Beyond the Red by Ava Jae
Published by Sky Pony Press on March 1, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Science Fiction, Romance
Pages: Format: eARC Source: Edelweiss
Alien queen Kora has a problem as vast as the endless crimson deserts. She’s the first female ruler of her territory in generations, but her people are rioting and call for her violent younger twin brother to take the throne. Despite assassination attempts, a mounting uprising of nomadic human rebels, and pressure to find a mate to help her rule, she’s determined to protect her people from her brother’s would-be tyrannical rule.
Eros is a rebel soldier hated by aliens and human alike for being a half-blood. Yet that doesn’t stop him from defending his people, at least until Kora’s soldiers raze his camp and take him captive. He’s given an ultimatum: be an enslaved bodyguard to Kora, or be executed for his true identity—a secret kept even from him.
When Kora and Eros are framed for the attempted assassination of her betrothed, they flee. Their only chance of survival is to turn themselves in to the high court, where revealing Eros’s secret could mean a swift public execution. But when they uncover a violent plot to end the human insurgency, they must find a way to work together to prevent genocide.
Sunday Street Team is a monthly feature highlighting upcoming releases and promoting new authors. SST was created and run by Nori over at ReadWriteLove28.
When I first heard about Beyond the Red by Ava Jae, I was definitely intrigued by the story and setting. I watch a lot of Science Fiction television and movies, but I haven’t picked up a lot of books in this genre. That stunning cover and a synopsis promising court politics, uprisings, red deserts, and twisted bonds sold me on this alien tale. Safara, the planet covered in red deserts, with more than one sun in the sky. Its captured so well on the cover and in the book that I just want to take a trip there. I don’t even like the heat that much but I just want to bask in the beauty of Ava Jae’s creation.
Now I’ve got to admit that when I started reading I was so utterly confused that I had to go back and read the synopsis. Jae drops the reader right into this new world and story and it was so jarring that it took me that first chapter to find my feet. That being said, I was all in once Kora arrived on the scene. The fast pace and lack of info dumps was one of this stories biggest assets. It didn’t get bogged down in an overwhelming amount of detail which allowed the characters to capture my heart.
While reading I kept on going back and forth on who’s point of view I enjoyed more but in the end it was the perfect story dynamic to experience things from both Eros and Kora’s perspectives. While Eros and Kora are from vastly different backgrounds, both are struggling to belong. He is fiercely loyal to his people despite their hatred of his mixed human and alien blood while she is trying to rule a nation alone when her citizens want her off the throne. That doesn’t stop either of them from persevering through their strife though.
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed Beyond the Red by Ava Jae! It was an action packed, roller coaster of emotions set in a stunning desert world that leaves your heart crushed on the floor. With characters the reader is so desperately rooting for, Jae has crafted an epic novel. If you love YA and Science Fiction, I would definitely recommend this book to you. I’ve got my fingers crossed for a sequel, so go check it out!
About the Author
Ava Jae is a writer, an Assistant Editor at Entangled Publishing, and is represented by Louise Fury of The Bent Agency. Her YA Sci-Fi debut, BEYOND THE RED, is releasing March 2016 from Sky Pony Press. When she’s not writing about kissing, superpowers, explosions, and aliens, you can find her with her nose buried in a book, nerding out over the latest X-Men news, or hanging out on her blog, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Goodreads, Instagram, or YouTube channel.
Ava is graciously giving away two finished copies of Beyond the Red through the Sunday Street Team.
So, are you looking forward to reading Beyond the Red? Already had the chance? Any other YA Science Fiction with aliens that I need to check out? Let me know in the comments below!