'Skyward' is so much more than your average sci-fi novel
Skyward by Brandon Sanderson ★★★★½
“You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”
I enjoyed this book a lot, as is kind of suspected from a Brandon Sanderson book. I loved these characters, literally all of them. The plot was really nice and interesting. The world-building was amazing. The only thing that I didn't like was the beginning of the book. I wasn't really sucked into the story from the very first page and that made me scared for the rest of the book.
Defeated, crushed, and driven almost to extinction, the remnants of the human race are trapped on a planet that is constantly attacked by mysterious alien starfighters. Spensa, a teenage girl living among them, longs to be a pilot. When she discovers the wreckage of an ancient ship, she realizes this dream might be possible—assuming she can repair the ship, navigate flight school, and (perhaps most importantly) persuade the strange machine to help her. Because this ship, uniquely, appears to have a soul.
The plot of Skyward is very interesting and I was eager to read it. I had heard great things about this book so I was expecting a lot. And I can happily say that I genuinely loved this book. I love a good sci-fi book, you could give me a random novel about a squad of mates becoming pilots and I probably would enjoy reading it. But Sanderson takes this topic, this theme a lot further and that made it so much better. The plot had so many intriguing and compelling elements that just makes you want to keep reading. Reading Skyward felt new, it felt refreshing and I didn't have the feeling I read this book before. The author keeps surprising the reader with plot twists, some of them were to be expected but that didn't take any of the excitement away.
The characters in Skyward were lovely and I literally want to be friends with all of them. There is not one I didn't like. They all had unique personalities and Sanderson does a really good job in making 9-ish characters all different. I especially connected with Spensa. She has a lot of anger inside of her and I really can relate to that. I liked seeing her struggles and her willingness to not give up. I see her as a strong female character and I feel like we need more of that. Spensa was sassy and straightforward without overdoing it. She was so real, honest, and vulnerable.
I definitely enjoyed Sanderson's writing style. As I said before I was expecting a lot. It is Brandon Sanderson, you know. He's a genius, a master writer and I felt that in Skyward. I did however had some trouble getting past the first few chapters of this book. You can see on my Goodreads profile that I started this book on May 19th but didn't pick it back up until May 23rd. After that I basically read the book, which counts more than 500 pages, in a day because I enjoyed it so much. After the first few pages, I got swept away and finished it in a blink of an eye. It was definitely an easy read.
The cover of Skyward is truly gorgeous. Charlie Bowater did an amazing job creating the artwork on this cover.
Skyward is a solid 4,5 stars and would definitely have gotten 5 if the beginning of the book had been a bit smoother and had immediately sucked me in. Other than that, I don't have any negative points about Skyward. I really look forward to reading Starsight. I almost started reading it after finishing Skyward, but I have other books on my TBR that have to be read!
Would I recommend this book? Absolutely. Skyward is a lot more than your average sci-fi novel about space and teens training to be pilots. The novel has an amazing and unique plot, very cool and honest characters, great world-building, and a fair amount of plot twists. Sanderson is a natural writer. I will definitely be reading more of his books.
Brandon Sanderson was born in December 1975 in Lincoln, Nebraska. As a child Brandon enjoyed reading, but he lost interest in the types of titles often suggested for him, and by junior high he never cracked a book if he could help it.
Brandon began writing in earnest, taking a job as the night desk clerk at a hotel because they allowed him to write while at work. During this era he went to school full time during the day, worked nights to pay for his schooling, and wrote as much as he could. He says it made for a rather dismal social life, but he finished seven novels during his undergraduate years. Brandon submitted many manuscripts for publication . . . and accumulated quite a pile of rejection letters. In spite of this he continued to be a dedicated writer.
The only author to make the shortlist for the David Gemmell Legend Award eight times in seven years, Brandon won that award in 2011 for The Way of Kings. He has also won the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice award for Best Epic Fantasy twice and has been nominated three other years. His novella The Emperor’s Soul won the Hugo Award in 2013. Brandon has been serving as a judge for Writers of the Future since 2016. He has hit the New York Times Best-Seller List fifteen times, most recently at #1 with Oathbringer, book three of The Stormlight Archive, which is also Audible’s most pre-ordered book of all time. DMG Entertainment optioned the rights to the Cosmere universe shared by his fantasy novels, and Fox acquired the Reckoners trilogy for Shawn Levy’s production company 21 Laps. Brandon’s books have been published in thirty-five languages.