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Schoolcraft Connection

The Student News Site of Schoolcraft College

Schoolcraft Connection

The Student News Site of Schoolcraft College

Schoolcraft Connection

Superluminal dreams and nightmares

Exploring new worlds, space battles, aliens and an epic ship crew

“To Sleep in a Sea of Stars”
By Christopher Paolini
Genre: Science Fiction, 880 pages
Available in Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle, and Audiobook
First Published: Sep. 15, 2020

Rating: 4.4 of 5 Stars


“To Sleep in a Sea of Stars” is an action-packed science fiction novel written by Christopher Paolini and released in 2020.  The author is well-known for his hit fantasy series the Inheritance Cycle which began with Eragon. 

The story takes place more than two centuries in the future, centering around xenobiologist Kira Navárez. It begins as she and a team of researchers survey a moon named Adrasteia located in the Sigma Draconis system for its suitability as a new colony. While there, Navárez unexpectedly happens upon and bonds with an ancient, sentient alien nanotech bodysuit known as the Soft Blade, unknowingly kicking off a war with the Wranaui, an advanced alien species with a scent-based language, and from there the plot only gets more thrilling.

The book features an array of quirky, engaging, and flawed enough to feel real characters, especially notable is the crew of the starship known as the Wallfish, with whom Navárez travels and adventures for the majority of the story. They include the gruff and loyal Captain Falconi, prickly first mate Nielsen, mad genius Ship Mind Gregorovitch, quiet and blunt mechanic Hwa-jung, witty and courageous teenager Trig, the ship’s doctor Vishal, the former space marine Sparrow, ship cat Mr. Fuzzypants, and ship pig Runcible. 

The crew are at the heart of much of the action, whether that be searching for long-lost alien artifacts or battling the Wranaui’s flagship. They also appear in the book’s most light-hearted and humorous moments, such as explaining why there is a massive mural of Runcible on their ship or why there is a warrant out for their arrest on the colony Ruslan. 

Paolini put significant effort into the world-building (or galaxy-building, in this case) for this novel, filling in the setting with a fascinating and detailed history, paying particular attention to the scientific accuracy of how faster-than-light space travel and space battles would actually work, and adding fun and unique bits of culture to the society of these space-faring humans. Overall, this book deserves recognition for its engaging, suspenseful, and richly detailed writing. It’s a spectacular adventure from the first page to the last. With a rating of 4.4 stars Paolini’s first foray into the sci-fi genre is undoubtedly a successful one.

“To Sleep in a Sea of Stars” is currently being adapted as a television show, along with a prequel titled Fractal Noise that was released in May, 2023.

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Jolie Larsen, Staff Writer

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