Review: Starswept by Mary Fan

When I first read this book, I’m not sure I’ll like it and thought I will get bored. But then, no. I was wrong because I enjoyed this book that even though I was busy (took me long enough to finish it), I still find my way to read it. Honestly, I’ve never read this kind of book before. Movie, yes. But not book.


Title: Starswept

Author: Mary Fan

Genre: Sci-fi, Fantasy

Published: 29 August 2017

Publisher: Snowy Wings Publishing

Disclaimer: Thank you to C.T. Callahan for providing me the copy in exchange for a review!

Some melodies reach across the stars.

“15-year-old violist Iris Lei considers herself lucky to attend Papilio. A sudden encounter with an Adryil boy upends her world. Iris longs to learn about him and his faraway realm, but after the authorities arrest him for trespassing, the only evidence she has of his existence is the mysterious alien device he slipped to her. Then, she discovers that her visions of him are real—by way of telepathy—and soon finds herself lost in the kind of impossible love she depicts in her music.But even as their bond deepens, Iris realizes that he’s hiding something from her—and it’s dangerous. Her quest for answers leads her past her sheltered world to a strange planet lightyears away, where she uncovers secrets about Earth’s alien allies that shatter everything she knows.”

—Edited synopsis from Goodreads


You come here looking for escape, but you keep going back.


I don’t know how to say this. Mary had put everything in such beautiful flow. I admit that I feel a bit slow at the beginning but maybe it was just me fighting my slump again. But then again, everything about it is so satisfying to me. The climax is so painful. It’s really breaking my heart.💔 Not to mention that it is also a freaking double pain! After one, I’m hurt by another again. Different people but same ways. I haven’t even recovered from the last heartbreak but then it’s changed to another heartbreak! Whyyyyy 😭 I could say this book makes me emotional and I love it even though it hurts my heart. Anyway, maybe this is unrelated but there’s so many eye contact between Iris and Dámiul. It makes me shy! 😳 But I love it.💫

I’m not gonna lie. I am attracted with how well and beautiful the writing is. Mary’s choice of words is truly brilliant! 😍 I know most of the words but I’ve never apply it, so it seems that it taught me in some ways on how to use it because I am still learning. Okay, I still can’t move on. I think I just fall in love with Mary’s writing. Maybe I’m overreacting, maybe I just don’t read much of SF/F to find more beautiful writing, but I’m still gonna say Mary’s writing have a special place in my heart.💗 It feels like Art. When Iris play the Butterfly’s Lament—the mournful piece of violin art—I can actually feel it, you know? I feel like I am in that situation or I was in that scene watching her. I maybe don’t understand Art and Musics but I can feel its touch through this soft heart of mine; which I can say is breaking. Yup, I am emotional that way…

Imagine all the stars in the galaxy in one pair of eyes, all the sureness of home in one pair of arms, all the heroics of a thousand epic tales in one noble heart. This is my love.

Iris is such a selfless person despite always thinking herself as selfish. I hate when she blamed herself of something that isn’t her fault just to make the situation better. Like when she blamed herself for Milo’s decision. I couldn’t find bad things she’d done throughout the story apart from being so stubborn just to help her friends in trouble. Iris is such a good and caring person.💝

Milo is Iris’s good friend who grew up with her in Papilio. There’s so much gentle affection between him and Iris and I like that. But at some point, he can be really selfish. All he can think is himself failing even though he’s on a higher rank than Iris. While Iris… she’s worried about not getting a patron but she’s the one who need to comfort Milo about getting promoted. It really frustrates me that he always *choose* to see the worst in everything.😤

Dámiul is the Adryil boy Iris encountered. I’m not sure how to say this but I somehow think that Damiul is intense. Not the fierce kind of intense but, I don’t know. The way he moves, his expressions, his gaze… it’s just… so deep. Everything about him is so mysterious. Maybe it’s just because he keeps a lot of secrets from Iris. But, he’s really something. I feel like everything about him means something really deep. I know I don’t make sense right now but I actually don’t have the words to describe him. If you guys read this book, you’ll understand what I’m trying to say 😂 Also, I’m not saying I like him because he have black hair but he have black hair so…. 🙃

Cara. This girl is definitely a kickass. She’s not an Adryil, just an Earthling like Iris but she sure have the vibe of a space girl—like Zenon the 21st Century Girl, the supernova girl? 🛸 LMAO. I don’t have to *try hard* imagining her in space suit hahaha. Anyways, Cara is a cold and mean person but she actually cares deep inside. She’s not evil, though. She’s good with Iris, but it’s just her attitude is making her look bad. She’s brave and loud and always ready to fight. Like I said, she’s a kickass.🤸🏻‍♀️

Mistress Ydaya/Soraï Ydaya. I definitely should put both of the Ydayas couple but I’ve grown fond of Mistress Ydaya more than her husband. To be honest, I kind of like her. She is that understanding and kind woman in a big house you see on TV. She would be one of my favorites here if she’s not a patron because patrons are dangerous. ‼️Since she’s Adryil, she can manipulate Earthlings. Except if she’s an Abolitionist, I will already love her.😁

Believe me, this book deserve to be known and appreciated. I’ve read this book two times to really appreciate the writing and the world-building of this story. It’s really worth it. 🖤

Want to read this book?

Amazon   |   Goodreads

6 thoughts on “Review: Starswept by Mary Fan

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