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Skies of the Empire

by Vincent E.M. Thorn

Skies of the Empire - Vincent E. M. Thorn - Dreamscape Voyager
Part of the The Dreamscape Voyager Trilogy series:
ISBN: 978-0578521053
Size: 6.00 x 9.00 in
Pages: 431
ISBN: 0578521059
Pages: 433
ISBN: 979-8985818536
Size: 6.00 x 9.00 in
Pages: 432

Airship pilot Cassidy Durant finds herself entangled in a menacing plot when a Faerie named Hymn saves her life in exchange for protection against nebulous enemies. This complicates her simple life of cargo trading, since affiliating with the Fae is a death sentence in the Empire.

Meanwhile, reluctant mercenary Zayne Balthine is tasked by his employer, a devout worshiper of the Desert Goddess, to break into the Imperial Palace. It's not his first suicide mission, but this time, things are different. He'll die should he fail, though that’s nothing new. But if he succeeds, he will be responsible for unfathomable death and devastation.

Reviews:Matt Lebois on Reader's Favorite wrote:

Adventure takes to the ‘Skies of the Empire’. In this adult fantasy novel from Vincent E.M. Thorn, humans live a life aloft to remain safe from the omnipresent threat of the Fae. Humans thrive in airborne cities anchored to mountaintops by protective iron, and some people live and work on airships, completely untethered. The first mate on the Dreamscape Voyager, Cassidy Durant is one day forced to commit a capital offense against her empire: making an agreement with a Fae. This act exposes her to new threats, but with the support of her captain and crewmates, it will lead to unexpected outcomes. Meanwhile, Zayne, mercenary and captain of the Scorpion, has his own mission, one that will have far-ranging effects for the entire empire, if not the whole world. When Cassidy and Zayne cross paths, more than just sparks will fly.

The opening chapter, featuring an airship battle with a dragon, left me breathless and full of questions about this new high fantasy setting. I loved the worldbuilding, with new details presented naturally through the characters’ experiences: the 26-hour days; food sources in a sky-bound world, where farming is the most dangerous profession; iron being literally more valuable than gold; the many uses for parts of dragons; songs, history, and technology all well thought-out. While the main conflict and stakes were slow to emerge, I found the setting continually intriguing, and the camaraderie of Cassidy and her “found family” crew was consistently a joy to read and held my interest while darker events were slowly unfolding. Younger readers should be aware that this book contains swearing and acknowledges the existence of sex, but otherwise I think all ages will thrill at this adventure. Sequel, please!

About the Author

Vincent E. M. Thorn is an award-winning fantasy author of mixed Japanese and European descent whose aspirations began in childhood. He spent many years writing short stories for friends and small online communities, but he finally entered the professional circuit in 2019 with his debut novel, Skies of the Empire.

Among his various influences, Vincent most regularly cites Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, Scott Lynch, and C.S. Friedman for shaping his writing. He currently lives in the metro-Atlanta area, He enjoys heavy metal and show-tunes, and is a huge fan of animation and comics.