Barit has been attacked, the planets people are being captured and forced into slavery by the Sky Raiders. Many of the people gifted with the power of the change are called on to be guardians and protect the people from the alien raiders. Their ability to call the elements can make them strong warriors. Garek is conscripted to travel to a large town to protect its people from the invaders. His ability to call the air helps make him one of the strongest warriors they have seen. His one year service becomes a forced two years service and when he finally returns home, he finds his village and the woman he loves have been taken by the Sky Raiders. He sets out to rescue his beloved Taya in a stolen sky craft.
Taya fights to protect her people on the Shadow planet, where they are forced to mine the shadow ore for the Sky Raiders. When she discovers the Change has come to her and she can control the shadow ore the invaders are after, she begins to look for what that can give her as an advantage. She is determined to get home to the man she loves and to take her people with her.
This book is somewhat of a space opera style romance. The first half focuses on the lovers plights and what they are going through to find each other. At times it is slow, as there is much back story to fit in to get the reader to understand the characters and the worlds they inhabit. The author does a great job describing the people and the places they are in. It was easy to picture the alien landscape and the inhabitants of those lands. The book did steadily pick up and then I couldn’t put it down. I would gladly read more in this series and enjoyed this work.
4 out of 5 stars.
When the people of Barit first saw the silver glint of sky craft, they felt awe. Then awe turned to fear. And they found a name for the mysterious newcomers. Sky raiders.
Garek’s one year of duty as a guard walking the walls of Garamundo was extended to two when the sky raiders appeared. Two long years away from home and his lover, Taya. When he finally returns, the town is empty. While Garek was protecting Garamundo, the sky raiders were taking their victims from his hometown.
Taya can’t bear looking into the night sky. All she can see is Barit, her home planet. Impossibly, the sky raiders have brought her and their other victims to Shadow, the planet that shadows her own, and looking up makes her aware of everything she’s lost. Garek is out there somewhere. She knows he’ll look, but he’ll never find her.
She and the other captives have to find a way to escape. Without the food and clothes the sky raiders bring them from their raids on Barit, they’ll starve on the almost barren wastes of Shadow. And when they’ve given the sky raiders enough of what they want, that’s exactly what the sky raiders will leave them to do.
What Taya doesn’t realize is she’ll have some help with her plan. Because Garek isn’t giving up on finding her. And he’s even more resourceful than she could ever have imagined.
Nothing is going to keep him from Taya. Not even space itself.
There would be blood.
Taya moved her gaze from Jerilia, weeping in soft, keening sobs, to the big Kardanx who gripped her arm, to the way Kas and the other men and women of the Illy began to gather to one side of the open area in front of the mine where they waited to be collected for the camp.
The Kardanx shifted his grip and Taya could see there were already dark smudges ringing Jerilia’s upper arm where he held her.
The spike of anger that ripped through her made her gasp, made her force in a breath of dusty, cold air.
If she couldn’t keep a cool head, she couldn’t expect Kas and the others to do the same.
Behind the Kardanx, some of his fellow countrymen began to gather as well, their expressions more muted, more severe.
They didn’t want trouble with the Illy. It seemed the big man who had grabbed Jerilia wasn’t so worried.
Kas had already told him to let Jerilia go. Jerilia herself had demanded it. Taya looked into his eyes and knew he would not do it.
Perhaps if Jerilia hadn’t screamed so loudly, made such a fuss. Perhaps if Kas’s bellow of outrage hadn’t made every head turn.
Or perhaps not.
Whatever the reason, to let her go now would be a loss of face the Kardanx would not be prepared to accept.
Taya could see it in the way his eyes narrowed, the way his mouth tightened. She had always had the gift of reading people’s intentions from the way they moved their bodies, and the Kardanx was screaming pent up rage and defiance with every pore.
A small movement caught her eye. Kas, drawing something from the back of his pants, gripping it tightly in his fisted hand.
Was that a knife?
She wouldn’t let another she loved be hurt. Not because of the lust of a stupid Kardanx. The Kardanx were supposed to worship the Mother, but either this one wasn’t an adherent to the belief, or he was simply one of the majority who twisted the meanings of their oaths so they could treat women with less respect. She saw the evidence before her now, in the way the Kardanx thought he could have Jerilia, even against her will.
Taya had heard another, even uglier whisper. That the reason there were only six women amongst all the Kardanx the sky raiders had taken was because the men had killed them, rather than have them taken by the enemy.
Taya had heard Kardanx men swore an oath to protect the Mother, and her avatars, all women, with their lives. But if they had killed their women to protect them, they were not honoring the Mother as an equal. They had killed them like they would kill their livestock so the invading army cannot use it. As they would burn their house, to give the enemy nothing to shield himself from the weather.
As one treats a possession, not a person, with their own will and choices.
The Kardanx took a step toward his own group, dragging Jerilia with him, and Kas and three others took a step forward.
The other Kardanx shouted something to their countryman, and he turned to look at them over his shoulder. He shouted back, and though Kardanx was close enough to Illian, it was said so fast Taya couldn’t understand it. But the meaning was clear enough.
The Kardanx would not back down.
She wished, not for the first time, for Garek. Felt a need for him as strong as for her next breath. Then she shrugged off the paralysis of wanting something she could not have, and her gaze came to rest on their guard.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Michelle Diener will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Follow the tour for more chances to win.
Michelle Diener is the author of the bestselling, award-winning Class 5 series. She writes historical fiction, science fiction and fantasy and loves creating new worlds for her and her readers to escape to. She lives in Australia with her husband and two children.