Come for the apocalypse. Stay for cupcakes. Die for love.
Phew! I finally finished reading And All the Stars by Andrea K. Host and I say finally because it really was a struggle! The first part was alright. In fact, it started off pretty strong! However, after the halfway mark (when the Blue’s “Super Powers” started to manifest) I found myself quickly losing interest because the author was focusing way too much on the mechanics of the “Super Powers” (in grave – and quite frankly, boring – detail). I only purchased this on my Kindle Paperwhite because it was found in the recommended list (Readers Also Enjoyed sidebar) on goodreads when I was searching for something similar to The Razorland Trilogy (reviewed here). Plus, the picture on the cover looked intriguing… and with a tagline like that, how could I resist?
Alien Spires have popped up in all the major sites around the world, accompanied with mysterious dust. Those who are exposed to the dust either turn Blue or Green (small patches at first, before eventually spreading all over the body). It’s not a flat Blue because it’s described in the story as a shimmery blue with stars and milky ways and constellations and whatnot (see cover photo) that’s velvet-y to the touch. Some survive the change and some don’t (they die). The Blues that survive the change automatically become viable candidates as hosts (for the aliens to take over their bodies) because the aliens don’t have physical bodies of their own (only energy bodies… or something like that?). The Blues also start manifesting “Super Powers” (they more or less all have the same “Power” which is essentially an energy blast… or whatever, but it’s weaker in some and more powerful in others). Certain Blues who can’t perform the energy blast/energy shield thing, instead have the “leech ability”. It’s all very confusing and as I said earlier, boring. That’s why I sorta’ just glazed over those parts.
The main character (teenage girl, loves to paint) wakes up in the immediate aftermath of what seems to a major blast that took out half the underground subway station or train station or whatever. It’s pitch black. She’s precariously balanced on a ledge with a fatal drop inches only away, and someone else’s blood dripping all over her. Now tell me that isn’t intriguing? Like I said, the story starts off STRONG! She manages to get out and finds herself – and everything else in the station – covered with the mysterious glittery dust.
The sense of urgency in the first few pages was what got me hooked. What are those spires? What’s this glittery dust stuff? What are the effects of breathing it in? What does turning Blue mean? Who else survived? What’s going to happen next? It got very interesting when more characters were introduced (as per usual, it’s always up to a rag-tag group of teens to save the world lawl). However, once they all settled into a routine of sorts, that’s when the sense of urgency was lost, taking my interest along with it. The main character even starts painting her new-found friends… because that’s just what you do during an alien invasion. As for the love story, I kept getting flashbacks to a movie I’d seen called “The Host”. Most of the characters, although likable, were unrelatable (at least to me). Overall, I’d say the story had an interesting premise but was poorly executed (the author should’ve worked more on getting us invested in the characters rather than their “Powers”). The story’s only saving grace was the twist towards the end, which I believe added some much-needed dimension to the otherwise flat story.
I wanted a nice quick read but sadly this was neither of those things.