Title: Stars Above (A Lunar Chronicles Collection)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Published: 2nd February 2016
“The first time, he had wondered why she liked books so much, and if it had anything to do with why he liked spaceships. Because they could take you somewhere far, far away”
The universe of the Lunar Chronicles holds stories—and secrets—that are wondrous, vicious, and romantic. How did Cinder first arrive in New Beijing? How did the brooding soldier Wolf transform from young man to killer? When did Princess Winter and the palace guard Jacin realize their destinies?
If you read and enjoyed the Lunar Chronicles and are debating whether this book will be worth your time, let me do you a huge favour and enlighten you…
IT IS WORTH YOUR TIME!
It is beautiful and wonderful and amazing and lovely and such a great addition to the series!
Stars Above is definitely to be read AFTER you have finished Winter though, as otherwise you may get some spoilers at the end! And no one likes spoilers!
I am going to review this book based on each story individually. In terms of individual stories, there were definitely some that I liked more than others, and I felt that I enjoyed the stories more as the book went on. However, as a collective, this book was just wonderful and amazing and everything I needed in life right now, and I’m not a mathematician or a scientist, so I’m going to pretend that averages don’t exist and round it up to a collective 5 star rating!
This first story is a prequel to the series, following Scarlett and her grandmother, Michelle Benoit, and explaining how Princess Selene/Cinder came into her care. I thought it was really interesting for some background; to see Cinder’s beginnings on Earth. I also liked reading more about Scarlett’s grandmother, who had an important role in the series, yet didn’t feature in it much at all. However, I didn’t think it was the best start to the book, and it was my least favourite of the stories.
In this prequel, we see the plague’s effects on Cinder’s new family, and its impact on her future years. This also wasn’t my favourite of the stories, but it was nice to see the origins of Cinder’s friendship with Iko, and her coming to terms with her life in a strange new house without memories of her previous years. And it flows really well from the previous story.
The Queen’s Army:
This story follows one particular soldier, drafted into Queen Levana’s army, who will do whatever he can to not be turned into the monsters she is creating.
Three guesses for who this special soldier might be…
The funny thing is, I had read this story back when it was released, and didn’t even realise who it was about. I think because it uses his real name, which is only released later in the series, I think? Anyway, I enjoyed re-reading this with that new understanding and appreciation.
Carswell’s Guide To Being Lucky:
Oh Carswell Thorne…we all knew you were cocky and arrogant and endearing, but as a teenager…! It was so funny reading a story about Thorne as basically a mini version of his older, Lunar Chronicles, self. The quote at the top of this review is from this story, and it made me smile. Because teenage Thorne loved his cargo spaceships, and his love for the Rampion ship was apparently a deep-rooted one! This was basically exactly what I imagined a younger Carswell would be like, and I loved reading a story from his perspective, as well as getting a bit of insight into his family life and background, which we don’t get in the main series.
After Sunshine Passes By:
This story follows nine-year-old Cress and how she ended up in her satellite, spying on Earth. It was so heartbreaking. In terms of the story-telling and writing, this was my favourite of the stories. Cress is such a wonderful and real character…with fears and awkwardness and dreams, all in a relatable way. She is my favourite character of the series, and I’m so glad this story made it into this book!
The Princess and the Guard:
This story was my favourite, in terms of content, of the whole collection. I always considered Cress and Thorne to be my OTP for this series, but after finishing this book, I think I would have to say Winter and Jacin may have topped it. I just loved reading more about them, and seeing their bond and connection. It also shows us some important events
in Winter’s life, and shows how she came to her Lunar sickness. It was a beautiful story of strength and care for one another, and I will probably read it many times!
The Little Android:
I found this a very strange little story. I was really confused at first who it was supposedly about. I’m still not completely sure if we were supposed to know the android, but I read the story as if about a completely new character. I found it the most difficult to get into, but also really different (in a good way) and quite emotional. Marissa Meyer made me so connected to these characters in less than 50 pages. I thought, while reading, that this story felt a little like the Little Mermaid, so I looked it up, and yep, apparently that’s what it’s a re-tellling of! Albeit a very vague and unique one. Clearly I’m just wired to pick out fairy tales in everything! It was definitely of a different tone to the rest of the stories, but quirky and interesting to read.
This story covers Cinder and Kai’s first meeting at Cinder’s stall, but from Kai’s perspective. I am so glad this story was in here. I forgot how much I loved Kai and his sarcastic humour. I loved seeing the scene from his perspective, and reading about his first impressions of her. It was such a cute and adorable scene!
Something Old, Something New:
This is that epilogue that we all needed. There’s just one problem: now I need an epilogue to the epilogue! As the title suggests, this final story follows the wedding of one of the series’ couples. Not really the couple I was expecting though! But still, the story gets the happy ending we all want! This is a hard one to write about without spoiling. So I’ll just say: it is a fitting, wonderful, if a bit cheesy, (but who doesn’t love a bit of cheese?) ending to the series, and I am now experiencing my Lunar Chronicles withdrawal symptoms again!