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Navigating the Stars by Maria V Snyder

(Left) UK Cover – Self Published – 1st December 2018

(Right) AUS Cover – Published by Harlequin Australia – 19th November 2018


Terra Cotta Warriors have been discovered on other planets in the Milky Way Galaxy. And Lyra Daniels’ parents are the archaeological Experts (yes with a capital E) on the Warriors and have dragged her to the various planets to study them despite the time dilation causing havoc with her social life.

When one of the many Warrior planets goes silent, and looters attack her research base, Lyra becomes involved in discovering why the Warriors were placed on these planets. And, more importantly, by who.


Ahh first of all I am a little biased because I have a soft spot for Maria’s work in general but I actually loved reading this book! It was a great start for a new series and is definitely in the Young Adult Sci-Fi genre. This was such an easy read and while it isn’t heavy in the scientific and physics information about space travel, you can tell Maria has done her research into it to make sure it’s accurate.

The plot revolves around Lyra (looove the name) and her parents/friends etc. Lyra’s parents are archaeologists, and are working on the discovery of terracotta warriors (yes, those ones) that have been discovered on different planets (uh, amazing!). The whole thing is told from Lyra’s perspective and you really feel as though you are in her brain, she is so snarky and quick-witted, her dialogue rolls out sharp and funny throughout so it is super easy to follow making this novel a pretty quick read (I’ve heard good things about the audiobook too).

While I know some readers will automatically discount this book due to its setting in space I very much urge you to just give it a go. Maria does not lay it on thick, the tech is not dumbed down but it isn’t ‘oh my god you need a degree in astrophysics’ to understand (although I personally just took Maria’s word for it) so I wouldn’t let the setting of this novel put you off. At its heart it is still a coming of age story about a 17 year old girl, living in a reality where her parents rule sternly and she is determined to live outside of the rules. Lyra, as a character is refreshing. She is honest and self-aware of her situation and that of others. While she gets herself into trouble, she does so with the best of intentions, knowing she is going to be grounded and I love her for it. She isn’t blinded by self-righteousness and she definitely doesn’t martyr herself. She does what she needs to do to get the job done and she needs her friends, her parents, her ship mates to do it. The camaraderie is perfect in my opinion, no conversation feels forced between any of the characters and I loved seeing them all develop together in a thoroughly enjoyable read.

I absolutely cannot wait to continue Lyra’s story.

Goodreads Rating: 4/5 Stars


30 something bookish crafter.

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