Sixteen-year-old Nina Kane should be worrying about her immortal soul, but she's too busy trying to actually survive. Her town's population has been decimated by soul-consuming demons, and souls are in short supply. Watching over her younger sister, Mellie, and scraping together food and money are all that matters. The two of them are a family. They gave up on their deadbeat mom a long time ago.
When Nina discovers that Mellie is keeping a secret that threatens their very existence, she'll do anything to protect her. Because in New Temperance, sins are prosecuted as crimes by the brutal Church and its army of black-robed exorcists. And Mellie's sin has put her in serious trouble.
To keep them both alive, Nina will need to trust Finn, a fugitive with deep green eyes who has already saved her life once and who might just be an exorcist. But what kind of exorcist wears a hoodie?
Wanted by the Church and hunted by dark forces, Nina knows she can't survive on her own. She needs Finn and his group of rogue friends just as much as they need her.
Rachel Vincent brings us something new and different with her latest YA series starter, The Stars Never Rise. Here we have a futuristic setting where the Church basically governs the US. Things couldn’t be more different, for the Church truly decides everything for you in life.
Nina and her sister Melanie have been on their own for what feels like forever. Their mother is a drug addict and is basically as neglectful as you can get, and their father passed away so long ago. They are basically on their own in a sense. Nina does everything she can to put food on the table and clothes on their back. And Nina truly does go to extreme lengths to keep her and sister living.
I admired Nina for the things she had to do. It wasn’t pretty but when the other option is to starve or even be put into Church custody due to having an unfit parent, well, it does seem like the better option.
Demons run amok outside the town walls, which is why no one ever crosses the barrier that protects the town. Then one day, Nina is attacked by a demon. Luckily an exorcist was nearby and was able to help her out, though, oddly enough, Nina held her own. And it’s then that Nina starts to learn a thing or two about things she never thought possible.
This was a very intriguing read! I loved all the secrets and suspense that surrounded Nina’s life. And seriously, these secrets are so unbelievable! In a good way that is! You never see them coming and then they even present new possible problems for Nina.
Nina meets a group of exorcists, who are basically teenagers like herself. Among them is Finn, who is the guy who rescued her. And naturally, sparks fly. But Finn has a secret (see even MORE secrets!). And it’s a big one! I still don’t quite “get it” in a sense, but I think we’re supposed to be confused at this point. I can’t say why, because of spoilers obviously.
When Nina learns that her sister’s life is in danger, she’s ready to do whatever it takes to save her. But Nina’s life is in even more danger, as the Church is using all the manpower possible to get her.
The Stars Never Rise was a pretty fast paced novel. I was reading through the pages as quickly as possible to see what the outcome of the major events would lead to and before I knew it, it was over! Gasp! Sometimes, “THE END” are the worst words ever! LOL! Needless to say this was one read that I did not want to put down at all.
The characters were just as awesome! Nina is an enjoyable heroine. I like that she doesn’t just blissfully believes the new information that gets thrown her way. She questions it, but still is able to truly realize it’s the truth. Finn was also incredible! And yes, swoon-worthy! Though I feel like we don’t get to know him as well. Due to the fast pacing of the novel, there wasn’t a whole lot of time for him and Nina to form those kinds of connections, but I think we’ll get that next time!
The Stars Never Rise is a delightfully surprising read that will sure to keep you gripping the spine and turning the pages as fast as you can to see the ultimate end…and then join the rest of us who are breathlessly waiting for the next book!
Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars