In this novel, Brandon Sanderson takes the adventure to the sky literally. Skyward is a thrilling story about a society fighting for its life with spaceships against alien lifeforms on a distant planet. By making the setting in the air on a distant planet, Sanderson puts himself in an unfamiliar situation yet he writes a novel that leaves you wanting more.
All Spensa ever wanted to do in her life was become a pilot. Even before her father was branded a coward and her family faced stigma daily. Now, at age 17, she plans to take the test to become a full-fledged pilot but she learns how unfair life is on Detritus.
Detritus is an alien planet habited by the remnants of a crew ship that left Earth about 70 years ago. It is constantly under attack from an alien life form known as Krell. They attack with spaceships hoping to blow up the weapon’s facility as well as the base. The Defiant Defense Force (DDF) is responsible for fighting off the attacks and recruiting people to keep spaceships in the air.
For Spensa, her goal is to prove her father’s innocence. But that is difficult whenever people realize who her father is. Spensa is able to distract herself when she finds a talking spaceship that is damaged. But when life at the academy contradicts everything she has ever known and believed, Spensa has to choose how to go forward. For herself and everyone living on Detritus.
My favorite thing about a Brandon Sanderson novel is how different it is from his other work. His writing style changes to match the material of the novel flawlessly. And he still retains the mysterious element of his novels. I knew going in that there was going to be a big twist and I was not wrong but even then, I did not expect it.
Rarely you see a great novel about battles in the air. That is not something to catch in writing easily. Sanderson accomplishes this task by focusing on his strengths as well as setting everything up thus making it easy to follow. This reminded me a lot of Ender’s Game and at the same time doesn’t. That may be because of the theme of Ender’s game involving children as well as the big twist.
For fans of air and space battles, Skyward is definitely something you should check out. And fans of Sanderson also give it a read. He leaves his mark on the genre but also sticks true to his writing style. I really enjoyed this novel and can’t wait to read the rest of it!