Last Star Burning
By Caitlin Sangster
Simon Pulse, 2017. 396 pgs. Young Adult Fiction
Up until she was eight, Sev was a First, one of the privileged elite in The City. Then her mother was accused of actions so traitorous that she was imprisoned and Sev was reduced to a Fourth, the lowest class of people. She has tried to live quietly since then, but when she’s accused of a crime she didn’t commit, Sev runs from The City and into the dangerous world Outside. It seems everyone she meets has different stories and no straight answers. While trying to figure out who to trust, she realizes that not only is her life at risk, but also the lives of everyone she knows, and trusting the wrong person could have disastrous consequences.
One of the things I really liked about this book was the world building. The author’s use of language and names to suggest how the world (possibly our world?) has changed and evolved, all while maintaining Sev’s very limited perspective and knowledge of history, was believable and consistent. I had a few problems with pacing where some sections seemed to lag, or were repetitive, and there were some issues where the timeline didn’t feel consistent. That being said, I felt the characters had depth and I was really invested in Sev’s progress. The book ended with a cliff hanger and I need to know what happens next. I look forward to Sangster’s next book not only to continue the story, but also to see how she develops as a storyteller. I would recommend this to those who enjoy teen dystopias.