully written novel. I really enjoyed it. I loved how the author portrayed a sexually confident character who took pride in her abilities (no pun intended). Renna likes being a girl. One of my favorite scenes, where Renna’s annoyed by all the plain underwear she‘ll have to wear:

“What the hell are these? Do they actually expect me to wear this?” They were soft white briefs, military-issue-a far cry from her lacy thongs back home, the bras with the special enhancements and frilly cups.

Heroines who wear sexy underwear should be more common.

She’s proud of her abilities in hacking as a thief mercenary. Most heroines are so demure and meek. She’s also got a lot of witty dialogue in this novel that had me chuckling many times. The romance wasn’t gag-worthy, which again for New Adult….is surprising.

Summary:

Renna, the Star Thief, is renowned throughout the galaxy as a thief. Always with a smirk on her face, she’s talented at hacking and bidding top items on the black market; things no one else would be able to steal, she naps. Renna‘s exhausted. She’s wants to be free. She’s almost ready to retire. On her last job she’s caught and a man working for MYTH blackmails her. He wants her help to keep a little boy safe and to steal something no one else would be able to.

She joins the team, reluctantly, and forced to work with someone from her past. Growls and glares ensue.

The team works together to save the Universe from impending doom!

The World:

Okay…so as much as I liked this novel. It has flaws when it comes to the world building. Meaning that, the author doesn’t really delve into much. We’re told these things exist, but we’re not really told why or the details of said gadgets and creatures abound. It’s not like I expect things to be spoon fed to me. But seriously, give me a little something to work with here. I’m told names of things, and little bits and pieces about them…but those pieces are so vague. It’s hard to really grasp why there’s even an Old Earth. How did things change and why? How does the world work? I don’t need a huge detailed info dump at the beginning of the novel, but I expect some more explanation.

The creatures descriptions, while nothing I haven’t seen on television before, put a smile on my face. It reminded me of some of the creatures from Star Trek:

A squat gray alien with a thick, fleshy neck and four large eyes spread horizontally across his face appeared at the door.

I remember being a kid and sitting on my father’s lap, entranced by Leonard Nemoy’s voice. As a kid many of those creatures with different colors, names, languages, and floppy skin entertained the shit out of me. The races in this novel did no different.

The Writing:

The humor in the novel made me laugh. I really loved the MC’s sarcasm and wit. I really appreciated the slow build of the story and how things gradually took place. But it didn’t slow down so much that I started to snore. However, I had some problems.

The incessant use of the word “growl“. What is with all the freakin’ growling in this book? She growls, he growls, they growl, it growled. I have examples people:

Example 1: With a growl, Finn spun around…
Example 2: He growled…
Example 3: Finn growled and turned away…
Example 4: Viktis growled…
Example 5: Finn let out a growl…
Example 6: She felt a burn of tears again and growled.

The last one is particularly hilarious. But, I don’t get it. Humans don’t growl that often…unless you’re the Hulk. But even then he turns into a big green monster.

Relationships:

Some of the best parts of this novel was watching Renna and Finn have glaring contests. Their relationship grows gradually. They don’t jump right into the sack. We don’t experience the ever hated insta-lust that dominates most fields of fiction these days.

When I got deeper into the novel, Finn comes to a point where he forgives Renna, but I had a problem with the speed he came to forgive her. It didn’t seem like something a real human being would do. It happened within two pages. People tend to take time to let things sink in for a while. Real forgiveness takes time. When we thing one thing happened for so long, and then suddenly figure out that’s no what happened, that’s going to take some time to adjust to emotionally and mentally.

Other reviewers have been likening this book to the Sirantha Jax series, but I highly disagree. I love that series, but I don’t see the similarity at all. I can see elements between Jax and Renna when it regards their independence. I’d also say they’re both likely to run off when things get to serious. Jax is so different from Renna, though. As in fucked up, different. A hundred times more than Renna. Actually, I had difficulty connecting to Renna emotionally. She’s always mentioning her triumphs and greatnesses that I feel like the author left out integral emotional feelings for Renna. It made it hard to understand her character and her M.O. We understand she sticks to herself, but what about her character’s emotional development?

Renna’s excuses for her freaking out when her relationship with Finn gets serious, became lame:

The kid had been nothing but trouble since she’d found him. And Finn…he’d already left her once. Why stay and watch a repeat performance?

This tells me that 1. She’s irrational and 2. She’s not very good at making up excuses for herself or the reader.

Then there’s the whole weird thing with Keva, a lieutenant of the ship Athena. I didn’t understand where the author was going with this and why. It didn’t really end up to any real culmination. Basically:

– Cat fight
– snark
– blah blah blah you’ll never wear one of those ninja outfits.
– glare, glare, glare.
– scowls
– Renna messes up
– poetic justice
– Renna saves day
– No more antagonism. Smiles abound.

WHAT. I don’t even understand where the fucking antagonism came from in this first place:

Gods, she hated working with other women. They were always so catty and competitive. Always so ready to stab you in the back if it meant getting ahead.

It can’t be because Renna dislikes working with other women because Keva initiated the hatred. Is it because Keva was attracted to Finn? Was it because Keva dislikes thief’s? Or was it because she just doesn’t get along with other chicks? I don’t understand why this had to be in the novel, anyway. Even if it is because of Renna’s thievery, why include it?

Conclusion:

I didn’t totally love this novel, but I really enjoyed it. I would definitely recommend it to other readers, depending if none of the things I mentioned wouldn’t bother them. If you like independent heroines and science fiction, I would suggest trying this novel.

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