❰Ebook❯ ➣ An Accident of Stars Author Foz Meadows – Horse-zine.co.uk

An Accident of Stars explained An Accident of Stars, review An Accident of Stars, trailer An Accident of Stars, box office An Accident of Stars, analysis An Accident of Stars, An Accident of Stars adf4 Book I Of The Manifold Worlds From Hugo Nominated Author Foz MeadowsWhen Saffron Coulter Stumbles Through A Hole In Reality, She Finds Herself Trapped In Kena, A Magical Realm On The Brink Of Civil War There, Her Fate Becomes Intertwined With That Of Three Very Different Women Zech, The Fast Thinking Acolyte Of A Cunning, Powerful Exile Viya, The Spoiled, Runaway Consort Of The Empire Building Ruler, Vex Leoden And Gwen, An Earth Born Worldwalker Whose Greatest Regret Is Putting Leoden On The Throne But Leoden Has Allies, Too, Chief Among Them The Vex Mara Kadeja, A Dangerous Ex Priestess Who Shares His Dreams Of Conquest Pursued By Leoden And Aided By The Shavaktiin, A Secretive Order Of Storytellers And Mystics, The Rebels Flee To Veksh, A Neighboring Matriarchy Ruled By The Fearsome Council Of Queens Saffron Is Out Of Her World And Out Of Her Depth, But The Further She Travels, The She Finds Herself Bound To Her Friends With Ties Of Blood And Magic Can One Girl An Accidental Worldwalker Really Be The Key To Saving Kena Or Will She Just Die Trying File Under Fantasy

  • Paperback
  • 484 pages
  • An Accident of Stars
  • Foz Meadows
  • English
  • 08 January 2019
  • 9780857665850

About the Author: Foz Meadows

Foz Meadows is a genderqueer fantasy author with a pronounced weakness for Dragon Age, fanfic, webcomics and mornings that are so late as to technically constitute noons She currently lives in California.

10 thoughts on “An Accident of Stars

  1. says:

    Until the death of Google Reader, I was a regular subscriber to Foz Meadows blog, so I was absolutely delighted to have the chance to read her book I think I would have been absolutely captivated by Accident of Stars when I was younger Thematically, it s a coming of age story in a creative high fantasy world, and not only are the majority of protagonists teenagers, but the story is also blissfully devoid of love triangles, self image issues, and school related angst Sadly, I ve since become rather jaded The story is an homage to traditional high fantasy, but with a strongly feminist slant As an almost exact contrast to standard epic fantasy, almost all of the characters of importance protagonists, villains, and everything in between are female Pure gender swapping was observable in everything from the matriarchal societies to the female role as warrior to the fact that in this world, it s women who can t ask for directions because Women were gifted by Sahu with the knowledge of orientation admitting failure in that respect would open her up to mockery The message of the story, too, are equally blatant Possibly because I was so cognizant of Meadows role as social commentator, the feminism and seemed rather self conscious to me It s all fun, but felt so very self aware that it prevented me from really getting into the flow of the story Accident of Stars follows something of a good evil dichotomy of traditional epic fantasy Our usurping villains are apparently Evil Incorporated , even though we see very little of their dastardly plans, possibly because they re so much an afterthought to the meat of the tale At least one of the villains appears to be evil for the sake of evil the other has a motivation right out of an 1890s morality tale view spoiler Seriously, what is with all these women and their obsession with childbirth It s almost like they feel that a woman s life isn t complete without it, yeah hide spoiler

  2. says:

    An amazingly rich portal fantasy, both in terms of story and characters.The storyline is deceptively simple teen girl follows another traveller into a portal that leads to another world The other world is in the midst of political upheaval, and the main character, Saffron, gets drawn into this.What makes An Accident of Stars different is that, among other things, Saffron is not a Chosen One in the story She has no special skills that will turn her into a key player, and she s not running away from trouble at home She is an average girl from a happy home and while of course she has some distant longing for adventure, she also misses her family There are a range of wonderfully developed and diverse characters in the book, but what really stuck out for me was how very realistic and true to life they seemed For example, the book deals exceptionally well in acknowledging the discomfort Saffron has at the prospect of having to be taught by a young, and confidently attractive man Her experience as a young woman in her own world has included both unwanted and vulgar sexual advances, compounded by adult men in a position of power dismissing such behaviour as boys will be boys The stinging anger and feelings of helplessness Saffron feels, the opposed feelings of possible attraction and slight fear, the unconfident place of a teen just beginning to acknowledge and think about her bisexuality are right on point, and well integrated into her character.Another main character, Gwen, is equally well treated as a middle aged woman who is aromantic, yet still craves the intimacy of a loving relationship and acknowledges her enjoyment of sex separately from these The complete richness of the characters and the detail of their human ness is extraordinarily impressive.If the characters are impressively rich, the world building is equally so The various political and social structures that exist are well thought out and create a place that truly seems different from our own world, yet not implausible.The story itself does take a bit of time to ramp up, but once it does, there is no stopping it There is no question that I will read the sequel, A Tyranny of Queens, which apparently deals with the aftermath of Saffron s travels through the portal While there is no real cliffhanger to resolve, there is certainly of the story to tell.

  3. says:

    I keep hearing third hand that publishers all believe that portal fantasies don t sell, and yet when I talk to other readers, a vast percentage of those who like fantasy sigh and wish there were portal fantasies.As a kid I certainly loved them, except for the endings I hated the endings wherein the kids arrived back the day they left, like nothing had changed including their experiences shaping them and I loathed the utter betrayal of the memories being taken away for their own good Well, Foz Meadows takes that weasel ending on with guns blazing in this fantasy in which Saffron Coulter, a teenager bullied by creeps at high school, is rescued by an odd but interesting woman named Gwen When Saffron goes to find Gwen, she gets swept inadvertently through a portal into another world along with Gwen.I have to admit that once Saffron got to the other world, I found it hard going for a while There seemed to be no sense of wonder, instead, Gwen unloaded a massive data dump about the world onto Saffron in a way that was so fast, allowing no time for experience much less emotional reaction in story form, that it felt kind of like ticking All the Feminism Boxes Matriarchy, check all colors of skin equal or irrelevant, check polyamory, check gender variety in love, and women with sexual freedom, check, check, check.But about a quarter of the way through, Saffron has an experience that hit her, and me as reader, like lightning, and the story snapped into urgency From then on it never let up, as Saffron tries to deal with what happened to her, meets other teens Zech, the mottled reject between two cultures, and Viya, a spoiled, badly abused runaway queen as well as some tough old women who are still very much players.Getting justice for Viya, who was betrayed by the slimy king Leoden and his equally betraying favorite Kadeja, drives the rest of the plot, as we encounter magic, female fighters, wanderers whose dedication is to Story, magical beasts, cultural clashes, gods and goddesses.It s not perfect that beginning was hard going, at least for me Gwen s polyamory seemed tacked on as we don t ever experience her thinking about her partners much less being with them view spoiler though her feelings as a mother are beautifully delineated hide spoiler

  4. says:

    A modern Australian teenager follows a mysterious woman through a portal between worlds in this engaging fantasy with strong feminist elements as well as a racially and sexually diverse world where polyamory is the norm The story features a cast primarily of women, and of many different age groups and also shows much realistic outcomes of and reactions to violence than you see in most fantasy books.Saffron inadvertently becomes a worldwalker by following fellow worldwalker Gwen into her adopted world Unfortunately an early accidental separation and encounter with one of the antagonists results in horrible consequences for Saffron before she can even fully understands what s happening to her Saffron is rescued and finds herself in the country of Kena, but in a compound of a family of a neighboring country There she finds friends and help and a much bigger story than just a visitor from our world having an adventure.I really appreciated the world building, and a fantasy world that acknowledges menstruation and contraception is a welcome change, let alone actually acknowledging trauma and outcomes of bloody battle.However, I didn t love this There s a word mentioned in the book that has a reflection in the structure of the book zejhasa, meaning the braided path Once characters are introduced, they can become point of view characters soon after and the book follows whoever it needs to to tell the story There are parts where Saffron is an important character, others where Gwen or Zech are, but the book doesn t really even have a main character as such It s a braided path among many, many characters.How that ends up translating for me is that I just didn t care that much As well, early indications that stakes are really high serve as a warning not to get too attached to anyone, and when major characters eventually do suffer something horrible, it s a really bad sign that my reaction is oh, that s a shame rather than oh no.If I was grading on having all the things I want to see in an epic fantasy book, it d be a 5 However, the actual craft of the storytelling just threw out so much of that great work for me.

  5. says:

    There were many aspects I enjoyed about An Accident of Stars even though the story never developed to its fullest potential It s a fun, light read for those who like classic portal fantasies.The diverse cast of characters boasting some LGBT awesomeness were easily the best component of the novel I thoroughly enjoyed reading each POV which bounced around in almost an omniscient style at times and appreciated how well developed they all were Even during the slower moments, my interest in the characters kept me engaged.The book also impressed me with its creatively constructed clash of original cultures Primarily two very distinct peoples with clear customs, religions, and styles They were so interesting to read about that I wish all of the other world building elements had reached this level of development.Most of the settings and overall atmosphere creation were decent, but there were definitely a few elements that could ve been pushed further The author had the framework and creativity to present a completely original world, but seemed to choose the easy way out when it mattered the most The use of horses as mounts when there was already a substitute built into the story see cover image is a great example of what I mean I m not gonna lie, seeing the Roa on the cover was one of my main reasons for picking up the book, as I was hoping it was an indication that the story would contain a plethora of original flora and fauna The presence of horses and a few other blatantly our world elements dissolved the magic for me a bit It was on the cusp of being what I wanted so many times before pulling back that I can t help but feel it an opportunity wasted.Another element that fell shy of my expectations was the politics As I mentioned, Meadows did a great job setting up unique cultures and religions, and even set the stage right off the bat for an interesting government but then really didn t do anything with it for the rest of the book I was expecting something so much complex, but the focus was definitely on looking from the bottom up how everyone is affected than from the top down how to affect everyone else , so the plot came off as reactionary This may not bother some readers as much as it did me I ve just been immersing myself in fantasy novels abundant in political intrigue and complex plotlines lately that the straightforward non involvement of political movement really stuck out as a deficiency to me.My final thoughts are on the general pacing of the novel The first half of the book contained a lot of organizing, where it sort of felt like the plot stalled while key players were moved into position Generally speaking, I don t usually mind this as long as the characters and their dynamics are interesting, as was the case here What I ultimately object to is that if the book is going to build towards something, there d better be a payoff Unfortunately I don t think the juice was worth the squeeze in this instance The story didn t really do anything after all of that preparation that it couldn t have done by just jumping straight into the action In summation I didn t mind it while I was reading because the characters were bomb , but in hindsight I m not really happy with where the story went That is, until the very end So many interesting things were introduced within the last 5% of the book that I m actually excited to continue on Hopefully all the things on the cusp in this book will slam dunk in the next one.Overall, as my points emphasize, I think this could ve been something truly amazing, but in the end it was just a solid I liked it kind of book I have a positive attitude towards the author s writing and look forward to seeing if she ll develop her ideas to the next level in future books.Recommendations I d hand this to fantasy readers who love that classic portal fantasy storyline It gets bonus points for equally interesting and diverse LGBT characters who carry the story through some slower moments A fun read.Via The Obsessive Bookseller at www.NikiHawkes.com Other books you might like

  6. says:

    I received a copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.Take a look at the cover Do you like it That will tell you whether or not you ll like this book See how old school it looks How much like one of those pulpy fantasies from the 80 s How vaguely YA I am still wondering if this book is a re release, somehow, despite my research, because it reads so VERY MUCH like one of the old 80 s portal fantasies And to be honest, that s what attracted me to the book in the first place I like portal fantasies for all the reasons that anyone likes them it s a great what if, it s fun to put yourself in the chosen one position, it s fun to learn about a new world through the eyes of someone like yourself Unfortunately, I got impatient with this book in a hurry It really feels like it s channeling old Mercedes Lackey or Robin McKinley or Diane Duane And there s nothing inherently wrong with that, but the book took so much time over things that I ve read so many times before There were a couple of chapters of set up, showing that our heroine and reader stand in, Saffron, is a smart girl who deals with icky sexist boys all the time and is misunderstood and stressed Her guide into the new world is called Gwen, herself a world walker Gwen feels just like those older characters in the Valdemar books who think a lot and are sensible and mature By this, I mean that the character s thoughts give you backstory, they show tolerance and kindness, and there s no real way you can dislike this very nice person It s very clear that the author has put a lot of thought into her portal world There are at least 3 distinct cultures, all with their own garments, takes on gender roles, and value systems There s a very complicated political backstory that Saffron bumbles into But, sadly for a portal world fantasy, I had a hard time suspending my disbelief After heading into this strange new world, Saffron is wrapped up in a foreign garment to hide her schoolgirl clothes, mounted on a tauntaun like beast like on the cover and made to ride for miles and miles I have my doubts about riding such a critter for days at a time without having any idea how to direct one until she gets to a giant city, at which point she is expected to blend in with the locals despite being given no real preparation for anything, because Gwen will answer specific questions but doesn t think to actually educate this girl about this entirely foreign place, so that we the readers can experience just how different everything is without an explanation The pacing just felt off You re the author, why put your characters in a place where they have to ride for days to get anywhere but then not use that time to help your fish out of water character acclimate in any way It felt like the point of this book was to show how you could write a diverse, inclusive fantasy Saffron is gay and just figuring that out Most of the characters on this new world have dark skin, and of course very different cultures At least one society is matriarchal Polyamory is accepted and indeed required if you are a ruler And good for the author for deciding to deliberately be inclusive of all these things To me, though, it felt like while she was trying just a little too hard to subvert every trope she could, she didn t actually know what she wanted to DO with her world It was so noticeable to me that I didn t enjoy the book much, because most characters felt like deliberate author choices to be different than they felt like actual people I had a hard time feeling meaningful relationships between characters and had a hard time latching onto any character to care about because there just wasn t that much to care about, once you were past physical description At least that s how the book read for me, like a Very Special Episode of A Different World or something.I strongly agree with and want to support authors who are inclusive of different genders, races, and sexual preferences and cultures in science fiction I think it s hugely important and vital, especially for this genre which is supposed to be able to portray different worlds and a vast universe of possibilities This particular book was so much about making sure that it ticked all the boxes that it got in the way of making interesting characters or a compelling story I guess the lesson is that inclusivity should have been the beginning of this book, not the purpose of it.

  7. says:

    I m having a hard time putting stars on this book, or on my opinions of it The bottom line, however, is that I liked it I enjoyed myself And if people asked me if it was worth the time, then yes, I definitely think it is.Before I go on, this book comes with major tw for gore, violence, mutilation If descriptions of physical violence, wounds, blood, scars, etc are hard for you, proceed with caution.Now novel is full of women Seriously, massive amount of women characters Almost every single important character is a woman, which was super refreshing for me Reading AN ACCIDENT OF STARS in many ways felt like going back to old roots of epic fantasy, throne games, and etc but with a ton women And these women are also super duper queer for the most part Honestly, AN ACCIDENT OF STARS could have been downright yes amazing give me right now but there s a spark missing Something in the writing never quite hooked me I liked the story well enough I liked the characters well enough I liked the world well enough, too a LOT when it comes to Shavatkiin actually BUT It often felt like I could never get deeper than well enough I think part of the problem is that apart from two characters Viya and Zech , I never got the sense of big character arcs, nor did I really get such a good feel of who they were Like Saffron is still a teenage girl from Australia to my mind, with the main difference that she toughened up to physical harm They aren t flat characters they re nice to see interact on the page, between each other and the plot, but mostly I still can t really imagine them out of the plot, which is always a massive indicator of whether or not I got a good grasp on a character to me And since characters drive my reading tastes than plot, this is perhaps the biggest contributor to this story never taking off properly in my heart I have a few issues with the craft, too, one of which is Foz Meadows tendency to zoom out of a scene when plans are made information is revealed for Later Story Twists, but in general the writing here is great The descriptions, in particular, are quite evocative.I feel like I m saying a lot of bad things, but this is fundamentally a good book, and I ll certainly pick up the rest of the series It s kind of like lots of good things that I think could have been Even More Amazing, but the good things are still there On to the Aromantic repThis is the BEST PART OF THE BOOK haha I m only slightly kidding I started bracing myself for microaggressions or mishaps, and made it through unscathed on that front And that is so rare I might have missed something, of course, as different aro peeps are sensible to different things Gwen, for the record, is the aromantic character She is an older worldwalker from Earth, like Saffron in a polyamorous triad And this is one of the very rare aromantic character I know of that isn t also ace spectrum Despite being older, Gwen is not characterized as undesirable or cold Aromantics especially ace ones are often the ones no one wants to deal with, the bitter old people or the otherwise ostracized This isn t Gwen s case Gwen s polyamory is not presented as a way for her partners to get that sweet romance It s clearly established they accept her aromanticism and that it isn t a diminished form of love Nowhere did I feel like Gwen s aromanticism made her an insufficient partner Kena s culture of polyamory as standard works in favour of this quite a lot.Another major point is that most of the Important Relationships in this book are tied to friendship and family motherhood, specifically Romance is not the center, even though some of it does happen, so D This is essentially the kind of aromantic rep I like from non aromantic writers a solid character which doesn t fit stereotypes or reinforces harmful tropes.

  8. says:

    17 12 I had such high hopes for this one, but from the beginning I felt like the gender and sexual equality were shoved in my face as if the author felt it was necessary to prove that she was capable maybe that someone was capable of writing a sci fi fantasy that didn t demean women by making them all TSTL or turning them all into Madonnas or whores Unfortunately, this was just the opposite extreme of books with the aforementioned crappy female characters, which didn t make it much of a success for me Sure, I didn t hate all the characters, or the author for making them so terrible, but being beaten over the head with themes as evidence that sci fi fantasy can include smart, tough, courageous women who can have loving relationships with whoever they choose wasn t that much fun I haven t read that much sci fi, so I haven t had to suffer through years of rubbish female characters, but what I want from contemporary sci fis is women capably doing everything their male counterparts do There doesn t need to be any sort of I told you I could do it just as good as you feeling to the book or of putting the men in their place Forcing the all encompassing inclusivity on me just left a sour taste in my mouth I will continue searching for a naturally inclusive sci fi fantasy.

  9. says:

    This gets five stars for sheer enjoyment Wish fulfilment for every person who has ever read a portal fantasy and questioned how a person would adapt so quickly to medieval standards of living A wonderful example of how to create societies, for that matter, that don t simply recreate a medieval world Tons of fun for me

  10. says:

    Galley provided by publisherRep wlw mcsDNF 23%Honestly, watching paint dry would be interesting than this book Probably, it was just one of those that wasn t for me There was nothing about it that I thought was bad per se, but I just didn t connect to any of the characters and the writing bored me.I was actually bored by it from the first page, which is a shame because I was really looking forward to this one There s portals between worlds, and magic, and a diverse cast both racially and sexually , but I just couldn t get past the fact that I was bored to death.But despite the issue I had with this, I would recommend it, on the off chance that someone finds it better than I do and because everyone needs women loving women in their life.

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