There Once Were Stars [Review, Giveaway & Tour!]

There Once Were Stars [Review, Giveaway & Tour!]
Hello there!
Title: There Once Were Stars
Author: Melanie McFarlane
Publisher: Month9Books
Published Date: 26th April 2016
Rating: 3 stars
*Thank you to Xpresso
Book Tours
 for the review copy*


Synopsis: Peace. Love. Order. Dome. That’s the motto that the Order has given the
residents of Dome 1618 to live by. Natalia Greyes is a resident of Dome 1618, a
covered city protected from the deadly radiation that has poisoned the world
outside for four generations. Nat never questioned the Order, until one day she
sees a stranger on the outside of her dome. Now Nat wants answers. What else
might her government be hiding from the good and loyal people of Dome 1618?

Review: There Once Were Stars was a novel that
intrigued me as soon as I read the title. I wanted to know more about the book,
and coupled with the gorgeous cover it had, it was too hard to resist. On top
of that, I was already familiar with the author because I follow Melanie
McFarlane’s gorgeous Instagram account. As soon as I saw there was a review
tour I rushed to sign up.
I turned out to really enjoy this book. It has a
dystopian kind of sci-fi young adult feel but doesn’t really take over the
story with the world building. For those readers who want to try some YA sci-fi
but don’t want to get too lost in a world completely different from our own,
this is the kind of book I would recommend to you. McFarlane did a good job of
introducing just enough into the story to know it’s a different time, world and
situation without it becoming overwhelming.
In this novel, the main character – Nat – is an orphan.
Her parents are deceased and passed away before they could share an important
message with her. Nat is turning 18, which is a tricky age for anyone as they
suddenly feel thrust into the world. So naturally, she turns to trying to
follow in her parent’s footsteps to learn a bit more about them. I think the
author handled the theme of loss extremely well. I wouldn’t say that Nat is
feeling grief anymore because the time for that has passed seeing as her
parents died when she was nine. But she is curious, inquiring and feeling that
gap of not having her parents there alongside her when she feels she needs
them. I love how well those emotions were translated to me, as a reader.
But sometimes, Natalie seemed to be a bit of naïve main
character. She would do a lot of things and make a lot of choices which would
hurt those around her, without really thinking about the consequences. And when
people got angry, which was only a natural response to the way she was treated,
she would be completely surprised by their actions. That kind of felt a bit
juvenile to me in some ways, coupled alongside with her habit to kind of throw
herself between two boys. That aside, Natalie was a main character easy to
The secondary characters in this novel were done pretty
well. They supported her, but also had their own role in the plot and managed
to follow that through as well. We get to know some of their backstory and why
the situation they are facing matters to themselves as well. I liked how we got
to see each characters motives and I felt like they were each unique and part
of the plot for their own reasons. I really liked that.
The writing style was okay. At times I wished the story
was going a little slower and was a little longer. Occasionally, I felt like
the sentences were a little choppy. But when it most mattered, the novel was a
smooth read and well written.
The best part of the novel for me was the ending. A lot
reached the climax it had been bubbling towards. The main characters had a plan
that they wanted to follow through with, but it fell apart. And I don’t mean
like when one part of the plan goes wrong, they fix it, and then everything’s
fine again. It fell to absolute pieces. That hiked up the action and had me
racing through 😀
A very good read and I’m looking forward to seeing what
this author brings to the mix next.

Gif Summary: 


Giveaway: Enter to win one of five ebook copies! Open internationally :3


Author Bio: Melanie McFarlane is a passionate writer of other-wordly adventures, a little excitable, and a little quirky. Whether it’s uncovering the corruption of the future, or traveling to other worlds to save the universe, she jumps in with both hands on her keyboard. Though she can be found obsessing over zombies and orcs from time to time, Melanie focuses her powers on writing young adult stories to keep the rest of the world up reading all night.

She lives with her husband and two daughters in the Land of Living Skies

Links: Buy the book on Amazon, B&N, Kobo or iBooks! Or check it out on Goodreads 😀
Or find Melanie on her website, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Wattpad and Instagram!


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