navigating-the-stars.jpgNavigating the Stars
by Maria V. Snyder
Review by Bronwyn Eley

To say that Maria V. Snyder means a lot to me is an understatement. Her Poison Study series was one of the first fantasy series to get me hooked on the genre and I have never looked back. This time, Maria has me looking to the stars with her new epic novel Navigating the Stars!

Our lead is a girl called Lyra – smart, witty, a little bit of a cyber-delinquent… what’s not to love about that? Lyra’s parents are the galaxy’s leading Archaeologists – another huge draw in for someone who used to want to be an Archaeologist – and Lyra has grown up jumping from planet to planet, following the whim of her parents’ desires. An Archaeology-brat, if you will.

Her parents jump for joy when there’s a new discovery on another planet. They are ready for new adventures. All they need is each other and their work. Lyra, however, needs more. While her future should be undecided, open to a million possibilities, it seems as though her parents have decided her path for her.

I love reading science-fiction for many reasons and one of those reason is that I love to be awed by space! Maria did a fantastic job at this. Space is incredible and it is scary. As a reader I felt so much for Lyra’s predicament – each time her parents move her, she loses friends. Due to the mind-boggling space/time difference (don’t ask me to even attempt an explanation), when Lyra leaves one planet for another, they hold ‘funerals’. By the time she reaches her new destination, she might only been a few weeks older but many of her friends will be long gone already. It makes total sense then that Lyra makes the bold decision to stop making friends.

Enter Niall. Hah! Good luck resisting that boy’s charm. Niall is the brooding, quiet, regimented boy. Lyra is somewhere on the opposite side of the room, illegally worming into the Q-net with her mad hacker skills and really annoying Niall, whose father just happens to be head of security. The second Niall came onto the scene, I was having Valek/Yelena flashbacks (the epic couple from the Poison Study series) and could not wait to see these two come together to become what would undoubtedly be an unstoppable duo.

I’m not going to spoil the end but let’s just say that things escalated and there’s an unknown big bad causing our cast a lot of issues and getting in the way of the galaxy’s greatest mystery – the origin of the Terracotta Warriors (not the ones on Earth, the ones in space!), and solving the mystery just so happens to be Lyra’s parent’s lifetime goal.

I cannot wait for more! Lyra and Niall are bound for epic space adventures and I want to be a part of them. Bring on book two!

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