The Stars We Steal by Alexa Donne
Publication Date: February 4th, 2020
Engagement season is in the air. Eighteen-year-old Princess Leonie “Leo” Kolburg, heir to a faded European spaceship, only has one thing on her mind: which lucky bachelor can save her family from financial ruin?
But when Leo’s childhood friend and first love Elliot returns as the captain of a successful whiskey ship, everything changes. Elliot was the one that got away, the boy Leo’s family deemed to be unsuitable for marriage. Now, he’s the biggest catch of the season and he seems determined to make Leo’s life miserable. But old habits die hard, and as Leo navigates the glittering balls of the Valg Season, she finds herself falling for her first love in a game of love, lies, and past regrets.
I got this e-ARC through netgalley but this does not change my honest review.
I think on netgalley this was pitched as The Selection in space and let me tell you, that sums it up pretty well! Basically, Leonie doesn’t want to get married but she has a duty to her family to marry someone rich because despite being “royal” in title, they’re basically broke. Then along comes Leo’s first love Elliot and things take a bit of a dramatic turn… dun dun dunnnn
Leo was an interesting character to follow. Right off the bat we’re introduced to her as the reluctant older sister that has to take responsibility for the family. She’s sarcastic and emotional and funny and definitely kind of relatable. I liked that she wasn’t JUSt focused on love or family. She had other dreams that I enjoyed hearing about!
Her sister Carina is basically like her polar opposite and it was fun to see their dynamics, especially as the “compete” for love. There’s also Leo’s cousin Klara who fit the whole “mean girl” trope. She definitely added to the angst and drama, and it was fun to see her at different stages in the story!
I’m going to be honest and say Elliot was just…eh. He was kind of average and was there to fit that specific mold. But hey, I like tropes and I wasn’t deterred by that. The mood of this story just fit really perfectly with what I needed to read at the time so it worked out!
But the real spotlight I think should go to Evgenia and Daniel. I loved their characters and I wish we’d gotten more time with them! They both were people I’d really want to sit and have lunch with and be friends with! I don’t want to get too into the details of these characters because of spoilers though, but they were definitely my favorites!
Now, in regards to the plot, I had a lot of fun with the whole Valg season of trying to get married and meet new people. There were a lot of fun scenes with speed dating and fun dates. I especially loved the way the whole “we live in outer space” thing factored into the plot. It was definitely interesting to see the politics and background about the world and I wish there had been more of that political intrigue!
I didn’t rate this a full 5/5 because I was honestly waiting for a lot more drama and angst and even though there definitely was some, it just felt like it was missing something. The ending felt like it got resolved entirely too quickly in my opinion and I was definitely hoping for more angst, especially given the scenarios! BUT, the story overall kept me engaged and I was thoroughly entertained!
If you like dramatic royals, a little bit of a love triangle-esque drama, second chances, SPACE WALKING, speed dating, dancing, and parties. If you enjoyed The Selection, you’ll definitely enjoy this one! I would definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a quick fun read!