Wednesday, March 08, 2023

#BookReview: Stars and Smoke (Stars and Smoke #1) by Marie Lu

Synopsis: Meet Winter Young—rookie backup dancer turned global pop phenomenon. His star power has smashed records, selling out stadiums from LA to London. Now he’s bringing his swoon worthy assets to a whole new arena...

Infamous criminal tycoon Eli Morrison has just one weakness—his daughter, Penelope. And Penelope has just one wish for her nineteenth birthday—a private concert with Winter Young. When covert ops organization The Panacea Group approaches Winter with this once-in-a-lifetime chance to infiltrate Morrison’s inner circle, Winter must use his fame, cunning, and charisma to pull it off—only he won’t be on his own.

Posing as Winter’s bodyguard is the fiery Sydney Cossette, Panacea’s youngest spy. Sydney may be the only person alive impervious to Winter's charms, but as the mission brings them closer, she's forced to admit there's more to this A-lister than slick dance moves and a handsome face. Panacea's unlikeliest partners just might become its biggest heroes—and maybe even more—if they can survive each other first.

The Hating Game meets Mission: Impossible in Stars and Smoke, a smoldering new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu about a superstar tapped to become a secret agent and the reluctant young spy assigned to be his partner.


Rating: 1 Star
My Review: I have had a love-hate relationship with Marie Lu's titles since I read Legend.  I loved Warcross but then hated her other books. This one was along the same lines on why I hated Legend. Nothing really happens until past the middle of the book.  A story needs to have something to grip you and keep you reading. But sadly this one just didn't do that.  I was bored.  I wished that this would have been closer to the blurb that stated it was The Hating Game meets Mission Impossible.  Because this was not what I got. 


*One of Seventeen magazine's most anticipated YAs of 2023!*

“Sexy, funny, action-packed, full of killer characters ready to break your heart and look good doing it. Marie Lu always delivers.” ― 
Leigh Bardugo, #1 New York Times–bestselling author 

“At once thrilling and poignant . . . a brilliant, breathtaking ride that will leave you clamoring for the sequel.” ― 
Tahereh Mafi, #1 internationally bestselling author of Shatter Me 

“A nail-biting thriller and a breathless romance, a keen character study and a wildly entertaining international caper . . with characters so charming and wounded and well-crafted that you’ll want them to walk off the page.” ― 
Sabaa Tahir, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of the Ember in the Ashes series and National Book Award Winner All My Rage 

“A classic covert caper from one of YA’s brightest stars. If you ever wondered what would happen if a pop star joined 
Kingsman, this is the book for you.” ― Ally CarterNew York Times–bestselling author of Not If I Save You First

"Marie Lu has done it again with an unputdownable, gorgeously written spy caper that will have you rooting for the spies to just kiss already." ― 
Maurene Goo, acclaimed author of Somewhere Only We Know and Throwback

"A propulsive and thrilling joyride from start to finish . . . The dynamic romance will have your heart racing just as much as the mission itself. I haven't smiled through a mystery like this since 
Knives Out." ― Adam Silvera, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of They Both Die at the End

"To my mind, Marie Lu can do no wrong and this may be my favorite novel of hers. Stars and Smoke is thrilling and wonderfully romantic and so much more than that. There is wisdom and real emotional depth pulsing through these pages that’s as gripping as the plot itself." ― Nicola Yoon, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of The Sun Is Also a Star

The propulsive, high-stakes plot will hook any spy-novel fan." - Booklist

The fantasy of a larger-than-life pop idol hero is balanced by Winter’s heart and vulnerability, and there’s depth and a great partnership between Sydney’s edgy Kim Possible and Winter’s pop star James Bond, both in the field and off." - BCCB

A lively action adventure full of espionage, mystery, and starry-eyed glamour." - Publishers Weekly

About the Author

Marie Lu is the #1 New York Times–bestselling author of the Legend series, The Young Elites trilogy, the Warcross series. the Skyhunter series, Batman: Nightwalker, and The Kingdom of Back. She graduated from the University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry, where she worked as an artist. A full-time writer, she spends her spare hours reading, drawing, playing games, and getting stuck in traffic. She lives in the traffic-jam capital, Los Angeles, with her illustrator/author husband, Primo Gallanosa, and their son.

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 Disclaimer: "All opinions are 100% honest and my own."  Thanks to Goodreads and Amazon for the book cover, about the book, and author information. Buying via these links allows my site to get a % of the sale at no cost to you. 

FTC Guidelines: In accordance with FTC guidelines regarding endorsements and testimonials for bloggers, I would like my readers to know that many of the books I review are provided to me for free by the publisher or author of the book in exchange for an honest review. If am compensated for any reviews on this site I will state that post has been sponsored. 


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