Young Adult Book Review: Sea of Stars by Amy A. Bartol

Title: Sea of Stars
Series: The Kricket Series #2
Author: Amy A. Bartol
Genre Type:  Sci Fi & Fantasy
Publication Date: 
Source: Publisher
Publisher: 47North

SUMMARY from Goodreads:

Eighteen-year-old Kricket Hollowell was looking for her place in the world when she discovered that the universe was bigger—and more dangerous—than she had ever dreamed. Now, whisked across space to the planet Ethar, Kricket learns that her genetic ability to see the future makes her a sought-after commodity…and the catalyst for war between her star-crossed parents’ clans. According to Alameedan prophecy, one house will rise to power and the other will be completely wiped out, and Kricket’s precognition is believed to be the weapon that will tip the scales.

A target of both the Rafe and the Alameeda houses, Kricket finds protection—and a home—in the arms of Trey, her Etharian bodyguard-turned-boyfriend. But her visions of what’s to come disturb her deeply, especially since she must discover whether the gift of foresight will allow her to rewrite the future, or if her fate is as immovable as the stars.

Last year I discovered Amy A. Bartol's writing with the first installment of her Kricket series Under Different Stars. Now, with her second installment Sea of Stars, I am once again reminded of why I enjoyed Amy's writing so much. Romance in the stars! Rivalry, action, and danger threaten all while a star-crossed romance had me gasping and swooning for more. 

"A warning will be issued to any House that harbors Kricket Valke: Return her to us or you will meet the same fate as the House of Rafe. She's our rightful property. We created her bloodline. We own her: mind, body, and soul." 

The story takes place immediately after the palace massacre which left Kricket fleeing for her life and her freedom as well. Both Houses, Rafe and Alameeda, want to use Kricket's ability as a seer for war purposes. Now the Alameedians have declared war on the remaining Houses they will do whatever it takes to capture Kricket to fulfill a prophecy about her. 

The setting in Sea of Stars continues to fascinate me as the waring factions between the five Houses and the prophesy that thrusts Kricket as a catalysis becomes clearer. This is a fast paced story with enemies everywhere. Kidnapping, fighting, and deceptive plotting are throughout. 

Kricket is a terrific heroine who has come a long way since we first met her in Under Different Stars. She's smart, tough and amazingly resilient. I love her fierce attitude and protective side, especially to those who she cares for and trusts. Everyone seems to want Kricket for her gifts and Sea of Stars pushes her into some tough situations, forcing her to master her gifts as a seeress and  giving us a glimpse of the powerful heroine she's to become.

Trey is the perfect balance of protectiveness and sweetness. He can easily melt your heart as he does everything in his power to keep Kricket from harm, yet he knows when to step back so she can take the lead. He made my emotions a puddle of goo as he reveals his feelings for Kricket, both emotionally and physically. 

"There'll be no martyrs here, Kricket. I'll tear your heart off your sleeve and bury it deep in my chest. Your savage heart will beat for me. Run if you think you can- I'll hunt you down." - Kyron

Kyron is supposed to be the dark villain and yet, I can't help but be curious about him. He will go to any lengths to be with Kricket. His pure determination was obvious at first for political reasons. But, Amy has changed the game up a bit with Kyron and it seems we are seeing a new side to him.

Wayra and Jax are back and lead some great moral support and friendship to the story. The addition of a few new characters added some great mystery to the overall plot, leading to some interesting questions about the House and the Seers.

"If this doesn't work out for us, Kricket, know that I've loved you from the moment I held you in my arms on Ethar, and every moment in between. I will love you even after my final breath." - Trey

Kricket and Trey have plenty of chemistry between them that is beautifully portrayed. The best part of this romance is how Amy carefully reveals their emotional vulnerability as they learn to open their hearts to each other. Trey and Kricket's relationship feels real. Sensual, sweet, and romantic.  I loved the way the romance unfolded and was taken to the next level was filled with all the swoons I could desire! 

I do, however, have one tiny issue, and it is the fact that I was almost overwhelmed by the sheer amount of kidnapping and double-crossing Kricket went through. But, that didn't stop me from enjoying her arse kicking when she needed to.

The Sea of Stars once again swept me away as more danger and intense romance rolls of the pages. The ending was even harder this time around. Amy A. Bartol once again gave me an ending that had me gasping and swooning-needing the next book immediately. Fans of the first book will be not be disappointed with this fantastic second installment.

MY RATING: 4 Stars. I really liked it!

PLEASE NOTE: A courtesy review copy of this book was provided by 47North in exchange for my fair review. Thank you, 47North for the review opportunity!