Cover Image: Reclaim the Stars

Reclaim the Stars

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Member Reviews

This review is based on an advance reader copy of the book that I received through Netgalley. 

The idea of creating a collection of Latinx authors was so interesting to me and made me want to read it. Latin America has tons of stories that are waiting to be told and I anticipated to love this.

The mixture of fantasy, sci-fi, and history was lovely for certain stories. Oftentimes I could notice the history within the stories and the questions/commentaries that it made me think of and reflect on. Although the anthologies are wonderful, the controversies behind some of these authors made it difficult to enjoy the entire book. 

I still have my favorites from this book which I've highlighted to no end. The most standout of the stories was Reign of Diamonds by Anna-Marie Mclemore which involved fighting princesses in space. I could probably explain in more detail, but that would take the fun out of someone hopefully reading it and finding out for themselves.
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A very well done collection of stories!

Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for providing me with an arc for an honest review.
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Reclaim the Stars is a spectacular collection of short stories written by Latine authors, mostly from the diaspora. From sci-fi to fantasy, you will be able to find varied stories that will probably stick with you for a while.
For this review, I will be reviewing each story individually. As always, these ratings are mainly based on my enjoyment:

- Reign of Diamonds by Anna Marie McLemore (4 stars): A wonderful, tension-filled story featuring two princesses who face each other on the intergalactic battlefield to fight for their lives, and their love.

- Flecha by Daniel José Older (3.5 stars): A story of remembrance and longing for something that was lost forever.

- The First Day of Us by David Bowles (N/A)

- The Tin Man by Lilliam Rivera (3 stars): Being the only human left on Earth, a girl comes face to face with a bot that carried a message that would change her life forever.

- This is Our Manifesto by Mark Oshiro (4 stars): A story of revolution, we see how a group of prisoners revolts against the oppressive prison system in space.

- Creatures of Kings by Circe Moskowitz (5 stars): A wonderful fantasy debut, a girl who has always felt in between worlds and cannot die discovers a dark family secret. It was so atmospheric and I kinda need a full novel now because this world sounds so interesting!!!

- Eterno by J.C. Cervantes (3.75 stars): Urban fantasy is back with this story featuring an angel and a tale of forbidden love.

- White Water, Blue Ocean by Linda Raquel Nieves Pérez (5 stars): Another amazing debut featuring a story of intergenerational trauma and family curses with a dash of magic. It’s set in Puerto Rico and that filled me with joy, and it lowkey made me cry various times.

- Leyenda by Romina Garber (4 stars): Set in the same world as Lobizona, this is a tale of strength, feminism and not being afraid to go against the rules. Loved this character and her resilience to not give up, even if she had to go down a route that others wouldn’t consider.

- Color-coded by Maya Motayne (4 stars): Amazing world-building and a beautiful story of what we do with those things we inherit. The cliffhanger almost ended me. I need a full novel ASAP.

- Magical Offerings by Nina Moreno (4 stars): Swamp tree boyfriends and a lovely relationship between a grandpa and his granddaughter, this is a wonderful fantasy debut for contemporary author Nina Moreno!

- Rogue Enchantments by Isabel Ibañez: (N/A)

- Sumaiko y la Sirena by Vita Ayala: (5 stars): CULTURAL RESET this story was one of my favorites because it has mermaids on the eastern side of Puerto Rico, very close to the town I call home. Sumaiko and la Sirena won my heart and I will forever love them. I NEED A WHOLE SERIES!!!

- River People by Yamile Saied Mendez: (4 stars): Another one of my favorites, it talks about immigration, about what families leave behind when they move to another country, and how it affects them. It also talks about the importance of keeping ecosystems alive, as well as the magic that lives in the nature of our countries. I wanted to slap some sense into one of the characters, but thankfully I didn’t have to.

- Moonglow by Sara Faring: (N/A)

- Killing el Chivo by Claribel A. Ortega: (5 stars): An iconic story in which three sisters plan to take down a goat dictator who is destroying their island, inspired by the real-life events of the Trujillato in the Dominican Republic with Rafael Trujillo. Very sad but satisfactory ending, I would have punched that mf in the face if given the opportunity.

- Tame the Wicked Night by Zoraida Córdova: (5 stars): What a marvelous story to end this anthology. Zoraida always creates mythologies and magic systems that fascinate me, and this story with a gender-bent Hades and Persephone dynamic was not the exception. I need a full trilogy with a movie adaptation thanks.
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4.75/5 stars

OH my goodness. This collection of short stories is utterly breathtaking.

Goodreads synopsis:
Reclaim the Stars is a collection of bestselling and acclaimed YA authors that take the Latin American diaspora to places fantastical and out of this world. From princesses warring in space, to the all too-near devastation of climate change, to haunting ghost stories in Argentina, and mermaids off the coast of the Caribbean. This is science fiction and fantasy that breaks borders and realms, and proves that stories are truly universal.

Authors include Daniel José Older, Yamile Saied Méndez, Anna-Marie McLemore, Mark Oshiro, Romina Garber, David Bowles, Lilliam Rivera, Claribel Ortega, Isabel Ibañez, Sara Faring, Maya Motayne, Nina Moreno, Vita Ayala, J.C. Cervantes, Circe Moskowitz, Linda Nieves Pérez, and Zoraida Córdova.

As I said, I am astounded by how incredible these stories are. I’m currently taking a creative writing class and writing short stories myself, so I found myself reading critically on accident - and yet, I still fell head-over-heels for these stories, enveloped over and over again into tales of magic, empowerment, magical creatures, sacrifice, mythology, love and loss. I found every story surprising, engaging, and unique; I’ve never read anything like these stories, which I imagine can be at least partially credited to their purpose: to show the world a whole new side of magical tales in ways they’ve never been told before. And that’s beautiful. I’m so honored to have been able to experience these stories and to have learned more about what magic lies in other places on the globe.

*I received an e-arc of Reclaim the Stars from Wednesday Books and Netgalley; all opinions are my own. It was published February 15th, 2022.*

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It’s absolutely zero secret that I love anthologies and collections. The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo, My True Love Gave to Me by Stephanie Perkins, and Meet Cute by Jennifer L. Armentrout are some of my long-time favorites, and Reclaim the Stars has moved right up there into the ranks.

I sat down a few weeks ago with this RECLAIM THE STARS, and despite my busy work schedule and the hectic rush to get caught up on my TBR, it has taken up so much headspace between then and now. It’s hard to put my finger on what exactly made this a hit for me, but it’s safe to day there’s a lot going for this book. Not only were each of the stories beautifully written and compiled, but they were brought by well-loved authors who each brought something brilliant to the table.  Each story had a vibrant and distinct voice, and together they worked so well in this collection. There was so much love poured into this work, and it was evident in every page and story in this book. I’m beyond excited to see a collection like this published, with stories that take Latin American diaspora and turn them into something magical.

I’m absolutely not done with reading collections of stories like these, so here’s hoping to many, many more like this in the future!
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This anthology had a good group of stories. They were diverse and I loved that it was all science fiction or fantasy stories. I would definitely read longer or expanded versions of some of the stories. Overall it was a solid collection.
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This is a strong collection with diverse view points and experiences within the Latinx sci-fi/fantasy/magical realism genres. The writing is good, the variety of worlds and situations is interesting.with magical, star-crossed space princesses from rival houses, curses, post-apocalyptic timelines, giant stuffed bunnies, spaceships, and a very loyal goat there is sure to be a story to suit whatever you may be in the mood for.
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The anthology as a whole was just okay. There was a few standout stories, but overall I was kind of bored. I think it may have been better if there was a couple less stories, giving  a bit more space for some others to expand just a little.

I think the majority of readers will enjoy this and anthologies are always a good way to get a sample of an author’s writing before diving into a full length book. I recommend for YA SFF fans
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It was by accident that I learned of this short story collection. I was on Twitter and I came across a tweet posted by Circe Moskowitz, one of the contributors to this collection. Her tweet convinced me to read a book I had never heard of called Tender is the Flesh, a book I still think about. I started following her after I read the book and saw one of her tweets about this collection. I was lucky enough to get an advance copy and I can safely say I enjoyed every single story. 

Normally when I read short story collections, there is always one or two (or sometimes three or four) stories that just don’t do it for me. But in Reclaim the Stars, I enjoyed every one. All of them. All 17 stories. Each one is written from a Latin perspective, interchanging English, Spanish and Taino, which I loved. The descriptions of the different regions where each story takes place, aside from being in space, are rich in details, from the food to the clothing to the characteristics of each character.

Some of the stories had me in my feelings. I either cried tears of joy or sadness, raged or felt hopeful. There is a plethora of characters to choose from different backgrounds, genders, and sexual orientations. You know, like real life. But there is also a lot of magic, both literally and figuratively. These characters live and travel through space, can speak to the ocean and its creatures, or move between worlds. I can only imagine the young ones who will read these stories and imagine themselves in them. 

I can’t wait to read the finished edition so I can fall into these stories all over again.
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*Thank you to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press and Wednesday Books for providing me with this Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) in exchange for an honest review!*

Sum It Up: 
Reclaim the Stars: 17 Tales Across Realms and Space is a curated collection of sci-fi and fantasy short stories that explore the Latinx diaspora in this world and the next. This book is divided into categories including “To the Stars,” “The Magical Now” and “Other Times, Other Realms” creating an immersive and tonal atmosphere for the reader to slip into as they enjoy the unique contributions of various POC voices. 

Who Should Read This: 
I would recommend this book for anyone in a reading slump that’s looking to get back into fantasy without committing to an entire book or series. This anthology allows for readers to sample and enjoy different authors and story styles while only occupying your attention for 5-10 pages. It was very easy to pick this up, read a few stories, and feel comfortable putting it down knowing I could return at a later time without feeling lost. 

My Favorite Stories: 
Most of the stories were just okay, but there were a few stand-out moments that really made me say “wow.” I really enjoyed “Creatures of Kings,” a story about a young girl’s relationship with Death, which reminded me a lot of Pan’s Labyrinth and did an excellent job of exploring complex worlds within worlds. Another story, “This is Our Manifesto” gave me big 1984 vibes with an excellent opening line and some really insightful commentary on the prison industrial complex. Would highly recommend this story if you're looking for something dystopian on a smaller, more digestible scale. 

Overall, I rated Reclaim the Stars 4 stars for the variety in the stories and the formatting and style of the collection as a whole. While some of the stories failed to catch my attention or lacked detail, the stories that stood out really carried the experience for me.
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Reclaim the Starts is a whimsical and diverse anthology filled with adventure, magic, love, and family. 

It’s composed of seventeen short stories written by Latinx YA authors, who transcend the realm of time and space. Every story is wildly different, and the genres span between fantasy, sci-fi, and dystopian. It’s a great book for when you need a quick read! I particularly loved the diversity and different lore; it felt as though I was reading a dark fairytale. Not to mention the cover is beautiful!!

I highly recommend it if you love magical realism and folklore! Here are just some of my favorite short stories from the book:

•Reign of Diamonds by Anna-Marie Mclemore is about two princesses who must fight to the death to satisfy a peace treaty between their worlds. 

•Creatures of Kings by Circe Moskowitz. What happens when a God of death and a girl of flesh fall in love?

•Eterno by J.C. Cervantes explores destiny and who we’re supposed to be, rather than who our family wants us to be.  

•Tame the Wicked Night by Zoraida Cordova is a story about curses and love.
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Thank you to Wednesday Books for this advanced copy in exchange for an honest review. 

I had really high hopes for this one. I love so many authors that were featured in this anthology. However, this one fell a little flat for me. It started out great and I loved the first few stories that were more sci-fi and dystopian like "Reign of Diamonds" by Anna-Marie McLemore about two princesas (who secretly love each other) having to fight to the death for control of the galaxy. Then there was "Flecha" by Daniel Jose Older about going back to a planet you once loved only to find it destroyed by climate change and 'The First Day of Us" by David Bowles about the start of polyamorous relationship on a space station. And of course "The Tin Man' by Lilliam Rivera about a dystopian world ravaged by sickness and how to survive alone. 

Ok, so it's very clear that I liked the stories in the first section "To the Stars" the best. After that the stories were just ok, and I wanted more from them. More of the adventure in the first section and less of what was happening in the next two. This is of course just my opinion, and like I said I had really high expectations for this collection, so that could be part of why I feel like the rest of the stories fell flat. I also feel like the stories in the first section were a little shorter so maybe that's why I enjoyed them more. The ones in the other sections just felt a little long for short stories and they seemed to drag. Overall, this is still a decent book and explores themes in the Latinx diaspora very well.
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This was so beautiful with so many voices of the Latin diaspora reflected in these fantastical stories. Two of the strongest stories I read were from debut writers Linda and Circe Moskowitz. Removed one star for the inclusion of anti-indigenous writers, Isabel Ibanez, David Bowles and Sara Faring ( I did not read those stories)
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This bold and mystical short story collection, showcasing voices from the Latinx diaspora through the lens of speculative fiction (á la A Phoenix First Must Burn) made me so thankful for stories and magic. The atmosphere was impeccable. I so appreciated the broad range of voices in this story; there were feminist stories and love stories and tales of standing up for what is right. Not only was it diverse in voices, but it was sprawling in scope, touching on magical realms and unique ideas while also interweaving issues from everyday teenage life. It was such a unique collection, and with many of the stories, I found myself spellbound, my spirits lifted as I absorbed these much-needed messages and enchanting backdrops. A few stand-outs for me were Leyenda by Romina Garber—a true picture of strong females in YA that we need so much more of—Color-Coded by Maya Motayne—a wholesome story about the transition between child and adolescent, with a very creative quirk—and Tame the Wicked Night by Zoraida Cordova—a riveting story that gave gender-flipped Beauty and the Beast vibes. As for every anthology, there were a few stories that I enjoyed less, but overall I was so happy with the execution of this wonderful idea. We can never have enough of these stories and voices in YA, and I so appreciate the people who promote them.
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I love anthologies because each story is a little snapshot of a new world, as well as the person who created it. They’re an excellent way to discover authors or revisit favorite ones in unexpected ways. When I first heard about Reclaim the Stars, I knew it was my kind of book. Not only did this collection hold stories from various Latinx authors I’ve been meaning to read for quite some time, but those same stories would take place in both the fantasy and science fiction genres—I wouldn’t have to choose!

As different as these stories are, they all share common themes of love and loss, power and commitment, kindness and cruelty. They’re reflections of our own world, molded by the words that transport us into new realities. I was also delighted to find that so many of these authors wrote queer love stories.

I came for the stories by the Rick Riordan Presents authors (J.C. Cervantes, Daniel José Older, and Mark Oshiro) but discovered a huge array of new writers I'm interested in. My favorite tales were from Anna-Marie McLemore, David Bowles, Isabel Ibañez, and--far and away--Zoraida Córdova.
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Raw, moving, and powerful. This collection of short stories touches upon what it means to love, to grow, to grieve, to live. An excellent volume on any shelf.
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The first story by Anna-Marie McLemore is amazing but it is all down hill from there. I keep trying to read this anthology but decided to give up after the next three stories were only 1 and 2 stars. I DNF'd this at around 25%
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I love scifi and speculative fiction. Reclaim the Stars is full of supernatural, fantasy, space, magical, queer, and/or romance stories all centering Latinx people. It opens with a tale of princesses who are destined to duel for the right to wield power. There is a moving and sweet parable about puberty. The revenge stories are delicious. Brujas! It hit me during a story about a mermaid how wonderful and powerful it is to read a story and know what the real world location looks like, especially if it is Puerto Rico. I am purchasing this book for myself and keeping it on my gift list.
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I loved this collection, and I especially love that there are stories to share with my students, stories that I think they will connect and relate to no matter where they are from. This group of stories includes work from some of my favorite authors, specifically Anna-Marie McLemore and Zoraida Cordova, These stories are lush, beautiful, and thoughtful; many of the stories go beyond the genre to help the reader think about things like climate change, or how we fit into our families, or what the consequences are for being ourselves.  Like every collection, you're not going to love every story in the same way, but I think that people will enjoy most stories and find those ones that speak specifically to them.  Wonderful writing, beautiful work!
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I am very excited to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this anth9logy. I loved the fresh perspectives in sci-fi and fantasy short stories. They’re all vibrant, richly detailed, and full of interesting characters. Many of them absolutely also directly reflect the heritage and culture of the contributors, and others feature latinx references and language. I loved the variety of writing styles, and I feel that this is a true gem of short story anthologies; not a single story in here was “a clunker” so to speak, and that isn’t the case foe other anthologies I’ve read over the years. Every story ranged from very good to outstanding!
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