Review: Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah

Review: Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah
Published by Flux on October 8th 2014
Pages: 336

After her little sister mysteriously vanishes, seventeen-year-old Claire Graham has a choice to make: stay snug in her little corner of Manhattan with her dropout boyfriend, or go back to Ohio to face the hometown tragedy she's been dying to leave behind.

But the memories of that night still haunt her in the city, and as hard as she tries to forget what her psychiatrist calls her "delusions," Claire can't seem to escape the wolf's eyes or the blood-speckled snow. Delusion or reality, Claire knows she has to hold true to the most important promise she's ever made: to keep Ella safe. She must return to her sleepy hometown in order to find Ella and keep her hallucinations at bay before they strike again. But time is quickly running out, and as Ella's trail grows fainter, the wolves are becoming startlingly real.

Now Claire must deal with her attraction to Grant, the soft-spoken boy from her past that may hold the secret to solving her sister's disappearance, while following the clues that Ella left for only her to find. Through a series of cryptic diary entries, Claire must unlock the keys to Ella's past—and her own—in order to stop another tragedy in the making, while realizing that not all things that are lost are meant to be found.


EDIT: Holly @ The Fox’s Hideaway found this post from the author. IT CONTAINS SPOILERS in relation to my spoiler post. HOWEVER, knowing that the theory I had (which made me feel that the story was genius) was confirmed, I am hugely upping my rating of this book. If you do read the book, please read the author’s post after you finish. I think you will realize and appreciate the significance of this book.


Seriously, this was me for a good hour after I finished this book. Then I developed a theory about the book, but it is riddled with spoilers, so I will save that for the end.

So, our main character is Claire. Claire has a sister named Ella, who she positively adores. Some stuff happens to Ella. Claire ends up in New York, where she ditches school on the regular to do drugs with her loser boyfriend. As per the synopsis (so I am not spoiling anything, you see), Claire goes back to her backwoods, messed up Ohio town of Amble.

There is very little I can say about this book without the spoiler factor. I’ll do my best. Also, if you haven’t already read it, skip the synopsis in general. I think it is best to go into this one without it. I was tempted not to post it, but that seemed silly.

  • I enjoyed the writing. I think Andrea Hannah definitely did a good job with it, and there were some great quotes, I even wrote one down (which I rarely, if ever, do) because I really related to it:

 “Most people seem itchy in their own body, like they can’t wait to go home and unzip their skin.”

  • I felt sorry for Claire. I mean, she just had issues. Sister is a mess, family ships her off to New York. It’s a bad scene. But then enter Grant, who is fabulous. Grant is a lovely character. More about him in the spoiler section, for those of you who’ve read this.
  • I was definitely intrigued throughout the book, I wanted to know what was going to happen. I was pretty spot-on with my guesses, but I was still intrigued. There were some points in the book that I didn’t feel were wholly necessary. A lot of the time in New York felt a bit like filler time. Yes, we knew Claire wasn’t doing well, but I don’t think we needed so much detail. And the emphasis on Claire’s friendship with Rae in the beginning of the story either should have had more significance, or less focus.
  • Obviously, the ending was…. unique. I can’t say a thing about it without spoilers. Sorry. I will say this: On one hand, if my theory about what this story is actually about is correct, it is pretty genius, albeit not completely satisfying. Otherwise, it’s just weird.
  • There were a few errors (like discrepancies in ages, and words missing here and there), which is kind of annoying in a finished copy, but it didn’t really bother me too much, especially once I cleared up that the age thing was just a mistake, and not something intrinsic to the story.

Spoiler Section! If you haven’t read the book and plan to, kindly divert your eyes. Thank you.

View Spoiler »

Bottom Line: See edit. 

So, what do you think about books that have endings that are… unusual? Have you had a book that had an ending that really threw you? 

Posted January 7, 2015 by Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight in Review / 12 Comments


12 responses to “Review: Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah

  1. I thought the way the author told the story was kind of brilliant. I thought she made this story so intriguing and unique and just holy hell, what was this book about? Also, your spoiler section got me thinking again, so I hopped on over to Twitter to discuss it some more. But like, I have a feeling we’re right on the purpose of this book. Otherwise, nothing of it makes sense to me. Great job writing a non-spoilery review! It was really hard to do that with this book. Haha.

    I can’t wait for more of Andrea’s books! She’s an author to watch out for. 🙂

  2. Hmm this does sound unique and interesting! I hate parts in books that are totally unnecessary, it just seems like a waste of time! The ending is unique? Uh oh… sounds a bit confusing or just plain strange. I’m glad you kind of liked this. Lovely review 🙂

    • It was very interesting for sure. It is best to go in not knowing what is happening, then wonder “what exactly did I just read?” and then go read the author’s post and feel like you really read something important!

  3. I am so glad I didn’t finish this one, talk about not a pay off (I did read the spoiler, and okay, that fits the story I guess but like you said, maybe there could’ve been an after chapter to clear some things up, the worst thing after finishing a book is wondering what the hell you just read, in the bad way). I don’t mind unreliable narrators, it makes things more fun, but to an extent. And you are way too nice to books (I would’ve been so annoyed for the errors, especially in a finished copy). Aha! Okay, the last one with an ending that was just huh? was Sleepless by Lou Morgan, really weird.

    • Ohh I didn’t know you DNFed this one! Well, apparently the theory WAS correct. I think it is an important message, but I think maybe an author’s note could have made things a lot clearer for readers. Not even an epilogue, just basically an explanation so we weren’t as confused! I am glad the author did post about it though, it made me feel a lot better about the book as a whole.

    • There has been confirmation of the spoiler, so I think in retrospect, it was a good book, because it was incredibly authentic. I just wish I had known a bit earlier, perhaps an author’s note would have sufficed.

  4. I HAVEN’T READ THIS but I don’t know if I will, so I’m tempted to read the spoiler but I have a feeling I probably won’t understand it either way. I’ll just leave it as “maybe I will read it” so blah.

    Awesome review Shannnnnon! The blurb doesn’t seem to interest me much, so I don’t know.

Leave a Reply