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Blog Tour, Teasers, Giveaway and Review: Amber Sky

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AMBER SKY is the first prequel novella preceding the adventurous steampunk horror tale CRIMSON SKY, and tells the story of Nash before he joined the Dauntless Wanderer when his only means of survival was to fight to the death, and how he was forced to make a choice that would change his life forever…

Buy it here: Kindle | Kobo | iTunes | Smashwords | Goodreads

Press-ganged into servitude by a ruthless band of marauders who survived the devastating Storm, Nash has grown tired of his career– the young, undefeated champion of the Stray Dog fighting pits. All he longs for is a place to live where his family is not his enemy.

When his captain gives him an assignment to embed him deeper into the crew, Nash attempts to refuse, until the life of his friend is threatened. Determined to save her, Nash embarks on the mission to subjugate and control a supplier. But the supplier has other clients, one of which could be the son of the most feared pirate captain in all of Westraven.

And if Nash plays his cards right, the key to his deeply desired freedom, if he can live with the consequences of his choice…

Set two years before the events of CRIMSON SKY, this prequel novella tells the story of how Nash and Sawyer crossed paths– and fists. While best enjoyed before reading CRIMSON SKY, this bonus story can be read at any time or enjoyed as a standalone.

About the Author:

Amy is a Canadian urban fantasy and horror author. Her work revolves around monsters, magic, mythology, and mayhem. She started writing in her early teens, and never stopped. She loves building unique worlds filled with fun characters and intense action. She is the recipient of April Moon Books Editor Award for “author voice, world-building and general bad-assery,” and the One Book Two Standout Award in 2015 for her Cursed trilogy. She has been featured on various author blogs and publishing websites, and is an active member of the Writing GIAM and Weekend Writing Warrior communities. When she isn’t writing, she’s reading, watching movies, taking photos, gaming, and struggling with chocoholism and ice cream addiction.

Her short stories published by independent houses like Mocha Memoirs Press and April Moon Books, and she has independently published a collection of standalone and series novels including Storm Born, Path of the Horseman, and the Cursed and Dark Sky series. Many of her short stories have been featured in anthologies such as Amok!, Avast, Ye Airships!, and That Hoodoo, Voodoo, That You Do, and Stomping Grounds.

Social Media Links

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads | Amazon

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HALLOWEEN THEMED GIVEAWAY!

Click above if you’re interested in being entered to win:  One Ebook of AMBER SKY, One Paperback Copy of THAT HOODOO, VOODOO, THAT YOU DO, and Swag!

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3Penguins
Quick Reasons: I agree, this should be read BEFORE Crimson Sky; love the glimpse into Nash’s past, and how his relationship with Sawyer was forged; the characters felt a bit stiff at times; this wasn’t quite as engaging a read as the full-length novels have been; a good dose of sass, a good amount of action

HUGE thanks to Amy Braun for sending me a copy of this novella free in exchange for an honest review! This in no way altered my read of or opinions on this book.

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I feel…a bit let down by this novella, unfortunately. I’ve had the opportunity to read both full-length novels in this series so far, and LOVED them to pieces–but this one fell a bit flat, in my opinion. I feel like a big part of this falls on the storytelling and characterization–there is SO MUCH focus on getting this story told within such a short amount of time, I’m not sure the characters were allowed to show their true colors completely. Having read the rest of this series, I’ve grown to know and adore these characters as older versions…and I didn’t see much of those men in this novella. They aren’t as well-rounded.

I did, however, appreciate the backstory that this novella provides. We were given a glimpse at these characters from BEFORE–and that’s not often something readers get the chance to see. I especially enjoy that we see more of Nash–while he’s just as integral a part of the later series as the rest of the crew, I feel he sometimes slips off to the sidelines to observe. We were put right into his head for this read, and I loved that shift in perspective–the chance to see Nash in his element, instead of through someone else’s eyes.

The action is decently written, though not as high-stakes or fast-paced as the books later down the line. While there are several battle scenes, I didn’t feel as emotionally connected during them as I thought I would I missed the nail-biting anticipation of the other books in the series. I feel like something important was missing in this read, overall–I have a feeling it might be the rest of the crew, all the characters I’ve so grown attached to in the future journey.

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This was, overall, a quick and entertaining read. There are some noteworthy snark moments, particularly from Sawyer (still love Sawyer, guys; I’m obsessed!). The battle scenes were engaging, though not necessarily as emotionally-driven for me as a reader. I appreciated a glimpse at this world from a new set of eyes…but in the end, I’m not sure I really NEEDED this book in my life. Still, it’s a fast-paced, swashbuckling tale of vampires and pirates (er…mostly sans vampires)–and I can’t wait to see where the series goes from here! I definitely recommend to lovers of prequel novellas, backstories, and ruthless daring in the face of life and death. Amy Braun, you know how to keep a reader on her toes–I can’t wait to see what you do next!

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Crimson Sky: In this World, it’s the Vampires…or the Pirates

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Crimson Sky (Dark Sky #1)

Dark Sky #1
Goodreads Rating: 4.15 Stars
240 Pages
Publication Date: February 2nd, 2016
Get a copy here! (Also available on Kindle Unlimited)

They’re always watching. They’re always waiting. They’re always starving…

Ten years ago, the sky shattered and the Hellions emerged. No one was able to keep them from destroying the city of Westraven. Now that the bloodthirsty monsters rule the skies and have forced the few remaining humans underground, Claire Abernathy lives in a nightmare. She survives by using her skills as an engineer for a ruthless tyrant connected to her mother and father’s past failure.

Then Claire’s world is torn apart when her sister Abby is kidnapped by the Hellions, and Claire herself is taken by dangerous sky pirates known as marauders. But Claire will not be intimidated by them while her sister’s life hangs by a thread, and so she strikes a deal with them: If they help rescue Abby, she will fix their ship and give them the chance to take the revenge they desperately seek.

As Claire fights for her sister’s life, she begins to realize that the Hellions are not the only dangers she’ll face. Burdensome secrets and devastating betrayals threaten her at every turn, and if she loses herself to them, it won’t just be her life that is destroyed…

4Penguins
Quick Reasons: vampires versus pirates!; steamy, sexy romance turned into icky love triangle–what?!; I mean really, these characters are STUBBORN!; lots of snark and sass, especially between our main duo; interesting, though slightly confusing, world-building; steampunk stacked on horror; special snowflake MC

HUGE thanks to Amy Braun and Giselle @ Xpresso Book Tours for sending me a copy of this title in exchange for an honest review! This in no way altered my read of or opinions on this book.

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So, if you look above to my “quick reasons” blurb, you’ll note that this book had three things that GREATLY intrigued me throughout: vampires, pirates, and steampunk/dystopian. It sounds like an odd mix, doesn’t it? A little bit off-the-wall, perhaps a LOT weird? Well, rest assured, dear penguins: it was all of that, and more…and it was BRILLIANT.

Let me just get this out of the way right quick: this book? is not the easiest of things to read. There are a LOT of grammatical errors/missing words. It didn’t make the book any more difficult to read–it was pretty easy to fill in the blanks and figure out which words were meant to be where, etc….but it did get a bit frustrating, hence the slightly lower rating than I would have otherwise given it. Like I said: not really a hindrance to the read, but an annoyance. Alas, such is how things go, right?!

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But let’s put grammatical issues aside and focus on the things that REALLY count, shall we? This story is SUCH an entertaining, horrifying, interesting read! While I was slightly disappointed with the world-building (like…we know almost nothing about the Hellions, save they came through some sort of gap in space/time and are, at least in my opinion, rather a lot like giant mosquitoes–no, seriously, that’s what I imagined throughout the entire book!), the read itself is fast-paced and easy to fall into. So while some of the finer details slipped through the cracks…in the end, I could NOT put this book down or stop reading to save my life. I was just too interested in finding out what happened next!

The characters are just as vibrant and unique as the rest of the story–with their own mixed bag of secrets and pressure points. I almost immediately jumped on the Sawyer/Claire ship…only to be HUGELY disappointed and full of rage, only to jump back on it…only to be even MORE disappointed and full of rage. These two characters are going to be the end of me, I swear it–seriously, guys, stop being stubborn and let things happeeeeeen! The snark and sass flung between them is electrifying (and not always in a good way); they push each other, they help each other grow… I just. OY with the poodles already!

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Raging love-triangle hormones aside, I had a TON of fun reading this and cannot wait to dive into book two (which is conveniently waiting for me patiently–yay, ARCs!) The characters are bright and individualized, the plot is entertaining (if a bit confusing on the world-building front), and the snark is enough to detonate at least a hundred Hellion airships. This is steampunk/dystopian goodness at it’s best…with pirates and vampires thrown in for good measure. I definitely recommend to lovers of…pretty much anything I said above! Seriously, if this review piques your interest at all, you should let the book speak for itself–you’re bound to love the journey!