The Space Between the Stars
In a breathtakingly vivid and emotionally gripping debut novel, one woman must confront the emptiness in the universe—and in her own heart—when a devastating virus reduces most of humanity to dust and memories.All Jamie Allenby ever wanted was space. Even though she wasn’t forced to emigrate from Earth, she willingly left the overpopulated, claustrophobic planet. And when a long relationship devolved into silence and suffocating sadness, she found work on a frontier world on the edges of civilization. Then the virus hit...Now Jamie finds herself dreadfully alone, with all that’s left of the dead. Until a garbled message from Earth gives her hope that someone from her past might still be alive. Soon Jamie finds other survivors, and their ragtag group will travel through the vast reaches of space, drawn to the promise of a new beginning on Earth. But their dream will pit them against those desperately clinging to the old ways. And Jamie’s own journey home will help her close the distance between who she has become and who she is meant to be...

The Space Between the Stars Details

TitleThe Space Between the Stars
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 1st, 1970
Rating
GenreScience Fiction, Fiction, Dystopia

The Space Between the Stars Review

  • Sh3lly ✨ Bring on the Weird ✨
    February 19, 2017
    DNF. Good premise, but the main character was irritating, whiny, and insufferable. I could not connect to her at all. There is more about her obsessing over her past (failed marriage and miscarriage from years ago) than any sci-fi, post-apocalyptic, dystopian vibe the blurb alluded to. The only thing sci-fi about this is that they somehow are able to travel the stars and populate other planets. It's sometime in the future, but the MC is still wearing denim skirts. Too much time spent on idle chi DNF. Good premise, but the main character was irritating, whiny, and insufferable. I could not connect to her at all. There is more about her obsessing over her past (failed marriage and miscarriage from years ago) than any sci-fi, post-apocalyptic, dystopian vibe the blurb alluded to. The only thing sci-fi about this is that they somehow are able to travel the stars and populate other planets. It's sometime in the future, but the MC is still wearing denim skirts. Too much time spent on idle chit-chat and no action, no significant plot. This reminds me of Station Eleven where the sci-fi/apocalypse aspects are WAY in the background. It's like the author used a fantasy premise but chose not to expand on that and instead focused on the psychological issues of the MC. Not for me. :/ I tried.Thank you Netgalley and publisher for providing a digital copy to read and review.
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  • Michael
    May 8, 2017
    A thoughtful consideration of what survivors of a near total apocalypse of humanity might go through to get their heads and souls set right in order to move forward with living. The main character, Jamie, is a veterinarian whose personal disappointments and trauma in her life have led her to a remote colony world, Solitaire, populated by about 10 thousand people. She revives from illness to find herself a rare survivor of an epidemic that was projected to kill 99.9999% of humans. Which means a f A thoughtful consideration of what survivors of a near total apocalypse of humanity might go through to get their heads and souls set right in order to move forward with living. The main character, Jamie, is a veterinarian whose personal disappointments and trauma in her life have led her to a remote colony world, Solitaire, populated by about 10 thousand people. She revives from illness to find herself a rare survivor of an epidemic that was projected to kill 99.9999% of humans. Which means a few dozen left alive on most of the 300 or so settled planets and a few thousand on Earth. As a woman of action and not one to wallow in grief, she sets out to find other survivors and build a sustainable community. When she gets to the largest town, she is surprised to find two survivors, a male priest named Lowry and bioengineering scientist Rena, both middle-aged. While he is spiritual and dedicated to helping others, he doesn’t believe in a vengeful god or a divine purpose to life. However, Rena does live by those precepts, putting her on Jamie’s shitlist for the duration of this tale. Lowry’s dedication to helping her is based on their long history together and the kind of compassion owed to the insane. Sending out a distress beacon gets them picked up by a military pilot of a small spaceship, Callan, a can-do, hunky guy. Jamie bonds with him, but resists the easy path to romance. His one crew member, an engineer named Gracie, is an antisocial misanthrope and an enigma, but her competence and courage will save the group’s bacon in hazardous times to come. They travel to other planets and space stations seeking fuel and looking to help other groups of survivors. Sadly, the living communities they find have quickly adopted the dog-eat-dog human response to adversity, with a few elite taking power and shaping others to their agenda by force. They pick up one more shipmate in a tense escape situation, an uneducated young woman named Mila, who had to resort to prostitution to survive tough times in one urban site of a colony world but doesn’t deserve to be part of one group’s forced breeding scenario. Jamie persuades their group to head for Earth. Despite having split from her husband of 13 years, she feels compelled to seek him out where her last message from him led her to believe he was travelling, the Northumberland region of England where they once lived. The overpopulation and pollution of Earth which had led to a massive forced emigration of the disenfranchised to the colony worlds will be gone, and hopefully the few thousand people likely to be still alive will provide to best chance to build a future. For Jamie, survival is not enough. They have a chance to build a better society. Unfortunately, Rena thinks the same way, with the difference that only true believers should be in control.I enjoyed this story in the same way as Mandel’s “Station Eleven” and Heller’s “The Dog Stars”, which are similar explorations of relatively ordinary people trying to find meaning in their survival after a near-total apocalypse. For me, it wasn’t quite as engaging or stimulating with respect to the depth of the key personalities and their philosophical delving. This story has an uphill struggle for success among the vast number of post-apocalyptic tales spawned by our pessimistic view of the future of humanity. The implausible spread of such a deadly virus among all human societies has to be taken as an arbitrary premise, not much different from many other novels. I was more disappointed in how the space travel was so painless that the sense of the vast magnitude of space implied by the book’s title didn’t really sink in for me. I didn’t mind the nonexistent attention to the technology of fast-than-light travel, but the refueling of the ship by pumping of ersatz gas at various landing sites went too far in disregard of tech trappings.This book was provided for review by the publisher through the Netgalley program.
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  • Carlos
    April 6, 2017
    3 1/2 stars for me. The premise of this book was one of the best ones I had heard in quite a while , so my expectations were pretty high , but I'm sorry to say that while there were some parts of the book that did meet my expectations, the big majority did not , I mean the author had a huge opportunity to remade the world (literally, since a virus had killed almost all population) , that in itself gives the author such a plethora of options to write a book about , and she chose to go with such a 3 1/2 stars for me. The premise of this book was one of the best ones I had heard in quite a while , so my expectations were pretty high , but I'm sorry to say that while there were some parts of the book that did meet my expectations, the big majority did not , I mean the author had a huge opportunity to remade the world (literally, since a virus had killed almost all population) , that in itself gives the author such a plethora of options to write a book about , and she chose to go with such a cliche one (I won't say what because I don't want to give away any spoilers) . But that might be my personal taste , I recommend this book to any lover of Firefly, adventures and dystopian novels . I also want to thank the folks at Netgalley for giving me access to this ARC.
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  • Faith
    April 20, 2017
    My disappointment in this book is probably my own fault. I didn't pay close enough attention to the blurb. This is not post apocalyptic science-fiction, although it is set in outer space. A virus has cut down the overpopulation by killing almost all humans on earth and the settlements in space. The people are reduced to piles of grey ash. Jamie is one of the few survivors but she very quickly meets up with a few other survivors. You'd think this situation would provide interesting challenges, bu My disappointment in this book is probably my own fault. I didn't pay close enough attention to the blurb. This is not post apocalyptic science-fiction, although it is set in outer space. A virus has cut down the overpopulation by killing almost all humans on earth and the settlements in space. The people are reduced to piles of grey ash. Jamie is one of the few survivors but she very quickly meets up with a few other survivors. You'd think this situation would provide interesting challenges, but in this book all Jamie does is obsess over her miscarriage and her former lover. At least that is all she did as far as I got in this book. All of this could have happened on a farm in Kansas. Outer space is an afterthought in this book. The author is not interested in the details like what fuel runs the spacecraft in which the survivors are traveling. She is interested, however, in philosophical questions like who should be saved and how the world will be reshaped. The questions may eventually have amounted to something interesting but I just didn't have the patience to find out. This is not what I was expecting, and I was so very bored that I gave up after trying to read this book for several weeks. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.
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  • Katie Lumsden
    March 26, 2017
    I thoroughly loved this. A brilliant, engagingly written story of survival and the search for meaning after most of the human population has been wiped out. I loved how the novel combined small, personal tragedies with disaster on a larger scale, and how it explored the need not just to survive but to turn survival into something meaningful. The book explores family, human relationships, religion and hope in fascinating ways. The plot is engaging and full of unexpected turns and the characters a I thoroughly loved this. A brilliant, engagingly written story of survival and the search for meaning after most of the human population has been wiped out. I loved how the novel combined small, personal tragedies with disaster on a larger scale, and how it explored the need not just to survive but to turn survival into something meaningful. The book explores family, human relationships, religion and hope in fascinating ways. The plot is engaging and full of unexpected turns and the characters are unique and well-drawn. (Definitely one for fans of Station Eleven of the Long Way to a Small Angry Planet.)
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  • ❀Eryn❀
    May 1, 2017
    I received a copy off of NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not persuade my actual opinion of the novel.DNF at 25%I'm going to be straightforward and say: this was not a book for me. It wasn't my type of genre (whatever this was), the story didn't grasp my attention, and the writing was too choppy/dull(?). But I really tried to finish it with an open mind - I truly did - sadly, my mind kept screaming at me to stop reading since I wasn't enjoying myself one bit. As a result of I received a copy off of NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not persuade my actual opinion of the novel.DNF at 25%I'm going to be straightforward and say: this was not a book for me. It wasn't my type of genre (whatever this was), the story didn't grasp my attention, and the writing was too choppy/dull(?). But I really tried to finish it with an open mind - I truly did - sadly, my mind kept screaming at me to stop reading since I wasn't enjoying myself one bit. As a result of this, I'm going to leave the rating blank, because someone might love this. I mean, it's a great idea and the cover is beautiful. However, it wasn't a book for me. Therefore, I don't think it's fair of me to give it a proper rating.*Thank you to NetGalley, for giving me the opportunity to review this.*
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  • Erin Sky
    June 4, 2017
    An Excellent, Unexpected ReadIf you go into this book expecting the usual dystopian fodder (one terrifying attempt after another just to stay alive... or to find other survivors... or to save what's left of humanity), then you're not going to like this book. And I'll admit, that's how I started out, based on the novel's premise. But then something interesting happened...I found myself on a parallel journey to that of the protagonist herself--letting go of the past; letting go of expectations; li An Excellent, Unexpected ReadIf you go into this book expecting the usual dystopian fodder (one terrifying attempt after another just to stay alive... or to find other survivors... or to save what's left of humanity), then you're not going to like this book. And I'll admit, that's how I started out, based on the novel's premise. But then something interesting happened...I found myself on a parallel journey to that of the protagonist herself--letting go of the past; letting go of expectations; living from one breath (or one paragraph) to the next; letting the characters be who they were, instead of who I wanted them to be.And then I became fascinated by the story in a whole new way.It's really a story about loss, and about living with that loss, on so many levels. It isn't about stopping the plague. It's about when the plague wins. And what comes after. It's a human story about surviving the unthinkable, and then trying to re-imagine life as something different--not as a step backward, and maybe not as a step forward either...In a way, it's a book about learning how to step through life without making that kind of judgment in the first place. Without being tormented by what was, or by what might have been.In fact, this book is so much about that, that it gets a bit heavy-handed in the moral-of-the-story department here and there, but I'm giving it five stars anyway because the theme is one that the protagonist is genuinely dealing with. Her thoughts are true to her character, so the real problem was not that I didn't like the story, but that I didn't like the character sometimes.She's broken inside, and not just by the plague. She struggles with her past. Like a real person. Sometimes she overcomes it, and sometimes she doesn't. Like a real person. And sometimes she ends up in uncomfortable situations that she can't quite figure her way out of. Like a real person.In essence, Corlett has created a character so real that I actively disliked her from time to time--before remembering the things I did like about her, forgiving her for being human, and moving on. I related to the character as though she were a real person. Which is, in my opinion, the book's greatest draw.So don't go into this story expecting dystopian fiction. It is a story about survival--but it's more about emotional survival than physical survival. Read it for what it is--read it for that--and you will love this novel.
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  • Sheila {ShesGoingBookCrazy.com}
    June 15, 2017
    See this full review on my blog along with others at: shesgoingbookcrazy.comI received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.I think I've let this book ferment for long enough. My thoughts have been stirring over the past week about it, and I think it's finally time to sit down and write a review.I will warn you: this review is going to be longer (maybe less organized) and more honest than most. Some of my personal beliefs and views will be included, so if See this full review on my blog along with others at: shesgoingbookcrazy.comI received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.I think I've let this book ferment for long enough. My thoughts have been stirring over the past week about it, and I think it's finally time to sit down and write a review.I will warn you: this review is going to be longer (maybe less organized) and more honest than most. Some of my personal beliefs and views will be included, so if you are one to easily disagree with others who may not hold your own beliefs, please refrain from commenting before contemplating. I mean that with the utmost respect.(I feel ridiculous needing to state that disclaimer. We can all be adults here, right?)Here we go. But let's start out with a summary, shall we?--------------------------------- Survival was a one-in-a-million chance. The virus was a near-perfect killing machine. Contagious as hell, it had a vicious little sting in its tail. It mutated with every reinfection. A single exposure was survivable---with luck---but it was as though it knew humans. Jamie has survived the worst virus to plague the human race yet. She's lucky. In fact, she's very lucky; only one-in-a-million people were estimated to survive the sickness at ravaged the population and planets. Living on a small settlement planet, Jamie had liked the life of semi-seclusion. Willingly emigrating from overpopulated Earth, she found herself working as a vet working in animal reproduction. Although there weren't many to begin with, all of the ranch hands that had been working with her before were now merely dust on the wind. When Jamie came through the worst of the illness, one thought, and one person crossed her mind: her estranged husband, Daniel. After most of the population had been wiped out, had he survived? The chances weren't likely. They told each other that if anything were to happen, they would meet again on Earth. That is where she is heading; to see if not only Daniel, but if anyone else had survived. ---------------------------------This was probably one of the best-written (in terms of depth) books I've read in 2017 so far, but also the hardest to rate. I felt like pulling my hair out trying to figure out how many stars this gets. The world, or world(s)-building is moderately done, but could have used more explanation and detail. The characters are very complex, and the plot line is well planned out.Take note that this is definitely an adult novel, because its underlying themes, messages, and innuendos are not for the faint, or young, of heart.   Character Breakdown: I have very mixed feelings about the main character, Jaime. I don't know if we are meant to feel bad for her, but I don't. Unfortunately, I kept thinking to myself, I really don't like this character. If I were to meet her in real life, we'd be having a hearty sit-down-and-face-reality chat. Many of the issues that she had were completely self-inflicted.I'm a realist, so when someone tries to pass the blame onto another, it just doesn't sit well with me. (This doesn't go to say that I never do this. Because we all fail in all areas of life at some point.) So just own up to your involvement, good or bad! Don't get me wrong here, being a realist doesn't mean I'm not empathetic. But empathy and sympathy are not the same thing. The way in which this book is written puts the reader in a position where you almost have to feel bad for Jaime, or else you are criminalized for it. I don't believe this is a good tactic of writing, especially when the MC is in the wrong. Feeling bad for someone, involves sympathy. Understanding a person's situation, requires empathy. Empathy and sympathy are two very different views, and sympathy has no place here if the reader wants to view Jaime from a constructive lens.Considering her past and situation, things happened that were challenging, and undoubtedly tragic. Each person internalizes tragedy in different ways, and Jaime's was to internalize everything and close herself off from others who were close to her. Tragedy can be a beautiful thing; it can open the door for other opportunities--if one only looks for them, and allows them to take root.Something I just couldn't wrap my head around was how and why did Jaime consent to marrying Daniel if she didn't love him in the first place? Can someone truly fall out of love with another person simply based on the aspect of love itself? I don't think so. Here's why: love in a relationship is not a standalone. Love must be accompanied by: sacrifice, commitment, empathy, selflessness, honesty, trust...the list goes on.  Is this book allowing the MC to "cop-out" from commitment that she agreed to and had the freedom to decline? Definitely.Jaime closed herself off to her husband after they had a miscarriage. The irony of this situation is that she didn't even want a child in the first place, and allowed herself to just be talked into things that she did and didn't want, rather than have a healthy discussion about it with her husband. Her overall disinterest in the matter, and the fact that she referred to the baby as a "near human," immediately reveal her viewpoint on the matter. I know this is a hotly-debated topic in our society today that I won't get into here for the sake of having a ridiculously-long review, but I think it was necessary to point out because she also had inconsistencies here. If the baby wasn't human (yet,) why did she care so much when she lost it?I was glad that she did finally realize that she was as much of the issue in her situation as everyone else that she passed the blame to.  "It was something you could control," Lowry finished. Jamie didn't answer for a long moment. All those times she'd battened down the hatches against her mother, her stepmother, Daniel, she'd always felt under siege. Like her silence was something that had been forced upon her, not something she'd chosen. Had there really been a stubborn little nub of satisfaction, right down at the bottom of it all? She turned over a couple of memories, examining them. Daniel, after the baby, begging her to talk to him. Her stepmother, coming up with the idea for things they could do together. "Yes," she said. "I think that was it." Because of everything stated above, I think that Daniel was over-criminalized throughout and in the end, and became the self-fulfilling prophesy Jaime wanted him to be. Because she was looking for an excuse to separate herself from him, it worked out all-too-perfectly that Daniel turned out to be the shady creepazoid that he was. Up until that point, he wasn't. If the book was true to his character, I really don't think Daniel would have ended up being portrayed the way that he was. I actually felt worse for him than I did Jaime, because she did him wrong. Being completely dishonest, Daniel was constantly on the receiving end of her passiveness towards him and everything about their relationship.  "It was never quite the same. When heaven came within reach, faith found that it wasn't welcome after all. Very few people took their religion with them to other worlds." Lowry had been a Catholic priest at one point back on Earth, and also on one of the planet settlements. Somewhere along the lines, he moved away from his responsibilities as a priest and Rena became a love interest. Even though he states that he's "moved away" from religion and has "his own type of religion now," he seemed very conflicted and discontent with that. I don't know what exactly to say about him, personally. He was great for helping other characters out with sorting out their own issues, but there wasn't anyone in the story to help him with his own. I know there is a lot more to be said about him, but I just am not sure which stance to take on him.Rena Rena Rena. Rena was a brilliant bioenginner scientist who had a very damaged past. There is so much irony surrounding her character that it almost negates everything else that this book is trying to accomplish. Rena clearly has developed some sort of manic/depressive disorder. Where majority of the characters are empathetic towards other characters who have "setbacks" she is also overly-criminalized for hers. I very much dislike how Rena was portrayed in this story. Another character done wrong, she became one of the "religious stereotypes"---prejudice, critical, two-faced---times 1000, and then some. Everything she said and did, she did so hiding behind the name of "god." I'd like to point out here that the "god" that she was referring to is not the God Christianity follows. Never ever would he exclude any of his people in the way that Rena did with Finn and Mila. Nor do any of his teachings say to do so...EVER! So, this stereotype, doesn't represent a Christian---it represents a person who says they believe in something, but doesn't follow those beliefs, and replaces them with their own and all sorts of hogwash. One good thing that came from Rena's character was that she made one reflect on the fact that we all have pockets of prejudice in our character. By no means am I saying this is right or good, I am simply pointing it out as a fact that addressing those prejudices always needs to stay at the forefront of our minds.   Callan was unfortunately a "filler" character more than anything. He had a few good lines here and there, but didn't have much of a purpose other than getting Jaime off the planet and to become a emotionless love-interest. Finn, an autistic teen didn't necessarily have much "page-time," but his role was huge. He constantly challenged the reader to address their prejudices towards disabilities and how they aren't what they seem to be. Mila, born in a brothel and of lowly status, had become a prostitute herself to survive. Despite her tough life, she has remained tender-hearted. I loved how her character, although experiencing many injustices, was able to be kind and empathetic towards others even if they were cruel towards her.   Jamie's Step-mother (I cannot recall her name!) was a character that I wish we could have seen more of. What we did see showed us the extent of Jaime's isolation from others, and how even with people trying to reach out to her, wasn't enough. Gracie, Callan's engineer, also didn't play much of a role, or have much impact on me personally. The point is that all of these characters have some sort of baggage. It depends on how they deal with that stuff that indicates where they will wind up in the end. Back to the book, itself. There is so much happening mentally that the pacing of this book didn't even phase me. At times, it slowed down. But it never was fast either. It wasn't like most other sci-fi stories, with loads of action, oddities, and the like. This was more of a contemplative fiction with some sci-fi twists.With everything said above, I couldn't help but feel that this book was attacking religions, especially Christianity, in very stereotypical ways. For a society who speaks against believing stereotypes, I'm surprised at the way this story turned out to be exactly that. (When I mean stereotypical, I mean ways that have been attached to the designation of "Christian" that are portrayed by people not following what their beliefs teach them to do.) Points that the book is trying to push here are:1. There is no God, (or gods, depending on the religion.) Hence, where the title "The Space Between the Stars" originates from. 2. People who are religious, especially "devout" are prejudice maniacs. This was exemplified in Rena's character.3. The significance of life is up to you, and within you. And so on and so forth.With all of that being said, I'd like to point out that I appreciated how much this book made me think. I could have easily pulled out the "offended" card and DNF'ed, but I like things that challenge my beliefs, and make me think about them in depth. This book made me do that. A lot. (If you couldn't tell.) I think as people in general, we need offense in our lives, or else we never have the opportunity to cement our beliefs and views, nor have much of an ability to grow. As humans, we are made to thrive in a challenge. We grow when opposition is placed right before us, and this book succeeded at that---speaking only for myself. I think that if you are a contemplative reader, who doesn't mind being challenged, offended, and slightly put-off, this might be a read for you.Vulgarity: Quite a bit.Sexual Content: Yup.Violence: Some.3 stars.A big thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book!
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  • Crazy4Books
    May 28, 2017
    When a virus hits 99% of the population dies leaving the 1% spread out on many different planets all across the universe. Some alone and desprately searching for other survivors. This is a very character driven book with people trying to figure what to do now that they've survived the end of the world. Wanting to make it better than it was. The practical captain Callan decides to pick up a few survivors on the way to the capital planets, one of them being our main protagonist Jamie.Jamie has a l When a virus hits 99% of the population dies leaving the 1% spread out on many different planets all across the universe. Some alone and desprately searching for other survivors. This is a very character driven book with people trying to figure what to do now that they've survived the end of the world. Wanting to make it better than it was. The practical captain Callan decides to pick up a few survivors on the way to the capital planets, one of them being our main protagonist Jamie.Jamie has a lot of complexe issues that she's trying to work through. Shes dealing with grief from a miscarriage and her aversion with being too close to anyone but also being afraid of ending up alone. The ragtag group of survivors couldnt be any more different from one another. We get two religious characters who are very different from one another. Rena being the zealous fanatic and Lowry being the calm and understanding character. We also get a wonderful character with autism named Finn. Mila and Gracie were also very different from each other.If you have the virus than you have it. You system will fight it off or it wont. I dont understand why being around other people who have it would make it worse. Plus if the virus is mutating a lot then why didnt anyone get sick again. I also find it hard to believe they havent encountered any aliens after exploring so much of the Universe or that so many people Jamie knew were still alive. I almost quit reading this book multiple times. I rarely love character driven books and this one was no exception but I did enjoy reading about more mature characters for a change.I think this would have gotten a higher rating from reviewers if it had been catergorized as literary fiction on Netgalley instead of Fantasy/Scifi, but what do I know about marketing. I just know that I want the intended reader for this but if you're looking for a literary fiction with a scifi twist than I think you might enjoy this more than I did. Once I knew what to expect I did enjoyed a bit more but honestly its just not my type of book. I found lots of parts to be really boring. I personally need more action in my books. However I do see a lot of people loving it.*received in exchange for honest review
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  • Rachael (RedRchlReads)
    February 3, 2017
    Expected publication: June 13th 2017I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.3.5 StarsI finished The Space Between the Stars just over two months ago and I've had a hard time sitting down to write a review because I'm really not sure what I think. Overall, it's a solid book, but I had some rather large issues with it. The story starts with the main character, Jamie, waking up after a virus literally burned the majority of the people in the universe to cinders. The virus Expected publication: June 13th 2017I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.3.5 StarsI finished The Space Between the Stars just over two months ago and I've had a hard time sitting down to write a review because I'm really not sure what I think. Overall, it's a solid book, but I had some rather large issues with it. The story starts with the main character, Jamie, waking up after a virus literally burned the majority of the people in the universe to cinders. The virus has a 99.9999% fatality rate and Jamie shouldn't have survived, but somehow she did. She quickly meets up with two other people on her rural planet and they are soon picked up by a spaceship, bringing their party to 5. They shortly pick up two more strays, and run into a few more people, which makes it abundantly clear that more than .0001% of the universe's population survived.One major thing that I need to get out of the way is the similarity to Firefly. Covering with a spoiler tag to be safe! (view spoiler)[If you have watched Firefly, you will see the overlap immediately, and it's pretty much impossible to not see the similarities once they show up. The biggest similarity is in the cast of characters, though there are several very similar plot points as well. We have the gruff captain with a heart of gold, the army veteran/engineer (combined in this case), the doctor (veterinarian in this case), the preacher, the prostitute, and the genius (autistic in this case, instead of River). As you can see, this is an enormous amount of overlap. Even though their personalities are somewhat different than the characters in Firefly, it was really hard to overlook it and view the characters as new, unique people. (hide spoiler)]Jamie's sole goal throughout the first half of the story is to get back to Earth and her former lover, who she is convinced will be waiting for her. I struggled with Jamie's character quite a bit. She was incredibly selfish, whiny, and downright obnoxious most of the time. Even when she got what she thought she wanted, she wasn't happy and couldn't articulate what it was she did want. She came across as really indecisive and not knowing herself, which is fine, but it makes characters difficult to engage with and relate to.The writing and the plot were both fairly good. Several major plot points/twists did end up being a bit predictable, but overall I did enjoy the story. I felt that the story really gained its footing in the second half of the novel and I did enjoy it a lot more once things really got moving. I would have liked a bit more of the sci-fi aspects to come through - the characters might as well have been travelling by train or boat instead of travelling through space - but it was still a solid story. Overall this was a good debut novel for readers looking for a light sci-fi/post-apocolyptic novel. I would definitely read more books written by Anne Corlett in the future.Review originally posted on RedRchl Reads.
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  • Jackie
    April 18, 2017
    Such a lovely read with a great ending! *I received a free ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion in any way!*The Space Between The Stars is an Adult Fiction novel set in a world that has been infected with a virus that is bound to wipe out all of humanity and quite literally turn them into dust. Jamie has seeked space from people all her life and found a new workplace on an almost deserted planet. When she wakes up and finds herself Such a lovely read with a great ending! *I received a free ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion in any way!*The Space Between The Stars is an Adult Fiction novel set in a world that has been infected with a virus that is bound to wipe out all of humanity and quite literally turn them into dust. Jamie has seeked space from people all her life and found a new workplace on an almost deserted planet. When she wakes up and finds herself all alone after the virus hit, she panics as she thinks she is all alone in the world and this wasn’t how she imagined it to be. Soon enough she meets other survivors and together they travel in a spaceship and make their way to Earth for the chance of a new beginning.I went into this story not knowing or expecting anything and I was pleasantly surprised at how great of a read this was!I usually read Young Adult novels so I felt it was very refreshing to read this Adult novel. Most of the characters we meet in this book are around 30+ and it was delightful to read about these mature characters and I’ll definitely have to pick up more adult books in the future for sure! 😀This wasn’t your typical science-fiction book and if you’re expecting action-packed spaceship fights and a plot-driven story, this isn’t the book for you!But that wasn’t a bad thing at all! The space aspect is a very minimal part of the story as this is a more character-centered story. It’s about the journey of a mix of different people and the only thing they have in common is the fact that they survived the virus and have to try and adjust to the new world. They have the chance of a new beginning but people’s opinions are clashing and leading to conflicts.While this isn’t your typical sci-fi story, it has some exciting and shocking plot twists, an interesting group dynamic and character developments which were done really well. It is a story about survival, new beginnings and finding yourself.Read my full review on my blog: https://toomuchofabooknerd.wordpress.... :)
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  • ☘Tara Sheehan☘
    February 7, 2017
    I found the concept of being the survivor of a post-apocalyptic event interesting particularly with the way Anne Corlett writes. It wasn’t just your basic space travel, let’s have some indepth examination of humanity, thing that is often so typical with this genre. Of course there was some of that there because if you’re a love of sci-fi you’ll expect that but there was an emotional depth to her story and characters I hadn’t expected when I began reading. I don’t often go in for this kind of thi I found the concept of being the survivor of a post-apocalyptic event interesting particularly with the way Anne Corlett writes. It wasn’t just your basic space travel, let’s have some indepth examination of humanity, thing that is often so typical with this genre. Of course there was some of that there because if you’re a love of sci-fi you’ll expect that but there was an emotional depth to her story and characters I hadn’t expected when I began reading. I don’t often go in for this kind of thing unless it’s on a big screen so I thought it’d be a refreshing change of pace which by the end I was glad I diverged from my normal go to path of genres. When I read a book with the purpose of reviewing it I normally do it in one sitting barring unplanned interruptions so that I can have everything fresh in my mind when I write. The one however I found myself stepping away often not because it was a bad book but because it forces you to ask a lot of questions about yourself and pushes you into an emotional journey you weren’t prepared for when you opened the pages. I loved that this book pulled me in and made me feel so involved in its mesmeric story line. You will crisscross along an emotional gamut rarely found in sci-fi books to the point your thoughts become intertwined with those of the characters leaving you to wonder what happened as if their journey didn’t end when you closed the book.Though there is some of the prototypical examination of humanity, what will the actions of the few be, will they devolve, what questions will be answered, what choices will they make, etc there is also enough romance and thrills to keep you entertained. Think the TV show Firefly but on a literary level.The character group takes on the stereotype often found in small group space movies where nearly everyone can find someone they identify with and they end up in various situations that all come to one driving conclusion; what kind of person do you want to be when the only mirror left is yourself? It’s a bit like a space version of Lord of the Flies.I would definitely recommend this if Sci-Fi is your normal thing and if it’s not then give it a chance because it’ll be worth it.
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  • Katelyn (Lost as Alice, Mad as the Hatter)
    February 28, 2017
    What would you do when you woke up to a dead planet?Who would you become when faced with extinction? Who history or belief matter?People this book is NOT for: science fiction enthusiasts, those who hate (or become offended) when they find themselves listening or involved in theological discussion, people who enjoy complexity in character or plot, and those looking for a dystopian tale set in space. Whew. Glad we got that cleared up. If you fall into any of the above categories, beware this is p What would you do when you woke up to a dead planet?Who would you become when faced with extinction? Who history or belief matter?People this book is NOT for: science fiction enthusiasts, those who hate (or become offended) when they find themselves listening or involved in theological discussion, people who enjoy complexity in character or plot, and those looking for a dystopian tale set in space. Whew. Glad we got that cleared up. If you fall into any of the above categories, beware this is probably not your shtick despite the blurb. Now for the meat of the matter... "Terminal in almost all cases. Almost. A lot of life could fit into that one small word." The human race has expanded across the stars through forced immigration decrees and personal choices. Now a virus has decimated the many billions of people across the many planets and dozens of star systems leaving handfuls of survivors on once densely populated worlds. “Home’s what’s left over when you’ve figured out all the places you don’t want to be.” When Jamie wakes up alive after the sickness ravaged her on her outlying world, she has no reason to continue as she has. No job that needs doing. No money to spend. She decides to make her way home- to Earth- and the man she may have loved. “I don’t mean we have to live pressed up against one another. There’s going to be space enough for everyone.”“There always was,” Callan said. “The problem is that most people seem to want everyone else to believe what they believe, like that will make them more right. Seems to me that a lot of our problems would disappear if people stopped believing in things and just settled for knowing things.”“It’s the same thing,” Rena said.“It’s not,” Callan said. “When you know something, it’s just how it is. Believing isn’t as certain as that. People who believe are always looking for proof, always trying to twist the world to make it fit, so they can say, There you go, I was right all along.” Through chance and against statistical probabilities Jamie finds a way off her planet with a rag tag group of survivors. However, just because the human population can now be measured in the hundreds that does not mean that old prejudices, long held beliefs, and shaping histories will simply disappear. Nor does it mean that old lives {relationships} can be picked up and pasted back together.Ooookaaayy, so the science-fiction part if the plot is minimal...honestly the fact that this happens to planets instead of countries is barely notable. They do not spend their time long on the ship or any one planet. Basically we touch down on planets just to see how different types of personalities are coping with the sudden downturn in population and resources as well as to pick up our cast of strays. And strays they are. None of the main characters fit into society comfortably. We have the mad scientist, the preacher without a religion, the introverted ship captain, the young prostitute, the developmentally different boy, the crabby engineer who prefers systems to people, and Jamie- the woman who is not comfortable in her own skin and blames the world for it. And even the majority of those characters are 2 dimensional. So what is the point if the plot is barely holding itself together and the characters lack depth? The philosophies. The existential discussions we have with ourselves and others. The "HOW" of how people would cope when faced with the end of the human race. With a little by-the-way glance of how human belief and behavior will propagate the very end. “All those years spent trying to get off this planet. Then close on a century digging ourselves in, setting up shop on every rock that looked like it could hold us. And here we are, unraveling it all, making our way back to a random little corner of the place it all started.”This story is about Jamie. And Jamie is all of us. She is confused and a little bit broken and just trying to find her way home. Each character was an extreme manifestation of one view of society. Each experience was designed by the author to bring about discussion and feeling within Jamie, and therefore within ourselves.“The problem with stories and songs—no, scratch that, the problem with words—is that they make us squeeze all the messy bits of life into something small and snappy. All the things you feel. The times you hate one another. The times you want to tear open your skin and let the other person climb inside. All that, and only one word for it.It’s like there’s only one way of doing things. You get it right or you get it wrong. But no two people are the same." The problem was that the author was so busy creating great one-liners and interesting discussion points that the story part of the book fell by the wayside. Situations felt bouncy, forced, and rushed. Characters only existed to get reactions from Jamie. We ended up being TOLD what was going on and how we should feel instead of being SHOWN. I read this book the same way I read philosophies, theologies and policies- I read a bit, put it down for a few days and thought, and then read a bit more. The emphasis was not on the characters or the plot but rather the human interactions and possiblities. "There was something bitingly unreal about the situation. Drinking whiskey and talking about faith in an empty bar on an empty planet." To recap if you want a story...this is not the book. If you want a lot of heavy God talk and extreme dystopia type scenarios (view spoiler)[ like forced labor to include baby making societies or isolationist societies or we should all die relgious nuts, for non-specific examples (hide spoiler)]with a heavy emphasis on social and political ideological pitfalls...then grab your favorite blanket and snuggle in.The upside is that this is not a long or hard read if you decide to give it a go. And the one-liners really do make a person think. “The last days?” Jamie said.“What else would you call it?”“Life,” Jamie replied. "Not an end. Not a new beginning. Just another bit in the middle, and who knows what comes next?”This ARC was provided by Netgalley for a honest review.
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  • Nancy
    March 30, 2017
    The Space Between the Stars is Anne Corlett's debut novel, combining dystopian sci-fi with a picaresque storyline, with a dose of romance and a touch of mystery added. There is a lot of eschatological table talk and a twisted thriller ending. A virus has killed humanity across the known universe. Jamie wants to get back home to Earth. She meets up with various survivors: spaceship captain Callen and his sidekick Gracie, and ex-priest Lowry and burned-out scientist Rena, who both had been at a re The Space Between the Stars is Anne Corlett's debut novel, combining dystopian sci-fi with a picaresque storyline, with a dose of romance and a touch of mystery added. There is a lot of eschatological table talk and a twisted thriller ending. A virus has killed humanity across the known universe. Jamie wants to get back home to Earth. She meets up with various survivors: spaceship captain Callen and his sidekick Gracie, and ex-priest Lowry and burned-out scientist Rena, who both had been at a retreat center. Together they go on a journey across space, stopping at various posts to refuel, learning how survivors have organized after the apocalypse, and picking up Mila, born into the 'whore' class, and Finn, who is perhaps autistic.We learn that before the virus Earth had become overpopulated. A way of classifying people by status involved tattooing people. Some people were sent off-planet, with a resistance group opting to join them. Jamie, Callen, Lowry and Rena are all on the run from their pasts. Cramped together on the small space ship, there are a lot of conflicts and divisiveness. And some underlying sexual tension.Rena was a scientist with fixated on understanding the 'will of God' behind all that has happened. As she spirals into a madness of her own making, and each survivor struggles to make sense of their lives, horrible secrets are revealed. Should--will--these misfits survive?When everything is revealed at the end, I realized the novel was also a warning about genetic manipulation in an endeavor to 'improve' on Mother Nature out of a false fixation on perfection.Nature is messy. But it is always right.I received a free ebook from the publisher through First to Read.
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  • NicAlba
    February 9, 2017
    This is an advanced reader's copy.Utter beauty and excitement and peace. I love this book so much. I am utterly excited for when the book is officially published so I can buy my own copy, and I am now a new fan of this author. I want to read whatever Anne Corlett writes in the future. This book made me happy.
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  • Heather Duff
    April 15, 2017
    This was one of these books that traps you with a matter of paragraphs, literally a page in to this beautiful sci-fi I knew I was going to love the story that was unfolding before me. It also reminded me of Firefly and I LOVE Firefly!!Jamie wakes up alone, she feels like crap but she also feels very much alive which considering the virus which has decimated the population of her known universe is a bittersweet feeling.Alone on Soltaire, all she wants is to make her way home to Earth and to find This was one of these books that traps you with a matter of paragraphs, literally a page in to this beautiful sci-fi I knew I was going to love the story that was unfolding before me. It also reminded me of Firefly and I LOVE Firefly!!Jamie wakes up alone, she feels like crap but she also feels very much alive which considering the virus which has decimated the population of her known universe is a bittersweet feeling.Alone on Soltaire, all she wants is to make her way home to Earth and to find her estranged husband Daniel, the man who she left following the loss of their first baby. The chances of him being alive are slim to none but first she needs to get herself off planet.Luck comes her way, she meets other survivors and a passing ship picks them up, gradually a mis-matched group of survivors finds itself making its way towards whats left of humanity. Jamie hopes that she will find her way home, she hopes to find the man she loves (or should that be needs) so much.Of course the known Universe is now fully in survival of the fittest (and smartest) mode, Jamie comes across the last remnants of humanity trying to cling to life and the life they are leading is not one Jamie wants to be part of.This is a beautiful read which takes the traditional post-apoc virus and throws it out in to space. I love a survivor story but to make that survivor stranded on a planet at the back end of the universe plays on your worst nightmare to great effect.This isn't all doom and gloom, the story takes Jamie and her fellow survivors, all totally different from one another and forces them to live together, it shows us that despite the fact that the odds are very much stacked against them, life always finds away - plus romance fans you'll be happy to know there is a nice hint of romance too.Thanks to Pan Mac for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Lynn Williams
    June 3, 2017
    3.5 of 5 starshttps://lynns-books.com/2017/06/01/th...The Space Between the Stars is a story concerning one woman’s journey, not just across the stars from A to B but also a search to find herself. As debut novels go I think this is very good. I wouldn’t say it contains much sci fi to be honest and it’s not particularly a story packed with action, it’s more a character study set against a rather grand back drop.As the story starts we make the acquaintance of Jamie Allenby as she awakens from ill 3.5 of 5 starshttps://lynns-books.com/2017/06/01/th...The Space Between the Stars is a story concerning one woman’s journey, not just across the stars from A to B but also a search to find herself. As debut novels go I think this is very good. I wouldn’t say it contains much sci fi to be honest and it’s not particularly a story packed with action, it’s more a character study set against a rather grand back drop.As the story starts we make the acquaintance of Jamie Allenby as she awakens from illness to find herself quite alone. Jamie lived on a pretty remote planet in the colonised universe but even though there weren’t many people there were some, on this particular day though it seems that the virus sweeping from planet to planet has turned everyone to dust. Jamie heads to the nearest port looking for survivors and just as she begins to despair she meets with a couple of characters and before long they find themselves on a ship desperately trying to return to Earth.I liked The Space Between the Stars, it’s well written and quite thought provoking. However, before I say anything further I will point out that this is very low in terms of sci fi – in fact strictly speaking Jamie could have been travelling from one end of any country on earth to another with much the same outcome as travelling from one planet to another by spaceship. There are no aliens, no light travel, no warp speed and actually not too much by way of explanation. The universe aspect is simply the backdrop. This also isn’t a story that races away in terms of plot. Yes, of course, being an apocalypse style book there are a number of encounters but to be honest these felt a little formulaic, perhaps not if you don’t read too many books in this style but otherwise this isn’t really reinventing the wheel.Now, I don’t really mean to sound negative with any of the above I’m simply making the point because I think it helps in terms of expectations going into a book. I got on quite well with this book, I enjoyed it, it has a mystery aspect and a little romance, although this does not dominate the plot, but, there are other elements that are skimpy. Basically, I have slightly torn feelings. In one respect, I liked this and didn’t struggle to finish it but on the other hand I had these niggles, some storylines felt very easily resolved, there was some incredibly good luck happening on a fairly frequent basis and travelling between the planets seemed incredibly quick, but, I quickly came to realise this was a certain type of read and with that in mind, once I stopped expecting an alien attack or a hoard of zombies it wasn’t a struggle any more. So, if you want something more from this than one woman, feeling very alone, embarking on a journey and having some revelations along the way then this might not be the story for you.In terms of characters. Well, we have Jamie, and this is very much the Jamie show. Jamie has experienced certain things in her life that have led her to run to the furthest corner of the known universe where she would have the freedom to live and work without having to interact too often with other humans. She’s tetchy and I suppose she comes across as a little self centred. She certainly spends a lot of her time thinking through why her prior relationship didn’t work and mulling things over rather than maybe considering how she would survive. However, I guess she’s simply built a wall around herself to protect others from getting through and emotionally hurting her. In times of crisis though she finds she wants to return home – at first for an ideal that she holds in her mind but as the story progresses I think simply to go home – may it ever be so humble, etc. Along the way she finds her hard exterior cracking and eventually she begins to let others get beneath her skin.On the whole, I think this is an enjoyable read. I had certain issues that prevented it being a great read but nonetheless a positive debut and I would definitely be interested in reading more work by this author.I received a copy through Netgalley, courtesy of the publishers, for which my thanks. The above is my own opinion.
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  • MsArdychan
    June 28, 2017
    Please Note: I received an advanced reader's copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence the opinion of my review in any way.I am an emotional reader, which means if a book is well-written, I become deeply invested in the story. When a character is raging, I am raging. When a character is confused, so am I. Haunting and contemplative, The Space Between The Stars, by Anne Corlett, tugged at my soul. This book explores what it would mean for humanity i Please Note: I received an advanced reader's copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence the opinion of my review in any way.I am an emotional reader, which means if a book is well-written, I become deeply invested in the story. When a character is raging, I am raging. When a character is confused, so am I. Haunting and contemplative, The Space Between The Stars, by Anne Corlett, tugged at my soul. This book explores what it would mean for humanity if all but a handful of people survived a catastrophic epidemic. Would society reorganize in the same way? Or would it mean a clean slate, a chance to live exactly as one liked? The suspense and action of the survivor's journey is peppered with quieter moments of reflection that I found lovely and moving. This is a book that will make anyone a fan of speculative fiction.What I Liked:Characters:Jamie is an expert at running away from her problems. After a long-term relationship crumbles, Jamie takes a job on a far-flung planet. She doesn't want to deal with people, just focus on her work as a veterinarian. When she finds herself alone after a devastating virus hits the universe, she is surprised to realize that she does crave human contact. I loved following her evolution from avoiding any strong emotional attachment, to finding what it means to live without baggage.Eventually, Jamie finds other survivors. Callan, the captain of the spaceship that picks her up, is another strong character with a past he is trying to avoid. I pictured him as a young Harrison Ford type guy. The other members of the rag tag group of survivors all have compelling backstories, particularly Rena. Rena is a scientist who is also a religious zealot. She is convinced that the virus is part of God's plan and sees a new world order emerging from the disaster. But others feel this is just Rena's way of coping with the devastation.Story:I thought the story was very compelling. There was a good mix of showing small details (would people even use money anymore?), and larger issues (would women be compelled to have babies to repopulate humanity?) that would confront the survivors. I was floored by the class system that was re-emerging almost immediately. The author is British and I can't help but wonder if this was a statement on the British class system, which is still significant in England today.Beyond that, the story was full of moments where Jamie questions what it means to be a part of society. Who gets to make the rules? Do people have a choice to be part of the survivor group or can they set out on their own. With few people left, some argue that the survivors have an obligation to stick together. Others see this as an opportunity to steer their own ship and forge their destiny for themselves.What I Was Mixed About:Astronomical coincidences:The author makes a point to mention that the death rate for this virus is 99.9999%, which means that the survival rate is 0.0001%. Yet Jamie manages to find several people among the survivors that she knows. And many of them also are British, and want to go back to Earth to a small village that is conveniently right near Jamie's hometown. I know that this is essential to the plot, but having all those stars align stretches the story's credibility.Overall, this is a book that made me think about society and the choices we make to either participate in it, or pull away from others. I think great science fiction (or speculative fiction?) uses over the top situations as a means to explore deeper questions of humanity, and this book did just that.
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  • Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)
    June 11, 2017
    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 4.5*You know the kind of book that you cannot stop thinking about long after you've finished it? Well, that is this book for me. It's also among my favorite books so far this year, so there's that. Here's the thing: it isn't a fully action packed space adventure, so if you're looking for that, this may not be the book for you. But if you are looking for some amazing characters who have t You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 4.5*You know the kind of book that you cannot stop thinking about long after you've finished it? Well, that is this book for me. It's also among my favorite books so far this year, so there's that. Here's the thing: it isn't a fully action packed space adventure, so if you're looking for that, this may not be the book for you. But if you are looking for some amazing characters who have to make some really difficult choices after the whole universe nearly collapses, then this is definitely a book to check out. So, here are the things I especially enjoyed about this one: The characters were so well done. Jamie, the main character, is kind of a mess. And this is before the apocalypse. So after, you can imagine the kind of shape she's in. She knows that the odds are not great in regards to how many fellow survivors may be out there, but she's determined to find out. That's the best part about her, even as she falls apart in so many ways, she's still trying to survive. The other characters are equally complex, and we get to find out so much about their stories as the book goes on. I grew to care about each of them. Everything about this book was incredibly thought provoking. Truly, it was terrifying to imagine being in the shoes of these characters- basically alone in the universe, having to rely on strangers, not knowing who can be trusted in a terrifyingly empty new society. It also felt eerily plausible- the way people reacted, how easily turmoil would have ensued. Even though it was quite character driven, the plot moved quickly too. I was never bored, and I was always excited for what would happen next. The characters have really great relationships with each other. Some of them became friends, while others flat out did not get along, and it felt so authentic. Just because there are not a ton of humans left, it makes sense that some people will flat out disagree, and I liked that the book wasn't afraid to go there. There was also a bit of romance, but it definitely wasn't the focus- as people are kind of busy worrying about the fate of humanity. Still, the bits of romance were a very nice respite from apocalyptic doom. Space! Even though the book wasn't incredibly heavy on the science part, it still featured a lot of great spaceship shenanigans and other technology. And really, who doesn't love space adventures? What I didn't as much: Really, my only minor complaint was that a few things seemed a bit unbelievable/coincidental. And while I wasn't totally able to suspend my disbelief, it also didn't really make me like the story any less. I was able to overlook it since the story and characters did a great job of pulling me in. Bottom Line: I was so invested in the characters' stories and the stories of this world, and what led it to the state it was in. I felt quite satisfied with the story, and was contemplating it long after I was done reading.**Copy was provided by publisher for review
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  • Meg - A Bookish Affair
    June 13, 2017
    3.5 stars. "The Space Between the Stars" is the story of Jamie, a woman who survives an illness that kills 99.9% of humans. Her almost solitary quiet existence on a distant planetary outpost is suddenly too solitary and she finds herself alone and trying to find other survivors. She teams up with a band of survivors who first travel to a planet where they may not be welcome as survivors of the outbreak and there is a plan to repopulate using forced breeding. They eventually travel back to Earth 3.5 stars. "The Space Between the Stars" is the story of Jamie, a woman who survives an illness that kills 99.9% of humans. Her almost solitary quiet existence on a distant planetary outpost is suddenly too solitary and she finds herself alone and trying to find other survivors. She teams up with a band of survivors who first travel to a planet where they may not be welcome as survivors of the outbreak and there is a plan to repopulate using forced breeding. They eventually travel back to Earth where she will have to make a choice between a new future and a grasp back to some thread of the past. This is a thought-provoking sci fi/ dystopian story that I enjoyed!Although this story has sci-fi and dystopian elements, it is still very much a character driven story. Most of the focus is on our main character, Jamie. We find out that she is still haunted by her ex-lover and by a miscarriage. She wonders if she will ever get another chance to make amends and if she does get to make amends is it to try to go back to the way they once were or is it to make amends to find peace. Jamie will have to decide this for herself. We the readers get a good look at her thought process and how she goes about trying to figure out what she wants. To some degree, this book almost feels like a spiritual journey for Jamie. We learn a lot about Jamie and the other survivors that include a priest and a scientist. The differences between all of the survivors were really interesting to me. We see how each of them views the new world and their place in the new world differently and the perspectives are definitely interesting.I liked some of the concepts in the book. Yeah, the epidemic has been done before a lot but what makes this one different is the idea of interplanetary epidemics added to the very different worlds that people can choose from. For instance, Jamie comes from a place called Solitaire that doesn't really have many people before the epidemic in contrast to how Earth is at the time. I did wish for more detail on things like how the different places came to be and why they are the way that they are. More back story would have been nice but overall, this was still a satisfying character driven story.
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  • Amy
    April 21, 2017
    I really loved this book. As I read it - I could envision the world Anne built up. I can't imagine waking up after a horrible illness to find everyone just gone, and that eeriness and panic of being alone. I loved that the characters - as they came together were so different and not people that would normally be friends....but they had to stick together for survival and have each others backs. I loved how the relationships developed.I never could figure out the age differences of the pilot and o I really loved this book. As I read it - I could envision the world Anne built up. I can't imagine waking up after a horrible illness to find everyone just gone, and that eeriness and panic of being alone. I loved that the characters - as they came together were so different and not people that would normally be friends....but they had to stick together for survival and have each others backs. I loved how the relationships developed.I never could figure out the age differences of the pilot and of Finn from the main character, Jamie. This story though kept me engaged the whole say and the end left me feeling really good and positive. I wish Finn would've been mentioned in that last little blurb she made and not sure what the point was about the name in the sand at the end.....I would love to see this book as a movie.Thank you, Penguin First To Read, for letting me read an early release of this book for an honest review. I will be recommending this one for sure!Available June 13, 2017
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  • Sarah
    April 3, 2017
    Review originally written for my blogI received a copy of this from Netgalley to review based just on the "ragtag group of survivors" because I love books centered around that and I certainly wasn't disappointed. I started reading this book before going to bed, and I didn't put it down until I'd finished it because I was enjoying it so much!The plot follows Jamie and the group of survivors she ends up with that include a former priest, a prostitute, the captain of a ship and an autistic boy. Alo Review originally written for my blogI received a copy of this from Netgalley to review based just on the "ragtag group of survivors" because I love books centered around that and I certainly wasn't disappointed. I started reading this book before going to bed, and I didn't put it down until I'd finished it because I was enjoying it so much!The plot follows Jamie and the group of survivors she ends up with that include a former priest, a prostitute, the captain of a ship and an autistic boy. Along their travels they meet other groups of survivors until they eventually reach their final destination. Obviously, in a book like this, the main focus is going to be on the characterisation and the interactions between the characters. They were all fantastic and I really enjoyed the tensions between them at times. However, the character I'm going to focus on for this review is Finn. Finn is an autistic boy and I adore him. He is written very well and at no point is he ever treated as a joke, most of the characters accept him the way he is (one doesn't, but she's not happy with most of the survivors). I was just so happy to see a positive representation, and see how the crew were just so accepting. At one point, Jamie gets very upset because he's wandered off without telling her but she doesn't yell or shout at him and the captain just calmly goes "Hey, tell us next time okay?". Another survivor that we meet briefly is also very likely to be Aromantic and Asexual based on the conversation she had with Jamie and again, she was portrayed in a positive manner, perfectly happy the way she was and the situation she was in. These positive representations just made me love the novel even more and just made me feel so happy to read. The worldbuilding is something that we don't see much of, because it's focusing mostly on the characters. We get a small glimpse at the history that involves forced emigration from Earth based on social classes and we see a couple different planets. What we do see is certainly very interesting and because of the nature of the book, it's something that isn't as important. One thing the book doesn't address is how they travel through space, other than a mention of needing fuel, but as it's a very character-based novel this lack of information isn't that important as it doesn't relate to the plot. I don't want to say too much more, because part of the enjoyment was just being along for the journey and so it's best to go in knowing as little as possible. I would highly, highly recommend this novel as I was just so charmed by it and any book that keeps me up until 3am reading deserves to be recommended! I enjoyed this book so much I'm planning on buying a physical copy when it comes out so I can force my friends to read it.
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  • imyril
    June 3, 2017
    Read it cover to cover on a transatlantic flight. Very very happy not to have had to put it downIt won't be for everyone but it sang to my soul. THE FEELINGS. THE SHIPPING. Aaaaah. 4.5 starsI received a free copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Full review to follow.
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  • Billiebumblebee
    May 14, 2017
    Even though this book is set in space, and it is classified as a sci-fi novel, this doesn't feel like one at all. A fact that I, to begin with, found disappointing. So do not pick up this book expecting a full on space adventure, but do pick it up to experience an surprisingly philosophical book about trying to find meaning and understanding in a large and vast universe.Even though I found the book at times to be cliché and a bit repetitive, I felt strongly for Jamie and her inner struggles. She Even though this book is set in space, and it is classified as a sci-fi novel, this doesn't feel like one at all. A fact that I, to begin with, found disappointing. So do not pick up this book expecting a full on space adventure, but do pick it up to experience an surprisingly philosophical book about trying to find meaning and understanding in a large and vast universe.Even though I found the book at times to be cliché and a bit repetitive, I felt strongly for Jamie and her inner struggles. She was easy to relate to and I both loved and resented her in a weird way.The not so unexpected love story that emerged was lovely and although the pacing of this book was off at times and the nerve kept coming and going, it was an enjoyable read.
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  • Marvin
    June 16, 2017
    Three and a half stars.Anne Corlett's The Space Between the Stars is full of some beautiful writing. The challenge is figuring out what type of beautiful writing it is.Jamie is one of the very few people left alive after a space-wide pandemic. She may be the only person alive in her space colony of ten thousand people and she has no idea if anyone else has survived. Earth in the past has been over-populated and the colonies were mainly populated by those who were compelled to resettle. Jamie was Three and a half stars.Anne Corlett's The Space Between the Stars is full of some beautiful writing. The challenge is figuring out what type of beautiful writing it is.Jamie is one of the very few people left alive after a space-wide pandemic. She may be the only person alive in her space colony of ten thousand people and she has no idea if anyone else has survived. Earth in the past has been over-populated and the colonies were mainly populated by those who were compelled to resettle. Jamie was one of the few who volunteered, wanting to leave an unfulfilling relationship and looking for her own "space". Now her only thought is to return to Earth and hope against hope the man she left is still alive.As it turns out, there are other survivors and they make a plan to return to earth. The small crew makes up a microcosm of reasons for returning. There are also others who do not want the survivors to return to Earth for their own reasons ranging from the political to social to personal. The trip to earth and what they find is pretty much the vehicle for the novel but the meat of the plot is found in the motives and expectation of Jamie and the others on the journey.This all make for a rather introverted space journey. there are several discussions of a philosophical nature on whether expectations of a future are futile or not and basically about what the heck they are doing anyways.. Jamie gets a surprise that causes her to rethink her reasons for going back to earth then strengthens and re-frames them. Jamie is a big "if" in this novel. She embodies a will and purpose yet some may think that purpose as rather selfish and naive. She wavers between selfish and wise and I believe that is how the author wants her to be seen. There are no real heroes and villains here just a group of people struggling physically and psychologically in a Homeric journey through space.And like most Homeric journeys, the author is portraying and exploring a few existential struggles in life along with it. But perhaps the venue is a bit wrong. Or maybe it's the marketing. The Space Between the Stars isn't really that much of either a science fiction novel or post-apocalyptic one although it is hyped as both in the promotional spin. Science fiction fans are bound to be disappointed in the simplicity of the idea and a distinct lack of world-building. Those who would like the literary drama of the story, which I feel is its strength, will be off put by the space adventure aspects. Essentially the epidemic and the colony aspects is a McGuffin and in that, some readers may feel a bit cheated. To add on to that, The other characters do not really flesh out all that well feeling like bit players in a B-science fiction movie when you want Ibsen.It's unfortunate since Corlett has a story to tell here and the climatic ending brings much of it together emotionally . If The Space Between the Stars finds its audience they should be quite pleased with it. I'm just not sure who that is.
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  • Bonnie
    May 22, 2017
    Review to come.
  • Jessie (Ageless Pages Reviews)
    May 11, 2017
    Two stars, according to GR, means "it was ok." That's.... pretty much how I feel about The Space Between the Stars. RTC.
  • S.E. Anderson
    April 18, 2017
    I received an advance copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This novel was nothing what I expected, and yet it is now stuck in my mind like an idea that just won't go away. It's one of those books that's so breathtaking, so gorgeous, it becomes unforgettable. Fair warning, scifi fans: this is not hard scifi, this is not a space opera: it is something different, something more. The virus hits, and humanity as we know it is gone. Less than a dozen or so survivors per planet. The vir I received an advance copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This novel was nothing what I expected, and yet it is now stuck in my mind like an idea that just won't go away. It's one of those books that's so breathtaking, so gorgeous, it becomes unforgettable. Fair warning, scifi fans: this is not hard scifi, this is not a space opera: it is something different, something more. The virus hits, and humanity as we know it is gone. Less than a dozen or so survivors per planet. The virus has consumed so entirely that the dead are nothing but dust in sunbeams. Jamie is one of the survivors, seemingly alone on a frontier planet, so she finds hope by clinging to one idea: she needs to find her ex-husband on Earth, as they promised they would do so long ago. She's not alone: soon, she finds a religious man with a troubled past; a woman slowly losing her mind; a pilot with a cold exterior, and his engineer; a young prostitute, and a mentally challenged boy. Strays. Stragglers. Survivors. Together, they decide to head to Earth. The surprising thing about this novel is just how... calm it is. Not so say that the plot isn't gripping, it's just that you can almost feel the voices snuffed out. The author juxtaposes small, personal loses (or quite large ones) with the wide scale loss of your entire species. Jamie's loss of her siamese twin, then unborn child, then the crumbling of her relationship with Daniel are poignant pains that are still valid in front of the collapse of mankind. It's really a book about philosophies, and personal beliefs around hope and religion. Some turn towards a god in this apocalypse; others turn away. And some try to take god's place. Although some might try to take control, believing they know best, the truth is, all in all, there is no right answer to dealing with loss and grief. There's no one sobbing in the street and mourning the dead - since this is a massive, collective loss, the hundred or so left might remain in shock forever. I found that the plot was predictable, BUT, it was the philosophies that kept me hooked. Yes, the 'twist' at the end (or big reveal) is evident from about half way through, but I didn't mind that since the rest of the book was so beautiful. It was very odd that out of the survivors (A little over a hundred out of the billions the human race used to be made up of) the protagonist knew or was related to two of them. The coincidences did feel heavy handed. The novel really did manage to speak about today, about how our fear of 'others' can destroy us all. We hear bits and pieces about the forced emigration when Earth became over crowded; about the protest ships; about the echelons that make up our future society, where our fingers are branded with our class. I would have loved to know more about that, even if that world is now gone. For fans of Station Eleven and Firefly, this seems to be the perfect combination of 'ragtag space team' and the burden of loss and survival. It's an exploration of grief and hope, and, above all, belief. It's an exploration of our humanity, what it means to be human when humankind is lost.And it's gorgeous.
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  • Becky
    March 25, 2017
    I loved this psychologically-focused take on the future apocalypse. The question of how people respond emotionally and spiritually to 'the end of the world' is an interesting one and is explored well here. And there was still enough current, what's-going-to-happen action to keep the plot moving, with complicated characters driving that action.Thank you to NetGalley for the advance reading copy.
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  • Michelegg
    January 27, 2017
    If you've ever wondered what life would be like as the only survivor of an apocalyptic event then this is the book for you. This book was full of so much emotion and I found myself having to put it down and walk away a time or two. But then it had me so involved that I couldn't walk away for long, and found myself drawn back in to what is just a fantastically riveting read.Fortunately Jamie finds that she's not completely alone and she unites with a small band of people who want what she wants, If you've ever wondered what life would be like as the only survivor of an apocalyptic event then this is the book for you. This book was full of so much emotion and I found myself having to put it down and walk away a time or two. But then it had me so involved that I couldn't walk away for long, and found myself drawn back in to what is just a fantastically riveting read.Fortunately Jamie finds that she's not completely alone and she unites with a small band of people who want what she wants, to get back home. Their journey is exciting and sad and so full of a depth of emotion rarely found in most books. I've thought of this book and it's characters repeatedly since I finished the last page. I want to know how they are today, what is life like for them. I'm sure I will think of them and worry about them for years to come. It's a rare author who can create characters that you feel that way about.I highly recommend this book to sci-fi and post-apocalyptic lovers, but also to anyone who enjoys a good thriller with a little romance in the mix. It's a book you won't soon forget.
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