Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Teen sci-fi romance - Starstruck by Brenda Hiatt #amreading #bookreview


This is another one that I picked up while trolling Amazon for alien fiction. It is not dystopian, but it is also a YA (Young Adult) novel. Some of you might find it strange that as a 53 year old I still enjoy YA books. I just do. I'm not sure why.

But while that is true this one is even more YA than the book in my previous review. At least I think it is a bit less suited for an adult audience.

There was a lot to really enjoy in this book that was suited for an adult and teen audience, like the science-fiction parts, the political parts. But it was heavy on the teen romance aspect, and it was fairly predictable.

It's really a Princess Diaries meets Romeo and Juliet (but not nearly so much feuding and tragedy) kind of book with Martians thrown into the mix.


Marsha (called M) is a high school sophomore who's a bit awkward, not very pretty, and has only two friends. She's often bullied by the head cheerleader.

She's been orphaned twice, (bio parents and adoptive parents both died), and is being raised by her strict, less-than-loving aunt and her amiable but hopelessly inept uncle. The new school year has started and she meets the hot new quarterback and sparks start to fly - literally.

I did enjoy the plot of the book, which I can't go into too much without giving away spoilers, but I will say that M gets to learn who her bio parents were, and they weren't from Earth.

While I did enjoy the romance aspect for the most part, it was a lot more of a plot device in this story than I typically prefer, since romance novels aren't my thing. Plus, I really wonder about books where the heroine meets her once-in-a-lifetime love at age fifteen, with all the unrealistic expectations that this gives young girls. I know this is fiction, but I think half the problem with relationships these days are the unrealistic expectations women (and men) draw from reading romance novels. But that's enough of that part of my soap box for today.

It IS an enjoyable story, and I liked it quite a bit overall. Will I read the sequel? Hmmm. Maybe, maybe not.

If you'd like to check it out for yourself here's the link to its Amazon page. At the time I wrote this it was FREE for Kindle - but be sure to check the price before you purchase.

Have you read a YA novel that you felt was a bit too YA for you? Tell me about it in the comments.

Book Blurb:
Nerdy astronomy geek Marsha, M to her few friends, has never been anybody special. Orphaned as an infant and reluctantly raised by an overly-strict “aunt,” she’s not even sure who she is. M’s dream of someday escaping tiny Jewel, Indiana and making her mark in the world seems impossibly distant until hot new quarterback Rigel inexplicably befriends her. As Rigel turns his back on fawning cheerleaders to spend time with M, strange things start to happen: her acne clears up, her eyesight improves to the point she can ditch her thick glasses, and when they touch, sparks fly—literally! When M digs for a reason, she discovers deep secrets that will change her formerly humdrum life forever . . . and expose her to perils she never dreamed of. Yes, the middle of nowhere just got a lot more interesting!

About the author:
Brenda Hiatt
New York Times bestselling author Brenda Hiatt has published 18 novels to date, her first 15 with Harlequin and HarperCollins. Her novels include six traditional Regency romances, one time travel romance and eight historical romances, most set in Regency England, as well as one humorous mystery and a new young adult series. She has indie published her backlist and is currently writing more books in her young adult SF romance STARSTRUCK series. In addition to writing, Brenda is passionate about embracing life to the fullest, to include scuba diving (she has over 60 dives to her credit), Taekwondo (where she recently achieved her 2nd degree black belt), hiking, traveling, and pursuing new experiences and skills. She is an active member of Romance Writers of America, the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, and Novelists, Inc, an international organization of multipublished novelists, where she served as President in 2006. For the past dozen years, Brenda has also collected data on writers' earnings, which she shares at her website. http://brendahiatt.com

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