The Stars are Ours! Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Stars are Ours!

The Stars are Ours! is a 1954 science fiction novel by Andre Norton. It is split into two parts, the first set on Earth, the second on an unexplored new world.
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Nationalists vie with the the supranational Free Scientists over the future of mankind. When a group of men (probably nationalists in disguise) take control of a space station and accidentally(?) kill billions, the Free Scientists are blamed; most are quickly either killed outright or enslaved.

Chemist Lars Nordis conducts research in secret, while his younger brother Dard and his daughter Dessie eke out a precarious living on a farm. One day, a greedy neighbor discovers he is a scientist and kills him, but not before he has completed his work and had Dard and Dessie memorize the results. Hunted, the two make their way to the last hidden bastion of the Free Scientists. They are building the first starship there, and Lars' findings are essential; they must use "cold sleep" (suspended animation) in order to have any hope of surviving the long, long journey. They launch under fire, as the authorities discover their hiding place at last, and take the desperate gamble that the untested cold sleep will work and that they can find a habitable planet before the ship fails.

The gamble succeeds, though some never wake from the cold sleep. The planet they land on is hospitable. However, they soon find a rocket filled with alien goods, then a long-abandoned city. When Dessie rescues an alien child, its parents emerge from the sea cautiously, and friendly relations are established. The humans learn that the sea people are descendants of slaves of the city builders who escaped when their cruel masters fought a devastating war. None of the city builders remain on this continent, but there may be survivors elsewhere.

Best part of story, including ending: The thrill and excitement of preparing for and taking the first interstellar flight while under imminent danger of attack.

Best scene in story: For excitement, you can't beat the delaying battle before takeoff. On the other hand, the first exploration of the new planet was good in a more peaceful way.

Opinion about the main character: Dard Nordis is a fairly two-dimensional character, not too surprising for '50s science fiction. Norton does a good job making the reader sympathize with him, but there's nothing particularly original about him.

The review of this Book prepared by J. Lee a Level 10 Peregrine Falcon scholar

Chapter Analysis of The Stars are Ours!

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 40%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 20%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 20%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Explore/1st contact/ enviro story    -   Yes Explore:    -   colonizing/homesteading another planet Repressive society story    -   Yes Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Age:    -   a teen


Earth setting:    -   medium future 22-24th century A substantial portion of this book takes place on a non-Earth planetary body:    -   inhabited by friendly aliens Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes Planet outside solar system?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   some scientific explanation How much dialogue?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Andre Norton Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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