This book is just so much awesome fun! Humorous sci-fi! Aliens, Hollywood and a golden retriever. You'll love it. If you don't then you don't know how to enjoy anything:)
Project Manager; Gamer; Team Leader; avid Science Fiction & Urban Fantasy reader.
Loved it. John Scalzi Lay's out a well crafted plot, driven by tight dialogue, that's enjoyably read by Will Wheaton.
There is always some absurdity in Scalzi's narratives this time the aliens communicate by smells. Now that I think about it, ants do the same. May not be by smell but by pheromones. The ending was brilliant! Maybe that's how they will do it if they come by. What better way to introduce yourself.
Brilliant plot excellent narration as always Scalzi and Wheaton.
What a great tale! This is a delightfully quirky sci fi, Hollywood meets First Contact. Suits my mood. Suits my sensibility. We've got the up and coming agent with a heart of gold; his smart, bossy assistant; the beautiful, dim-bulb starlet who wants to be taken seriously; the sleazy, tabloid reporter who stops at nothing; the alien in need of an acceptable image.
Great characters and they each are well developed.
Will Wheaton doesn't do many voices for each different characters but each is well defined so it's not a problem following.
Semi retired computer field engineer.
I'm just too busy much of the time to do so. Hey, this is why I listen to audio books!
But, once in awhile a book just stands out from the crowd for me, and this one was one of them. "Stars" was a brilliant mix of humor, light SciFi, social commentary read buy someone meant for the "parts", delivering the characters excellently and ending up with one of the most satisfying listens I have enjoyed in some time.
Not too long; didn't belabor the points. Not too short; dug in deep enough to the characters and the subject. Ended well; came to a satisfying conclusion of a brilliantly written story. Oh and did I say really really funny?? In this writing, there was good character development using each character well in the telling of the story. Wil leveraged the writing with skill and finesse.
This book had me going all the way, from laughing to almost crying at the end, not because the story was sad, but because it touched and challenged my sensibilities about accepting people for who they are, "character warts and all", not just how they look.
Please don't interpret this last statement as me saying that tolerance and anything goes is acceptable. No, what really struck me here, was the thoughtful and logical, not just emotion based look at stereotypes, the making of life decisions and how we view people in entertainment, news and society. I think at times we all take ourselves just a little to seriously. Get ready for the challenge.
One funny experience while I was listening to “Stars”. I ride trains to and from work in a country where culturally it’s considered rude to disturb others. Talk only very quietly if at all and only text with your cell etc. Well I was listening to this book, and all a sudden, I wanted to laugh so very hard out loud, but I had to struggle to keep my composure.
While trying so hard to hold my laughter, so many tired and frankly, a bit culturally uptight people, looking at me with looks on their faces of “Oh another one of these foreigners.” They are trying to act like they are ignoring me, but you could tell they are privately thinking, “What is he laughing about so hard? I want some of whatever he's having!”
I have listened to a few of John Scalzi’s works, all of them narrated by Wil Wheaton. It’s getting to the point where I will not listen to a book if it’s read by certain readers, some of them very popular on Audible, but are to my way of thinking, not longer meeting the level of quality of acting ability necessary for a good audible book. Will, his off project personality and character aside, when preforming for a project, is simply really good at what he does, plain and simple. What Wil does so well, is he looks at these books as "scripts". Then he wonderfully explores each character seeded into the writing. Will is now one of my "go to readers" for Audible.
Would this book make a great movie, maybe after listening to this audio book you can decide for yourself. Personally, I think it would make an amazing film, but it's possible the entertainment industry doesn't have the guts to do it.
If you would like to listen to something somewhat outside the norm, be entertained and spend some quality time looking at your own views about others, I think you might just really enjoy “Stars”. I hope you do as much as I have.
John Scalzi seems to crank out two types of books, those in the serial style of Asimov, and those with a sense of humor that is uniquely his own. This one is the latter.
The story line follows an alien that finds the way to integrate into human acceptance is not through politics, or systematic desensitization, but with the help of a great publicist.
The humor in this book is what endears me to Scalzis other books of this type and I would recommend all of them.
Wil Wheatons performance is great as usual.
The story isn't bad, it's entertaining, but it's a little transparent, predictable. Wil Wheaton is a fine narrator who matches the book well, but there was nothing particularly outstanidng in his performance. It's not the best example of Scalzi's keen-eyed, sharp-witted modern sci-fi talent, nor of Wil Wheaton's gifts for ascerbic delivery. I found myself being entertained and listening to the end, but never really engaged or rivited or invested in this story or these characters.
Not a bad listen, light and easy, but not exceptional.
I like most of John Scalzi's books, and this was no different. The concept is very funny, and the execution is good. The characters are interesting, but we never completely get a full feel for their qualities. For example, why was Tom's grandmother thrown in there, other than to move the plot forward? We never got a sense that his grandmother was important to him.
Overall, the book is entertaining and typically (for Scalzi) very funny. But, it was a very light read, and not quite as interesting as Red Shirts or Androids Dream.
Wil Wheaton's narration is brilliant as usual - he's rapidly becoming one of my favourite narrators!
Increasing my ops tempo by allowing storytellers to whisper in my ear(buds).
This was my second John Scalzi book and was quite a relief after enduring the annoying character identifiers of ANDROID’S DREAM. Either Scalzi was taken to the woodshed by the audio producers and ordered to eliminate all the “he said,” “she said” repetitions in the dialog scenes; or he was tired of playing practical jokes on his listeners and allowed the characters to be recognized by the context of their words. In any event, the character identifiers in the dialog scenes are completely transparent. Now you can focus on the story.
Here Scalzi writes like a Hollywood insider. He seems to know all the moves that occur behind the scenes. His protagonist is a talent agent thrust into the midst of the historic first contact with an alien species. It is a fun idea and plays like a comedy.
Wil Wheaton is becoming one of my favorite narrators. I will always be amazed that Wil Wheaton, who played Wesley Crusher, the most annoying character on Star Trek the Next Generation, could become such an excellent voice actor. Wheaton gets the audiobook medium like few others. He seems to sense the different characters to the degree that even when he doesn’t employ a distinct character voice, he is still able to set off each character apart by distinct pacing and diction. He’s one of the best. Don’t miss him.