Expected publication: November 25th, 2015
Publisher: One Good Sonnet Publishing
Read from October 18th to 30th, 2015
Synopsis from Goodreads:
In a world divided by an ancient enmity involving the very gods themselves, forces move, threatening to upset the delicate balance between the people of the air and their enemies on the ground.
Skye, prince of the Skychildren, is betrayed and exiled from the sky realm. Wounded and cast down to the earth below, he is unable to escape capture by the detested Groundbreathers and is assigned to serve as the slave of one of the Groundbreather princesses. Escape, however, is paramount, as his kingdom is being threatened by a madman, and he resolves on trying to find a way back to the sky realm.
While certain that his disdain toward his heathen captors and their reprehensible god is justified, Skye finds himself thawing toward the Groundbreathers—most especially toward Princess Tierra, who is different from the rest of her people.
Complicating matters are the whispers he hears of the existence of a creature of legend, one which has the ability to destroy all life. As events spiral out of control, Skye begins to follow a path he could not have imagined, and he discovers that the secret of the Fenik is one which threatens the very existence of his people.
This book has a very interesting premise. I love the idea of Skychildren who live in the clouds and that they have ongoing conflict with the people on the ground. The idea of them having a belief in the same two gods but each group worshiping a different one and believing theirs was the superior one was also fascinating to me. So much about the world building in this novel was fantastic. It basically made the book for me.
The story itself wasn't quite as exciting to me. I found it hard to get into the possibility that Tierra and Skye would be together. (Slight spoilers following, but nothing that doesn't come relatively early in the book.) While Tierra never embraces the idea of being cruel to the Skychildren slaves like her family, I couldn't stop feeling uncomfortable with the idea of a romance between someone who had been forced to be a slave and the person who had been declared their master. I think the book did as good of a job with that storyline as a book could have, but the very idea behind it made me uncomfortable. It was hard for me to actively root for them to be together.
There were also some parts of the ending that felt rushed to me. Thinking about the entirety of the book, the beginning and middle seem to spread out events at a reasonable pace, and then there's so much packed into the end that it feels like too much in too short of a time frame. I think the ending would have benefited from having some of what happened spaced out a bit more.
That being said, I did enjoy the book. The world it takes place in is such a cool one, and the story held my attention and was enjoyable. I can imagine plenty of people really enjoying this story.
I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review.