Every new Cecil Castellucci book is cause for celebration around here, and her latest, Tin Star — the first volume in a new young adult science fiction series — is no exception. Castellucci's got a gift for characters and dialog (this being part of her success in her extensive work in comics) and a stellar imagination. The story — researched in part through workshops with NASA for science fiction writers — is a tale of romance, escape and adventure on a remote space station where the charismatic leader of a colony ship is revealed for a monster.
The first five chapters of Tin Star are a free download (other formats here), so you can make up your own mind. But I know that my copy of Tin Star's going straight into my Christmas holiday reading pile.
On their way to start a new life, Tula and her family travel on the Prairie Rose, a colony ship headed to a planet in the outer reaches of the galaxy. All is going well until the ship makes a stop at a remote space station, the Yertina Feray, and the colonist's leader, Brother Blue, beats Tula within an inch of her life. An alien, Heckleck, saves her and teaches her the ways of life on the space station.
When three humans crash land onto the station, Tula's desire for escape becomes irresistible, and her desire for companionship becomes unavoidable. But just as Tula begins to concoct a plan to get off the space station and kill Brother Blue, everything goes awry, and suddenly romance is the farthest thing from her mind.