Monday, January 17, 2022

Book Review: "We Free the Stars" by Hafsah Faizal

Title: We Free the Stars
Author: Hafsah Faizal
Series: "We Hunt the Flame" #2
Genre: YA Fantasy
Page Length: 592 pages
Publication Date: January 19, 2021
Rating: 4 // 5 stars

I will say I was a bit worried going into this book. I enjoyed the first book but didn't love it and this one was quite a bit longer. I was worried my reading slump I'm trying to recover from would make it difficult to read. And I was also worried for all my favorite characters. It was a bit of a slow start for me but after around 200 pages I couldn't put it down. I ended up reading the majority of the book in one night and I really enjoyed it. 

The characters were what really kept me going. I was invested in the plot but more than that I was invested in the characters I'd gotten attached to in the first book. Seeing the development and journeys they all went on was one of the most enjoyable aspects of the duology for me. I was also just really scared about what would happen to each of them that I couldn't put the book down until I knew the outcome. 

The romance aspect of the duology wasn't one that I felt as strongly as the rest. I think part of that was the fact I'm still recovering from a slump. I enjoyed the romance but I think a lot of people are more invested in it. What I will say, though, is that I think the romance was pretty realistic in terms of pacing and whatnot. I liked the pining, I liked the messiness, and I liked the angst between them. Also, the number of quotable lines about love was just...chef's kiss.

Like I said, I was really invested in the plot. While I am more of a character-driven reader, plot is still an important part of my enjoyment of books. The stakes in this book were high and that added to the burning need to find out the ending as fast as possible. 

Apart from the romance, what held the book back for me was the writing style. This duology has beautiful writing and so many beautiful quotes in it. It truly is top tier. However, the lengthy descriptions and internal thoughts/feelings were a bit difficult for me to stay tuned in to right now. This is 100% because I am still getting out of a slump. I know for a fact I'll reread these books in the future and I fully expect it to be easier for me to get along with the writing style and enjoy the book even more than I already did. 

Overall, I enjoyed this duology a lot. I think this sequel is my current favorite of the duology, but on future rereads that could change. The characters in this world were my favorite, but I also loved the world, magic system, and adventure that the reader goes on. I can't wait to see what else Hafsah Faizal writes in the future because I'm for sure a fan after finishing this duology.

Thanks for reading!

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