Books · Reviews

Christmas Review – No Ordinary Star (Spoiler-Free)

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Hey guys, I’ve missed you!!

All right, so first things first: you might have noticed I have been absent the entire month of November and I’m really sorry! Also, for not saying anything. It’s just been a crazy month and I decided to take some time off from blogging so I could get some stuff in order. Nothing to be worried about, though! I’m doing great and I hope you are too ^_^

With that said, I also thought it would be cool to continue my thematic reviews so for the entire month of December I’ll be posting some Christmas/winter book reviews! I’m really excited because I love Christmas and wintertime and I can’t wait to try some awesome new stories ❀

Anyway, expect to see me around more often, reading and commenting on all your posts (as much as possible)! And now, please enjoy this review πŸ™‚

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No Ordinary Star

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A soldier is summoned to the North Pole, days before the year changes, told to fix the great Clock for a celebration. He has no idea what to do.
A girl, hunted for the crime of being born, almost dies out on the ice. She is rescued by the last polar bear left alive.

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I was surprised to learn this was a Christmas-y book, especially considering it’s sci-fi. It’s inspired by Ray Bradbury’s short stories and he, of course, wroteΒ Fahrenheit 451 (among others).

The beginning was a bit confusing, I must admit. There are all these futuristic concepts and lingo and characters being thrown around and I had no idea what was going on. However, it didn’t make me want to read it any less. Quite the opposite: it just made me even more intrigued!

I loved the whole winter-y feel and how much it alludes to Christmas. I loved, loved, loved the atmosphere the author created. This first installment is really short and doesn’t tell you all that much, just enough to make you super curious. There’s a lot of mystery surrounding this futuristic society and how this young man and girl fit into it. So I reached the end not really sure what to expect next.

The characters are also a bit of an enigma, with little bits and pieces being revealed along the way. Despite finding out where they were coming from and who they were, they still felt foreign and distant to me. This might be an issue for some people but personally, I felt instantly connected to them and really rooted for their happy ending. Plus, I’m a sucker for love/hate relationships with a lot of banter and bickering. And they were just adorable.

The world building was surprisingly vast for only 200 and so pages. It explains what the Earth’s condition is in the year 2524 and how exactly civilization has evolved. It feels really nostalgic to read about how Humankind has forsaken certain things and replaced them with these strange inventions and ideas that make perfect sense, yet carry that suspicious quality to them that we, twenty first century people, still feel very wary of.

Some sci-fi novels tend to focus too much on their present time and not pay the past any mind, which to me doesn’t feel as interesting. So I was glad for the reminiscing.

Overall, I was shocked by how much I loved this book! It was very well-paced, the writing was great, the short chapters and dual POV worked really nicely, and it never felt like a chore to read this. It was such an amazing journey! And very sweet.

I can’t wait to get my hands on the next installment to find out what’s going to happen and what it all means! It left me with so many questions and a deep hunger for answers. (A word of warning, though: this does contain some mature/triggering themes, if faintly).

Four and half candy canes!

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Thank you so much for reading and until next time!

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I hope you liked my first Christmas Review! Are you planning on reading No Ordinary Star? Please let me know your thoughts below q^β€Ώ^ q

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61 thoughts on “Christmas Review – No Ordinary Star (Spoiler-Free)

  1. I love strange and new societies and it’s pretty cool that it’s a Christmas read! You make it sound so alluring too, Sophie… My December reading is maxed out unfortunately (will I even be able to read and review all of them!?) but I want to make a Christmas read list for next year from everyone’s recommendations, so thanks! β™₯️ And I just love that this I see sci-fi too!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I know! It sounds perfect, doesn’t it?
      I really hope you can fit it in your Christmas list next year, then πŸ™‚ I think you’ll love it!
      Do you have any recs for me? I’m trying to read as many as I can until the end of the year and I’d love any suggestions ❀

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    1. Thank you, Diana! It’s good to be back πŸ™‚
      I love the cover and everything about it, honestly. If it weren’t so short, I might even have given it a higher rating. I just hope the second and third installments are just as good…
      I think you’d really enjoy it!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the theme you’ve got going for your blog, Sophie. Your skills continue to prove how awesome you are. πŸ˜€ It’s also great to hear from you again and that you haven’t dropped reading too! After all, it sounds like you picked up a paper book instead of an audiobook!!! That’s a great sign of having had some free time. πŸ˜‰ Love the sound of this book. Just the mere mention of Ray Bradbury gave me hope that this was going to be a pretty positive review! I’m also quite intrigued that it had a very Christmas-y vibe to it. That is rare in the sci-fi I’ve read to even have snow! Wonderful review as always, Sophie. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw, thanks Lashaan! You’re the best ☺️ ❀
      Oh no, I've been reading while on hiatus, I just haven't been posting at all… SHAME ON ME.
      Yeah, so far I've only cuddled with physical books (or ebooks) and set the audiobooks aside. I fear if I listen to too many of them I might just forget how to spell and even read πŸ˜‚
      Unfortunately, I have yet to read Bradbury's work but I've heard wonders so I could only assume that was a good thing!
      I know, right? I wasn't expecting it to be Christmas-y at all but I think it worked really well in this. The author was pretty clever in her approach and I couldn't have been happier.
      Thanks so much! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Trang, you so need to try this one!!! It’s super short, so even if you don’t like it, it won’t waste too much of your time hahaha
      And it’s just so adorable and dystopian and magical (who knew those words could go well together?). I can’t describe it, really. I think I need the second installment to really get a feel of it as a whole but so far, so good!
      Thanks so much, hon! ❀ It's good to be back ☺️

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  3. It’s good to hear from you Sophie and I’m glad you are back! Plus, I am loving these themed reviews so I’m thrilled they are coming back for the Christmas season πŸ™‚
    I haven’t heard of this book before, but I love this cover ahah, and it sounds like a very intriguing story. I love a good love/hate relationship and I’m glad there is so much world building in so little pages, that’s the sign of a good writer πŸ™‚ Thanks for the review πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Marie! Feels so good to be back ☺️
      Oh I’m so glad you do because they’ve been so much fun for me too!
      The cover was what grabbed my attention right away and also how much people raved about it. Especially when it came to the romance.
      Yeah, I was pleasantly surprised by it and I hope the author keeps it balanced in the next few installments. It would be a shame if it all came crashing down because of plot holes or loose ends!
      Thank you so much for reading! ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh it’s great to see you back and posting again on WordPress Sophie! πŸ˜€ I hope your time off from blogging in November was nice as well though, sometimes it’s just what we need to take a step back for a while, right? πŸ™‚
    Also great review for this book, it’s quite interesting to see a story that’s sci-fi and Christmas themed because I don’t think I’ve heard of any other quite like that (could be wrong though, I’m not that knowledgeable on the sci-fi genre). It sounds like a great book, and that the atmosphere and world building were well done which is something I like to see in all the books I read. πŸ˜€ Also it’s kind of interesting this was inspired by Ray Bradbury’s writing, I haven’t read Fahrenheit 451 but one of my friends has and she loved it.
    Again great review, also I love the Christmas theme you have going on this month! πŸ˜€ ❀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much, Beth! ❀ Yeah, it went fine, I just had so much to do and to focus on I really didn't have the mindset for blogging at all… I think it really helped to take some time away. And you're right, sometimes it's totally needed!
      I'm so glad you liked it ☺️ Right? I thought it was so unique. I haven't read it either but heard wonderful things about it so I might one day. If it's anything like this story, I'm sure I'll really like it πŸ™‚
      Thank you!! And that's lovely to hear ❀ I was feeling really Christmasy and couldn't help but channel it all out hahaha πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s all right, sometimes I don’t have the mindset for blogging and then I always take a little time away. Just because I want to keep enjoying blogging and I can’t do that if I’m forcing myself to blog you know?
        In that case I hope you enjoy it as much as you did this book, if you decide to pick it up as well that is. πŸ™‚
        And that’s all right. I’m feeling kind of Christmasy at the moment too, not long to go now! πŸ˜€ ❀️

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        1. Yup, absolutely understand. I felt the same way and it felt pointless, because that’s basically the reason I blog. I didn’t want to disappear off the face of the earth either but that’s what ended up happening anyway xD
          Thanks, me too! I’ll definitely pick it up, I just bought the second and third installments the other day and am ready to dive into them when I’m done with the rest of my reading list ^^
          Yay, Christmasy mood is the best πŸ˜€ ❀

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, this book sounds really unusual and intriguing! I’m also a sucker for love/hate relationships so that caught my attention, and I love icy northern settings. I’m sometimes not a fan of too much mystery and too many things left unexplained… but if it didn’t do that in a frustrating way and kept you intrigued that’s a good sign. I presume this is a romance? I love dual perspectives and sci-fi romances so maybe I’ll give it a go πŸ™‚

    And it’s great to have you back! I totally understand about needing to take time off blogging to catch up on other things, I did the same in November (and probably will in December too). It seems November has a tendency to be a month of craziness!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought so too! I had no idea going in it would be like that, though hahaha
      It didn’t frustrate me, no, and I’m the same as you so I think you’ll be fine πŸ˜› It didn’t feel like I was being kept in the dark just for the sake of the story looking mysterious… As in, it wasn’t forced. It tied in well with the plot, which in itself is supposed to make you wonder. So it made complete sense.
      It is a romance but the first installment doesn’t actually have any in it, which I loved! I hate for relationships to be rushed and I think the author might turn this into a slow-burn, from what I could gather. Which is just awesome πŸ˜€ We’ll see!
      I think from what you just said, you will really love this ^^ It checks all the boxes for me, too!
      Thank you so much, Nicola ❀ ❀ I'm super glad you're back too! And yeah, I noticed a bunch of people going on hiatus these past two months, so it made me feel a bit better for being away hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s great that the mystery feels natural and not forced or frustating, and I love slow-burn romances too! It’s rarer to encounter a series where the romance is developed over more than one book, but I much prefer that to a rushed or instalove romances. So it seems like its checking even more boxes πŸ™‚ I think I will read it then – thanks for reviewing it! And haha yes, I’ve also seen several other people slowing down and going on hiatus, so we don’t have to feel too guilty πŸ™‚

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        1. Well, technically this is a book divided into three parts, so I’m not sure how well it fits into the profile hahaha But still, it feels like separate books so that’s a plus πŸ™‚
          No problem! I’m glad the review has made you want to read it, that’s super awesome ^_^ And I really hope you enjoy it ❀

          Liked by 1 person

  6. I love the idea of a Christmas sci-fi. I don’t read many contemporary books and if I want a Christmas read, they’re most likely to be contemporary so this would probably be a great pick for me! Glad you enjoyed it Sophie and thank you for reviewing it! Glad you’re back!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Me too! I never thought I would actually find one, though hahaha
      Yeah, same here… I do end up liking some contemporaries but it’s very hit and miss for me. I rarely go wrong with fantasy/sci-fi so there was a higher chance I’d like this one πŸ™‚ So glad that was the case!
      Thanks so much, Leah ❀ And thank *you* for reading! I really hope you enjoy it if you decide to try it πŸ™‚ It's really short so I'd give it a go, it won't take too much of your time.
      Thank you, I’m so glad to be back! ☺️ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s awesome to hear, Amy! I have so much fun with them so I hope others do too ^^
      Yay, that makes two of us! hahaha Do you have any recs I could borrow? I already have a pretty extensive list but I’m always up for more in case I don’t like the ones I got πŸ˜‚
      I really hope you do, too! *crossing my fingers* πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yay!
        So far I’ve read The Grift of the Magi (Heist Society novella), but I’m also planning on getting to My True Love Gave to Me, Let it Snow, The Afterlife of Holly Chase, and Gideon’s Gift. I read What Light last year (which was quite good), and I’ve also heard of My New Crush Gave to Me, but I was unable to get my hands on a copy. πŸ˜‰
        Thanks!

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        1. Ah cool! πŸ˜€
          I’m currently reading My True Love Gave to Me and I have My New Crush Gave to Me and What Light on my Christmas reading list but I don’t think I’m familiar with the others… Let It Snow, I think I might have it as well even though I’m not a big John Green fan.
          The Afterlife of Holly Chase sounds really great! I think I’ll skip Gideon’s Gift as it sounds like a tearjerker, though πŸ™‚ As for The Grift of the Magi, since it’s part of a series, do you think I could read it on its own? And will it contain spoilers for the prequels?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Awesome!! I’m excited to see if you enjoy My New Crush Gave to Me; if you end up really liking it, I might have to get a copy for next year, haha!
            Right, although Let It Snow also has two other authors, so even if you hate JG’s story, the book isn’t totally hopeless. πŸ˜‰
            TAOHC is my most anticipated for the month; it’s overdue at the library and they only have one copy so I’m just really hoping that they get it back soon.
            Haha, I just read Gideon’s Gift last night and you’re definitely right about that! I almost cried. It’s super short and sweet though, so I would recommend it if you don’t mind a little heartstring-pulling.
            The Grift of the Magi is part of the Heist Society series, which the author actually intended to read mostly like standalones. I’m trying to think of any spoilers, but she’s really succeeded for the most part- one couple gets together (although in my opinion it was really obvious and it happens in the first book) and there is a nickname that is explained in the third book, but other than that, she pretty much explains everything you need to know at the beginning of TGOTM. You’ll just miss some references/backstory, but I think you’d be fine to read it on its own!

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            1. Ah I see, thanks for letting me know! I’ll definitely get on in if I can get myself a copy πŸ™‚
              As for the rest, I’ll try and review every Christmas book I read this month so I’ll be sure to write about MNCGTM as soon as I finish it (if I do read it, but I hope I do!)
              I’ll keep Gideon’s Gift in mind for some other time as I’d really like to keep my December TBR as cute and light as possible hahaha
              And I’ll give Let It Snow the benefit of the doubt, then πŸ˜›
              Thanks again, Amy! ❀

              Liked by 1 person

  7. Love the new Christmasy decor for your blog (just had to say it, it looks awesome πŸ™‚ ) And I like Bradbury (though I’ve only read one of his books) so I’d be interested to read something based on his work. And that’s cool about the wintery feel πŸ˜€ And the world building sounds amazing. Really sounds worth picking up- great review!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh thank you! Glad you like it πŸ™‚
      I can’t promise you it’ll be anything like Bradbury’s stories because I haven’t read anything by him myself, but I for one enjoyed this one and hope you do too! Which book of his did you read, if you don’t mind my asking?
      Yes, very wintery and quite nice on the world building aspect (even though there’s still a lot left to explore, which is awesome – I hate info dumps).
      Thank you very much! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Wow!! I have been on the hunt for some great Christmas reads and this one is new to me! A holiday sci-fi is so unique. I will have to see if I can find this one, as it sounds fantastic. Thanks so much for sharing this one. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad to hear it! I’ve been on the hunt for them as well and was super happy to find this one. Definitely unique and so sweet!
      I think you can easily get it on Kindle, and it’s really cheap too. Would love to hear your thoughts on it if you do end up giving it a try πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much for reading! ❀

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  9. Welcome back Sophie! I hope you had a great November! Love your Christmas decorations on your blog πŸ™‚ I haven’t heard of this book before and I still have yet to read Fahrenheit 451. I do like books set in the future though so this book sounds good to read. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Welcome back to blogging! And I think the idea of thematic reviews is brilliant! To be honest I never read seasonally so I miss out on a lot of Christmassy books D: But although I am aware of this fantasy novel I had no clue it was a Christmassy kind of read in any way as well. Glad you managed to like it so much πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! Yeah, I didn’t use to either, but when the Halloween season rolled in I thought “why not?” and decided to keep the trend up until now hahaha
      I didn’t know, either, and that was a really nice surprise! The fact that it lived up to my expectations was also great πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I didn’t know about this book, and I am not a sci-fi fan, but it seems interesting and your enthusiastic review brought me in! I have to check it out as soon as I can! I am glad you liked it and the thing you write about the Christmas-y atmosphere get me curious! I didn’t read a Christmas book yet, but I hope to read at least one before the end of the year! πŸ™‚

    Like

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