Book Review: Skyward by Brandon Sanderson
Hey everyone! It’s been a while since I did one of these, but I’m finally coming out with a book review… of a book that, when this post goes live, I will have read several months ago. At the time that I’m writing this, though, I just finished this book a few hours ago, so I’d say it’s still pretty fresh in my mind.
I feel like I’m going to have a lot to say about this book, so let’s just get started!
Set on a run-down planet called Detritus, where space junk rains from the sky on a pretty much daily basis, the last of human civilization is locked in a fight for survival against an alien species called the Krell. Since the humans’ crash-landing on Detritus three generations before, the Krell, who live beyond the layers of space junk that orbit the planet, have been doggedly working to wipe them out, and until relatively recently, the humans were unable to fight back. A famous battle of Krell and rebel humans gave humans the chance to fight back—and gave Spensa Nightshade, our main character—her reputation as the coward’s daughter, after her father infamously ran from the battle. Determined to not only clear her father’s name, but also to break out of his shadow, Spensa signs up to become a pilot in the Defiant Defense Force (DDF for short), and that’s where the story takes off.
As you may know, Brandon Sanderson is my favorite author. I’ve loved every book I have ever read by him, and this one was no different. I really only had one tiny issue with the book, and that was that, especially during the first chunk of the book, Spensa’s personality was just a little too one-note, almost to the point where she felt less like a person and more like she was just that one personality trait. Luckily, over the course of the book, she becomes a much more rounded character, so it wasn’t a big enough deal for me to take off any points from my rating.
Plus, there were so many incredible things about this book that they made up for it. As usual, the worldbuilding was incredible, the characters were great, and the plot was exciting. This series is definitely sci-fi, which is very different from other Sanderson books I’ve read, but what I thought was really interesting about it is that even though it’s sci-fi and there are starfighters and aliens and highly advanced technology, it seems like there is also just the tiniest hint of magic in this world. I’m really excited to find out where this all goes in the next three books in this series.
Another thing I loved about this book was the character development. Most of the book follows Spensa as a cadet interacting with the members of her flight and learning how to be a real pilot. All of the characters in her flight are so distinct. Really, we’re not just watching Spensa’s transformation, but we’re watching as her whole team learns how to be a team and how their friendships grow.
There were also a few hints at a possible future romance between Spensa and another pilot, which I am intrigued about. You guys know that I’m not always a fan of romance in books, but Sanderson’s romances are usually more subtle and slow-building, which is the kind of thing that I like reading.
Overall, I think this was a really solid first book in the series, and I’m excited to get my hands on the second book, Starsight, when it comes out later this year.
That’s all that I had for this review today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you soon.