The Sound of Stars
Author: Alechia Dow
Published: February 25, 2020
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Can a girl who risks her life for books and an alien who loves forbidden pop music work together to save humanity?
Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deaths of one-third of the world’s population.
Seventeen-year-old Janelle “Ellie” Baker survives in an Ilori-controlled center in New York City. Deemed dangerously volatile because of their initial reaction to the invasion, humanity’s emotional transgressions are now grounds for execution. All art, books and creative expression are illegal, but Ellie breaks the rules by keeping a secret library. When a book goes missing, Ellie is terrified that the Ilori will track it back to her and kill her.
Born in a lab, M0Rr1S (Morris) was raised to be emotionless. When he finds Ellie’s illegal library, he’s duty-bound to deliver her for execution. The trouble is, he finds himself drawn to human music and in desperate need of more. They’re both breaking the rules for love of art—and Ellie inspires the same feelings in him that music does.
Ellie’s—and humanity’s—fate rests in the hands of an alien she should fear. M0Rr1S has a lot of secrets, but also a potential solution—thousands of miles away. The two embark on a wild and dangerous road trip with a bag of books and their favorite albums, all the while making a story and a song of their own that just might save them both.
I’ve got to start this review by saying that I think this book is really good. Not only is it well written, but it deals with themes that are playing out in our society right now. I felt that it gave a voice to people who have been drowned out by the noise for a very long time. This is a beautiful debut from Alechia Dow and I am looking forward to more books from this author!
I have seen numerous reviews that say they couldn’t connect with this book, and I do understand where those people are coming from. I struggled to really connect with the characters and the story for a few chapters. Once the narrative really picked up with the teased flight for your life across America road trip, all of the pieces that were laid in the beginning chapters became clear. Some of the things felt a bit cheesy, but I am also older than the intended audience for this book which would explain those feelings.
The fact remains that this book is well written, interesting, fast paced (in a good way), emotional, thematic, and it’s just a really good book that will connect with a vast array of readers. I want to encourage people to read this book, because it is a book that needs to be read.
Ellie and M0Rr1S are characters that share commonalities that readers face every day. They are othered because of the way they look, their birth, their class in the social hierarchy, or just because they feel. The unfortunate reality of the world is that we are going through a time where people are rising up against prejudice and injustice because humanity hasn’t dealt with this problem. There are still too many people in the world who harbor so much hate toward other humans because of the color of their skin or the person they choose to be with. While reading The Sound of Stars, these thoughts kept going through my head, it’s filled with larger themes that made me think.
In the beginning I thought I was getting into an alien invasion, save the pop culture, road trip book, but what it ended up being was so much more and so much more thought provoking. Seriously, this is a stellar debut novel and I’m excited to read anything and everything from Alechia Dow!
This is my honest review, I purchased this book and was not obligated to post a review for any reason.