An amazing reimagining of a classic.,
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This review is from: For Darkness Shows the Stars (Paperback)
Elliot North is struggling to keep her family's farm afloat since her mother died, not for the sake of her Father, but for the sake of the Reduced & the Posts that work on it who would starve and die without her help. It was the reason she did not run away with the boy she loved and now he's back 4 years later as a rich captain of a ship, just when her farm is struggling harder than ever.
The Reduced are the result of human genetic modification gone wrong, they are considered to be dumb and mostly mute and the Luddites (the descendants of those that shunned genetic modification) consider it their job to take care of the Reduced, but that system has gone awry and the reduced are now little more than slaves. However some of their offspring are different, the Posts as they are known, are completely normal. Gone are any of the genetic defects that generations of the Reduced have suffered through and yet they are still second class citizens.
Kai seems determined to show Elliot that she made the wrong decision and to show everyone else that she is nothing but a rich selfish little Luddite that considers everyone like him to be below her. As Elliot learns the truth of how the world is changing she must face what it truly means to be a Luddite, and whether that's something that is even important to her any more.
A retelling of Jane Austen's Persuasion in a way that you never would expect.
For Darkness Shows the Stars hit me right in the feels and just kept punching. I never thought I could cry so much during a standalone about the future, but I cried an awful lot for Elliot. She truly loved Kai but for unselfish reasons she chose to stay behind and through out the novel he resents her for it, not understanding her true reasons but choosing to twist them in his head so he could cope. This results in him repeatedly lashing out at her to keep her at a distance and the way that Elliot felt when he was being cruel just got me so choked up for her.
Elliot is truly a great character. She's not outright kick ass but there's no real fighting to be done in this book. Instead she has this great strength to her that makes her keep going no matter how **** things get. I'm not sure if I'd have the strength to carry on after what she has to go through but still she keeps her secrets and keeps fighting her own battles to make sure the Posts and the Reduced are taken care of and that her cruel Father doesn't run them all into the ground with his own greed. I admired her greatly for that strength and hated that she had to be so strong.
I probably would have hate Kai if we didn't get glimpses of him before he ran away through his and Elliot's letters and then the odd moments of kindness he had for Elliot through out the book. They were few and far between but you are aware that it's about as hard for him to be around Elliot as it is for her to be around him. I just wanted to scream at them to stop resenting each other and talk but of course it's a novel so I just had to sit there with tears streaming down my face as they argued.
The world Peterfreund created is perfect as well. So many aspect were incredibly well crafted to make the world feel tangible and grounded in reality. Everything just reminded me of the slavery in the South of America before it was abolished. It was amazing and horrible all in one go.
If you'd ever thought about picking up this book DO IT! Don't wait around umming and ahhhing. I regret not reading this as soon as it was possible but I'm glad I read it eventually because I just LOVED it. I truly think that fans of Jane Austen's Persuasion will love this.