Monday, November 12, 2012

Review: Defy The Stars by Stephanie Parent

Title: Defy the Stars
Author: Stephanie Parent
Publication Date: July 30th 2012
Publisher: Stephanie Parent
My rating: 3.5 stars
Julia Cape: A dedicated classical piano student just trying to get through her last semester of high school while waiting to hear from music conservatories.

Reed MacAllister: A slacker more likely to be found by the stoners’ tree than in class.

Julia and Reed might have graduated high school without ever speaking to each other…until, during a class discussion of Romeo and Juliet, Julia scoffs at the play’s theme of love at first sight, and Reed responds by arguing that feelings don’t always have to make sense. Julia tries to shake off Reed’s comment and forget about this boy who hangs with the stoner crowd—and who happens to have breathtaking blue eyes—but fate seems to bring the two together again and again. After they share an impulsive, passionate kiss, neither one can deny the chemistry between them. Yet as Julia gets closer to Reed, she also finds herself drawn into his dark world of drugs and violence. Then a horrific tragedy forces Julia’s and Reed’s families even farther apart…and Julia must decide whether she’s willing to give up everything for love.

I was never a fan of Romeo and Juliet but when it was said that this book is some sort of a retelling of the said famous romance novel I was curious as how the author will pull it off. Well, actually it was more like I wanted to see a different ending, something that isn't really tragic or well, stupid because I really resent the ending of the original novel. Thankfully, I think the author did a very good job in portraying the story of Reed and Julia as the modern Romeo and Juliet and although the ending wasn't exactly what I had hoped for it was I guess, the best that could have come for a retelling of a tragic love story. 

Julia and Reed comes from complete opposite world. The rich and the poor, the good and the bad, the responsible and the reckless. That isn't exactly a new setting to us but despite that it wasn't really hard to be swept and curious with the story of these two. Julia is a character that is easy to relate with and understand. Her emotions and feelings are very well voiced out making it even easier for us to understand her better. She did a lot of mistakes and wrong decisions but she's unmistakably a compassionate and strong person. 

Reed is a character I'm very torn with. Not that he isn't likable but he was a character that I can't seem to have a firm grasp at. I saw the good in him, the vulnerable side, the reasons behind the addiction, his genuine intentions and I understand him, I really did and I did grew to care for him. Yet, despite all that it seems that he keeps on slipping away as the story goes on. It was sad and disheartening but I feel like the author purposely wrote his character that way. 

The romance between the two was sweet and lovely. I love how the two met and how their feeling for each other developed, how they admitted it and how they fell into each other and didn't seem to care what people say about them. However, some part of me felt like it was lacking a bit of intensity, to completely convince the readers that they were indeed utterly, madly in love without words saying it. It might have made the ending even more compelling and powerful. 

Nonetheless, Defy the Stars is lovely and heartwarming read although it ended still pretty tragic (not as much as the original Romeo and Juliet though) but the ending, for some reason I find encouraging. I was actually satisfied with it and it showed what should have been the right choice for the ending of a tragic love story. 

Thank you YA Bound and Stephanie Parent for the review copy of this book.


  1. I loved this book! I'm yet to post my review but like you, I found the ending encouraging as more true to the current times as well. Great review!

  2. Romeo and Juliet killed me! I hate the way it ends too, Eunice. Still, I love verse novels, I just would be really afraid to pick this up knowing it was a re-telling of that tragic story. Wonderful review. :)

  3. I was never much of a fan of the ending of Romeo and Juliet either, too tragic for me! I'm glad the ending of this one isn't quite as tragic, though I still worry about it. I like those nice, all-around happy endings even though I know that's not really the way life always works:) Thanks for this fantastic review Eunice!

  4. I definitely don't enjoy Romeo and Juliet as much as I might onece have done, and I think a tragic ending here would hurt me more than that one did. ;P Reed sounds like a hard character to get a firm grip on. Brilliant review, E! :)

  5. I actually quite liked Romeo and Juliet, ending and all. :D I've come across this book a few times now and it sounds more promising with each visit. I'm glad you enjoyed it overall, Eunice! Great review. :)

  6. Oh I don't know if I could be able to deal with this book, I adored Romeo and Juliet, but couldn't deal with the ending, the ending of this one has me slightly intrigued though. I'm glad you enjoyed this on the whole Eunice. Wonderful review! :)

  7. I've been eyeing this book for awhile now, and I'm so glad I came across your review! I think that Julia sounds like a great main protagonist, since she is easy to relate to, but I'm not hooked to Reed, and I haven't even read the story yet. The romance sounds a bit mediocre, and I'm not EXCITED for it. I don't think I'll be picking this one up, but lovely review! Thanks for being honest. :)

  8. I'm glad you liked the ending to this book! Its so hard to find a good book that shows true chemistry. too bad this one is one. Wonderful review Eunice! Julia sounds like an intriguing heroine that I would like to meet.

  9. That is such an utterly lovely cover.. *faints* Fabulous review, Eunice! I read Romeo and Juliet a few years back in school and liked it okay, but I'm NOT a fan of R&J retellings. The romance in this book sounds very sweet and heartfelt though, so I might look out for it if I'm spared some time. :)


Hi guys! Thank you for dropping by and commenting on my posts! I'll be sure to drop by your blogs too!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...