Review: The Vanishing Spark of Dusk by Sara Baysinger

Synopsis/Cover Image from Amazon:
Stand up.

When Lark is stolen from Earth to be a slave on the planet Tavdora, she’s determined to find her way back home to her family, no matter the cost. Placed in the household of a notorious slave trader, Lark quickly learns her best assets are her eyes and ears. And if she’s brave enough, her voice.

Be heard.

Kalen is the Tavdorian son of a slave trader and in line to inherit his father’s business. But his growing feelings for Lark, the new house slave who dares to speak of freedom, compel him to reveal his new plan for the slave ships returning to Earth—escape. Together, they just might spark a change that flares across the universe.

Fight back.

I've read a lot of books published by EntangledTeen over the course of 2017. Some I liked. Some I loved. As it turns out, however, I saved the greatest for last - The Vanishing Spark of Dusk by Sara Baysinger. Honestly, I think this may just be EntangledTeen's best book yet. 

I'll be honest here: it took me a while to warm up to Lark. 

In the beginning she's timid and spineless. She refuses to speak up for herself, and, instead, she consistently obsesses over her failings, wishing she could be brave but never acting on it. There's one pivotal moment in the first few chapters where she overhears some of the other girls talking trash about her, and I was so angry for her - the girls were incredibly out of line - but Lark does nothing. She just sits on the sidelines, convincing herself that they couldn't possibly be talking about her. I was disappointed in her - I wanted nothing more for her to stand up for herself and speak loud and proud - but it gave me hope that she'd learn to be brave.

Over the course of the book, Lark grows and prospers. She learns how to speak up for herself and others. She stands up for what she believes in no mater the consequences. She makes great friends and even starts up a romance. Most importantly, she becomes a vital part of her new community, finding a purpose and a home in a seemingly hopeless place. It was a rough journey - sometimes she would go too far with her actions or not think them through enough - but it was such an incredibly worthwhile one to witness. By the end, I was proud of her - I may of even shed a tear. She had come so far. 

On the other hand, I loved Kalen, Lark's love interest, from the start. Ladies and gentlemen, Kalen is prime book boyfriend material. My heart was swooning - full-out swooning! He's the perfect mix of sweet and spicy, and I loved how he always stuck up for Lark. When Kalen's first introduced, it's hard to tell if he's a good guy or a bad guy; however, soon it becomes clear as day: Kalen has a heart of gold. Like Lark, he also deals with his own challenges. He's torn between embracing the path his father has chosen for the company (slave-traders) or fighting against it, and I felt that the development regarding this was good. I felt for Kalen - it's hard to disappoint family but at the same time it's important to stand up for what you believe in, especially when it involves something as wrong as slave trading. 

The world building in The Vanishing Spark of Dusk was also fantastic. I thought Sara did such a wonderful job of creating the world of the Tavdorian. It was so easy to picture their planet, and better yet, I loved the level of detail and spice she gave to it - it wasn't the standard fantasy space world by any means. I do wish she would have given some more details into how the Tavdorians overtook Earth. I was curious as to when it all began, how did the government fall, etc. 

Additionally, the plot in The Vanishing Spark is full of action and romance. There's so much at play here - rebel groups, evil men, space journeys, and a divided family. I couldn't flip the pages fast enough! I just wanted to know everything! The romance was steamy. Lark and Kalen had such a great dynamic - I loved how they constantly would push at each other's buttons. Plus their ending was so adorable. 

There was one aspect, however, that brought this book down one star: it was slightly slow at times. I'm all for slow parts when they bring about essential character, world, and/or plot development, but that didn't always happen here, especially in the beginning. Thankfully, as the book continued the pacing got better.    

Lush, intricate, and thrilling, The Vanishing Spark of Dusk reminds me just how wonderful YA fantasy can be, how exciting it is to be transported to a world so unlike our own.  

So mark your calendars for January 8th. This is one you won't want to miss, especially if you love a mixture of fantasy and dystopian. 

4 stars!! 

The Vanishing Spark of Dusk will be released on January 8, 2018! 

Source: eARC provided by publisher for review 

Buy Links: 

Amazon | BN | Kobo 

Author Links: 


  1. I haven't heard of this one before but it sounds really good. I am so glad you enjoyed it, Lauren!


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