Skyward (Skyward, #1) (2024)

chai ♡

343 reviews165k followers

August 14, 2022

Skyward, the first in a brand-new series by Brandon Sanderson, feels like a prelude. The raw energy of the closing pages rattles; I started every sentence without knowing where it was going, half-terrified of where it might end. When I looked up, the bedlam of motion inside the coffeeshop where I sat was an underwater warble, and I felt the sort of disorientation you only get when you are pulled out of one world and back into another. The effect, of course, of a really good book.

**
Spensa “Spin” Nightshade was going to be a pilot. As a 7-year-old, she dreamed of it with the raw hope of a child who looked at the stars as if her very soul had unfurled and stretched out to meet it. As a 17-year-old, she knew it with the boundless confidence of a youth who assumed the world will contort itself to accommodate her desires. But Spensa’s name was full of her father’s cowardice in a way nobody could miss. It was a burden and a responsibility. For ten years, Spensa had tried to piece together a father who was gone from rumors that spoke of him deserting his team and betraying his people. But when it is all boiled away, what was always left was that wanting, hard and spare and alive: to prove herself, to clear her father’s name, and to fight for humanity’s survival. Even if that meant breaking the rules, leaving them smashed and glittering in her wake.

“Remember, Spensa. You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”

Skyward soared through the autumn and winter of 2018 on a frenzy of love, drawing a cornucopia of rave reviews and dominating bestseller lists. And I have to say—it is well-deserved.

Clocking in at more than 500 pages, the novel requires patience as it unfolds in slow but ultimately satisfying layers. The meticulous plotting comes off as the work of someone in absolute charge of his craft. Skyward brims with details that build out into a vast, intricate world which, remarkably, still leaves plenty to explore. It’s a good thing that Sanderson has 4 more books planned for this series as there’s a lot to set up. It’s clear that the author is only getting warmed up; the political and intergalactic machinations that swirled around Spensa had much left to play out. And if Sanderson’s goal was to make his readers clamor for more, I'm pleased to say that he accomplished that goal with flying colors.

Skyward is fun, but there’s a deep layer of story at work. Sanderson paints real-world concerns like classism, war profiteering, and patriotic jingoism with piercing resonance. The novel examines, thoughtfully, the dangerous culture of martyrdom that is deeply embedded in the DDF—the Defiant Defense Force—and which had, for many years, been preserved in false perfection.

Spensa, who recited Defiance like a litany and ripped herself to rags against the sharp and ugly poetry of it, determined to never be called a coward, is confronted with a truth like ice water: the DDF bleeds great gouts of young pilots in the deadly battles against the Krell, but spares the sons and daughters of the elite who are pulled out from the Academy by their wealthy and well-connected parents when the peril becomes too real. Spensa had thought she could join the DDF and vie for the only chance she would ever have at glory, she built her life around that dream, but Spensa soon discovers that her government’s talk of glory and heroism, all their promises, wear a thinner veil than a funeral shroud. Spensa didn’t want to be a part of this machine anymore. But the machine didn’t care. The machine went on grinding and catching her up in its gears.

Spensa’s character development doesn’t stop there. All her life the mystery of what had really happened the day her father was unequivocally branded a coward hung over her, and she had hardly dared hope that she might get the answers she longed for. When Spensa does, the truth of it strikes her backhanded, and her heart—for the second time—splits in two and goes to war against itself. The truth, this novel explores as brilliantly as anything else, is never how we want it: clear-cut and shining, a perfect moral center leading us all back home.

“Sometimes, the answers we needdon’t match the questions we’re asking.” He looked up at me. “And sometimes, the coward makes fools of wiser men.”

This is, I think, what I relished most about this book: the way the author gives his characters plenty of room to fumble and triumph. He made a list of characters that kept getting longer (then, heartbreakingly, shorter) and injected them with enough interiority to keep his readers riveted. Spensa’s journey, in particular, is wonderful to watch, and her potential narrative paths for the sequel are very intriguing. I, for one, can’t wait to see where Sanderson takes her.

    fiction read-in-2020 ya-sff

Emily (Books with Emily Fox on Youtube)

594 reviews65.7k followers

January 11, 2019

"Just for that, I shall hunt your firstborn and laugh with glee as I tell them of your death in terrible detail, with many unpleasant adjectives!”

You know how sometimes you realize you’ve read 500 pages and it was all fluff, nothing really stands out and you can't even remember most of it?

Well this book was the opposite.

So much happens, the characters are flawed but their growth is fascinating to watch. The story is complex and becomes more interesting as it progresses. Every time I thought I knew where things were going… I was wrong. And happy to be.

The teenage angst, an hilarious sentient ship, the lack of romance… This is how you create a fantastic YA book! Sanderson is not afraid to make you laugh... and cry.

Absolutely recommend this book.

Also shoutout to Doomslug!

    2018-releases favorites

Christine Riccio

Author4 books100k followers

January 23, 2019

THIS WAS AMAZING. I loved the characters, the world, the humor, the action. I'm excited to continue the series.

Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

3,595 reviews10.9k followers

December 20, 2020

UPDATE: $1.99 Kindle US 12/20/20

****
Even though I already had the book, I'm impressed a Brandon Sanderson book was in my November Fairyloot!! Click the link under the picture to see the goods. I think I left out a picture of one of the cards! sigh....

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (5)

THE GOODS

I had so many things I wanted to say for this review but I have nothing right now! I have cried sad and happy tears. I have loved many. Go read the damn book people!

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (6)

It's Brandon Sanderson! What more needs to be said?

Happy Reading!

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾

    fantasy-all favorites hardback-own

Melanie

1,233 reviews101k followers

November 18, 2018

“You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”

Skyward is the start of a brand-new YA Sci-Fi series by Brandon Sanderson. You all know that I love Brandon Sanderson’s work, especially The Stormlight Archive and Mistborn, and I knew I couldn’t let this new release pass me by without immediately reading. And, friends, this was nothing short of a treat.

This book follows a young girl named Spensa, who wants nothing more than to follow in her father’s footsteps of being a space pilot and defending her home planet from an alien race called the Krell, who are relentless in their attacking. Unfortunately, her father did something unforgivable and the rest of her community truly will never forget.

“People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real.”

Spensa lives in future version of our galaxy, on a planet named Detritus. But most of the inhabitants live underground, while only a few cities are above. And in this society people’s job positions are supposed to be based off their test scores that will influence them into learning their strengths, but we soon find out that pilots are mostly found based on their family lineage.

Brandon Sanderson really talks about privilege and how outside forces can really impact a person’s life, while a last name can completely make someone’s future. Spensa learns this very quickly, but she is still determined to not only go to flight school, but to graduate at the top of her class, regardless of the people who are willing to do anything to stop her.

And Spensa has to go through some really horrible stuff. No spoilers, but even her family is forced to live off of rats, while never being able to see the sky, but living in fear of a lifetime war that never ceases. But Spensa’s determination is awe-inspiring, but she soon realizes that flight school is completely ruthless and very deadly.

“It turns out that strange little girls grow up to be strange young women.”

Yet, one of the best characters I’ve read all year is easily Spensa. She not only makes you feel immense empathy because of her situation, but just because she’s a little girl that has only known war. She’s passionate, she’s caring, she’s so very dedicated. And she’s hilariously funny. This book made me laugh out loud so many times. But mostly, I was rooting for her from the first to the last page. And she really showcases that everyone has a choice, regardless of the things that life has forced upon them, and regardless of the mistakes of their parents. She was such a wonderful character, and a shining light in 2018’s protagonists.

And I loved the constant discussion of what makes a coward and what makes a hero. And about all those grey areas in between those things. And how a different view can really turn those two titles upside down completely. Spensa also meets many new colleagues, some of which who are also chasing the same dream as her, and some who have had it forced upon them. And dare I say, there is a start of an enemies to lovers relationship in this book? Lord, help me. I am already invested!

But my heart truly belongs to M-Bot, the AI-driven ship that Spensa finds. A lot of people have compared this book to How To Train Your Dragon and that is so damn accurate, but I actually think I loved M-Bot even more than Toothless. (And that is quite the recommendation, friends!) I also think I just have a soft spot in my heart for sentient ships, if I’m being completely honest. But I have no doubts that if you pick up this book that you will fall in love with M-Bot, too.

Okay, so even though I loved this reading experience so much, and I truly think Brandon Sanderson comes up with the best worlds in SFF, two things bothered me about this book. One is a character death, and I won’t go into spoilers, but if you know me at all, you’ll know why this upset me. And Brandon should have done better. Secondly, the ending was a masterpiece. Yeah, you read that right. The ending was magnificent, but it truly overshadowed the rest of the book and made it feel like the 500 pages I just read were some precursor to the actual story that will begin in book two.

“Claim the stars, Spensa.”

Overall, I did adore this book. It was just what I needed. I actually was feeling really slumpy before I picked this up, and not only did it rectify that, but it reminded me why I love books and stories and fictional worlds so much. I know Brandon Sanderson isn’t for everyone, but he truly is a master at his craft and every book and series he touches turns to gold. And his world-building is honestly on a tier above all else in the genre. And, again, I cannot wait for book two. And I cannot wait to learn everything about a certain blue and orange slug.

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Content and trigger warnings for bullying, loss of a loved one, battle scenes, and war themes.

    audiobook read-in-2018 sci-fi

Lisa of Troy

719 reviews6,006 followers

December 19, 2023

Check out my video on 7 Plot Holes in Skyward: https://youtu.be/IGsYseEyWv4

Spensa has grown up an outcast but has always dreamed of becoming a pilot her entire life. Will she be able to achieve her dreams? One day she stumbles upon an ancient ship that crashed into her planet. Can she repair the ship before it's discovered? The ship also seems to have a personality. Will Spensa be able to convince the ship to join her side?

This book was quite lengthy, and it seemed to drag in certain portions of the book; there was a little too much "Yay! Flying! Let's fly here and fly there. Hands in a circle. Yay!" This isn't the worst book that I have ever read but it also isn't the best. Full disclosure: This is my first Brandon Sanderson book. However, reading this book, I just don't understand all of the fuss.

The foreshadowing was a bit heavy handed. A few topics were mentioned over and over, and magically they happened later in the book to the surprise of no one. Also, I would love to know how many times the word, "Scud!" appears throughout the book.

In terms of the fantasy, this book aligned more with my tastes. I have an extremely difficult time visualizing what the author is describing so I tend to lean more realistic fantasy or I need a few pictures/video. In my copy of the book, there were a handful of pictures which were really helpful. Therefore, I didn't have a hard time with the fantasy in this book.

Overall, this book was ok but didn't live up to the hype of the famous Brandon Sanderson. My curiosity isn't peaked enough to continue this series, but I would be open to reading other Brandon Sanderson books. You can drop me some suggestions in the comments below.

2024 Reading Schedule
JanMiddlemarch
FebThe Grapes of Wrath
MarOliver Twist
AprMadame Bovary
MayA Clockwork Orange
JunPossession
JulThe Folk of the Faraway Tree Collection
AugCrime and Punishment
SepHeart of Darkness
OctMoby-Dick
NovFar From the Madding Crowd
DecA Tale of Two Cities

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Katerina

422 reviews17.3k followers

April 24, 2020

2000 hrs., Alta Base, Flight Command Headquarters

Scholar: Flight Command, this is Booknerd Twelve, name Katerina. Callsign: Scholar.
Flight Command: What are you doing in the outer space, Scholar? Your mission is accomplished, you finished Skyward. Return to the base immediately.
Scholar: I’m not ready to leave, Command.
Flight Command: Why do you defy direct orders soldier?
Scholar: Because there was something about Skyward; the cinematic quality, the non-stop adventure, the humor and sarcasm, the wonderful crew and the heroine oozing bravado and determination, that won’t let me return. I need more time, to float in space, to soar the winds, to claim the stars, to let the fact that Brandon Sanderson is a master storyteller not only when he composes the most epic fantasy books ever written, but also the most solid, gripping and awe-inspiring YA science fiction sink in.
Flight Command: Why was it such a surprise, Scholar?
Scholar: Because the truth is, I was mad at him for engaging with a new YA project that delayed the release of Wax and Wayne #4 and Rhythm of War. But as soon as I took off with Spensa, as soon as I became a part of Skyward Flight, I regretted my anger and all the reservations that held me back. It was truly magnificent, another proof that Brandon Sanderson is the best author of his generation.
Flight Command: I understand all these, Scholar, but you have to return. Daydreaming in the outer space is a dangerous (and forbidden) habit.
Scholar: But sir, I have my own protectors!
Flight Command: Who?
Scholar: Doomslug the Destroyer, the most terrifying beast that feasts on the flesh of her enem-
Flight Command: That’s simply the cutest slug that ever existed, a soft cupcake.
Scholar: Well, there is also the Massacrebot, the most advanced spaceship that will hunt down the first born of his foes and-
Flight Command: You know he likes being called M-Bot. And he is not vicious, just a slightly insane talking spaceship that may or may not be the king of sass.
Scholar: Fine, there is also the fiercest warrior, Spensa Nightshade, callsign: Spin, the one who bathes in blood and drinks in her cup made of skulls and-
Flight Command: Spensa tends to get carried away, and being overly dramatic, but I do recognize that she is one of the bravest, strongest (and funniest) YA heroines out there. Before you start analyzing the might of Skyward cadets and Cobb, the journey to find the meaning of courage and camaraderie, I must confess that while you composed paeans about the glory of Skyward, we launched Reality missiles that will destroy your wings.
Scholar: No no no leave my wings alone, I’m setting the coordinates to return, just give me-

beep beep beep

Booknerd Eleven: Sir, was that really necessary?
Flight Command: She must learn to control her frenzy every time she reads a book written by Brandon Sanderson. Flight Command out.

    2020-reads science-fiction

TS Chan

760 reviews916 followers

September 2, 2023

Re-reading in preparation for Defiant.

So much fun! With better understanding of Spensa, I didn't find her angst and anger the least bit annoying this time around and appreciated her as a great YA main character. The dynamics of Skyward Flight was so enjoyable to read, M-Bot was just pure gold as Doomslug was simply adorable, and the Sanderlanche was spectacular!

----------------------------------

ARC provided by the publisher, Gollancz, in exchange for an honest review..

4.5 stars.

Skyward is a fine example of a Young Adult novel. Once again, I'm in awe of Sanderson who shows he is still at the top of his game.

This novel is another hallmark of Sanderson's ability to spin the most incredible stories. He described the book as How to Train Your Dragon meets Top Gun and Enders Game. These references, however, would count for nothing if the execution was poor. Fortunately, and to solidify my unwavering faith in my favourite author, he excelled in his first full-length space opera novel.

So what do we get from Skyward? Fascinating worldbuilding - check. Empathetic characterisation - check. Excellent pacing and plotting - check. All these I have come to expect from Sanderson already, but the one thing that impressed me the most are the starship dogfight scenes. No magic system to showcase in action? No sweat! He relied on his (seemingly inexhaustible) imagination to create some unique dogfighting techniques while keeping flight science as real as possible with the help and advice of real-life fighter pilots.

Similar to his magic systems, the capability of the pilots and their starfighters is constrained within a set of boundaries or rules as dictated by available technology; some of which are made-up to make it more exciting. The flight school arc is engaging and well-written with loads of flight action scenes, and they are so vivid and thrilling that I was practically glued to the pages.

If it is even possible, Sanderson is getting better at his worldbuilding skills, and I'm not just talking about how fascinating this most aptly named planet of Detritus is. It is that self-described Grand Skill of incorporating worldbuilding naturally through the perspective of the characters. Aside from avoiding info-dumping, this also lends an air of mystery to the history of the planet, its inhabitants and their lifelong war, but at the same time is not too obscure as to frustrate the reader.

The story is written mainly in the first-person POV of Spensa - an angry young lady with a lot to prove and hence had quite an attitude problem and a propensity to act like an idiot sometimes. Her growth in character was simply quite superb. While I was annoyed with some of her thoughts and actions at first, she was relatable, and as she fought so hard to remain in flight school at all costs to prove her detractors wrong, the life lessons she faced made her development feel completely natural and realistic.

Even the supporting characters are excellent and ones that you will root for and develop an emotional investment. The level of empathy that Sanderson demonstrated in the way he wrote his characters truly astounds me sometimes. My favourite character - who made me tear up and then laugh till I almost cried again - is one that is not even human or biologically alive, but has such a personality as to appear quite sentient.

As with all of Sanderson's stories, there are always important themes imbued into the character's journey. Living in the shadow of her father, Spensa went all out to prove that she is not a coward. As she progressed through flight school, however, her conviction of what real bravery is was sorely tested. Her path to be a pilot and a grown-up was one of harsh realities and self-realisation.

"It has always seemed to me that a coward is a person who cares more about what people say than about what is right. Bravery isn't about what people call you, Spensa. It's about who you know yourself to be."

There is also one unifying theme evident in Sanderson's books, and that is one of hope. Not hope in the metaphysical sense or some god-like intervention, but hope that arises from the good in people. I live for stories like these, especially during these dark and nonsensical times.

"People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real. If that's the case, what does it matter whether people in them actually lived?"

No, it does not matter to me if Kaladin or Dalinar, Vin or Kelsier, (to name a few) are fictional. Their stories illuminate what it means to hope, to live and be human. And I will want to ‘live' those stories again and again. Now, I am adding Spensa and her awesome, hilarious starship into that list.

You can order this book from: Book Depository (Free shipping)

You can also find this and my other reviews at Novel Notions.

    arc-review-copy brandon-sanderson physical-owned

Warda

1,259 reviews22k followers

January 31, 2021

I’m fluctuating between a 4 and 5 stars, so 4.5 🌟 for now but damn! I felt robbed by that ending. The scope of this world, the characters and plot is about to get even bigger AND THE EXCITEMENT I FEEL!

I don’t understand how he does it. Sanderson can’t do no wrong.

THIS is how you write a YA sci-fi/fantasy book. With depth and substance, whilst still knowing your target audience.

Yes, the above comment is very much a dig at the mediocre YA fantasies that have been getting published.

I’m still floating in space - so no ‘review’ from me just yet - but I can arrogantly say that if you didn’t connect to this book, you’re the problem. It’s you.

(Note the sarcasm PLEase. Don’t come for me in the comments. But really, you should question yourself if you didn’t like this book. Just some unsolicited advice from a reader who means well.)

    audiobooks i-fell-in-love

Nilufer Ozmekik

2,589 reviews52.7k followers

September 13, 2020

Good news to the die-hard Mistborn fans like me and also The Stormlight Archive lovers (Seriously, I should stop procrastinating and start reading ASAP! It waits too long at my TBR purgatory!), we got the brand new, unique, exciting sci-fi series we’d dreamt of for so long. I honestly waited for second book’s release to start this journey and it finally came out.

The book started a little slow and it gave me idea that was long prologue before taking our first steps into journey and warms us before the real action starts. We’re introduced the characters and main purpose, the obstacles, enemies, facts and after this long introduction we’re all set to buckle up and move to the space, travelling around the stars and learn more what’s gonna happen.

So before reading this book, you may consider this one as a long intro to main story but it is really good written with its perfectly rounded characters and world building. It may be long but don’t give up because especially the cliffhanger shakes you to the core and thrills you so much, makes you want to get the second book into your hands ASAP!

Let’s get a quick look to the story progression:
Our heroine Spensa Nightshade’s father died a few years ago at the war against the alien race named Krell. Now she wants to be a pilot to honor her father’s memory and defend her planet by fighting against the Krell and avenge her father’s death. But later we learn her father made an unforgiveable mistake and now rest of the colony are so adamant not to forget it. He was accused of being a coward! His wrong move labeled and ruined his own daughter life and after 9 years passed from his demise, Spensa still suffers from his wrong choice’s consequences.

But Spensa is fiery, stubborn, powerful, rebellious soul and she is so determined to be trained as a starship pilot and prove her competence. But it’s not gonna be more compelling challenging for her to be accepted to the Defiant Defense Force’s flight school because so many influential and powerful people are against to give her chance get her approval.

But with the help of her determination, working her ass off and a little bit luck, she finally finds an empty spot for her to join the program. But her problem doesn’t end so easily. She turns into persona non grata, gets rejected to use the dorms, even the school cafeteria is forbidden zone. She finds herself at a house in cave to stay and she meets with an old, decapitated starfighter named “M-Bot”
So as she resumes attending her classes so she also tries to fix this old starfighter. But before without completing her training, she and her classmates find themselves fight against the Krell.

Overall, two things really affected me so much about this book. One: I LOVE M-BOT so so so much! I wish I had it in my house and start a starship book club with it!

I’m absolutely sure it stole all the show! And the second is (my mouth is till zipped) I’m devastated, so sorry about one of the character’s fortune at this book. (the readers know who I’m talking about and I found it not fair! I even thought to cut one star from my rating but my love for M-Bot and my adoration for the story stopped me.)

Brandon Sanderson is uniquely gifted author with his intelligent, visionary brain, he creates remarkable novels. I’m delightfully to read anything his hand touched and worked on.

So I cannot wait to start the series’ second book! It’s so much worth to wait for!

Petrik

740 reviews53.1k followers

September 6, 2023

Skyward is a great and rare (for me) example of a YA sci-fi novel done right.

Skyward is the first time I read a YA novel by Brandon Sanderson. At the same time, it has been years since I read any YA novel. This isn’t to say I am totally done with reading YA novels. The fact that I’m reading and reviewing this series right now should prove otherwise. And hey, I still have The Shattered Sea trilogy by Joe Abercrombie and Arc of a Scythe trilogy by Neal Schusterman on my TBR pile. However, I cannot deny I’m incredibly picky over which YA books to read now, definitely even more compared to when I’m picking my preferred adult SFF books to read. From my experience, the most popular and highly praised YA novels like Shades of Magic trilogy by V.E. Schwab (I’m calling this series a YA series despite its supposedly targeted adult market) and The Six of Crows duology ended up being a disappointment; though I will admit the Six of Crows duology is still good. If there was any YA novel to attempt again, I figured, why not try a highly praised YA series written by Brandon Sanderson, one of my favorite authors of all-time. This is why I read Skyward, and fortunately, this was undeniably a hit with me.

“It has always seemed to me that a coward is a person who cares more about what people say than about what is right. Bravery isn't about what people call you, Spensa. It's about who you know yourself to be.”

The story in Skyward takes place on the planet Detritus, and it is a story about Spensa who dreams of becoming a pilot in a dangerous world at war for humanity’s future. Detritus has been under attack for decades, and pilots are now the remaining heroes of the human race. It is Spensa’s dream to become a pilot. And yet, it is difficult for her to achieve this because her fate is intertwined with her father’s—a pilot who was killed in the prologue when he abruptly deserted his own team. No one will tell Spensa the details of her father’s death, and no one is letting Spensa forget what her father did. But Spensa will not give up. She will enter the flight school no matter what. She is determined to fly, and an accidental discovery might provide her the way to claim the stars.

“You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”

This is the first book in a quartet. Although marketed and targeted to the YA audience, I found the themes and topics explored in Skyward to be applicable to both young adult and adult readers. Just because we have reached adulthood doesn't guarantee we have realized what we want to become. Sometimes, it feels like we (adults) are surviving and hanging on every thin rope of hope we manage to find. And adulthood does not mean we have succeeded in breaking the chains of harmful heritage and tradition. The themes of following your dreams and not letting misfortune guide or define who you are as an individual are prominent and well-implemented in Skyward through the perspective of Spensa. And now that I have read Skyward, it is no longer a surprise why many adult fantasy and sci-fi readers recommend this story of hope and determination to me and other adult SFF readers.

“People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real. If that's the case, what does it matter whether people in them actually lived?”

Let’s review this by discussing the four things that turned into a pleasant surprise to me upon reading Skyward. First, I think Spensa is a well-written character. Before I read Skyward, I heard some opinions stating they couldn’t stand Spensa and her aggressive or foul-mouthed personality. I have to disagree with this notion. I found Spensa’s behavior to fit the narrative and background she has. The pressure and the prejudice she encounters every day due to her father’s actions are insane, and the way she stands tall (even though she is short), fiery, and determined despite all that is admirable. I wouldn’t know how it feels to be a teenage girl, but I know I wouldn’t have fared better if I were in her shoes. Raised under the heroic stories of Beowulf, Conan the Barbarian, and more, these stories influenced and inspired Spensa to hope and be strong as an individual while retaining her inner kindness.

“And the warrior’s way was not to run from failure, but to own up to it and do better.”

Second, although she is the primary (and almost singular except the interludes) POV character, Spensa is not alone in her journey. Some of you might know the magical/battle school trope is one of my favorite tropes in speculative fiction. Pair this with found family and friendship, and it was practically assured I would at least enjoy Skyward. And enjoy it, I did. Sure, some of the flight training montage did feel repetitive, but the development and interaction between Spensa and her mentor and the flight crew of Skyward Flight—Jerkface and FM in particular—were one of my favorite aspects of the novel.

“And yet, when you fly, you are amazing. You’re so determined, so skillful, so passionate. You’re a fire, Spin. When everyone else is calm, you’re a burning bonfire. Beautiful, like a newly forged blade.”

And third, of course, I have to mention Doomslug and M-Bot. Now, Doomslug is an adorable-looking slug that has become a mascot for the Skyward series. I have owned a sticker of it for a while now! And I had certain expectations on how Doomslug will behave. And it is certainly not the ones that I end up reading here. When I read Doomslug and M-Bot constantly learning and copying Spensa’s foul-mouthed language, I cannot help but smile at this. Sanderson has pitched Skyward as How to Train Your Dragon but with a spaceship instead of a dragon, and this is such an apt pitch/comparison. I have a feeling that moving forward into the series, Doomslug and M-Bot will play a more significant role in the story, and I am all up for it.

“We must not cower in the dark because we’re afraid of the spark within us. The answer is not to put out the spark, but to learn to control it.”

Lastly, as expected of Sanderson, the writing was easy to read, and the actions were exciting and fun. I have read all of Sanderson’s Cosmere books. I knew a Sanderlanche at the end of Skyward would transpire. This being a YA novel would not change that. I expected this, and it is there. I am, however, surprised by the high quality of the Sanderlanche. Even though it was mostly predictable, the narrative succeeded at immersing me in the climax sequence. No kidding. I read the final 100 pages of Skyward in a non-stop one-hour burst because it was so engaging. Depending on each reader, it might be relatively hard to imagine or visualize some of the dogfight and flight sequences or movements, and this is where the interior illustrations of the DDF ship's design, Krells, and Turning Methods by Ben McSweeney came in as a support. If you are reading this for the first time and find it difficult to realize some of the scenes in your mind, I strongly suggest flipping the pages to check the interior artwork.

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (14)

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (15)

Overall, I did have a wonderful time reading Skyward. It is not a favorite of mine as it lacked that massive emotional impact and explosive vivid scenes often found in Sanderson’s Cosmere novels. But I think Skyward is the kind of fun and adventurous YA sci-fi novel that can be read and highly enjoyed by both YA and adult readers. It is also suitable for readers who want to get into reading sci-fi for the first time. I always recommend Mistborn Trilogy as a hybrid adult fantasy series by Brandon Sanderson to both YA and adult fantasy readers, and I think a similar type of recommendation can be given to Skyward. I heard worrying things about the sequels, especially Cytonic, and I will keep my fingers crossed I will have a better reading experience of the rest of the series. I look forward to reading the sequel, Starsight, this month.

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Claudia Lomelí

Author8 books81.4k followers

January 7, 2020

4.5 stars

    2019 cover-love hilarious-humor

Bradley

Author5 books4,484 followers

November 25, 2018

Okay, it's official, folks. Brandon Sanderson is a god.

He's not just a go-to guy for all things fantasy. I've read a few of his Cosmere SF stores but this is the first outright SF novel I've read from him and OMG he slams it out of the park. Or sky. :)

Let's put it this way. You remember how Armada should have been the glorious Last Starfighter? Let's just ignore that for a moment.

THIS is the quintessential Top Gun meets the Last Starfighter, complete with a girl pilot with a huge chip on her shoulder, a lot of growth to be had, a mysterious AI starship she's caring for while undergoing training, and KILLER dogfights.

Did I cry a little as the cadets started dying or being pulled from the classes by freaked out parents? Yes. Did I feel the urgency and the hopelessness and the absolute need for pilots at all costs? Yes.

Did I have an INSANE amount of fun reading this?

YES.

Hell, I'm already devoted to this man's fantasy.

I just never guessed, although I SHOULD HAVE GUESSED, that Sanderson's Law was always a great means to bring understandable science-like laws to the field of Fantasy, but COME ON... a man who does this already has a FANTASTIC grip on SF. The story is fantastic, fun, and jammed with action, pathos, and a LOT of cute. :)

I can't wait for the next one! It's a great blow out and an even better set-up! :)

    2018-shelf sci-fi space-opera

oyshik

257 reviews867 followers

February 3, 2021

Skyward(Skyward,#1) by Brandon Sanderson
Skyward (Skyward, #1) (19)
Skyward was brilliantly written. And it had a compelling, captivating, and engaging storyline. Loved those unique characters. It was a fine read and it wasn’t a bad one by any means, but compared to the other books I’ve read from Brandon Sanderson, it’s by far my least favorite.

And the warrior’s way was not to run from failure, but to own up to it and do better.

Not bad.

NickReads

461 reviews1,176 followers

Want to read

April 6, 2020

I want to read a Brandon Sanderson book but they all seem overwhelming

Sean Barrs

1,122 reviews46.8k followers

March 10, 2022

Skyward is the freshest and most exciting science-fiction novel I have read in a very long time.

There is a great deal to talk about here because there is a great deal Brandon Sanderson does right. Well, he does everything right really. I do not have a single criticism. The plot is fantastic. The world building is totally excellent. And, as ever, Sanderson gives little away at the start. He slowly builds the layers through the plot and reveals how extensive this world is towards the end. The small little universe the characters have been occupying is part of a much greater expanse.

So, this felt like a beginning to a much larger story that has epic potential. Another reviewer called it a prelude, and I am inclined to agree. Sanderson is clever with his storytelling; he always has been. He likes to create illusions for his readers. He likes to make you imagine a world from a certain perspective and then reveal the truth of the situation as time goes on. His stories will never follow the linear path he makes you believe they are going down. And, for me, that’s his greatest strength as a writer.

“People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real. If that's the case, what does it matter whether people in them actually lived?”

I love this quote. And this story is full of little gems like this one. Central to it all is a remarkably strong young woman who drove the story forward with her unmatched desire to become a pilot, protect her home and see the stars. She is funny and she is weirdly cool. She grew up on stories of epic adventure and has imagined herself the heroine of her own quest, a quest to prove that her father was not a coward and a traitor. She does not want to be branded with such a false legacy.

And, as I said before, the story would never quite go in the direction is appeared to be going in. The reveals behind her legacy are feats of storytelling prowess. The seemingly ordinary (yet still engaging) novel about fighter pilots develops into an imaginative and mystical exploration of the human soul and its connection with space and the stars. Although technically young adult, Sanderson captures the stark beauty of human ingenuity here and its will to overcome the most insane odds through nothing but perseverance. There are many adult themes here and some of them quite dark too.

“You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”

It would be remiss of here not to mention the star-ship, M-bot, the ship with a soul and an obsession with mushrooms. And this idea reminded me of the ships from Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders series, the idea that a vessel can bond with its owner and together they can achieve extraordinary feats through magic and a telepathic connection. Sanderson only touches on this here as the story comes to a close, though no doubt this will be explored further in the sequels.

Thank you, Brandon Sanderson, for your persistently excellent storytelling. I can genuinely say that it has been over a year since I enjoyed reading a book this much.

Skyward is remarkable in every way, it is so special, and it is easily my favourite Sanderson novel I have read so far.

Skyward Series
1. Skyward - 4.5 stars
2. Starsight - 4.0 stars
3. Cytonic - 3.5 stars

________________________________

You can connect with me on social media via My Linktree.
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    5-star-reads reviewed-for-fantasy-book-review sci-fi

Caz (littlebookowl)

303 reviews39.7k followers

January 2, 2019

What a ride! It took me a little while to get into this, but once I did I couldn't put it down.

Full review to come!

    owned

Sofia

234 reviews8,099 followers

November 18, 2021

Spensa could crash her starfighter into me and I would thank her.

Sanderson is a characterization expert. He has clearly spent a lot of time thinking about his characters. Not just what they look like or what their main personality traits are, but how they would react to every situation and how their past influenced how they grew up. He understands Spensa so well and it's evident in the little things. Spensa is a realistic, sympathetic character and I love her. Her behavior makes sense with the context of her past and what she has had to do to survive. She's brash and defensive and not trusting, but that was how she had to be growing up. She relishes freedom but is resigned to the fact that she'll never have it for long. Spensa, despite how hated she is, has a contagious spirit, passion, and dedication that I adore. I love how Spensa isn't so stubborn that she doesn't know when to give up. She knows her own weaknesses and she knows when a situation is hopeless.

This book is what YA fiction should be. The side characters aren't made of cardboard. They're memorable and wholesome. Skyward treats death like... death, which a lot of YA books don't. Death is permanent, it's not something every character can resurrect from. Loss is real here and feels real. The plot of this book isn't too complex, but it's the execution that makes it so good. It's addictive. I was never bored. It flew by so quickly. The action scenes were incredible and made me scream. Skyward exceeded all my expectations. There are a lot of questions left unanswered, so I need the sequel right now.

5 stars

    favorites science-fiction

Lia Carstairs

464 reviews2,701 followers

December 11, 2021

Who would've thought that a talking spaceship would be my favourite character???
Skyward (Skyward, #1) (25)

This book hit me right in the feels and I'm not even surprised because it's Sanderson and Sanderson always does this. His books make me feel so scudding alive and I'm always coming out of his books looking at the world differently?? Like for an author to be able to do that with every scudding one of his books is beyond impressive. Of course, Skyward was no different and tackled so many different themes and concepts. I loved it so much omg.

“People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real. If that's the case, what does it matter whether people in them actually lived?”

First of all picture this: Fighting jets soaring through the sky trying to shoot down enemy aliens called Krell.

How does that not sound cool??

On the planet Detritus, humans are pushed to the brink of extinction by the attacks of the enemy Krell. To fend off these attacks, fighter pilots are sent into the sky, eliminating as much of these aliens as they can lest they face death themselves. To be a pilot means to live a luxurious and honorable life

thats if you manage to stay alive at least and many are encouraged to enter into Flight Academy... except for Spensa of course.

Many years ago Spensa's father was considered a coward after having abandoned his mission in the middle of a Krell attack. Ever since that moment, Spensa and her family have been branded as a family of cowards and they're shunned by everyone. It's especially hard for Spensa as she wants to be fighter pilot and to get into pilot school she must pass the exams required. Unfortunately, everyone's so against her going there since she's a daughter of a coward, but Spensa won't let this stop her and discover the truth to prove her father's innocence. But what if the truth is not what Spensa expects...

“It has always seemed to me that a coward is a person who cares more about what people say than about what is right. Bravery isn't about what people call you, Spensa. It's about who you know yourself to be.”

I love how this book focuses on the idea of cowardice and bravery. Everyone is so scared to be branded as a coward of course, but especially Spensa because of the actions of her father. It even comes to being that if your ship is literally shot down and you're about to crash and scudding die, ejecting is the act of a coward and therefore you'll come back as a coward and forever be known as a coward?? Just wow. Sure, you'll have a hero's funeral if you don't eject and won't be called a coward but I mean... you'll be scudding dead. So many deaths that could've been avoided... all because the fear that society had instilled into pilots of being a coward if you eject from your scudding ship.
"My confidence was that of a person who knew. Nobody could ever again convince me I was a coward. It didn't matter what anyone said, anyone thought, or anyone claimed. I knew what I was."

This quote here is literally everything. It's human nature to care about what others say about you to the point where even you start to believe them. This moment meant so much like throughout the story Spensa cared so much about not being called a coward by others until she finally realized that the person who knows her best is Spensa herself. Screw all the others. This is a queen here.👑
"The soup tasted better than the blood of my enemies."

Spensa just speaks in the most dramatic way I love it so much. She has the best entrances ever *thinking about the meeting between Jerkface and Spensa* and the banter in this book is perfect. I loved the side characters so scudding much, the friendships were so sweet😭

SPENSA AND M-BOT IS GOLDEN. Their bond is so beautiful and just he's so sweet and funny omg. I need more M-Bot content in Starsight. Also Doomslug is so scudding cute.

“Sometimes, the answers we need don't match the questions we're asking. And sometimes, the coward makes fools of wiser men.”

I do think that something's wrong with me being the most emotional person ever because literally I was tearing up over the ending of this book EVEN THOUGH IT WASN'T SAD. My emotional heart smh. But seriously though, that last scene hit me so hard and the way I was just so scudding happy. I cannot express how much I love these characters like I shouldn't even be surprised at this point that Sanderson always creates the most amazing characters??
“When this is done, Jerkface, I will hold your tarnished and melted pin up as my trophy as your smoldering ship marks your pyre, and the final resting place of your crushed and broken corpse!"

The mixed reviews I've seen for Starsight concern me a little but hopefully I'll love it just as much as I loved Skyward. Sanderson, you have my trust.

_____

Pre-read Review:

I already know I will love this because it's Sanderson, how could I not???

it's like i just jinxed myself ahahahaha

Buddy read with angels minty & charmie and demons erin & mash!!!

    aliens all-time-fav brando-sando

jessica

2,577 reviews44.1k followers

April 21, 2019

unpopular opinion, but this story sadly didnt feel like sanderson to me. and that could be for a variety of reasons:

- ive only read two other books by him, so i might not know him as an author yet.
- this is my first time reading a YA/sci-fi book of his, so maybe im just not used to it.
- this story feels like plenty of other books i have read before, some of which do this type of story better.
and i think its the last point that is really bothering me. even with my limited experience with sandersons stories, i can tell that he has such an imagination and really excels at creating new and exciting worlds. but ‘skyward’ is honestly nothing that i havent read before. and for it to lack that originality and uniqueness i have come to expect from him, its leaving me a little disappointed.

there is no doubt this book is a dream for both sanderson and sci-fi fans. there are truly awesome elements to it, but i just couldnt help but feel a bit bored by its predictability. i still love sandersons adult fantasy books, so maybe this genre by him just isnt my favourite.

3 stars

Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽

1,880 reviews23k followers

November 23, 2021

$1.99 Kindle sale for this YA SF adventure by Brandon Sanderson, first book in the series. The third book is coming out this week. 🌟✨💫 It's a Star Wars training academy sort of story, set on a prison planet surrounded by alien guards.

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (28)

Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature:

Brandon Sanderson’s new young adult science fiction novel, Skyward, replaces his intricately detailed fantasy magical systems with equally detailed dogfights between one-person starship fighters of the humans living on the planet Detritus (it’s as bleak as it sounds) and the starships of the alien Krell. The Krell chased a fleet of human spaceships to Detritus decades ago and have pinned them down on the planet since, frequently bombarding the humans with attacks that threaten to wipe out the colony, where people primarily live underground for safety.

Spensa Nightshade’s father died years ago during a major battle against the Krell. Though other families of spaceship pilots are lauded by the colony, “Chaser” Nightshade was accused of being a coward, fleeing the Krell forces and being shot down and killed by his own flight in retribution, and as an example to others. That cowardice label has lasted through the nine years since his death, continuing to haunt his family and his daughter, Spensa. As a result, at age eighteen she’s a rebellious hothead with a huge chip on her shoulder, and a fiery determination to win a place to be trained as a starship pilot and prove herself as the bravest fighter, ever. Defiant isn’t just a description of the human’s military forces to Spensa; it’s deeply ingrained in her nature.

Unfortunately for Spensa, there are influential people who are equally determined to see that she does not get a chance to join the Defiant Defense Force’s flight school or graduate as a pilot, convinced that the “defect” in her father is also in the daughter. When she manages to land one of the few spots in the program ― barely, through a combination of hard study, stubbornness and luck ― her troubles aren’t over, by a long shot. Denied the right to live in the school’s dorms or even use the cafeteria, Spensa sets up house in a cave where during a previous excursion she had found a very old, damaged starfighter with (it turns out) a very quirky AI named M-Bot.

Spensa divides her time between her pilot training classes and trying her hand at secretly repairing the old Starfighter. But the Krell are gradually decimating the human starfighter forces, and Spensa and her classmates are thrown into action against the Krell far sooner than they are ready to handle it.

After a slightly weak beginning ― Spensa’s brash character and simmering anger got old for me, fast, though I had to admire her sheer determination and refusal to ever give up ― Skyward gains traction and briskly works its way up to an impressive finish. Most of the time in between is spent with training in the semi-military space pilot school for Spensa and her group of ten eighteen-year-old classmates, and with frequent individual spacecraft battles with the Krell aliens. If that sort of story sounds appealing, Skyward should be just the ticket. Though the main emphasis is on action, Skyward also includes some deeper insights into character, and has some excellent points to make about what truly constitutes bravery and cowardice.

A solid dose of humor is provided by an odd cave creature that Spensa adopts as a mascot of sorts, delightfully naming it Doomslug, and by the personable AI M-Bot.

“Not that I require affirmation of any sort, as my emotions are mere simulations … but you are listening to me, right?”

“I’m listening,” I said. “I’m just thinking.”

“That is good. I should not like to be maintained by one who lacks brain functions.”

The characters in Skyward are, for the most part, familiar types, but they’re still engaging, not to mention quite diverse in their internal and external makeups. Not just Spensa but several of her classmates grow and change significantly through their experiences. The plot is enjoyable, if somewhat predictable, but a few twists toward the end shed a surprising new light on several characters, as well as the ongoing wars with the Krell.

The ending of Skyward is open-ended, since this is the first book in Sanderson’s new SKYWARD series, but the main plot threads reach a reasonable stopping ― or at least pausing ― point, while leaving me anxious to see where the series goes next. And the sequel is almost here!

    coming-of-age military science-fiction

Steven Medina

220 reviews1,143 followers

March 2, 2020

Excelente libro. Muy recomendado.

Es la primera vez que leo algo del autor Brandon Sanderson y el resultado fue terminar plenamente satisfecho con cada página. Me decidí a leer Escuadrón, porque en varias reseñas se mencionaba que si me había gustado el Juego de Ender, este libro me iba a encantar. Y la verdad me encanto, pero es bueno aclarar que estos dos libros tienen grandes diferencias, como sus personajes, su filosofía, la rivalidad entre los escuadrones, etc. Sin embargo, recuerdo que cuando leí El Juego de Ender, uno de mis libros favoritos, lo que más me impresionó fueron los giros inesperados, las estrategias y las batallas. Quizás en esas características si coinciden ambos libros.

Ahora, ¿qué es lo mejor de Escuadrón? Diría que todo, pero al tener que elegir me inclinaría con las batallas. En cada batalla existe una gran tensión, y como lector, siempre tuve el presentimiento de que algo iba a salir mal y que todos morirían. Eso provocó que en cada batalla sintiera mucho el suspenso por lo que ocurriría.

Es un libro recomendado para todos los amantes de la ciencia ficción, para los que quieren enamorarse de esta hermosa actividad llamada leer, o para los que han sufrido un estancamiento y hace rato no leen.

Encontrarán en estas páginas mucha acción, aventura, peligros y muertes. Todo esto contado a través de un lenguaje sencillo y una narración excelente, que por medio de capítulos cortos los mantendrá interesados en todo momento por su continuación. Cuando acabas de leer un capítulo, de inmediato quieres leer uno más, luego otro y así sucesivamente hasta que sin darte cuenta llegas al final. No hay una pizca de aburrimiento en todo el libro. No solo hallaremos intriga y acción, sino un mundo muy bien ambientado; desde reproducciones de las batallas pasadas en hologramas o en 3D, hasta un simulador de batallas o una nave que habla. Eso, sin dejar de mencionar los vuelos, guerras, desintegración de escuadrones, comunicaciones por radio, etc. Se incluyen además ilustraciones de las naves y las maniobras usadas a lo largo del libro. Son tantos detalles los que hacen bueno este libro, que sin duda van a quedar cautivados con esta obra de Brandon Sanderson, se los aseguro.

No es necesario explicar sobre el argumento, porque en la sinopsis nos indica claramente de qué trata la historia. De lo que sí quiero comentar es de su personaje principal que es Spensa. Ella es una joven de 17 años, que aunque al principio me pareció pedante, más adelante me agrado mucho, porque descubrí que esa actitud, solo era una máscara que tenía para defenderse de los insultos y desprecios que sufría todo el tiempo. Spensa siempre fue juzgada por las acciones de su padre; pero aun así, y a pesar de todas las dificultades que aparecen en su camino para que no cumpla su sueño de ser piloto, tuvo el coraje para enfrentarse a todo el mundo, de persistir y de no doblegarse ni rendirse en ningún momento. Spensa es un gran ejemplo de superación.

Otro personaje que me llamó la atención fue Gali, porque me sentí identificado con él. En mi niñez y adolescencia siempre me fue bien en todas las materias, no sufrí en el estudio porque todo me pareció sencillo y aunque todos me veían como el nerd que era bueno en todo, internamente siempre sufrí una batalla mental al equivocarme, por ejemplo en un examen, porque me sentía frustrado y fracasado. Pienso que a veces es difícil reponernos de una mala decisión, cuando estamos acostumbrados a no tener dificultades en lo que hacemos. Es un miedo a equivocarnos, a sentir que hemos tomado el camino incorrecto. A Gali le pasó al ser piloto, a mí al trabajar en el mundo informático, eso no era para mí. Por ello me siento identificado con él. Y justamente hablando de Gali, está es la forma en que Spensa le da ánimos, haciéndole saber de sus virtudes:

“Gali, el problema no es que vayas a estar mal preparado para lo que elijas. El problema es el mismo que ha sido siempre: que, sencillamente, eres demasiado bueno en demasiadas cosas distintas.” —Spensa.

Más allá de Gali, encontraremos que los personajes de este libro son interesantes, tienen personalidades muy bien definidas y disfrutaremos mucho de sus participaciones, como el caso de M-Bot, un robot:

“Me recuerdas a alguien que he olvidado” —M-Bot.

Los personajes son un punto muy alto del libro.

En conclusión, finalizo completamente satisfecho con lo que he leído, ansioso por leer la segunda parte. En cuanto a la calificación nunca en mi cabeza se me ocurrió algo diferente a las cinco estrellas, va directo a mis favoritos. Probablemente, en el futuro lo relea para disfrutarlo de nuevo. Gran libro en general, que me anima a leer más de este autor.

    dystopia fantasy favorites

Robin (Bridge Four)

1,746 reviews1,571 followers

May 29, 2022

Kindle Daily Deal: 29May22 for 2.99 here Totally worth that for M-bot and Doomslug

This review was originally posted on Books of My Heart

“That music the water makes,” she said. “Isn’t it the most wonderful sound ever?”
“The most wonderful sound ever is the lamentations of my enemies, screaming my name toward the heavens with ragged, dying voices.”

Bless My Stars this was fantastic! You know how you are going along in your life thinking that most of the stuff you are reading is good, and it is, but then you read something and it makes everything else seem dull by comparison. Skyward (most Brandon Sanderson books actually) was like that for me.

Let me tell you that this book has absolutely no kissing in it, like none and I still LOVED it. Not liked, but thought if it has more romance it would be better, no I LOVED this book and thought that everything about it was perfect. Sure, I’m hoping long term we are warming up and there will be a romance but SCUD it, I’ll be okay if there isn’t one, you can *gasp* in amazement now.

So you probably want to know why this is in my TOP 3 books for 2018 at the moment.:

First there is the MC Spensa a.k.a. spin. She is just this wonderfully fun character so full of anger, bravado and temper. Plus she has a great imagination and I love every single time that she tells someone off, it is hilarious and slightly barbaric. She even gets a doomslug for her mascot and finds and incredibly funny talking ship along the way.

“Is my father why I’m such a mess of anger, bravado, and temper? Is the fact that they call him a coward the reason I walk around with my sword in hand, screaming that I’ll make a pile of everyone’s skulls, then stand on that to help me behead the people who were too tall for me to reach?”
Kimmalyn smiled fondly.
“Bless my stars?” I asked her.
“Every single one of them, Spensa. Every single bouncing star.”

Second is the mystery of this world. Why are the humans even fighting the Krell, how come the Krell never field more than 100 ships, what is the truth behind the death of Spensa’s father, what is the history of these people and how they came to this planet, where did M-bot come from etc, etc. Sanderson always does a great job of surprising me and this book had some big surprises in it.

Third is the side characters. Spensa’s flight school classmates make up a wide blend of different characters and it is so much fun to watch them go from a disjointed collection of kids to a group of friends and team mates. Alas this is a dangerous place and not all the kids are going to make it to graduation. The danger is real and I felt every second of the suspense in each battle wondering who wouldn’t be coming back. Still I loved getting to know all of them and each brought something special to the story.

Fourth is M-bot, I know I mentioned him above (talking ship) but I think that I highlighted almost everything M-bot said in this book. He was hilarious and brought some much-needed comic relief to the story. Truly my favorite side character in the story.

"You have large twin destructor emitters on each wing, along with a light-lance turret underneath. That’s as much firepower as our larger ships. You’re a warship.”
“Clearly not,” M-Bot said. “I’m here to categorize fungi. Didn’t you listen to my last orders? I am not supposed to get into fights.”
“Then why do you have guns?”
“For shooting large and dangerous beasts who might be threatening my fungus specimens,” M-Bot said. “Obviously.”

And lastly was the Son of a Supernova ‘Jerkface’ himself. I love when your perceptions of someone can be changed over the course of a story. I pretty much hated him at the beginning but by the end I guess I could say that a ‘ship’ might be in my future for this series. I could definitely get on board a Spensa/Jerkface ship in the long run.

I haven’t read a lot of space opera’s but I think that this book has something in it for every fantasy lover and most readers. It was entertaining, emotional and had just about everything I want in a book (I mentioned the no kissing already). I have over 230+ highlights and can’t wait to reread it sometime in the near future, probably right before the next book comes out. So if you didn’t get that I’m very enthusiastic about this book let me say 3 final words. READ THIS NOW!!!

Audio Note - I have never been disappointed with a narrator for a Sanderson book and the streak still holds. Suzy Jackson was fantastic. She performed this book splendidly and I always knew who was talking. Her portrayal of Spensa was great and M-bot so funny. I haven’t listened to anything she narrated before but I’ll definitely look through her catalogue to see what else I might like. I listened at my normal 1.5x speed.

Listen to a clip:
https://soundcloud.com/orionbooks/sky...

    4-5-stars awesome-audio books-of-my-heart

April (Aprilius Maximus)

1,134 reviews6,474 followers

May 26, 2019

YOOOOO WTF THIS WAS SO GOOD??????????? It's EXACTLY the type of sci-fi i love with such badass-ery!!!!!!

ale (semi hiatus) ‧ ₊˚୨ ♡ ୧ ₊˚

443 reviews2,747 followers

December 30, 2021

5 f*cking. stars. are. not. enough.

“You get to choose who you are. Legacy, memories of the past, can serve us well. But we cannot let them define us. When heritage becomes a box instead of an inspiration, it has gone too far.”

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (33)

Here is my playlist for Skyward because yes.

And I also made a pinterest board, lmao.

I'll start by saying, as always, you know me well by now, that there are spoilers in my review. So if you haven't read it yet, don't go any further.

I read this book in Spanish and English, so, I was living the best of both worlds because I don't understand a lot of ships and it was hard for me to understand it in English along, so... you can say I read it twice, haha.

All my life I've dreamed of being a science fiction writer. It's the dream of a fourteen year old girl who grew up reading books and dreaming about them. There's something about the genre that has always captivated me and it's my favorite.

The thrill that Skyward gave me when I read it is something I longed for, the thrill of reading and not feeling the time, of asking for more even when I've finished the book. It's the kind of emotions that I wanna evoke on people.

The way that Sanderson told the story... That's it. That's the f*cking way I wanna tell my story (of course, it's not about aliens, but about superheroes, lol), because it grabs you and it's so f*cking magical and exciting. You feel the anxiety of Spensa, her struggle and all of her emotions...

You can tell for sure and bet that this is my favorite book of the year, one of my "marry you with paper rings" and one of my favorites ever.

The story is well written and perfectly narrated. I fell for most of the characters and I cried like a f*cking bitch. Yes, I was a f*cking mess of tears and snot.

I started disliking Jorgen, but I ended up loving him and willing to give my life for him. So, here's the thing, Brandon: if you hurt Jorgen or dare to kill him, I'm gonna set the whole world on fire.

Same for Rodge, FM, Kimmalyn, Arturo, Nedd, M-Bot, Cobb and Spensa (even if I wanted to kick her sometimes, lmao).

I'm still not over Bim, Hurl and Morningtide, just know that...

M-BOT STOLE THE f*ckING SHOW. WE STAN A REALLY AMAZING IA WITH AN OBSESSION WITH MUSHROOMS AND GREAT INSULTS, LMAO.

I already know too that you will crush my feelings with Starsight, but guess what? I'm a masoch*st and I'm ready to cry, laugh and get mad. I'm ready to get excited and also anxious.

I had more ideas for my review JAJSKJDHKDJFDFH *laughs in Spanish* but I forgot them while I was sleeping aND THE f*ckING EXCITEMENT DOESN'T LET ME THINK RIGHT.

THANKS, SANDERSON, for getting me out of my slump. For being my first book of his, it was pretty cool and awesome.

It took me a while because, again, the reading slump was kicking me like a bitch.

previous review:
RTC!

no, you don't understand. i'm obsessed

sanderson, my therapist will hear about you

    action adventure aliens

Emma

117 reviews53.4k followers

August 27, 2022

2.5

    sci-fi series young-adult

Geek Furioso

99 reviews3,399 followers

June 19, 2019

Sanderson nunca defrauda. Por algún motivo, a pesar de conocer esta máxima y de abrazarla con todas mis fuerzas, siempre me sorprende cuando leo un libro más de Sanderson y resulta ser excelente.

Necesitaba leer algo como Escuadrón. Hacía mucho, muchísimo tiempo, que no devoraba un libro como he devorado Escuadrón. Últimamente había empezado a preocuparme por mi lento ritmo de lecturas, como no tenía ánimo para leer nada y cómo avanzaba despacio en todo aquello que me animaba a leer. Pero no ha sido así con Escuadrón. Me ha tenido pegado a las páginas. Lo he devorado en tres días, lo que para mí es casi un tiempo récord. Me ha recordado lo mucho que adoro leer.

Estaba casi esperando lo que habían anunciado que sería este libro (Top Gun para adolescentes y en el espacio) y me he encontrado con un libro que habla con muchísima amargura sobre los horrores de la guerra y la pérdida de amigos. Sobre la cultura militarista y sobre cómo los actos de nuestros padres y ancestros no deben definir los nuestros. Sanderson borda, como casi siempre, sus personajes secundarios, llena el libro de momentos divertidos y de pequeños momentos de relajación y camaradería, y eso ha hecho que la pérdida al verlos estallar y morir en el aire en pleno combate sea incluso más real y dolorosa. Me ha sorprendido lo trágico que era en ciertos momentos este libro, desgarrador pero nunca en exceso, manteniéndose en unos límites perfectamente medidos, haciendo que el peso de la muerte se sienta. No estoy acostumbrado a que se trate la muerte de esta forma en un libro para adolescentes, y me ha gustado mucho.

No puedo esperar a la segunda parte. Larga vida al maestro.

    alien f*ck-yea-books military-fantasy

Samantha

455 reviews16.5k followers

June 4, 2019

This book took me forever to get through not because I actively disliked it, but because it failed to motivate me to keep reading. The characters all felt rather flat and for as long as the book was, I still didn’t feel that connections between characters were fleshed out. I found myself not caring. In typical Sanderson fashion, the ending was engaging, but not enough to raise the star rating significantly. The ending did hint that the future novels in the series may be more exciting, so I’d be willing to give later installments a go.

Reynita ★ The Night Reader ★

124 reviews1,101 followers

February 17, 2019

THE REVIEW IS POSTED

3,7 STARS


I was a warrior, as Gran-Gran had taught me. And the warrior's way was not to run from failure, but to own up to it and do better.

My Opinion Time!

The first time I saw this book, I was captivated by the cover. It was so amazing and it looked eerie and mysterious. After that I also was curious about the book itself because the plot sounded good and something that I would probably love and it's science fiction! one of my favorite genres and I also heard many great things about it, more reasons for me to read the book!

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (38)

This book was pretty good and it was also funny and action-packed. I love it so much when books manage to make me laugh and I laughed several times while reading this book, a good sign indeed. But I couldn't give it a solid 4 stars or more because while I liked the book, I didn't enjoy it immensely. Like the book could be tedious sometimes. I knew I was bored sometimes, but I kept reading it because the plot of the book was pretty fascinating, even though it could be tedious sometimes but that was not a hindrance for me to keep reading it. To be honest, I initially thought that I wouldn't continue with the series, but I changed my mind and I definitely will read the sequels! even though I didn't love this book, it was still a fun read.

The Plot

The plot was fascinating and I liked it. It was unique and the technology in the book was also cool as well. This book reminded me why I love science fiction very much. But while the plot was fascinating, I also found a problem about it. The pacing of the book was slow and while I didn't complain about it, it could be pretty boring. Things did happen, but still I still found myself quite bored by the book but the plot got better! thankfully. And I my curiosity increased and my heart pounded fast and I felt like I couldn't read it fast enough. The book was action-packed and it was also funny! I laughed and grinned and rolled my eyes several times. I'm so glad I didn't stop reading the book when I was confused in the beginning because the more I read it, the more I understood the story and the technology. I indeed had a pretty good time reading the book.

The Characters

OH MY GOD. I RELLY LOVE DOOMSLUG. She's so cute and Doomslug is a cute creature. She imitated voices and she's just so cute. Every time she spoke I was like " awwwww " damn, I really liked this creature. I should've talked about Spensa or the other characters first but I talked about Doomslug first, so that definitely said something.

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (39)

And M-Bot! he's also funny and weird. Most of the time, he was the reason I laughed. He's just so unique. And about Spensa, honestly I'm so conflicted every time I think about her. She was incredibly brave, determined and a fierce character. I adored her and I also loved how ambitious and determined she was but there were also times that I just disagreed with the way she way she thought and acted. She could be rude sometimes, but that made her more realistic, I guess. But still, there were times that I just didn't agree with her.

The friendship in this book was also sweet and heartwarming! I have friends in my real life and I also like them but the friendship in this book was like the other level of the friendship I have in my life. The friendship was heartwarming and strong and I really loved getting to know Spensa's friends! Spensa's really lucky to have them, I wish I had friends like them.

Skyward (Skyward, #1) (40)

Overall, I liked the book and I had a pretty good time reading it. The book was worth to read.

Thank you very much for reading and liking this review! I appreciate it so much and I hope you all have an amazing day. ❤

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••

I AM SO EXCITED TO READ THIS BOOK. Science fiction is one of my favorite genres and I've heard great things about this book and I honestly can't wait to meet M-bot and the synopsis also sounds soooo good. Please I'm begging you book do not disappoint me.

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? (No spoiler please. ☺️)

    2019-reads breath-in-breath-out fantasy-books

Alana

733 reviews1,406 followers

January 19, 2019

Rating: 4.5 stars

WOW! This was such an incredibly good book. I am super behind on the Brandon Sanderson train. So behind that this is the first book of his that I've ever read, it definitely will not be the last though. I fell in love with the plot, characters, and world building from the very first page and that almost never happens.

Skyward follows a young girl named Spensa (callsign: Spin), who desperately wants to follow in her father's footsteps and become a pilot. In Spensa's world, which takes place in the future, being a pilot is the ultimate honor. However, from the minute this story starts Spensa is constantly put down because her father was deemed a coward and shot down by his co-pilot after betraying his flight crew. Her determination to prove others wrong kept me engaged from the very first page and had me rooting so damn hard for her. Without a doubt Spensa is my favorite character that I read in 2018. She's smart, funny, competitive, so incredibly passionate, and most importantly doesn't take sh*t from anyone else. She is literally everything I want to be in a person.

At first I thought going through flight school might drag the storyline on more than necessary but I was so incredibly wrong. Spensa's fellows classmates all add so much more depth to the story. Their conversations, callsigns, and first few days in the co*ck pit lead to some pretty hilarious moments, and maybe, kinda, sort of a slow burn romance?!?! Which y'all know my heart and soul is READY for it. However, the real star of the story is M-Bot. If you read The Iluminae Files and loved AIDAN then move on over, because theres a new AI ship in town. M-Bot is the softest and sassiest starship I've ever encountered...not that there are many. And if you think I'm not going to love a freaking starship you're dead wrong.

While the story sounds all fun it games, it also bring up the conversation of what it means to be a coward A LOT. As Spensa continues her pilot training she's realizes that it's not as glorified of a position as she once believed it to be and faces some pretty scary encounters with the enemy ships, called the Krell. It also deals with Spensa digging into her father's past to try and figure out what exactly happened the day he died that made the planet deem him a coward. Which definitely kept me on the edge of my seat trying to guess what happened, and even when I thought I had it figure it out I was still blown away by the ending and in desperate need of the next book. While this book doesn't end on a massive cliffhanger there are still so many unanswered questions that a whole year just seems like a cruel punishment to have to wait.

Favorite Quotes


“People need stories, child. They bring us hope, and that hope is real. If that's the case, what does it matter whether people in them actually lived?”


“Sometimes, the answers we need don't match the questions we're asking." He looked up at me. "And sometimes, the coward makes fools of wiser men.”
“You have large twin destructor emitters on each wing, along with a light-lance turret underneath. That’s as much firepower as our larger ships. You’re a warship.”
“Clearly not,” M-Bot said. “I’m here to categorize fungi. Didn’t you listen to my last orders? I am not supposed to get into fights.”
“Then why do you have guns?”
“For shooting large and dangerous beasts who might be threatening my fungus specimens,” M-Bot said. “Obviously.”
“Then [Hurl] sat up, holding out her fist. "Not cowards. No backing down. Brave until the end, right Spin? A pact."
I met her fist with mine. "Brave to the end.”

All in all, I am so glad I was able to buddy read this book with a few of my closest friends here in the book community, Amanda (Classy x Book Reviews), Ashely (Thrifty Bibliophile), and Books in the Skye.If you're looking for a book with amazing world building, characters, and a plot that will keep you hooked for DAYS then don't pass this one up!

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