The Fated Sky

The Fated Sky One Man S Fight Against Fate Shapes The Destiny Of An Entire World Caer S Breath Hissed Between His Teeth For Some Reason He Had Assumed That Offworlders Would Be Frail, With Weak, Puny Bodies From All He Had Heard They Were Feeble, Using Machines They Had Invented To Do The Work Of Their Muscles But This One Was Strong And His Body Was Built Like Any Ordinary Man His Flesh Carried Several Old Scars And His Muscles Were Clean And Compact Beneath The Skin The Thought Struck Him That This Man Would Fetch A Fortune In The Alfor Slave Pens The Castellans Would Be Scrambling Over Each Other To Purchase Something So Rare And Exotic As A Genuine Offworlder See, He Is A Fighter, Captain This And This They Were Made By Blades, Zarul Said, Pointing At The Scars Caer Nodded Well, If He Lives, Perhaps We Shall Find Out What Kind Of Fighter He Is, This Man From The Stars Temsevar Is An Insignificant Periphery World On The Very Fringes Of Galactic Civilisation Settled Long Before The Rise Of Faster Than Light Technologies And Left Isolated For Hundreds Of Years, Its Population Have Degenerated Into The Barbarism Of A Medieval Culture This Primitive World Has Nothing The Wealthy Planets Of The Coalition Could Want, Until It Becomes Unwitting Host To One Of Their Most Dangerous Enemies Avilon RevidFrom The Moment He Wakes Up In The Caravan Of The Merchant Princess Alexa The Fair, Avilon Has To Fight Simply To Survive In A World Where He Is Seen As Alien And Dangerous It Is A Battle To Obtain His Freedom,that Pushes His Skills And Resources To The Limit,so He Can Find A Way Off Planet Before His Enemies In The Coalition Track Him DownBut Temsevar Has Its Own Brutal Conflicts Being Played Out Against The Backdrop Of Its Harsh And Unforgiving Climate The Society Is Dominated By A Ruthless Warlord, Intent On Subduing The Entire Continent To His Will And Whose Brilliant General Jariq Zarengor Has Earned A Reputation For Callous Bloodshed And Then There Is The Enigmatic Durban Chola, Trading Information To Whoever Pays Him For It, While Playing His Own, Highly Dangerous, Game With FateThe Fated Sky Is The First Volume In A New Series Of Character Driven Books, Which Combine The Action And Space Opera Of Science Fiction Classics With The Intrigue And Political Duplicity Of The Fantasy And Historical Genres If Game Of Thrones Met Star Wars This Is What Their Progeny Might Look LikeThe Series Continues With Transgressor Book Two Times Of ChangeFate Has Left Jaelya Roussal As Regent Of Harkera, At The Most Troubled Time In Its History The Warlord Qabal Vyazin Has Set His Sights On Seizing The Country And Making It Part Of His Powerful, Barbaric Empire, And He Would Crush The Stirrings Of A Progressive And Compassionate Way Of Life That The Nation Has Embraced Harkera Is Also Home To A Powerful Secret Which Could Affect The Fate Of All The Coalition Worlds Jaelya Needs The Help Of Every Friend She Can Find To Keep Her Daughter S Kingdom Safe But First She Has To Decide If She Can Trust Those Who Offer To Help Her Protect Harkera Or Risk Losing Everything To BetrayalTransgressor BookDues Of BloodThe Sabre Is The Most Famous Of The Gladiatorial Fighters In The Arena Of Alfor He Knows How To Face Any Opponent On The Sand And Has Defeated Them All In The Blood Games Patronised By The Wealthy Elite Of Medieval Temsevar But The Warlord Qabal Vyazin Has Decreed The Arena Is To Become A Means Of Political Execution And Even The Sabre Will Have To Struggle To Survive As The Action On Temsevar Moves To The End Game, Those Caught Up In Events Find Themselves Polarised And Choosing Sides, Unsure Of Where The Dagger Of Betrayal May Hide But Offworld Influences Are Reaching Into The Planet S Affairs And Temsevar Itself Could Fall Under Threat From The Coalition

E.M Swift Hook is the author of the Fortune s Fools dark space opera series and co author of the alternate history whodunits the Dai and Julia Mysteries.In the words that Robert Heinlein put into the mouth of Lazarus Long Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards Having tried a number of different careers, before settling in the

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  • Paperback
  • 386 pages
  • The Fated Sky
  • E.M. Swift-Hook
  • English
  • 03 May 2019
  • 9781519046277

10 thoughts on “The Fated Sky

  1. says:

    The first part of the trilogy The Fated Sky Transgressor Trilogy 1 book is well written and with pleasure, I read it Author E.M Swift Hook with an excellent story captures the imaginary world of planet Temsevar The writer has created the world that survives on the edge of a familiar universe in which not yet fired fingers of the Coalition But this world is all that perfect, ruled by the rulers of the desirable power, slaves are a normal thing, and life is worth less than the grain of dust Caravans transport goods between cities, and through wasteland are led by dangerous Zoukai warriors Karavanes Alexa the Fair is the owner of goods that are transported over the wasteland and provides her with a unique opportunity to enrich because it is near her caravan, the spacecraft crashed Alexa the Fair sends its leased Zoukai warriors to explore the place of the fall and pick up all the values they find But Zoukai finds one survivor of the crew members Alexa the Fair is superstitious of the find of goods because it guarantees the wealth, and the new slave is worth the same amount of money She orders the slave to cure to achieve the best price But what Alexa Fair does not know is the man she has rescued, no less than the most controversial anti Coalition fighter, Avilon Revid The world of Temsevar will surely change inevitably with Avilon s arrival I have to admit I enjoyed the book and would gladly recommend it to all Sci Fi lovers and book fantasies because both types of writing are interwoven through the story I received a free copy from the author without an obligation to review.

  2. says:

    Note, Dec 3, 2016 I ve just edited this to correct a couple of minor typos.At present, none of the books of my Goodreads friend E M Swift Hook s Transgressor Trilogy are available in paper format though the author s intention is that they eventually will be Ordinarily, I don t read e books but I got this one when it was temporarily offered for free on Kindle an offer that s since expired , in the hopes of liking it enough to support a friend s work with a review and to put it on my list of books to eventually buy as a paper copy As my review indicates, those hopes were abundantly fulfilled This tale is set in a far future, human colonized galaxy, dominated but not universally occupied and ruled by a self serving, oligarchic empire, the Coalition The immediate setting is Temsevar, a backward non Coalition world circling a red sun, settled millennia ago by colonists before the days of FTL space travel, who ve had little contact with the rest of the galaxy since then and have regressed technologically and socially to a medieval like culture with a stratified, slavery based socio economic system, not much high technology, and an ingrained might makes right, dog eat dog ethos Swift Hook uses a variety of viewpoint characters to tell her story and those she starts off with won t actually be the main characters though I m guessing they ll play important roles in later books of the trilogy Our protagonist I think is Avilon Revid, a high officer in the armed resistance movement against the Coalition, whose spaceship, damaged in battle, crashes on Temsevar he s the only survivor When he s found by the locals, injured and helpless, he s promptly enslaved But intrigue is afoot in this world, where a brutal warlord who uses mass murder as an instrument of policy has set out to conquer a continent and Avilon doesn t intend to give up on finding his way off world and re joining his revolution.Some of the basic premises here have been used before in the genre but Swift Hook essentially re vitalizes them and makes them her own There are affinities to Edgar Rice Burrough s Barsoom novels but the author s prose stylistic skills are a considerable cut above his, and her world building both vastly detailed and vastly plausible Her characterizations are top notch vivid, three dimensional, and believable While she doesn t offer incessant action, there s a fair amount of it, and she handles those scenes well SF of this type incorporating action, and with space opera characteristics is readily dismissed by snob critics as shallow and lacking in really serious thought content Like other tales of its ilk, though, it doesn t truly lack serious thought content it just thinks seriously about topics snob critics prefer to ignore kindness vs cruelty, loyalty vs treachery, concern for others vs sole concern for self, honor vs self serving expediency And the look at a very unhealthy kind of society necessarily prompts readers to think about what a healthy one would look like, and what kinds of attitudes would engender one Plotting and pacing here are also very good this is a compulsive page turner The nearly two and a half months I took to read it was solely do to the format, which doesn t lend itself to reading on the stationary bike where I do my main, regular reading In paper format, I d have blazed through it pretty quickly While the major characters Avilon, nobleman Jariq Zarengor, and secretive information broker Durban Chola are well drawn and complex, and evoked genuine interest in their well being and safety on my part, I can t actually say I liked any one of them All three are flawed to one degree or another though they also have very real good qualities, some of the things they re willing to do can be quite off putting and even chilling at times Surprisingly for a female writer, Swift Hook s important characters are almost all male of course, Temsevar is a very sexist, male ruled society None of the characters here display any scruples about using members of the other gender as playthings for sexual gratification, and even Avilon thinks nothing of using slave women for that purpose Granted, he doesn t violently rape them though raping their social inferiors seems to be a pretty standard practice for the planet s not very noble nobility but in a situation of slavery, constricted options and cultural brainwashing, their consent isn t worth very much On the plus side, however, there s no explicit sexual content, and no bad language This also isn t a work of great spiritual insight Christianity is totally forgotten on this world, what passes for religion is a vague polytheism, and Avilon and Jariq both view life from a standpoint of atheistic skepticism.Although I ve had to read this at least for the moment as pretty much a stand alone, that isn t really the optimum way to read it There are a lot of secrets and unanswered questions here about the characters real motives and agendas some of these questions will be answered, but not all and the answers to other questions may simply give rise to new ones And readers should be aware that this trilogy opener ends in a total cliff hanger though no spoilers here about what it is This and some of the factors mentioned above knocked a star off my personal rating they may not bother other readers but nevertheless, I really liked the book overall That s a testimony to how genuinely well written it is Memo to the author the paper version, when it s published, could really use a map of Temsevar s Western Continent The verbal geographical clues in the text provide a basic spatial orientation, but for me they re no substitute for a map Of course, I fell in love with world and U.S maps as a kid, and felt that they grounded me and helped me to relate myself to my environment maybe not all readers bring that kind of map happy mindset to the table

  3. says:

    Let me start by saying the writing is good This is something I scrutinize since I do a bit of critiquing and self editing At least three times I had been so swept away with the prose that I had to set my Kindle Paper white down and make the statement Not that people in a car dealership waiting room cared My wife seemed mildly interested, but only reads the fiction I write That smarty pants There is a fair amount of political maneuvering and mental chess going on with a couple key characters, namely Jariq and Duran Orson Scott Card and Frank Hebert employ the same method, but I have grown impatient with both sci fi legends because I m an action guy and though their books are well written, they are written about people who just sit around and plot ten steps ahead because they are strategic masterminds Swift Hook avoided Alvin Maker s fate on my digital book shelf There was a good mix of action and much of the deep scheming came from people with the life experiences that would enable them to benefit This was not a book about smart people spacing out with their twenty steps to victory planning This was action packed political intrigue I used to think I was averse to the POV of scheming so and so, but Swift Hook has renewed my faith in the architype I love the Ender s Game and Dune books, by the way, but tolerated the scheming in the doing, then enough was enough.Don t try to figure out the storyline and set up before chapter 14 Just enjoy the ride through an exotic and dangerous desert backwater world of a space empire I wasn t even sure who the book was really about until the mid point, but every person we meet gives us a unique glimpse that no other could, and I wouldn t recommend editing any of them out.I received a free copy in exchange for a review Any review That fact that it s a good one is because the book is good Which has nothing to do with how awesome I am You ll have to find that out for yourself S_Shane_Thomas on Twitter.Do buy this book, but know that the story spans all three parts of the trilogy and part 1 ends without the mandatory hero gives it a fourth desperate unexpected ballsy beyond imagination try, manages to vanquish ultimate evil, then we spend 5 15 pages seeing that all s well that ends well It cliff hangs, leaving me in a lurch and desperate for volume two and the precious time to read it That said, just buy them all Go on, I m done ranting.

  4. says:

    The Fated Sky is an intelligent and wonderfully convoluted fantasy novel, enchanting the reader on a well built far away world through the thoughts, emotions and memories of two triangles of characters The settings are extensive enough to create a plausible world and background for the story There is an inherent complexity in the characters interactions as none of them is entirely good or bad, and there are many hidden implications that the reader is incensed to discover.We start with a triangle that figures Alexa the Fair, an intelligent and beautiful woman and a Caravan s leader, struggling to survive in a man s world by trying to be tougher than most.Caer, a young Zoukai considered too inexperienced to be a Caravan s captain.Avilon, the kashlihk, whose spaceship crashed on the planet Captured and enslaved, he tries to find his way to liberty.With the flow of action, we move into the second triangle Avilon, again.Durban Chola, the riddle inside a mystery, the character that the reader must try hard to understand, and whose actions will still be shrouded in mystery at the end of the book.Jariq, a knight with a grudge, a certain blunt cynicism, a questioning of his own sense of self, and shade of romantic behavior, learning what friendship can be.Over all rule Qabal, a warlord bent on dominating the world, cruel and ruthless but having an interesting mind, a subtle politician.The Fated Sky is a well written mix of fantasy and science fiction, a parable with a high degree of uncertainty and hidden connotations that subtly absorbs the reader in a long journey

  5. says:

    The fated Sky is a well conceived, well written Space Opera, left on a bit of a cliffhanger, or so I thought The story follows Avilon, an offworlder, who crash lands on what I would call, a primitive planet, backward in technology He is captured by a Zoukai Captain, by the name of Caer, who takes him back to the caravan he is guarding.As the story progresses, characters begin to want a piece of Avilon, mainly, Durban Chola, who takes an interest in Kashlihk , the name that Avilon has been given by Caer, as he arrives with the caravan who has taken him prisoner at the yearly market, if that s what would like to call it Where the caravansi try to make as much money as they can from the items they have acquired on their journey s Avilon is sold to a warlord, and Caer is hired by him to become his new right hand man And this is where the story really kicks off I won t elaborate for fear of giving away spoilers I have a really bad habit of doing that I found the writing of this story to be sound, with very few mistakes The dialogue was well written and the story flowed well It was a nice, easy read, full of adventure, and some really dark scenes, which I love There was only one draw back with the whole story, and that was the slowing of pace in some areas Apart from that, everything else about was good A fantastic read that I would recommend to anyone Well done I can t wait to see where this story goes, as it left at such a place, that you would find yourself begging for the next segment.

  6. says:

    When at its start a story needs only who and what to submerge a reader into the immediacy of its world, a powerful writer has you in her grip.The Fated Sky introduces a novelist whose storytelling skills, at once masterful and wondrous, create a world of magnificent scope and vivid imagery Avilon Revid has crash landed on a human world centuries behind the FTL civilization hunting him Now he must reach the planet s other side to its only spaceport if he hopes to escape And the adventure begins.Ms Swift Hook invites you to travel across this world in the company of the trade caravans criss crossing it You will be a party to their internal rivalries and machinations as they vie for power and status And when the caravans arrive in the grand city of Alfor, she places you not just in the midst of its reality but at the heart of the factional maneuvering sharpening the coming conflicts.All the while Avilon, captured by one caravan as a slave destined for the gladiatorial arena, must use every bit of guile and cunning he can muster to pick his way through this alien minefield A task made difficult when the author, in another twist that keeps the plot unpredictable, places him within the clutches of the Black Vavasor.Indeed, Ms Swift Hook s storytelling brings surprise, dismay, frustration, anxiety, anticipation, anger, satisfaction, rage She binds you within emotional chains that permit no escape And that is to her credit.And yet, The Fated Sky is not a flawless novel Not the flaws of structure, scene, and character Ms Swift Hook s instincts and natural skills have those well in hand But the faults of style expected of any first time novelist While not impeding clarity, flow, or the sharp, detailed scenery she paints for the mind s eye, it does not have the depth and maturity awaiting this very talented writer.Nonetheless, it is a singular read that displays a coming novelist s grand vision and sets the stage for the two successive stories serving as coda I deducted a star for the reasons stated above and did so without doubt or reservation 5 star wonders will form Ms Swift Hook s future The Fated Sky is not just the story of a galactic warrior but the unveiling of a phenomenal novelist.

  7. says:

    A merchant class, horse drawn, wagon caravan salvages what it can from a space ship that crashed on the primitive planet They also found and saved the life of an offworlder from the ship not for any altruistic reason mind you, they re profit minded and plan to sell the captive into slavery But that seems to be only one worry as Avilon could just as easily end up in the gladiator arena fighting for his life It s against this backdrop that the story of The Fated Sky unfolds.It s well written and full of intrigue Friendships are made and broken with astonishing regularity All this back and forth aids in the development and understanding of each character The chapters alternate with shifting points of view, much like the cast of characters change alliances.It begins with a caravan Captain, Caer, who s young and naive but learns quickly The question raised is whether he is clever enough to battle wits with Avilon The offworlder is skilled at deception than the caravan operators realize He s like a chess player running his best game using the people he solicits to help him like pawns And some of those folks have their own agendas Characters like Durban Chola, a master manipulator and lay intelligence operative, his plan to aid Avilon looks legit until it s in action then as a reader I wasn t so sure.The pace slows as the activity moves from one place to another on the trail, it becomes a bit of a race to see who will outwit whom first.It s an enjoyable story that I could recommend for teens and older The ending is rather abrupt Given the skill E.M Swift Hook exhibited in the beginning and the middle of the story, there s obviously talent and know how which is why I think I was caught off guard It definitely makes the reader hunger for the next installment to see what happens.

  8. says:

    A thoroughly enjoyable read Although out of my scope of my usual genre, I was swept up and became engrossed in the meticulously laid out world Swift Hook so deftly described Featuring a cast of characters from differing worlds and backgrounds, I enjoyed the pace of the story, and the jump from one viewpoint to the other I particularly enjoyed the way the characters were drawn Jariq, for instance, has a terrifying legacy of indiscriminate killing of innocents like women and children, and yet, he doesn t seem to own this legacy, which made me think it was either untrue, or vastly exaggerated I liked how, through each meeting of other characters, and at the turn of every event, you can make out the change in the point of view character, the way each one is being shaped as the story went on.The story itself, while moving at a good pace, was, at times, puzzling I couldn t quite make out at times where the author was going with the plot, or why certain events happened at all I know this book is a part of a trilogy, so perhaps the finer details of why will come to light later on in the story.Swift Hook is a deft and talented writer, with a gift for creating worlds, while so different from our own, seem entirely plausible and real An interesting and imaginative read I would especially recommend it for Sci Fi fans.

  9. says:

    E M Swift Hook s Fated Sky is a gritty Space Opera set in a far flung periphery of the galaxy in the distant future After being ambushed by Coalition forces, Avilon Revid s space ship crashes on the technological regressive, almost forgotten planet of Temsevar Badly injured, he is captured by a Carvanensi and sold into slavery to a powerful warlord He needs to escape and get to the planet s only spaceport on the other side of the world Not an easy task as Avilon finds himself embroiled in the local politics and the hidden agendas of both possible friends and foes I loved Swift Hook s world building through the point of view of a range of characters Avilon the young Zoukai captain Caer the Carvanasi Alexa the Fair the dealer in information Durban Chola the War Lord s right hand man, Jariq Zarenga and Aisah, leader of the troop of acrobats With each change of pov, I found myself immersed in the character and their goals, conflicts and challenges It certainly added to the understanding of the world, especially as Avilon spends the first part of the story drugged and or chained up in a wagon The distances travelled by foot and horse are realistic on a planetary scale and so there are long sections of travel though there is also plenty of action and high stakes as well The writing was strong, the characters well drawn and complex and memorable, the plot and set up interesting There were a number of minor typos and stylistic glitches but not enough to spoil my enjoyment of the story It was a bit of a let down to find this first book not only ends on a cliff hanger but also, it glides over what could have been a climatic event, as it happens while one major character is drugged and we only hear about in hearsay and not from Avilon s pov, followed by an abrupt finish only tempered by the fact that I m reading the boxed set and have the second book at my finger tips I think the biggest issue for me, the one that made this 4 1 2 stars rather than 5, is that I would be settling into a character, enjoying the nuances, sympathizing with their difficulties, only to realise that yet again this character was a cold blooded killer with or without some pangs of conscience and, often as not, treated sexual encounters as little than scratching an itch I realise that this is in part how their circumstances had made them, and that there is no doubt greater depths to at least some of the major characters, but it did find myself struggling to know who I should barrack for Perhaps this was added to by the fact that Avilon, who I d imagined as the main character, gets little air time and is so totally self contained even when he does so that he is almost as much an enigma at the finish of Fated Sky as he is at the start I want to care about Avilon and Durban, but I don t as their real motives are hidden too deep I want to care for Jariq despite his past loyalty to the cold and calculating Warlord but am reserving judgment.That said, Fated Sky was an enjoyable read and I m looking forward to some answers in the rest of the trilogy.

  10. says:

    From the offset, I liked the premise of this book a periphery back world, tenuously linked to the wider universe, with a fairly primitive civilisation and, of course, the most brutal sociopaths holding all the power Though it is largely a hand to hand, horseback riding kind of world, there are certain aspects of high technology in circulation, which definitely makes this my kind of book in terms of being an interesting genre mix Having said that, most of the tech we see in this book takes the form of weapons high tech laser pistols, and lower tech multi chamber ones and I d like to have had a little bit variety, and seen on how the tech is viewed in the differing levels of society That s just a personal thing on my part though, and although it is something worthy of deeper exploration, the weapon tech is probably key in this story, as the main characters spend a good portion of the book running away from people who want them dead.Which brings me onto the main gist of the book The story is really one of two halves The first part acts as an introduction to the world and the characters It is an interesting world, well thought out, with a clear depth to it, and this depth is reflected in the characters The book is very much character driven, and in the first half we get many POV switches This was okay, as the changing perspectives served to introduce a lot of much needed detail about the world and the characters, but some of the character building did not always help to move the story forward Indeed, some of the characters introduced don t feature in the second half of the story, although this is the first book in a trilogy, so I m assuming they will be reappearing in later books That being the case, I couldn t help thinking that some of these details could have been held for later stories, when these characters would play a bigger role.This first half of the book also involves a lot of diplomatic personal intrigue, with various power plays, machiavellian manipulations and the like, many of them centred around, or rather, instigated by, one of the main characters, Durban Chola Chola is indeed one of the story s strongest characters, because the reader is kept in the dark about his motives, and his personal morals are somewhat dubious That being said, I did feel that some scenes involving him, especially those towards the middle of the book, were overly long At one point he has a conversation, hints at some political intrigue or other, and you think, that s interesting something to mull over But then, at what feels like the end of a scene, he enters into another conversation with someone else, and yet intrigue is piled on Fans of this kind of thing will doubtless love it, but it did have the effect of slowing the pace down in places, and I felt that some of these revelations could have been better spaced.The second half focusses on the characters of Avilon and Jariq Zarengor, and their growing relationship of respect friendship Avilon is an off world freedom fighter, stranded on the planet after his ship crashes, having just escaped a near deadly mission where many of his squad, and presumably his friends, have been killed He suspects that the mission was somehow compromised, and his driving goal is to get off planet and uncover the traitor responsible Not an easy task when you ve been made a fighting slave by one of the planets most dangerous warlords, Qabal Vyazin At the start of the story, Jariq Zarengor is that deadly Warlord s right hand man, loyal to the extent that he has been tarnished with the mantle of being a callous murderer of women and children Though the full facts are not revealed in this book, there is than a hint that his ill repute is not wholly justified I ll not go into detail regarding the events that lead him his estrangement from Qabal Vyazin, but I will say that the build up to it, and the growing tension between the two men was very well done A little bit frustrating maybe, that they could not just have sat down and talked it out, but where would the fun have been in that As I said before, the book is very much character driven, and there is a lot of internalisation in this second half, as the author explores these two characters, and their relationship I would say that this second half loses some focus regarding the overall plot The character s aim is still to escape the clutches of Vyasin, but the threats they face come from a different quarter, in the form of a petty warlord s drunken son, and some chance bandits From the way the story ends, I can see why the author did this, but I d like to have seen something grand at its high point, where some sort of threat from their pursuers was faced Without a big climax at the end, and with the other issues I ve mentioned regarding the introduction of characters at the beginning, this book does feel very much like one section of a bigger story That s okay, to an extent, because of its part in the trilogy, but I would like to have seen it work better as a single story a story that makes the reader go on and read the second one As is stands, I still want to read on to see how the story pans out, but it s of a brief pause for breath before turning the page, rather than a feeling of wow, that was epic, what s next

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