Skyward (Skyward, #1) – Brandon Sanderson


Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️


Spensa’s world has been under attack for decades. Now pilots are the heroes of what’s left of the human race, and becoming one has always been Spensa’s dream. Since she was a little girl, she has imagined soaring skyward and proving her bravery. But her fate is intertwined with her father’s–a pilot himself who was killed years ago when he abruptly deserted his team, leaving Spensa’s chances of attending flight school at slim to none.

No one will let Spensa forget what her father did, yet fate works in mysterious ways. Flight school might be a long shot, but she is determined to fly. And an accidental discovery in a long-forgotten cavern might just provide her with a way to claim the stars.


This is my first Brandon Sanderson book (I know I am super behind on the Sanderson train) and I AM NOW HOOKED! Skyward is an incredible action-packed sci-fi adventure with a twist ending that I did not see coming! And how gorgeous is that cover?!

Skyward follows Spensa (Callsign – Spin), a teenage girl on the planet Detritus, who dreams of being a pilot for the Defiant Defense Force. She wants to be like her father and defend the planet from the evil Krell aliens. The only problem . . . her father died while fleeing a battle and is branded a coward. Spensa must live with her father’s reputation while fighting for her dreams.

The world Brandon Sanderson created in Skyward is absolutely incredible. Everything was so well done – from the cavern cities to flight school to the EPIC starfighter battles. The world was immersive and full of detail, but I never felt overwhelmed. I saw myself with Spensa and the rest of Skyward Flight as they trained and battled. I felt like I was part of Skyward Flight.

All of Sanderson’s characters in Skyward were so well done. I felt like I really got to know the main cast. However, I’ll be honest. Spensa annoyed me at first. She starts off as this overly cocky girl with a huge chip on her shoulder. She needed some sense slapped into her. Cue flight school. As soon as Spensa starts flight school, she realizes that she is not even close to the best. This reality check changed her for me and made me absolutely love the character. Spensa experiences so much growth throughout flight school. She matures so much. Spensa must deal with friendship, loss, and finding herself. She has an existential crisis and must confront her knowledge of herself, her father, and her world. Spensa must decide what it means to be a good pilot or to be a coward. I really enjoyed watching how much Spensa grew and how she confronted these challenges.

My favorite thing about Spensa is how freaking weird she is. She is so imaginative with her speech . . .

  • “When you are broken and mourning your fall from grace, I will consume your shadow in my own, and laugh at your misery.”
  • “Firstborn will be Executioner Destructorius. But you can have number two.”
  • “Ha! Your children will weep tonight, you holographic Krell bastard!”

One thing that I really liked about Skyward was that there was no romance! There is definitely some beginnings for the potential of a romance for Spensa and Jorgen, but it didn’t feel forced, rushed, or insta-lovey. I liked watching Spensa and Jorgen’s relationship grow from hate to pure friendship and admiration for one another. I can totally see them slowly falling for one another in books to come.

Now, before I move on from characters, I HAVE TO talk about my absolute favorite . . . M-BOT!! M-Bot is the most hilarious and sassy AI that ever was. The one liners from him/it? were on point and made me laugh out loud. I could probably write an entire review of just quotes from M-Bot, but I’ll save you from that and just include some of my favorites (and yes . . . this was me cutting down the number of quotes I wanted to include).

  • “Good night, sweet prince,” M-Bot whispered as the junk crashed to the ground. “Or princess. Or, most likely, gender less piece of work inanimate space junk.”
  • “Ah yes. Human squishiness quotient. Is that why you’re so mad at that space junk? Jealousy is not pretty, Spensa.”
  • “You have slightly under two minutes until you die a fiery death and I’m left with only Rig and the slug. I haven’t been able to compute which of those two is the less engaging conversationalist.”
  • “It can appreciate something at a million times per second. So you could say your comment is likely the single most appreciated thing you’ve ever done.”
  • “Hello!” M-Bot said to me form the cockpit. “You have nearly died, and so I will say something to distract you from the serious, mind-numbing implications of your own mortality! I hate your shows.” I laughed, nearly hysterical. “I didn’t want to be predictable,” M-Bot added. “So I said that I hate them. But actually, I think those shoes are quite nice. Please do not think I have lied.”
  • The best is when M-Bot starts to talk like Spensa . . . “Tremble and fear, all enemies! For we shall shake the air with thunder and blood! Your doom is imminent!”

While the entire book was full of action, the last ~75 pages were on a whole other level! I couldn’t put it down! The battles were insane and so epic! My heart was beating so fast throughout the battle sequences. I had no idea what to expect! There are twists and turns and huge reveals that changes all we know about the Krell. I loved the ending and I am so excited to see what happens next!


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