Overall I was looking forward to The Star Thief. Good sci-fi is hard to come by and apparently even harder to write. I was not impressed by this attempt at sci-fi or the inconsistent writing seen throughout the novel. The characters themselves also suffer from inconsistency, especially our main character Renna. She states that she never promises but proceeds to promise throughout the novel like she can't help herself. She also manages to utterly forget significant symbols within a day or two even when she specifically noted it when she saw it. Is this the character being senile or the author?
Renna overall is one of the biggest problems with this novel. She uses idiotic words like frakking (are we drilling for gas?) to, I suppose, "replace" curse words. I absolutely hate when authors do this. Our lovely main character also states the following:
"Gods, she hated working with other women. They were always so catty and competitive. Always so ready to stab you in the back if it meant getting ahead." p56
Sounds like she thinks ever woman is like HER.
"Men usually only stayed angry for one reason: injured pride." p103
I see the arrogant and sexist comments go across both genders.
"With a sigh, Renna followed Viktis from the ship. Good thing she'd washed her sexy underwear." p115
This aspect of Renna's personality and the moments she chooses to use it are all over the place. Not to mention that this aspect of Renna's character is in no way necessary and feels extremely forced by the author.
"He tasted exactly how she thought Finn would, like warmth and sweetness and strength." p226
Um, this tells me nothing. Do I need better taste buds?
In addition to Renna, a significant issue with this book was the worldbuilding. Well, worldbuilding was actually a big far ZERO. "Aliens" are mentioned along with very limited descriptions, but don't expect to understand this world. What is never explained even with limited depth: the planets, the governments, the alien species, the communication capabilities, the interactions between planets or between species, or the travel capabilities. ZERO. But don't worry, there are a ton of sci-fi words, probably ripped straight from Star Trek and Star Wars! BUT, still they are almost never explained and are rendered useless.
The extent of our alien descriptions:
"A tall alien with bright green hair and three eyes set in a triangle on her forehead studied her with interest. A Xestu." p159
All you need to know eh?
And we get cryptic comments about Earth:
"Blur had bought her a bottle of Scottish whiskey to celebrate." p180
We still have a Scotland and a Scotland with a whiskey business? But still no info as to how this is or what is going on on Earth--if it still is this
"The bad thing about space travel was how dirty it always made her feel--the recycled air, the metal coatings, the space particles." p100
Um, space particles? Space particles that make you feel dirty? WTF she is talking about?
I'm sure you've guessed by now that this is certainly a flawed book, which includes the plot. For instance, the big job at the beginning of the book makes no sense. There is no way that it works as a "test" for Renna if 1) they didn't know she had an implant capable of locating the child, 2) the location of the child in comparison to the equipment she was stealing is unknown and 3) no one knew whether she would even hear or see the child.