Book Title: Shattered Skies: Beginnings End
Genre: Dystopian Science Fiction/Horror
Author: Heather Linn
Date Originally Published: 20 March 2010
Date Re-Released: 19 December 2012
Date Re-Released: 19 December 2012
This is the first book of five in the Shattered Skies series. The current version has been re-edited in response to reader’s comments.
Torn between the day and the night, Catalina treads a dangerous, deadly trail among the monsters; sex is her weapon. But what happens when her heart takes over and she falls in love with the head monster, the leader of a new breed of Vampire that is chillingly capable of killing her and the humans she loves?
Courageous Catalina never had the chance to live in the normal world we take for granted. Instead she was born into a world ruled by the alien Vampires that have taken over the planet. Half the human race is dead, the survivors have been raped and pillaged, and the alien Vampire invaders have bred a nearly indestructible new race, the Dominus, a horrific genetic mix of human and vampire.
Catalina and her small family of rogue humans have been led by a brooding Doctor since their infancy. So far, they have managed to live secretly among the new deadly breed of monster, killing when they can.
Then Catalina, the black sheep of the family, rejects the subservient female role assigned her, and demands to be a warrior on the front lines with the men, bedding one Dominus after the next, in a world where sex kills. Hell bent on destroying as many of the Dominus as she can, Catalina is drawn to the bed of the King Dominus, Akia. Her emotions flare in his presence and she feels a strange, tumultuous, magnetic pull towards him and him to her, but this star-crossed attraction can only lead to death. But for whom?
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review. I received this book before it was re-edited, so I can only give my opinion on what I read.
This is the first book in the Shattered Skies series. It is a very intriguing tale and I enjoyed it.
Catalina is a character I had mixed feelings for. I liked her determination and independence, but hated her attitude at times. She comes across as very arrogant and superior, even though she is a human living in a world conquered by vampires, who are actually aliens from another planet.
I started to read the story and I was quickly pulled in. I love the concept of vampires being aliens; that actually makes sense! However, it was the idea of sex as a weapon which somewhat ruined the story for me. Don't get me wrong, I know sex has been used as a weapon since Adam begat Eve, but the way this story was written had me scratching my head at times, as there seemed to be contradictory elements within the story.
The story itself was extremely exciting and full of danger. I loved the tension created within the tale, and the scene between Catalina and King Akia just after the ballroom one was extremely intense. But sad to say that the characters felt a bit one dimensional with very little depth, and were not as "alive" as they could have been. In actuality, I was on the side of the Dominus vampires and feeling sorry for them, although I should have been rooting for the humans. I know that it's weird, but I really took a liking to Akia, even though he is really not in the story a lot of the time. However, things are not all that they seem and there are several twists and turns that surprised me. Dr. Walker, the doctor who rescued the human babies, including Catalina, during the invasion, has his own secrets. I really didn't like him very much; I got a really funny vibe about him. My suspicions were realised when his secrets were revealed. However, it wasn't his secret as much as his parenting that threw up a red flag in my mind. It smacked too much of indoctrination and brainwashing. His attitude towards female and male roles within the "family" dynamic was extremely upsetting to my modern sensibilities. I kept wondering if he had been reading an old Dr. Spock book, as well as others from the 1930's to 1960's about a woman's place in the home and in society. It was a bit too "June Cleaver" or "Stepford Wives" for my taste. No wonder Catalina rebelled!
The ending is a bit ambiguous, but is that better than a cliffhanger? I have said this many times, but I have a love/hate relationship with cliffhangers. However, an ambiguous ending is just as irritating as a cliffhanger in my opinion, as it leaves the reader wondering where the story is going to lead next. I am not sure if I will be continuing with this series, but I won't rule it out either.
Heather Linn has written an interesting novel with an intriguing premise. I loved her fast paced writing style and the flow was okay. However, I felt the character development needed a bit more work.
I recommend this book if you love science fiction, dark fantasy, paranormal horror or dystopian genres. - Lynn Worton
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