Series: Origin #1
Published by Tor Teen on October 30, 2018
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Science Fiction
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
With her latest novel The Darkest Star, Jennifer Armentrout pays another visit to the Luxens, the alien beings who are featured in her popular Lux series. When I first requested The Darkest Star, I actually had no idea that it was a spinoff of an existing series. I was just looking for a sci-fi read and thought the synopsis for this book sounded cool. Once I realized it followed another series, I was a little worried that I would be completely lost. Thankfully, however, Armentrout does a very nice job of providing enough background on the Luxens that I was able to jump right in and follow the story without issue.
When The Darkest Star opens, we learn that the story is set four years after a Luxen invasion has left many dead and many of the Earth’s cities in ruins. Not all of the Luxen were involved in the invasion, however, so some of them are now living right alongside the humans. That’s not to say that relations between the humans and Luxens are great though. While the two groups leave each other alone for the most part, there are definitely some humans who would rather have absolutely nothing to do with the Luxens. Armentrout creates a palpable tension in the air in most of the scenes featuring humans and Luxens because they ultimately don’t trust each other.
That mistrust is evident as soon as we meet the main character, 17 year old Evie Dasher, who is accompanying her best friend to a club which happens to be a known hangout for Luxens. Evie goes because she promised her friend, but she is definitely uneasy about it. Evie’s night then takes an unexpected turn when she meets and finds herself unexpectedly attracted to a gorgeous Luxen named Luc. Something seems familiar about him, but Evie has no idea why since she’s never met him before. She’s about to get to know him a lot better though…
One of the things I really liked about The Darkest Star is that it really starts off with a bang. Armentrout hooked me immediately by not only having her main character wander into this Luxen club, but she then adds to the tension and the danger by having law enforcement raid the club, which of course sends everyone in a frenzy trying to get away.
At the same time she’s hooking me with such an exciting opening, Armentrout also introduces me to Evie and Luc, two characters that I immediately liked and wanted to get to know better. Evie is a great protagonist. It was easy to feel sympathetic toward her right away because we learn that her father was killed in the invasion and her mother is always working so Evie is on her own more often than not. I also liked watching her feelings about the Luxens evolve as she gets to know Luc and some of his Luxen friends better.
Speaking of Luc, he’s the one who really steals the show. Like all Luxens, he’s unnaturally hot. Luc is also an arrogant smart ass. He really gets under Evie’s skin from the moment they meet and most of the time she can’t decide if she wants to punch him or kiss him. He’s endearing in a really obnoxious way. I often found myself laughing out loud at some of the words that would come out of his mouth. He’s also immediately super protective of Evie, so that gives him some bonus points to offset the obnoxiousness.
The Luxens are fascinating too. As I mentioned earlier, they are ridiculously hot. Unless they are trying to disguise themselves, they always stand out as the hottest, most flawless people in the room. They also have an interesting array of powers, including being able to open locked doors, melt guns, and read minds, to name a few. I also found myself sympathetic to the Luxens because of how they are viewed by so many humans. Even though this is science fiction, there are many parallels between how the Luxens are treated and how immigrants are sometimes treated.
Last but not least, I liked that this is one of those books that has a little something for everyone. It’s a great action-packed sci-fi story, but it’s also got a great mix of romance and family drama. Throw in a few dead bodies, another species of aliens, a heavy dose of danger, and you’ve got yourself one heck of an entertaining story!
The only real issue I had while reading was that I did wish I knew a little more about the Luxens and their powers. That’s totally on me though for not having read the earlier series first. Even without that information, I still thought it was a great start to a new series.
Whether you’re already a fan of the Luxens or you’re new to this world, The Darkest Star has a lot to offer. It has left me not only wanting the next book in this new series, but also eager to backtrack and read the earlier series to fill my need for more information on the Luxens. If you’re looking for a great sci-fi read, check out The Darkest Star.
When seventeen-year-old Evie Dasher is caught up in a raid at a notorious club known as one of the few places where humans and the surviving Luxen can mingle freely, she meets Luc, an unnaturally beautiful guy she initially assumes is a Luxen…but he is in fact something much more powerful. Her growing attraction for Luc will lead her deeper and deeper into a world she’d only heard about, a world where everything she thought she knew will be turned on its head…
#1 New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns to the universe of the Lux in this brand new series, featuring beloved characters both new and old.