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I Belong

Review: Beyond the Red by Ava Jae

Beyond the RedTitle: Beyond the Red

Author: Ava Jae

GenreYA Science Fiction

Series: N/A

Publication Date: March 1, 2016

Format: Hardcover, 360 Pages

ISBN-10: 1634506448 (Sky Pony Publishing)

ISBN-13: 978-1634506441 (Sky Pony Publishing)

Reviewed by: Bridget


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.

Quick & Dirty: Hands down the best book I have read this year so far! Beyond the Red is a fantastic science fiction novel filled with steamy romance, loveable characters, and tons of action. If you are a fantasy or science fiction fan you must pick up this book ASAP!

Opening Sentence: My brother just killed me.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Kora is an alien queen that rules people who depose her. She is the first female ruler in generations and her subjects would rather have her younger twin brother be king. But her brother is a tyrant and letting him rule would cause her people much suffering so instead of stepping down she does what is right for her people even though they don’t agree. There are riots and attempts on her life almost everyday and there is really no one she can trust. Her guards are loyal to her brother, as are most of the servants. If Kora is going to survive she is going to have to find someone she can trust to protect her at all cost. She never imagined that person would be a half-blood with mysterious origins.

Eros is a rare half-blood. Both humans and aliens depose half-bloods, so the majority of the time they are killed at birth, but strangely Eros was not. He was abandoned when he was a baby and was raised by rebel humans in the desert. He had a loving family, but the rest of the humans merely tolerated him out of respect to his adoptive parents. When there is a raid on his village by an alien group, Eros is forced into slavery. He is offered a position as the personal guard to the queen, the woman who ordered the slaughter of his people. Eros agrees to serve Kora but he never expected to befriend her or eventually feel more for her.

Kora is a very inspirational character and her story broke my heart. She has done everything she can to be a good queen but no matter how hard she tries it never seems to be enough. She is always surrounded by other people but she always feels lonely because there is no one she can truly trust to never betray her. But even though her life is far from perfect she never complains and she never gives up. I loved her spunky personality and she is definitely a girl that can take care of herself, which I really admired. She has a huge heart, but she is willing to make sacrifices when it is right for her people. I loved everything about Kora and I think she is an amazing character!

Eros was one amazing guy and he pretty much captured my heart right from the start. He is smart, resourceful, good looking, and just a genuinely good person. As a character he goes through so much in a very short amount of time, and it amazed me how well he kept himself together through all the pain and emotions he was feeling. He wasn’t always the best at making rational decisions and he could sometimes be a jerk. But I thought his flaws made him more realistic and easier to relate to. His relationship with Kora was perfection. I loved how they first became friends and then slowly developed into something more. They have great chemistry and there was lots of great sexual tension between them. If you can’t tell, I am a huge Eros fan and he has quickly become one of my favorite book boys!

Beyond the Red is a bloody masterpiece! I say that because the book is pretty violent and a little gory, but it was amazing. From the very first page, I was hooked and I literally couldn’t put it down. It is one of those stories that makes you ignore the rest of your responsibility’s so you can read (my kids might have watched too much TV for a few days due to this book ?)! The pacing was spot on, the romance was sexy, the world was captivating and the writing was phenomenal. One of my favorite things about this story was that it was told in dual point of view. It made the story feel more complete and it helped me fall in love with each character so much more! I really liked that it was a sci-fi story, but it read more like a fantasy. I personally haven’t read many books like that and I really enjoyed it. To me it felt and read a little bit more like a new adult book versus young adult, but I think fans of both age groups will enjoy it. But do to the content I wouldn’t recommend it to younger teens. The ending was left very open and I am DYING for a sequel, so hopefully it will happen! If you are a science fiction or fantasy fan you MUST read this book!

Notable Scene:

Something inside me breaks.

A scream rips from my throat, but by the time the soldier turns and sees me, it’s too late—I slam my dagger into his neck. He drops, gurgling as I rip the blade away, whirling on the second solider and catching him in the throat.

Lightning cracks across my eyes—

I’m on my knees, Someone has a fistful of my hair and is yanking my head so far back that my spine might snap. My vision returns in a slow fade, and a second dark-skinned solider with sharp, angled markings who’s more muscle than a man-eating wildcat towers over me, my knife in his hand. Blood drips down my face and neck, soaking the scarf ties around my head, but I’m not sure whose it is. The soldier’s white uniform is soaked in red.

glitter crown


FTC Advisory: Sky Pony Publishing provided me with a copy of Beyond the Red. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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