Once again, the Force makes an appearance as the most convenient plot device ever in this thoroughly enjoyable new canon book by Claudia Gray. In Lost Stars, childhood friends find themselves on opposite sides of a galactic war . . . and somehow manage to both be present at nearly every single pivotal battle in that war. Because the Force! Seriously, though, I didn't even mind the blatant Force contrivances (the characters even comment on it, hah!), because the characters and their emotions felt real and it added so much depth and so many layers to be able to see the conflict from both viewpoints.
I cringed at the Romeo and Juliet in space analogy, and at the end I felt it didn't really fit. This isn't about two people flipping the bird to their respective factions and running off together. This is about two star-crossed lovers who put duty and honor and idealism above their personal desires, and all the heartbreak that comes with personal sacrifice.
I highly recommend this one to anyone who adores the space opera aspects of Star Wars, and I'm fervently hoping Gray gets to write a sequel.