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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Stone in the Sky is set on various spaceships and space stations, which are presented with as much scientific realism as possible. The diverse cast of aliens is well conceived.
Individuals from very different backgrounds can work together and achieve goals that might be unreachable were they on their own. Deciding who you love is not always rational.
Positive Role Models
Tula Bane is an especially strong female protagonist. She survives by her wits on a space station but tries to play fairly by everyone with whom she trades goods and services. Although she doesn't think of herself as a leader, she can inspire others and make them see new ways of dealing with adversity.
Violence & Scariness
Stone in the Sky contains a few violent scenes, but they're generally understated and not particularly bloody. A battle between slavers, pirates, and captive humans results in many deaths. Supporting characters are shot and electrocuted.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Tula is attracted to Reza, a fellow Human, and they share some kind of romantic relationship, the physical details of which are obscured beyond hugging and kissing. But the individual who knows Tula best may be an alien, Tournour, and they share an odd but affecting devotion to each other.
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One or two instances of "hell."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Cecil Castellucci's Stone in the Sky is a sequel to Tin Star. It's an exciting, well-written coming-of-age science-fiction novel set on a space station and on a planet that's home to a wide mix of aliens. It features a compelling, complex female protagonist, as well as an intriguing supporting cast. There's some violence, including a fatal shooting and a deadly electrocution, but the scenes aren't graphic. There's no strong language or drug use. Minimal sexual content consists of mostly hugging and kissing, although it should be noted that one of the participants is a humanoid alien with antennae on his head.
Is It Any Good?
STONE IN THE SKY proves to be a satisfying follow-up to Tin Star, expanding the first book's scope and deepening the characterization of protagonist Tula Bane. The world building is well thought-out, and the mix of alien species provides plenty of conflict. Sometimes it seems a little convenient that, with an entire galaxy in which to wander, characters are able to reunite so easily. Most readers won't notice, though, as they'll be engrossed in the exciting plot and compelling character moments.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.