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Rajdeep Paulus’ Soaring Through Stars

“I live in the in between. Between holding on and letting go. Hurt clings to me. Hope teases me. Home. I can’t explain it, but sometimes, I just want to go home.”

Talia and Jesse Vanderbilt have escaped a childhood full of abuse, and when they have a chance to put their father behind bars, setbacks arise from every direction. The siblings can’t help but consider the option to walk away and move on with their lives.

Then someone unexpected brings his own secrets, forcing the Vanderbilt teens to revisit their pasts and rethink their plans. Through it all, Lagan and Talia’s Post-it love story blossoms, while Jesse and Summer hit roadblocks.

From the award-winning author of Swimming Through Clouds and Seeing Through Stones comes a powerful story of freedom and belonging in this final book of the young adult trilogy that began with an invitation on a little Post-it note.


I had the privilege of reading the previous novels in this trilogy and I actually didn’t realize that a third one was coming out. The second one was good, but it definitely felt like the story wasn’t over. So I was thrilled when the author told me about the third book!

My thoughts:

What I liked

The dual pov of Talia and Jesse. For some people this can be irritating, but I appreciated being able to see events from both of their povs. And frankly, Jesse was so secretive that if I didn’t have his thoughts I wouldn’t know what he was up to.

The diversity. Again, I love that Talia and Jesse are Indian and South African. I love that their friends are equally diverse. And I’m even glad that one of the new secondary characters is fully South African. It allows you to learn about different cultures and different people.

The suspense. I don’t want to give it away, but in book two you think the danger is over, but it’s not completely over. You are definitely on your toes, just as much as Talia and Jesse are.

Father-son relationship. I will say that there isn’t much romance in this novel because Talia and Jesse have pretty much found their significant others in the previous books, thus the novel focuses more on other things. One of those things is Jesse finding a father figure. And I didn’t mind the lack of romance at all because Jesse needed that father figure and watching him discover that relationship had me flipping the pages just as much as if it were a romance novel.

Spiritually, the novel is like the others in the sense that it’s a bit vague and often refers to God as the gardener (for Talia) but I would say the theme is to trust that God will work it out.

What I didn’t like

Okay, this may be because I didn’t remember something accurately from the second novel, but I couldn’t understand why Jesse was doing everything he could to get a job and a place for him and Talia to live while Talia stayed home and journaled.

The other thing though, is that as much as Jesse needed a father figure, I would have liked to see him meet the Gardner as well. He had such a tough row to hoe that I wished he could learn to depend on someone other than people.

Romantic scale: 7

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It took me a couple chapters to get involved, but once I got into it, I read it quickly and when I wasn’t reading it I was thinking about it. I wouldn’t call it a “fun” series (due to the topic), but it is definitely worth reading.

** I received a copy of this book from the author. My opinion was not affected in any way.**

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