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Beyond the Red Hardcover – March 1, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Gr 6-9-Kora and Eros cannot be more different: one an alien queen who is fighting to keep the throne from her power-hungry brother and the latter a half-breed human who has never belonged anywhere. This work is told in alternating perspectives and is set in the future on Safara, a desert alien planet in Earth's universe. Kora and Eros are thrust together, and the duo are forced to unite after being framed for an assassination attempt on Kora's betrothed, Serek. The three protagonists not only form a compelling love triangle but are also the world's sole hope to prevent a mass genocide. Fierce and beautiful Kora must navigate her way through court politics, revolutions, and secrets while red-blooded Eros finds himself to be much more important than he ever could have imagined. Serek holds everyone together with his calm yet authoritative nature. Jae's debut novel introduces a unique alien world with a thrilling plot full of twists that are bound to appeal to sci-fi fans, particularly admirers of Avatar and Star Wars. The fast-paced and intense plotlines introduce deep concepts including segregation, homosexuality, and racism; however, the concepts and characters are not fully developed. The author builds a beautifully conceived world with unique details, such as language quirks, an alien monarch ruling system, and special meaning for phrases such as "golden eyes." The fun and engaging plot is predictable but enjoyable. VERDICT An engaging and amusing read for fans of sci-fi romance.-Emily Bayci, Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, OHα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
"Jae's debut novel introduces a unique alien world with a thrilling plot full of twists that are bound to appeal to sci-fi fans, particularly admirers of Avatar and Star Wars. The fast-paced and intense plotlines introduce deep concepts including segregation, homosexuality, and racism; however, the concepts and characters are not fully developed. The author builds a beautifully conceived world with unique details, such as language quirks, an alien monarch ruling system, and special meaning for phrases such as "golden eyes." The fun and engaging plot is predictable but enjoyable. VERDICT: An engaging and amusing read for fans of sci-fi romance." School Library Journal
"Jae's smooth worldbuilding and solid pacing make this a highly readable SF romance. Jae engages with the brutality of her setting and doesn't spare the central characters, who suffer terrible losses." Publishers Weekly
"Ava Jae’s Beyond the Red is a sand-swept fantasy of court politics, rebel attacks, and forbidden romance. While reading, I had flashes of Star Warsa new planet, a fascinating culture, a fresh look on a ruler struggling to keep her powerand I had to know what happened next. Dangerous, exciting, and fast-paced, Beyond the Red is a story not to be missed.” Francesca Zappia, author of Made You Up
Packed with political intrigue and smoldering romance, Beyond the Red left me craving more of Kora’s and Eros’s story and the unique, fascinating universe that Ava Jae has created.” Sarah Harian, author of The Wicked We Have Done
Beyond the Red is a sweeping, compelling romance in a complicated and gritty world. Intrigue and heart on every pageI couldn’t put it down. I’ll be following Ava Jae to see what comes next!” Kate Brauning, author of How We Fall
I loved this book! I couldn’t put it down! What a fantastic debut, perfect for fans of Firefly and Star Wars. Ava Jae’s Beyond the Red packs a punch, a total thrill ride that will keep readers turning the pages. I stayed up all night reading it. From page one, I was sucked in. Jae’s writing style is a perfect mix of stop and go, and her world comes to life within the first few pages. The action was power-packed, and the star-crossed romance had me begging for more by the end.” Lindsay Cummings, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Zenith
Ava Jae has built such an interesting world in Beyond the Red. With forbidden romance, gritty action, and thrilling danger, this debut is one to watch. And here’s hoping for a sequel!” S. E. Green, award-winning author of the Killer Instinct series
I loved Beyond the Red! Ava Jae’s science fiction world-building is a perfect blend of a fantastic, foreign alien civilization and achingly human desires all packed into an explosive mix. I couldn’t help but root for crafty Kora as she navigated court politics, revolutions, and dangerous secrets. And Eros! His determination balanced with a sense of humor about his fate made him such a swoon-worthy love interest. The action started swiftly and didn’t let up. I can’t wait to read more from Jae!” Lindsay Smith, author of Sekret and Dreamstrider
"A thrilling blend of science fiction and fantasy, Beyond the Red sketches out an exciting new world full of romance and intrigue. I can't wait for future installments!" Kat Zhang, author of the Hybrid Chronicles series
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Top Customer Reviews
This story about murder and power and loyalty is told between two POVs, one female and one male from opposite sides of the desert. Watching their journeys merge and grow was such a treat! I really enjoyed the story developments as the power plays became more intense and the stakes were continuously raised.
With two very different main characters seemingly coming from two different walks of life, we get a thought provoking exploration of race and class discrimination and how that affects entire nations of people when the people with all of the power are the ones pushing the prejudice. I love how this is interwoven into the story and such a big part of the story and as far as diversity goes, I also want to mention that there is a brief m/m romance among a minor character.
One of my favorite aspects of the story? The relationships. I loved the sibling rivalry dynamic and really all of the relationships explored in this story. I did think that Kora (a queen) and Eros (her enslaved guard) got too comfortable with each other too quickly and even with that, there was quite a lot going on with Kora’s romance prospects in general though that was understandable and when you read the book, you’ll understand why. So these two bits aside, I really loved seeing all of the well developed relationships and could only ever ask for more.
You’ll want more after you reach the end of this. In fact, since this is a standalone novel, I was surprised with how much was left for the reader to come to terms with. There were many things that I wanted more closure with but as far as Eros goes, I did enjoy the very end! I was really satisfied with this story overall and am so glad that I was able to take the trip beyond the red! Definitely a trip worth taking! Too bad that trip is over now.
The plot and pacing literally kept me turning pages.
Gorgeous and imaginative world-building.
I loved the new language and human dialect Jae created - esp how she envisioned it changing after being passed on for centuries, very clever!
I LOVED Iro...that is all I'm going to say about that.
I know some people knocked the whole physical/insta-luv thing, but honestly, we DO have lust and physical attraction as humans first. It's in our biological make up to assess the person before us as a fit or unfit mate subconsciously without knowing a thing about their personality, which Jae DOES flesh out later. Jae doesn't ignore truth about us in fear of trope haters. So BRAVO for keeping it real. I liked the physical heat she admitted her characters to having.
I loved the many sub-plots she hits on with discrimination. Well done and I loved seeing it in fantasy.
The only thing I wanted more of was Jerek. (Spoiler) I would have been more affected by the ending if he and his feelings for Kora had been fleshed out a bit with just a few more scenes.
I can't wait for the next book to come out, this was an incredible debut and bloody brilliant.
Eros wants nothing more than to escape and rejoin his people, but with his human family dead, and all kinds of prejudice and distrust surrounding him, he's not sure he has much to go back to. Queen Kora wants nothing more than to help her people, but she too faces the prejudice and distrust that her jealous brother is sowing among their people.
When they are framed for an attempted assassination of Kora's betrothed, they must flee and learn to trust each other.
So much heart in this book. So many parallels to our own world that seems to struggle with prejudice and distrust of anyone who is different. Ava Jae is a skilled storyteller, and I'm sincerely hoping there will be a second (third, fourth, fifth), because I need to know more!!!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book was a pleasant surprise, and I wish I would have read it much sooner.Read more
I don't read a lot of sci-fi, but I wish I did. (Recs in the comments, please?Read more